For Immediate Release
Contact: Paul Fidalgo
Phone: (207) 358-9785
August 25, 2011
Thanks in part to a $10,000 donation from Todd Stiefel of the Stiefel Freethought Foundation and a $5,000 gift from the Andrew Norman Foundation, the Center for Inquiry (CFI) is expanding its national multimedia Living Without Religion advertising campaign to Grand Rapids, Michigan; Niagara Falls, New York; and Durham, North Carolina. In addition, CFI will again run ads in the Washington, DC, metro system.
The campaign began in March, in Washington, DC, Indianapolis, and Houston. Shortly thereafter, CFI placed additional billboards with the Living Without Religion message in Portland, Oregon.
In the current phase of the campaign, a poster on US 131 in Grand Rapids, Michigan, will be visible beginning the week of August 29, and a poster will be placed near the intersection of the I-190 and Niagara Falls Boulevard in Niagara Falls, New York, on September 12. CFI will have a billboard display on the East-West Expressway near the Briggs Avenue exit in Durham, North Carolina, beginning September 5, and the subway ads will run in 250 rail cars in the DC metro system beginning August 29.
Unfortunately, a billboard company in Knoxville, Tennessee, refused its ad on the ground that it would be too “offensive” to a “large percentage” of the population in Knoxville.
“Our inability to display this ad in Knoxville underscores the need for this ad-all across America,” said Ronald A. Lindsay, CFI president and CEO. “Irrational prejudice against nonbelievers has no place in twenty-first-century America, yet negative stereotypes about the nonreligious persist.” Lindsay added that he was very grateful for the support of donors, noting, “With these generous gifts, we are able to spread the message that the nonreligious share many common concerns with the religious. They are your friends, neighbors, and colleagues, and we all need to work together-even in Knoxville-if we want a better world.”
The Living Without Religion website has more information about the millions of nonreligious Americans. Roughly 16 percent of Americans are unaffiliated with any particular religion, according to the American Religious Identification Survey (ARIS), and about 10 percent reject belief in any god, based on surveys conducted in association with the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life.
To view the ad and a short video, and for more information, please visit livingwithoutreligion.org.
The Center for Inquiry is a nonprofit educational, advocacy, and research organization based in Amherst, New York; it is also home to both the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry and the Council for Secular Humanism. The mission of CFI is to foster a secular society based on science, reason, freedom of inquiry, and humanist values. Our web address is www.centerforinquiry.net.
The Stiefel Freethought Foundation is a nonprofit private foundation that provides financial support and volunteer strategy consulting to the freethought movement.
The Andrew Norman Foundation is a nonprofit private foundation that was instrumental in funding Free Inquiry magazine. The foundation continues to support humanist programs and projects.
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