Published by: 1World Online
An atheist is suing the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission for denying her the right to have the word “8THEIST” stamped on her car’s license plates. The non-believer of religion says that by doing so her 1st Amendment right to “free speech” is being violated.
Chalk one up for an atheist’s right to proudly announce, on our nation’s roads, that “freedom from religion” is an unalienable right to tell the world that they believe we come from nothing and return to even less.
It is a safe bet to say that while atheists are driving on the highways they will not be praying to Saint Anthony or muttering the words “Oh my God!” right before smashing into a road barrier at ninety-miles-per-hour.
In this one rare moment, an atheist may even be right. If one can have the word “BAPTIST” stamped on their license plate, why not the word “8THEIST?”
Shannon Morgan, who is an atheist, was denied that right by the NJMVC, as was previously David Silverman, who is the “American Atheists” group proud leader and hater of the term, “Merry Christmas.” Silverman eventually was granted the right after finding a supervisor at the NJMVC who was not stuck in traffic at the George Washington Bridge.
Morgan’s case is still pending.
I agree with Silverman when he says that the word “8THEIST” is not a bad word or offensive. The ideology that the word projects may be too many people, but the word itself is not.
I find it ironic, however, that Silverman and Morgan support the same group of people who were complaining last year that they find the word “Christmas” objectionable. They also find it so offensive that they displayed a huge billboard in Times Square, last December, which proclaimed we should, “Take The Christ Out Of Christmas!”
It is unfathomable that one would complain that they cannot display the word “8THEIST,” on license plates, but say that millions of Catholics around the world should not use the word “Christmas” to display their holiday message.
Why is it that the American Atheists (not to be confused with the AAA auto club) thinks that 1st Amendment rights belong only to them?
Isn’t the freedom of speech to announce that you do not believe the word of Christ based on the same right as saying that Christ belongs in Christmas?
Perhaps now atheists will understand how all followers of religion feel when say they have the right to freely express their religious beliefs no matter who finds it offensive.
The right to freedom of speech in religion, politics or in any other setting is not inclusive to any one group, and never should be for the sole purpose of degrading another’s right to believe in something.
I guess now, David Silverman, and the rest of his joyous followers, will not object to Santa Claus having the words “Christmas Rocks!” on his toy sleigh’s license plates this coming Christmas.
I may even put those words on my car’s license plates this “CHRISTMAS!”
Joseph E. Rathjen is a freelance writer and Opinion Writer at 1World Online – America’s Fastest Growing Social Research Engine.
- Atheist billboard in Times Square deletes Christ from Christmas (pix11.com)
- Why atheists should quit the ‘War on Christmas’ (richarddawkins.net)