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African Americans for Humanism

I usually gripe about the esthetics of atheist billboards here, but I have to come right out and say it: African Americans for Humanism did good. Their whole campaign is attractive, positive, and tasteful. Heck, I’m Minnesota Pallid*, and I want to join them.

They have a speakers bureau. If you’re building an atheist/humanist/secular conference, look. I’ve heard less than half of them speak, and next time I’m at a conference I’d like to hear more.


*True fact. I had a routine checkup today, and the first thing the doctor said to me was “Boy, you’re pale”…which is a major accomplishment in Minnesota in February, to have a complexion so white that it elicits comment. I’d go outside and see the sun, but I’m also teaching a cancer course which makes me fearful of everything.

Comments

  1. says

    nothing to complain about that banner (well, it’s pretty busy, but amazingly enough, it’s still very readable despite that): professional photography, relevant and non-garish use of colors & graphic elements, not-horrible font, main message readable at a single quick glance, but details also provided.

    And on a winter-related note: I never expected to brag about the “warm” winter in ND to my mother in Germany, but apparently we switched climates without noticing; we are having the mild German winter, she is having the harsh ND winter

  2. Dr. Audley Z. Darkheart, liar and scoundrel says

    You really can’t go wrong with Langston Hughes.

    Anyway, yay for professional quality billboards! I think this is the first atheist-y billboard that hasn’t made me cringe.

  3. Matt Penfold says

    *True fact. I had a routine checkup today, and the first thing the doctor said to me was “Boy, you’re pale”…which is a major accomplishment in Minnesota in February, to have a complexion so white that it elicits comment. I’d go outside and see the sun, but I’m also teaching a cancer course which makes me fearful of everything.

    You need to read the Daily Mail PZ. It has embarked on an ambitious project to categorise everything in the entire universe into things that cause cancer and things that cure cancer.

  4. niftyatheist says

    I second the vitamin D advice. As a mom, I was never a fan of a lot of vitamin supplementation, but as a Newfoundlander who grew up being given cod liver oil in the winter months (believed to hold mysterious healthful qualities- which it did, though no mystery; vitamin d, which we sorely lacked in that sun-deprived part of the world), the one thing I do insist on from October through May is a 1000IU vitamin D geltab each morning (two for myself and Mr Nifty, since we are 50-ish).

    Fresh air exercise as often as you can (ie your “constitutional” on Saturday morning – excellent!) a colourful diet with as many fresh, crunchy red and green ingredients as possible, enough sleep and water and a vitamin D tab every day and you’ll be in good shape!

    I predict that in 10-20 years there will be firm science showing that vitamin D is the foundational thing humans need for all systems to be working optimally.

  5. niftyatheist says

    OMGs, I forgot to comment on the actual topic – the billboards! I first saw the African Americans for Humanism billboards on the Friendly Atheist and I thought then (as now) that these are hands down the best effort of a godless group so far, visually and thematically.

  6. says

    The only reason I don’t have rickets is that I actually have on-campus classes and thus am forced to leave the apartment in daylight 3 times a week. I don’t think I’ve seen sunlight once during Christmas break :-p

  7. evader says

    OMG!! — an Atheist billboard that won’t give you cancer from it’s superbad design principles?!?!

    *clap*

    Bravo!

    This Advertising Artist approves the above billboard.

    (to whoever made the Yellow Baby w/ Comic Sans billboard, TAKE A LESSON).

  8. ewanmacdonald says

    Yep, fair play, that’s a good billboard. Names are maybe a little small but by the side of the road they’ll be better.

  9. frog says

    Rey Fox @ 5:

    You would be surprised. I drink milk by the gallon and hate sunblock (though I use it if I’m outside all day because I hate skin cancer more). I got back from two weeks in the Mediterranean, and tested at 8 ng/ml. Eight. It’s a wonder I wasn’t all bendy with soft bones.

    We corrected that with vit-D supplements, and I get tested every few months just to be sure, but wow, I had not thought it physically possible for me to be so low in vit-D.

  10. fishsci says

    Yay, go black atheists! Don’t let this be another white-only run show!

    Also, asthetically pleasing design, must have been hard to get right. Not that I am going to see it here in Germany – where incidentally, yes we have a North Dakota winter here with temperatures regularly around 0°F and records at -22°F. And it is even colder in Poland or Ukraine. Brass Monkey, and all that.

  11. says

    When Kimberly said she was from Chicago my heart skipped a beat. I can drive there! Unfortunately I’m Swiss cheese pale (Wisconsin).

