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Oct 13 2013

That is a good cartoon

The Digital Cuttlefish has found an excellent expression of religious thought.

show-me-a-sign-cartoon

That isn’t photoshopped or fudged in any way — that is the actual, complete cartoon that Ken Ham has happily encouraged everyone on the internet to share around.

It’s perfect. We ask for evidence of their god, they point to one of their own silly texts. And we really are stunned, shocked, and surprised, just like the guy in the cartoon…because we had no idea anyone could be that stupid.

40 comments

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  1. 1
    Rip Steakface

    “If there is a god, show me a sign!”

    “Well, I pulled this out of my ass a few moments ago…”

  2. 2
    spontorder

    Aw, come on, PZ. For coming from Ken Ham, that’s pretty funny.

  3. 3
    Rey Fox

    Am I really to believe that they got their goofy billboard up in Times Square?

    I guess I kinda hope so. One, New Yorkers would just laugh at it, and two, the advertising rates might bankrupt him.

  4. 4
    David Marjanović

    *Picard & Riker double facepalm*

  5. 5
    blf

    (I accidentally added a comment to Digital Cuttlefish’s blog which was intended for this thread (so it perhaps doesn’t make too much sense there), where it is now awaiting “moderation”. Unfortunately, I don’t have a full copy, but it went something like this…)

    According to Ken “Piglet Rapist” Ham’s post, “AiG cartoonist Dan Lietha decided to produce a special cartoon about our new AiG billboard campaign. …I’ve also included a special link [to the cartoon]so you can share it with others”. (I had trouble believing they were that stoopid (or think their zealots are), so after donning appropriate protective gear, I visited the original.)

    What is next? Putting the cartoon on a billboard? Oh, please, please, yes! (Could the workmen stop sniggering long enough to even paste-up / hang the cartoon correctly?)

    And how long before Michele Bachmann or Governor (quit) Palin, or some other wingnut, cites or uses the cartoon?

  6. 6
    Daz: Experiencing A Slight Gravitas Shortfall

    To call this circular reasoning would be to stretch the word “reason” way too far.

  7. 7
    boskerbonzer

    So they’ve moved from a baby’s smile and breathtaking sunrises to billboards? Yeah, sounds about right.

  8. 8
    blf

    (Third and last attempt to comment. First one — very similar to this attempt — accidently posted at Digital Cuttlefish, second vanished (not sure why), …)

    I wasn’t stunned into silence, I was rolling on the floor laughing so loud I got a message from the Disaster Area band to please quiet down, they couldn’t hear themselves play…

    According to Ken “Piglet Botherer” Ham’s post, “AiG cartoonist Dan Lietha decided to produce a special cartoon about our new AiG billboard campaign. …I’ve also included a special link [to the cartoon]so you can share it with others”. (I had a hard time believing they were —or their followers are &mdasp; that stoopid, so after putting on appropriate protective kit, visited the site…)

    What’s the next step? Put the itself cartoon on a billboard? On please, please, yes. (Could the workmen stop snickering long enough to even paste up the cartoon on the billboards correctly?)

    How long before somebody like Michele Bachmann or Governer (quit) Palin or some other wingnut cites (or at least uses) the cartoon?

  9. 9
    blf

    (I blame the typos on laughing so hard…)

  10. 10
    DonDueed

    Okay, I read it. I didn’t find it too funny. I mean, who would imagine a creationist would be so stupid as to…

    Wait… you mean this was supposed to be supporting their side?

  11. 11
    Beatrice, an amateur cynic looking for a happy thought

    Okay, I read it. I didn’t find it too funny. I mean, who would imagine a creationist would be so stupid as to…

    Wait… you mean this was supposed to be supporting their side?

    Heh, that sounds pretty similar to my reaction.

    Going from “huh? PZ finds this funny? Oookaaaay” to laughing loudly after reading who made and promoted the cartoon.

  12. 12
    Sonja

    I’m sure it is a coincidence that the atheist looks like a Jewish hipster.

  13. 13
    Al Dente

    Yet again Ken Ham shows he’s not the sharpest knife on the Christmas tree (or however the simile goes).

  14. 14
    trucreep

    I LOVE the atheist’s face in this. Just full of malice, so sure of his own superiority. What a world Ham lives in. Makes me think of the copypasta about the teacher, navy SEAL student, and bald eagle named “Small Government.”

  15. 15
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.

    Well, it is an amusing cartoon.

