Meeting Report

January 19, 2014

Judy Saint

Organize, Agitate, Educate

Do you know how many billboards in the Sacramento area bore pro-humanist and pro-atheist messages in December? Fifty-five, according to Judy Saint. Fifty-five! Fifty-five messages of hope for non-theists who until now have felt alone in the closet. What’s more, all the billboard messages were generated by the volunteers whose pictures appeared with them.

At this meeting, Judy Saint gave a riveting presentation on her very successful billboard campaign, underwritten by the Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF), the purpose of which was to provide moral support to non-Christians during the traditional Holiday Season.

Moreover, Ms. Saint’s efforts went further than simply developing billboard messages and getting them posted; in fact she contacted several news media outlets in our area in advance to make sure the billboards were noticed. Consequently, every local TV news station and several radio programs aired interviews with her, and national media such as Fox News and the Associated Press carried the story. However, despite her emphasis on the positive messages the billboards carried, many of the reports insisted on labeling them “controversial,” and included reactions by religious leaders.

Near the end of her presentation, Ms. Saint stressed the danger our nation faces by the incursion of religiosity into government. For example, she reminded us that, during the Reagan era, Congress mandated an annual National Day of Prayer.

What can we do to combat this threat? As a start, how about supporting the American Humanist Association’s National Day of Reason? How about also pushing back against the religious zealots’ efforts on the subjects of abortion, birth control, stem cell research, sex education and voting rights?

Our thanks go to Judy Saint for her excellent presentation.

Report prepared by Roger Zabkie

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