Washington, D.C — An individual or individuals have defaced a billboard in Moscow, Idaho… again. The billboard originally read “Millions are good without God” but was partially obscured with blue paint to now read “Millions are good with God”. It’s the second time the American Humanist Association (AHA)-sponsored billboard has been vandalized in two weeks. In the first instance the word “without” was completely blacked out, after which the AHA quickly replaced the billboard. The advertisement, which was originally placed mid-September, is part of an American Humanist Association advertising campaign to spread awareness about being good without God. It’s the third billboard advertisement the organization has displayed in the Moscow area and similar ads have been put up around the country.
A picture of the vandalized billboard can be found here.
The billboard can be found on Highway 95, just south of Moscow near the Sweet Avenue cross street, facing northbound traffic.
“The irony here is worth noting,” said David Niose, president of the American Humanist Association. “Some individuals are committing criminal acts while apparently claiming that their religious view of the world leads to good behavior. It’s not a very convincing argument on their part.”
“This is not just vandalism, it is religiously motivated vandalism which attempts to silence a minority viewpoint,” added Niose. “Everyone, not just humanists, should be concerned about such acts.”
The Moscow Police Department notified the AHA this morning. They believe the ad was defaced between 1 and 3 am. The AHA has alerted the billboard company who leased the space, Lamar Outdoor, who said they will start leaving the lights on round the clock. The AHA will be replacing the billboard but hasn’t yet decided whether to go with the same design.
“I’m disturbed that this happened again,” said Roy Speckhardt, executive director of the American Humanist Association. “Two consecutive crimes in a town where the last incidence of billboard vandalism was years ago makes it obvious that humanists and our message are being targeted.”
The American Humanist Association (www.americanhumanist.org) advocates for the rights and viewpoints of humanists. Founded in 1941 and headquartered in Washington, D.C., its work is extended through more than 100 local chapters and affiliates across the United States.
Humanism is the idea that you can be good without a belief in God.