    Not that way Hammster meant it to be amusing, but amusing nonetheless.

    If anyone, anywhere, comes up with evidence for the existence of any god, anytime, anywhere (not evidence for belief in gods, but evidence in gods themselves), it’ll be the first time ever.

  16. 16
    Kristof

    So, “a sign from god” is actually something set up by people? :)

  17. 17
    david

    Pointing, as proof of god, to a sign that was produced by humans is the same as pointing to the bible. Since it’s all they’ve got, they might as well repeat it in various forms.

  18. 18
    Gregory Greenwood

    trucreep @ 14;

    I LOVE the atheist’s face in this. Just full of malice, so sure of his own superiority.

    Come now, this was really rather restrained on the part of the Hammster. The faintly comical supercilious facial expression is there, but the cartoon atheist in this image is notable for his lack of horns, fangs, claws, a tail, a trident, the ground being corrupted by his very demonic tread, or a portable baby barbecue – all things that most of Ham’s supporters would probably expect, if not demand…

  19. 19
    Al Dente

    Gregory Greenwood @18

    You might be confusing Ham with Jack Chick.

  20. 20
    yellowsubmarine

    I had the same misunderstanding others did when I first read it, but when I read it was supposed to be supporting Ken Ham’s side, a thought occurred to me. Their idea of an atheist’s expression for “OH CRAP IT’S A SIGN FROM GOD!!” looks strikingly similar to our common expression for “You are full of crap and I don’t even know where to start now.” It makes me wonder how many religious peoples thought that Dave Silverman’s WTF face was admission of defeat to Bill O’Reilly over the “tide comes in, tide goes out” thing.

  21. 21
    David Marjanović

    I’m sure it is a coincidence that the atheist looks like a Jewish hipster.

    To be fair, the other guy has a very long nose, too. I think the shape of that nose just makes it easier to sneer.

  22. 22
    karpad

    Sonja:
    I’m sure it is a coincidence that the atheist looks like a Jewish hipster.

    I had the exact same reading.

    David:
    To be fair, the other guy has a very long nose, too.

    My reading of this is, specifically, Sneering Jewish Atheist Hipster and friendly open black (but not too black) Real True Christian, because Some Of Our Best Friends Are Black, Really! It proves we aren’t all a bunch of stodgy old white dudes, we’re a diverse and modern community of accepting people who just love jesus!

    Maybe I’m being unfair and ascribing an extra layer of bigotry to them that doesn’t exist. Maybe.

  23. 23
    Lofty

    This is just classic 5 year olds argument on who’s got the better toy. A grown up should be ashamed to be so shallow.

  24. 24
    anuran

    The 1969 Mets

  25. 25
    JohnnieCanuck

    First question, do we actually have the name(s) of Ken’s atheist friend(s)? Without evidence, I’m going to have to go with the null hypothesis.

  26. 26
    jalyth

    I always thought a good sign from God would be to cause an earthquake to destroy Mt Rushmore, because a) it’s a classic type of godly message, b) the statues are kinda full of hubris, and bcafaik, there’s no fault line there, so it would be miraculous. Of course, I used to think that the USoA was a bit more secular than I now consider it. Now that I haven’t been a Xtian for 1.5 decades, I think He’d have to destroy the monument while leaving His own visage in place of it.

  27. 27
    yubal

    I am unsure if it is ok to mock ken ham. “Thou shalt not mock the mentally challenged” with ray comfort I am pretty sure that he is just a suck out who knows what he is doing. But good ole kenny? Hm. . .

    Funny cartoon though. No atheists could have made it better.

  28. 28
    MJP

    Is he implying that God himself made that billboard?

  29. 29
    Lofty

    MJP @28

    Is he implying that God himself made that billboard?

    No, the argument goes that the power of god works by giving Hammy the bright idea to put up the billboard in the first place. And lie about it’s location. God doesn’t do anything physical, he just messes with susceptible minds.

  30. 30
    garydargan

    Any fool can see The yellow T’shirt’s fish God is clearly inferior. It hasn’t got a leg to stand on.

