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Blasphemy Day news - Taking aim at God on 'Blasphemy Day'

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  • Francis Cabarle
    ... I wonder where can we find those atheist art on the web? If you guys find some let me/us know. Regards, ./francis [Non-text portions of this message have
    Message 1 of 1 , Oct 1, 2009
      > By Moni Basu
      > CNN
      > *(CNN)* -- In his youth, Ronald Lindsey planned to enter the priesthood,
      > so fervent was his devotion to God. But these days, Lindsay is devoted to
      > protecting a person's right to ridicule, criticize -- even lambaste God.
      > [image: Super Bowl Sunday Praying for a Hail Mary was painted by Dana
      > Ellyn.]
      > Super Bowl Sunday Praying for a Hail Mary was painted by Dana Ellyn.
      > You might say he is a blasphemer's savior.
      > The devout Catholic turned non-believer leads a movement that is all about
      > protecting people's rights to speak irreverently about religion.
      > Criticizing God is an act punishable by death in several nations. In
      > America, blasphemy laws remain on the books in six states, though they are
      > largely arcane and not enforced.
      > But everywhere, it seems to Lindsay, scoffing at God is not socially
      > acceptable.
      > People are willing to tolerate the harshest statements about the president
      > of the United States, he said. But talk about Jesus<http://topics.edition.cnn.com/topics/Christianity>or
      > Mohammed <http://topics.edition.cnn.com/topics/Islamism> -- that's a whole
      > different ball game.
      > "We think religious beliefs<http://topics.edition.cnn.com/topics/Religion>should be subject to examination and criticism just as political beliefs
      > are," said Lindsay, 56, who heads the Center for Inquiry<http://www.centerforinquiry.net/>in Amherst, New York, an organization that claims about 100,000 followers
      > worldwide. "But we have a taboo on religion."
      > Outraged by nations that want to execute blasphemers and propelled by a
      > deep belief in the freedom of expression, Lindsay is forging ahead with his
      > "nothing is sacred" movement. Wednesday marks the first organized observance
      > of Blasphemy Day, a series of events, exhibits and lectures unfolding in a
      > host of mostly North American cities that are part of a larger Campaign
      > for Free Expression.<http://www.centerforinquiry.net/news/the_center_for_inquiry_launches_campaign_for_free_expression/>
      > The day coincides with the fifth anniversary of a Danish newspaper's
      > publication of controversial cartoons about Mohammed. The depictions of the
      > prophet wearing a bomb as a turban with a lit fuse sparked protests by
      > Muslims worldwide and prompted media outlets to censor themselves.
      > But to Lindsay, a society is not truly free unless people can freely air
      > their views on any subject -- including God.
      > The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, when asked about the day on
      > Wednesday, declined to comment.
      > Blasphemy Day even includes a contest that invites participants to come up
      > with slogans that might be judged blasphemous by society. And, yes, the
      > winner gets a T-shirt heralding the prized slogan.
      > Lindsay offered this sample: "There's nothing wrong with God that a dose of
      > reality won't cure."
      > Some of the entries are so crude they can't be published by CNN. But since
      > the Center for Inquiry is all about freedom of expression, it can't reject
      > any of them.
      > Lindsay has made it clear that expletive-ridden, crass slogans are not the
      > type of entry that is destined to win, but he makes no apologies for
      > statements that might offend a devout person's sensitivities.
      > Neither does artist Dana Ellyn, 38, of Washington D.C., who is showing her
      > provocative paintings of God and religion in a special Blasphemy Day show
      > Wednesday evening.
      > Ellyn grew up as a non-believer but later studied religion on her own to
      > understand it. After all, she said, it's such an important part of society.
      > She found the concept of faith fascinating. It was an unknown to her.
      > She painted a scene from Noah's Ark with a black child sitting under the
      > table. How did the races evolve, her art asks those who believed in the
      > Biblical tale? She portrayed Jesus painting his crucifixion nails after she
      > noticed a church group using space next to a nail salon in a shopping mall
      > stung by recession.
      > She said she realizes her work makes people uncomfortable, though her
      > intent is not to disrespect.
      > "Even to say, 'I don't believe in God' is enough to knock someone out of
      > their chair and then to see it in a picture ... I've had a lot of hate come
      > my way."
      > And even though she doesn't believe in hell, she feels a bit uneasy hearing
      > that she is going straight to it.
      > "I am in no way trying to be a poster child for atheism," Ellyn said. "But
      > I don't want to be punished for not believing in God."
      > Ellyn said she never means to harm anyone, so she finds it frightening that
      > someone could be punished -- or lose their life -- over remarks or actions
      > considered blasphemous. An Afghan student journalist was sentenced to death
      > for distributing a paper that allegedly blasphemed Islam. A British
      > schoolteacher spent time in a Sudanese jail after she allowed her students
      > to name teddy bears after Mohammed.
      > These are cases that worry Lindsay and the members of his organization. He
      > is most distressed by the U.N. general Assembly considering next month a
      > binding resolution on the defamation of religion.
      > All this did not come easy to Lindsay, the son of Catholic parents who
      > bared his soul in a confession booth each week. Later, he studied religion
      > and philosophy in at Georgetown University. The more he read, the more he
      > questioned beliefs that had been ingrained from childhood.
      > Slowly, the would-be-priest turned into an atheist lawyer -- and a
      > 21st-century defender of time-worn sacrilege
      > source:
      > http://edition.cnn.com/2009/LIVING/09/30/first.blasphemy.day/index.html?eref=rss_topstories

      I wonder where can we find those atheist art on the web? If you guys find
      some let me/us know.



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