Friday, January 16, 2009

Epicurus Part 2



As an addendum to my post on Epicurus.

It's hard to believe folks, but we now have a bus driver refusing to drive a bus with the atheist advertisement on it. The man cannot drive a Godless bus. In 2009. Seriously. I do not jest.

It says so much about intolerance of other religions and opinions, brainwashing and prejudice.

And it also begs the question, is there some other force behind him driving his stance? Like, I dunno, Fundamentalist Christians?

H/T JO

21 comments:

  1. Totally unbelievable. What has he got against atheists? What really gets me is that his bosses, rather than sacking him, say they will do everything they can to accommodate his (totally irrational) objections. Whatever next? Can a driver object to any advert and refuse to drive? Can a driver object to a passenger's reading matter? The mind boggles.

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  2. And guys like this no doubt, lack any compassion or decency when it comes to muslims, jews, buddhists, etc. And you're right, his employers condone it.
    We're regressing at an accelerated speed.
    XO
    WWW

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  3. we've had this problem too in many ways.

    bus drivers who won't drive buses with certain ads on the side (for gay bars)

    muslim taxi driverrs who won't transport anyone who is carrying alcohol; muslim grocery clerks who won't check you out if you're buying pork.

    there is quite a clash between faith and the rest of life. and in a society that is not religiously based but allows for all faiths, the answers are not always clear.

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  4. A huge row has broken out in Northern Ireland over these bus ads, with several prominent Bible bashers saying the NI bus company Translink should "think very carefully" before running the ads on its buses.

    I think the Biblicals should think very carefully about the meaning of the phrase "freedom of speech".

    See http://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/
    (lead story Saturday morning)

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  5. such a fascinating topic!! would we cheerfully and willingly drive a bus that had a banner that said, oh, DEATH TO ALL JEWS?

    ok aside from the fact that Translink likely wouldn't allow such an ad, it does cast a little light on the other side.

    it's very very tough!

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  6. I'm not a Christian but have seen comments in our media in the UK about the fact that you wouldn't see the same slogan beginning "There probably isn't an Allah! on a bus because it would have been censored in case it caused offence to Muslims. While I support the atheist's viewpoint, we seem to allow messages that are perceived to be anti Christian whilst censoring anything similar against other faiths. So our "freedom of speech" is very one sided here.

    There have also been a spate of stories in the media about Muslims using their religion to sue for compensation from their employers where alcohol is involved. One man refused to shift boxes containing bottles of alcohol using a fork lift truck that he was employed to drive in a warehouse owned by Tesco supermarket. As if he didn't know that a supermarket sells alcohol, let alone pork products etc.

    Also a Muslim woman is suing a company that owns a cocktail bar for "forcing" her to wear a red cocktail dress that had been designed by the team of female staff. Said it was against her religion to wear a revealing dress. She managed to do so for 8 months before resigning and then suddenly taking legal action. What is interesting in this case is why a Muslim woman would want a job serving alcohol in the first place when her religion forbids her to drink it or serve it at all.

    Opportunism or what?

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  7. I'm a bit surprised this happened in England - it's the kind of thing which would happen here in the Bible Belt of the USA. Things must have changed there in the last 4 or 5 years!

    In our town there are big sign boards, banners and adverts for all things Christian - I bet they wouldn't allow anything similar to the bus sign to be displayed - the perpetrator would be arrested for sure. Freedom of expression? Forget it! It's "do as we do - or face the consequences".
    Sigh.

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  8. Laurie:
    I think it about time that the other side was heard from, though.

    There's a difference between hate mongering and a simple statement.

    We are inundated by billboards telling us that Jesus Saves and Plant a Tree for Israel.

    I find it completely refreshing though saddened that this bus driver takes such a stance. Is his faith that rocky?

    XO
    WWW

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  9. Rossa - "Allah" means God, so as I understand it the reference to God on the adverts would include Allah.

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  10. Excellent point, Rossa. Here there was such an outcry from Sikhs in the RCMP that their religious headgear is now allowed instead of the uniform hat.
    I am consistently surprised that the aboriginal peoples (who have more rights than many Canadians)have not insisted on feathers, beads and paint as part of their RCMP uniform.
    Where do we draw the line?
    XO
    WWW

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  11. T:
    I agree, the sedation of the masses into fundamentalist thinking.
    But I must admit I get a charge out of seeing that pink bus tooling around carrying the banner:
    "Gays for Jesus".
    LOL
    XI
    WWW

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  12. Well hell WWW, if other faiths can be bolshie about what they will and won't put up with I don't see why athiests can't. He's making a valid political point if you ask me! :-)

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  13. Nick is quite right that the word Allah means God. However it is the use of the Muslim word for God that would be banned. In fact the original advert submitted to the ASA (Advertising Standards Authority) didn't have the word "probably" in it....There isn't a God...." etc. That was considered too provocative so they had to insert “probably” to comply with the ASA ruling.