  31. 31
    gardengnome

    Those Xtians are really deep, eh? What a joke. Hambone is an ignorant, arrogant bully but I never thought he was this dense…

  32. 32
    Ben

    Speaking as someone who (long ago) was a conservative Protestant, and thus thought in a much similar manner to the way these people think, I’d like to offer an alternative explanation. I highly doubt that the Ken Ham ilk actually believe that the cartoon represents an argument for the existence of God. They are not stupid, and believing this to be a sound argument would in fact be stupid. As much as we are calling him dense, I think that Ham is trying to say that atheists are dense. This is supposed to be a joke; moreover, the Christian in the cartoon was supposed to be joking, and the atheist’s look of disgust revealed him to be completely unaware of and unable to appreciate the joke. I think Ham’s point is: “if a rigid logical approach can’t even identify simple jovial human interactions, how can it be relied upon to identify the basic facts of reality?” Of course, the comparison is complete bullshit. Nevertheless, I think it behooves us to not live up to his stereotype.

    Perhaps part of the problem is that the joke is not that funny. In fact, it appears to me to be a complete rip off from an early Simpson’s episode. Someone told Homer that he should buy Lisa a saxophone, as a musical instrument is a great way to encourage a gifted child. When pondering whether to do so, Homer exclaims to the sky something along the lines of, “should I buy it? God show me a sign!” Immediately, a store owner then puts a sign in his wall reading, “A MUSICAL INSTRUMENT: THE PERFECT WAY TO ENCOURAGE A GIFTED CHILD”. My guess is that Ham saw this or some variation of this joke, and decided to publish his own version of it (charitable way of putting it).

  33. 33
    markbarker

    It’s obvious: The first rule of tautology is the first rule of tautology.

  34. 34
    hexidecima

    as has been since time immemorial, humans must do what their gods cannot. It’s very hard for imaginary beings to do anything.

  35. 35
    CaitieCat, in no way a robot nosireebot

    Yeah, i got the “atheist is a Jewish guy” vibe too, definitely. Curly hair, the glasses, the fact that it’s obviously set in New York City, that it’s Ken Ham and his merry band of anti-Semites…

    I got the same reading that others did – this isn’t funny, oh wait, they mean it, though I’m intrigued by Ben’s reframing from the talibangelical’s pov, which is basically that the reading we’re getting is the right one, and it’s meant to be a joke that the humourless atheists can’t get.

    The only problem with that, from Ham’s pov, is that it’s assuming that everyone reading it shares that particular small angular measurement of the universe; if you don’t, it will look to the majority of people, I expect, much as it did to the list of people here: wow, the Xtians really don’t get how stupid that is.

    Bad cartoon. If it requires knowing the intent of the cartoonist to get the joke, it’s a bad cartoon.

  36. 36
    David Marjanović

    black (but not too black) Real True Christian, because Some Of Our Best Friends Are Black, Really!

    …Yeah.

    In fact, it appears to me to be a complete rip off from an early Simpson’s episode.

    Do you really think Ham watches something as godless as the Simpsons, where Flanders has been flanderized from good neighbor to total whackjob in just a few years?

  37. 37
    twas brillig (stevem)

    All the atheist in the cartoon asked for was “show me A sign” (if God exists). So the Hamster shows him A sign because God exists (to him). Ham (cartoon Ham) laughs because the sign is so convenient and he showed the atheist a sign, so case closed, argument won. The cartoon atheist is upset because the sign says, “You’re Wrong!”. My own interpretation is that the cartoon atheist is upset that he asked a bad question, not the full question, “If God exists, show me some evidence that could only exist if God put it there”. But given the source of the cartoon, that is way too charitable an interpretation.

  38. 38
    demonhellfish

    My question is, who thinks an atheist asks to be shown a sign? You don’t ask for a sign, you ask for evidence; they’re not the same thing.

  39. 39
    Menyambal

    I’m reading an old creationist book of Ken Ham’s, and there’s a lot of similar cartoon-work in it. He likes this style of weird overreactions to inanities. Some look like imitations of Jack Chick.

    He seems to have a rudimentary grasp of the idea that some humor comes from suddenly seeing things in a new and different way. He fails completely to realize that some folks are going to see his humor in an entirely different way than he expects.

    Also, he hasn’t escaped the right-wing idea that humor is all about ridicule—he laughs at people, he doesn’t laugh about things. He sets up the atheist with an unlikely request, and bends the meaning of the word “sign” until it snaps, and wants us to laugh at the atheist.

    (There’s an Ozarks folktale about a religious man who finally takes his son into town. When the boy sees his first billboard, he asks what it is. He father tells him that it’s a sign. The kid asks, “Is it a good sign or a bad sign?”

    Also ends with, “What’s it a sign of?”)

  40. 40

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