  12. magistramarla says

    Those of you who CAN spend time in the sun are lucky. For those of us who have Lupus, Sjogren’s and other autoimmune diseases, the sun is our enemy – makes our rashes and symptoms so much worse. Ironically, research has been finding that a lack of vitamin D is very common in folks with these diseases, and also seems to worsen the symptoms. So, I have to mega-dose on those supplements.

  13. Furr-a-Bruin says

    I don’t know if I’m as pale as PZ or some of the others here, but as a resident of Southern California … I tend to stand out, as much for my devotion to high SPF sunblock and shade as for my actual skin tone.

    I’ve been this way since I was a kid; I referred to sunburn as “a radiation burn” in school, which got me some odd looks. And shortly after learning the connections, I started seeing “skin damage and increased chances of cancer” instead of “healthy glow” on tanned people.

  14. Synfandel says

    I’d go outside and see the sun, but I’m also teaching a cancer course which makes me fearful of everything.

    On a clear, sunny February day in Ontario, I get sun burn in about ten to fifteen minutes. (I have a very strong albedo.)

  15. Synfandel says

    Should the Catholic church be able to refuse government health care that allows sterilization, abortion-inducing drugs and contraception?

    What does the question mean? I don’t think the U.S. government or the Texas government is trying to force the Catholic Church (all 968,000,000 of them?) to undergo health care.

  16. debbiegoddard says

    (Just saw this, and I had to laugh at how many of the comments so far are about people trying to out-pale each other.) :)

  17. collif says

    Love it. The quality is good, and after watching one of the interviews the whole campaign seems to be following suit.

    Also, @#7 niftyatheist. Good to see a fellow Newfoundlander here. I have heard the majority of our population suffers from vitamin D deficiency from too many cloudy days. Not sure if it’s true or not but the supplements likely wouldn’t go astray. I should look into that.

  18. says

    Having spent 3 years of my Army service in The Outer Hebrides I empathize with the pale rider thing for your poor northerners. In winter if you didn’t go out at lunchtime you didn’t see the sun at all, though on the plus side you could safely go out for a midnight walk and not worry about falling into the peat bog all summer long (both days in a good year). Moving to the deep south – great for the weather; not so great for freedom of atheistic expression; still definitely worth it for the woman I married.
    That said it’s good to see a good quality poster design by atheists; we need more like that.
    And the poll on the Cat Lickers – the noes have it right now. When will they learn how dumb these online polls are?

  19. rapiddominance says

    Well, damn if that ain’t a good looking advertisement. Looks like something out of a Michael Bay film. Furthermore, its a pretty smart strategy to use REAL African American actors rather than menstrils (whose obvious paint job is an insult to everybody and who, more often than not, tend to offend minority viewers).

    But its the music that makes this baby run. It sort of gives you the sensation that a customer service representative will be taking your call shortly (and in the order that it was received).

  20. Sili says

    But I don’t understand …

    Everyone knows that atheists are only grumpy, middleaged, white men.

    Religion is sooooo good for the black man! Just look at MLK and Malcolm X! If it wasn’t for Christianity all the blacks would still be slaves!

    Fascism! Imperialism! Nazis! Nazis! Nazis!

  21. says

    Nice, clean aesthetics. About time.

    You need to read the Daily Mail PZ. It has embarked on an ambitious project to categorise everything in the entire universe into things that cause cancer and things that cure cancer.

    And amusingly, half the things in one group can also be found in the other.

  22. georgeneharkness says

    “its a pretty smart strategy to use REAL African American actors”

    Just for the record, these are not actors. I know one of them personally, and while he presents himself well, he’s not an actor.

  23. David Marjanović says

    I don’t think I’ve seen sunlight once during Christmas break :-p

    That’s… entirely understandable (I almost managed the same feat while actually living with my parents!) but scary. Not in terms of rickets, but of depression.

    but but… chalkboard! and artistic expression! and effort! and WAAAAAAAAH!!1!

    :-p

    :-D :-D :-D

    I think I must take everything back. You don’t look depressed to me right now! :-)

  24. cjmitchell says

    I once had this conversation (not verbatim) with my doctor:

    Doc: “Wow, you’re pale. You should wear sunscreen all the time.”
    Me: “But it’s February.”
    Doc: “All. The. Time.”
    Me: “At night?”
    Doc: “You never know, those incandescent lights are tricky.”
    Me: “But it’s Seattle! And I’m a hermit-like engineering student who gets outside maybe half an hour a day.”
    Doc: “Yes. Sunscreen.”

    I did ask about the questionable effect that some ingredients in sunscreen have on one’s health, and she admitted I had a point. She told me I didn’t have to wear it at night.

  25. buzztoh says

    this might sound weird, but why is it targeting african americans as a separate group? Would the response be the same as it was especially targeting white americans? or asian americans?

    Why make the distinction in the first place?