    As a humourous aside...In the UK they passed a law this year saying that if you’re an astrologer, you have to put ‘For Entertainment Purposes Only’ on your promotional material.

    You also have to put ‘not experimentally proven’. As one lawyer said: “You could argue that this is no different from promises given by the Church of Eternal Life, which people pay for, in the sense that they feel obliged to give to the collection, it’s no more proven.”

    Can you imagine it...if they were to make it EU law, the board outside the Vatican,"Not experimentally Proven" !!

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  14. WWW, we already have a law in the UK that allows Sikh police officers to wear their turban instead of a helmet or cap. They can also ride a motorbike with a turban on instead of a helmet.

    In schools all religious headgear is allowed though we’ve had a spate of court cases over the wearing of religious jewellery such as crosses, the latest one being the ring worn by teenagers committed to no sex before marriage. Can’t remember the name of the group promoting this, it started in the US then came over here.

    A woman working for British Airways was suspended for wearing a tiny cross on a necklace under her uniform. Eventually after an outcry she was allowed to wear it, particularly after it was pointed out that other members of staff were allowed to wear religious symbols. As I said before so called equality of religious belief doesn’t exist anymore, particularly if you are a Christian, neither does freedom of speech or expression.

    What is even more frightening is that now we have a law against thought based race crimes, as in if someone “thinks” something is racist the police are forced to investigate it. Just waiting to see what they do about Sooty (for those who don’t know he is a glove puppet) which is a word that can be used to describe a “person of colour” in a derogatory manner and there is a fun 4 piece group called “4 poofs and a piano” who can’t register their name in case it offends gays. As they are 4 gay guys who are happy to call themselves “poofs” it seems ridiculous that it could offend anyone.

    You couldn’t make it up!!

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  15. There was a very interesting article in today's "Globe" about this whole issue. The writer's position was that, even as an atheist himself, he was opposed to the whole idea of promoting atheism as another organized "ism" And that for him, the benefit, beauty, point of atheism was to be outside of any organized group, church hierarchy, political area, etc. and hence to be impervious to retaliation or rebuke. "Each to his own." You cannot oppose something that refuses to position itself in opposition. It merely is...ML...

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  16. Laura:
    You mean the bus-driver refusing to drive the godless bus?
    XO
    WWW

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  17. Rossa:
    I'd prefer a huge banner flying over the Vatican: "For Entertainment Purposes Only, Use at Your Own Risk".
    LOL
    XO
    WWW

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  18. Rossa:
    And meanwhile real HATE goes unchallenged in Iraq, Darfur, Gaza et al.
    We are all barking mad.
    XO
    WWW

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  19. Marylou:
    Excellent point but I can also see a need for atheist children not to be so marginalized in schools, friends, etc. I believe some summer camps have been organized for atheist (pagan?) children.
    The Humanist community is also quite validating.
    XO
    WWW

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  20. What I don't understand is the idea that Atheists aren't allowed *one* advert promoting atheism (and not even that - it's a debating point (as the Methodists have spotted - from the link in the post: "the Methodist Church said it would be a "good thing if it gets people to engage with the deepest questions of life" and suggested it showed there was a "continued interest in God"."), not a statement that says you have to follow it), yet, on the way to work (two train stations and walking past road advertising hoardings), I pass on average 4 Christian adverts, most along the lines of "If you don't believe, you will go to hell..." You don't see anyone complaining about these.

    And would I, if I became a bus driver, be allowed to refuse to drive buses with Nestle adverts on the side because I object to their business practices? I expect not!

    I do not understand the offence that seems to get taken by religious fundementalists of all types when someone dares to question their beliefs, or even state that they might have an opposing view. The conversation with my mother when I told her that I no longer wanted to go to chapel because I didn't believe in God or Jesus was "You believe in love and truth? Well then, you believe in God. You are coming to church."

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  21. Jo:
    it just goes to show you how insidious is the brainwashing in all levels of society from political gurus down to kindergarten.
    How dare we question a (Christian) God when everything in our logical brain tells us there is no such thing. We are on our own in this chaotic journey. Dust in the wind.
    XO
    WWW

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