Atheist Books Next To Bibles? Could Happen In Georgia’s State Parks

    May 21, 2013
    Zach Walton
    Comments are off for this post.

Georgia’s state parks are now allowing Bibles to be placed in rental cabins. An atheist group arguing for equal representation is now presenting a plan that would allow them to place books with atheist philosophies in those same cabins next to the Bibles.

The AP reports that David Silverman, president of the American Atheists organization, is now waiting to hear back from the state of Georgia on its plan to place atheist books in cabins. The plan, if approved, would see the group donating several books to state parks. These books will explain atheist philosophy.

According to Silverman, this isn’t about competing with Christianity. It’s all about fair treatment and allowing multiple viewpoints to be presented:

“We expect fair treatment, we anticipate fair treatment and we look forward to fair treatment. If the state is going to put Bibles in the cabins, they must allow alternate points of view — all alternative points of view without taking sides.”

All of this started when an atheist named Ed Buckner was dismayed to find nine Bibles at the cabin he rented. The state promptly removed the books, but soon returned them after the state Attorney General deemed them legal. Afterwards, Governor Nathan Deal said that literature from any religious group was welcome to donate literature.

So now Silverman plays the waiting game as Georgia works on new regulations regarding the distribution of materials. It’s likely that Silverman will have his way. A win for him will open the floodgates, however, as other religious groups may be jumping at the bit to put their own books in Georgia’s state parks. Visitors may soon even find that their rented cabin has been converted into a library full of religious texts.

[Image: justenableme/tumblr]

  • Jacob Schlueter

    I don’t see anything wrong with this. Especially if the books are being donated to the parks. I would much rather see all religious and philosophical groups represented than none of them. That way there’s something for everyone.

    But it would realy be interesting if state park cabins ended up being full of a variety of religious texts, though.

    • http://atheists.org EdBuckner

      The best solution is the one I quietly sought from the beginning–keep state government out of the religion business, since there is no practical way for them to be completely inclusive without installing a library in every cabin. But I guess we’ll see what happens. –Ed Buckner (the “troublemaker” who started all this.

      • freethought

        Exactly. As with the distribution of Bibles in public schools, if the powers that be decide to allow them, then they must allow any religious or non-religious organization equal access. We would rather that no one need do this, but since they allow Christians to walk all over the Constitution we must have the same consideration.

        • Wow

          “they allow Christians to walk all over the Constitution”

          That has to be one of the dumbest things I’ve ever seen someone post on the internet. Congratulate yourself, you are stupid.

          • freethought

            You can call stupid without saying why? Well I think you are stupid…just because.

          • freethought

            Christian Prayer in government meetings and in schools. Christian Manger scenes on Government Property. Ten Commandments on Government land. Christian Bibles in courtrooms. Christian Chaplains in the Military. Christian Mottos on our currency. Christian slogans in the Pledge. If that doesn’t reek of treading on the laws for separation of church and state, I don’t know what is.

            Care to offer some legitimate response there, Wow?

            Or do you just know the two words: dumb and stupid?

        • eva

          Yes I can offer a reasonable and intelligent answer. The constitution allows freedom of religion. If you don’t like it, look the other way. No religion walks over the constitution, because it offers freedom to everyone. If you are going to ask for an intelligent response, why don’t you carry yourself in such a manner, and stop responding with replies such as, ” Well I think you are stupid…just because.” Thanks.

          • freethought

            If you were paying attention you would see why I responded to WOW with the remark about being “stupid”. At least you can form words into a complete statement. And I would never seriously debate by saying that someone was merely “stupid”. I leave that to the Christians. They do it so well.

            Funny, isn’t it that the Christians are the only ones that are going against the separation of church and state theory. All others are content with the laws of this land.

    • Seth Welch

      The atheist group needs to check their facts before moving forward. The Bibles are not “placed” in cabins by the State. The Bibles are paid for by a private party and they actually pay the State to place them there. I would love to go back to living in a country where the majority actually still had a voice. I wonder if this is actually a concern from the Atheist movement or a publicity stunt.

      • freethought

        Back to when the MAJORITY HAD A VOICE? I guess that you are blind to the fact that the Bill of Rights and the Constitution protect the rights of the individual over the forces of tyrannical religious majority. You think America was that kind of a country once? I say you need to get your history from somewhere besides the pulpit.

