Godless Billboard Appears on the New Jersey Turnpike

(Newark, NJ, October 27, 2009) "Are you good without God? Millions are."

These words are part of a coordinated multi-organizational advertising campaign designed to raise awareness about people who don’t believe in a god. The four-city campaign includes a billboard on the New Jersey Turnpike just north of Newark, subway ads in New York City and Boston and a billboard in Chicago.

The New Jersey billboard is in Kearny in Hudson County just south of exit 15W, which leads to I-280 W. People traveling southbound on the Turnpike will see it on the left-hand side of the western spur of two merging highways. Placed by the New Jersey Coalition of Reason, with funding from the United Coalition of Reason, the billboard features the slogan superimposed over an image of blue sky and clouds.

"The point of the billboard is to reach out to the millions of humanists, atheists and agnostics living in the United States," explained Fred Edwords, head of the United Coalition of Reason. "Nontheists sometimes don’t realize there’s a community out there for them because they’re inundated with religious messages at every turn. So we hope this will serve as a beacon and let them know they aren’t alone."

Reaching out to nontheists isn’t the only goal of the campaign. "We want people to know they can be good without belief in a god," said Ken Karp, coordinator of the New Jersey Coalition of Reason. "There is a lot of misinformation out there about us. But we humanists, agnostics and atheists are just like everyone else. We’re your friends, neighbors and family members. We care about our communities and are true to our values.”

The New Jersey billboard officially launches New Jersey CoR. It is also timed to coordinate with the launch of a new book called "Good Without God" by Greg Epstein, which is being released by William Morrow. Epstein, the humanist chaplain at Harvard University, is giving a talk and holding a book signing Thursday evening, October 29, from 7:30 to 9:30 PM, at Rutgers University, 101 Hickman Hall (Douglass Campus), New Brunswick, NJ.

The billboard is one of many that have appeared around the country this year. Billboards and transit system ads funded by the United Coalition of Reason have gone up in places as far flung as Charleston, South Carolina; Dallas and Fort Worth, Texas; Des Moines, Iowa; Morgantown, West Virginia; Phoenix, Arizona, and New Orleans, Louisiana. In a month, more are slated for California and elsewhere.

For additional details on the New Jersey Coalition of Reason and for an image of the billboard, go to www.njcor.org .

See the right sidebar for a high resolution version of the ad free for media use.

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The New Jersey Coalition of Reason ( www.njcor.org ) is a group of like-minded member organizations from throughout the state that share a worldview grounded in reason over superstition, and scientific truth over revealed truth.

The United Coalition of Reason ( unitedcor.org ) exists to raise the visibility and sense of unity among local groups in the community of reason by providing funding and expertise to help them cooperate toward the goal of raising their public profiles.

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For more information contact:

Ken Karp
New Jersey Coalition of Reason
[email protected]

Greg M. Epstein
Humanist Chaplain at Harvard University
Ben Bruton (publicist)
[email protected]

Barry Klassel
Humanist Chaplain at Rutgers University
[email protected]

Martha Knox
United Coalition of Reason
[email protected]