What’s that? You wanted to be filled with rage?

Fine, because you asked so nicely. Here’s the latest campaign ad from Rick Perry (International readers: He’s trying to win the Republican nomination to run for President in 2012).

“I’m not ashamed to admit that I’m a Christian, but you don’t need to be in the pew every Sunday to know there’s something wrong in this country when gays can serve openly in the military but our kids can’t openly celebrate Christmas or pray in school.

As president, I’ll end Obama’s war on religion. And I’ll fight against liberal attacks on our religious heritage.

Faith made America strong. It can make her strong again.

I’m Rick Perry and I approve this message.”

And this is why I’m an atheist activist. Because people should be ashamed of saying such bigoted shit, spreading blatant lies, and believing in mindnumbingly stupid fairy tales. Sweet jebus, does this man know anything about the history of our country or the separation of church and state? (Answer: No)


  1. says

    Look at the likes vs. dislikes. Last I checked there were ~4,000 likes…
    And over 200,000 dislikes.
    Have hope, America is getting smarter :)

  2. says

    Oh scratch that, I just checked again- 5k likes, 250k dislikes. So… 50 dislikes for every like.
    And I just learned that my boyfriend can’t do math. So there’s that.

  3. J. J. Ramsey says

    “our kids can’t openly celebrate Christmas or pray in school.”

    Um, kids openly celebrate Christmas already, and given that finals are probably coming up soon, many of those kids will probably be praying in school. And the whole “Obama’s war on religion” bit? Sheesh, what world does he live in?

    I got to give credit to Rick Perry’s post-production guys, though. They successfully hid all the flames from his pants.

  4. says

    – Children can celebrate Christmas and pray in school all they want. The school just can’t force all children to do those things.
    – Obama is hardly waging a war on religion. He’s increased funding for faith based initiatives and openly considers himself a Christian.

  5. Tommy says

    There are times to be outraged and times to sadly shake your head and chuckle. Unless you live in Texas. The guy’s a hair-do who, in a field full of fools and lunatics is polling lower than the glass of milk they’re trying NOT to vote for because he’s a robot and the philandering curmudgeonly failure from a quarter of a century ago. He’s not worth outrage. Unless you live in Texas.

  6. Stan Brooks says

    Thanks (I think) for posting this. Let me re-phrase and say I’m glad you posted this and I’m sad that you had to. It’s why I’m an “out” atheist as well, and thank you for all the work you put into being an “out” atheist activist, you do it so much better than I could.

  7. Tony says

    The only people who have reason to be embarrassed are Republicans, and Texans.

    If Perry had said that there was something wrong that blacks can serve in our military, party leaders would make a statement disowning him and he’d be out of the race. That this won’t happen now proves that the GOP is dominated by bigots.

  8. says

    We needed proof?

    Or to be more accurate, we needed MORE proof?

    The fact that believing in reality makes you an unacceptable candidate to many Republican primary voters has to be incredibly frustrating for those Republicans who aren’t actually insane.

  9. HeavyG says

    So…if Perry said he was sorry should atheist activists forgive him?

    If Perry opened a gelato shop should atheist activists patronize his business?

    Just asking – I’m a little confused as to when it is “proper” to display/maintain my umbrage in these matters.

  10. says

    Separation of church and state is an American concept. But, it ain’t in your doodle-dandy constitution.

    Your the one that doesn’t know anything about the history of your country.

    Time for a heart-to-heart with PZ.

    You keep steppin’ out on biology Jenno…with nary an accurate thought in your head.

    I didn’t think your theological ignorance could be trumped. World, I was wrong.

    I’ll admit that now.

    You failed at religious exegesis…miserably, now you’re crashing and burning at political science.

    Yes, this is like watching an extremely violent car crash in slow motion. I tell myself, not to look …but I do look, every day.

  11. says

    Former Fetus:

    You are correct that the words “separation of church and state” do not appear in the Constitution. (Source: http://www.usconstitution.net/constnot.html) Those words come from Thomas Jefferson. The interpretation most commonly used of the First Amendment is that the government should not establish, support, or otherwise involve itself in any religion. In other words, we don’t have a national church or a nationally recognized religion. We may have a number of Christians in the country but it is not our national religion. The Founding Fathers were deists at best.

    I also fail to see where Obama has declared a war on religion. I know that some Catholics are claiming it because of the birth control access written into “Obamacare” but it’s not like any religion is being actively persecuted with believers being arrested and put to death. If you want to claim a “war on religion”, go live in Saudi Arabia where no religion but Islam is allowed.