        If it is a publicity stunt, it is the Christians that are pulling it.

  • Lame

    Really? Atheists need equal representation? For what? They are not a minority(skin color or otherwise), they are not women, they are in no way discriminated against. Why then do they need “fair treatment”? This is such a non-issue that it really is just an excuse to push their “beliefs and ideals” onto other people.

    By the way, who really checks into a cabin and expects to find a library of books waiting for them? If you are that worried about seeking knowledge and empowerment from books, bring your own.

    • Kevin

      To your point, “this is such a non-issue that it really is just an excuse to push their beliefs and ideals onto other people.”–Uh, you could say the same thing about the people putting bibles into these cabins in the first place? People throughout history have committed the worst atrocities in the world under the guise of Christianity. If Atheists or any spiritual/philosophical construct want equal representation, let them have it.

      • Lame

        It is a non-issue because only atheists complain about it. Not only that, they have made such a stink about it that people such as yourself feel the need to speak on their behalf—maybe you are an atheist? By the way, how many Muslims or Jews have complained about this issue? It has become a topic of debate only because atheists will do anything to attack religion, no matter how petty.

        And if you did your homework, you would know that atheists have already made countless attempts to have Bibles removed from such facilities, and with some success; now they are trying to get their own material in. Hypocrisy at its finest…

        Cabins and other facilities that are state-run are NOT REQUIRED to supply such material; to put it another way, there is no law that says a facility must provide books of this nature. Again, if you seek spiritual or philosophical guidance, bring your own stuff.

        • freethought

          Atheists outnumber Jews, Mormons and Scientologists together. Would you be the kind to tell a Jew they should not have representation? I didn’t think so.

        • Raandy

          Please answer as honestly as you can. Do you think some Christians would complain & make a stink if they found Qurans (and only Qurans) in the cabins? If you answer “yes” then you know you,and the state of Georgia are wrong in this matter.

  • Chuck Daly

    I wouldn’t care if they put an entire library of religious and philisophical books in each cabin. The athiest group behind this looks petty. It’s not mormons, jews, muslims, buddhists, etc, but athiests. What next, are athiests gonna ask for an alternative to the white house easter egg hunt, because the easter bunny and religious deities are no different to true athiests and agnostics.

    • freethought

      Chuck would be wise to tell us which Easter egg hunts were ruined by the atheists. Isn’t it getting so common that Christians refuse to follow “thou shalt not lie” especially when making a comment. We see how little respect they have for the Constitution. What looks real petty is the Christians, who should know better, forcing the issue to keep BIBLES in a Cabin paid for by all Americans.

      • freethoughISdumb

        Right, because ALL Americans are complaining/concerned about paying taxes for Bibles in cabins. How stupid are you?

        • freethought

          In America it should be what is unfair to one cannot be approved to all. That’s the American way. Or do you see it differently?

    • Raandy

      Please answer as honestly as you can. Do you think some Christians would complain & make a stink if they found Qurans (and only Qurans) in the cabins? If you answer “yes” then you know you,and the state of Georgia are wrong in this matter.

  • DTerrell

    Here is the best solution…

    Tell Ed Buckner to go *F* himself. Tell David Silverman to go *F* himself because this is how you deal with “adult children”. When adults behave like spoiled brats you quickly send them on their way and not give them the time of day.

    Now, I don’t know who put those bibles in the cabins and I really don’t care. I would suggest not purchasing any more and as time passes and those that are there get old and thrown away or taken then there won’t be anything in any cabin related to religion unless some visitor decides to donate their copy of whatever book they believe in.

    With that being said, it is not against any principle of this nation, constitutional amendment or law, for a people of a state or locality to express its religious faith using tax payer money. This does not mean it would be a good idea under any circumstance to do so.

  • Legalmind

    Under the law, the atheists are not entitled to equal representation in the state’s cabins as atheism is NOT a religion. Atheism is not constitutionally protected, not entitled to equal representation under the law, and has no standing to require equal representation in government. Atheists cannot declare their aversion to religion and then seek the same treatment as religion as they are, by their very nature, non-religious. The law is clear. The request should be denied.

    • freethought

      Really? LEGALMIND? On what prior cases do you base your opinion? If anything, the atheists should have more rights as we are determined to make all follow the rule of law. Did you really pass a law exam?

    • Raandy

      So do you think that Atheists should also be denied citizenship? The right to vote?