  12. says

    A number of my Christian friends on Facebook (evangelical and mainline) alike have been decrying that video and ripping apart Rick Perry for it. People like him make the rest of us look bad.

  13. says

    What a load of self-pitying twaddle. I love the way he makes it sound like Christmas has been driven underground by secular authorities; as if it needed to be practiced in secret, by a poor, persecuted minority who identify one another by secret hand gestures or something like that.

  14. MCJB says

    Normally I refuse to respond to trolls or idiocy when it comes to commenting on blogs, forums, or really anywhere on the internet, however, your comment, FormerFetus, has somewhat forced my hand in this matter. If you wish to condemn someone for their own inaccuracies please do not succumb to putting yourself into a position where you will have to begin arguing from a losing position. At least hit up Wikipedia first, before commenting, as to not sound like a complete imbecile.

  15. frankb says

    Perry resorting to pure bile as a campaign strategy is really pathetic. Even Bush Jr. the most political President ever gave lip service to bipartisanship.

  16. LadyDreamgirl says

    Umm, I do hope you mean that Texans who voted for him should feel ashamed. He may be the governor of Texas and I may be a Texan, but I refuse to be ashamed of Rick Perry because I didn’t help put him in office. He should be ashamed for himself and those who have supported him political should feel ashamed for supporting him, but just being a Texan doesn’t mean that an individual ought to feel responsible for empowering this bigot.

  17. LadyDreamgirl says

    grrr, I clearly ought to have re-read the post before replying, please read embarrassed for ashamed in my post. I got a bit annoyed at the thought of all Texans being held responsible for Perry’s bull.

  18. Azkyroth says

    Your the one that doesn’t know anything about the history of your country.


    Also, are you sure about that “former?” I was under the impression fetuses grew a brain well before birth…

  19. danherbert says

    There’s no use responding with reason to something that wasn’t created with reason to begin with.

  20. joviality says

    Did anyone else read this like a free verse poem?

    So much


    and so many

    new paragraphs.

  21. Eric RoM says

    What exactly would make you happy about the gelato guy? What apology could he possibly frame that would pull your head out of your ass?

    At least this way, your whining is muffled.

  22. Sally says

    So… I flagged the video as hate speech that discriminates on the basis of sexual orientation. Feel free to do the same. :]

  23. says

    So… I flagged the video as hate speech that discriminates on the basis of sexual orientation. Feel free to do the same. :]

    Please don’t.

    Never censor moronic bigoted assclowns who self-incriminate.

    Ridicule works better.

  24. thewhollynone says

    Even top Perry staffers are publicly distancing themselves from this latest TV ad, as they are quite sure that very shortly they will be looking for other jobs and STUPID BIGOT in big block letters is not generally considered a great thing to have on a resume.

  25. says

    There’s also the assertion that there’s something wrong when gays can serve openly in the military. As with any bigoted remark, change it to a different group and see what it sounds like:

    “…you don’t need to be in the pew every Sunday to know there’s something wrong in this country when blacks can serve openly in the military…”
    “…you don’t need to be in the pew every Sunday to know there’s something wrong in this country when women can serve openly in the military…”
    “…you don’t need to be in the pew every Sunday to know there’s something wrong in this country when Italians can serve openly in the military…”

    See? Blatant lies.

  26. sunsangnim says

    “…crashing and burning at political science”??? All Jen did was put up a video of an asshat spewing vile ignorance so the rest of us could point and laugh at the lunatic who thinks he actually has a shot at the White House. It’s kind of hard to fail at that. The only possible criticism of Jen’s post is that she picked such low-hanging fruit. But then again, there’s been plenty of that in this campaign.

  27. Meg says

    When people talk about the war on Christmas, this is what I think of. Don’t forget sneaking into the woods for a tree, the black market decoration market, and thick curtains to hide everything from the Christmas police.

  28. satanael says

    What’s incredible is that this video managed (in a few days!!!) to get more total dislikes and more “dislike to like” ratio than Rebecca Black’s “Friday”, which was till now the most hated video on Youtube.

    And honestly, I’m starting to call this guy a classic “Poe’s law”, at least for the sake of my sanity.

  29. Tom Singer says

    Perry’s ad is not at all comparable to a guy running a gelato store in Missouri. Rick Perry is the governor of one of the largest states in the country, and a major presidential candidate, with a much larger platform. He has caused multiple offenses based on religion and bigotry (stating that he would stand with Israel as president of the US based on his Christian beliefs comes immediately to mind). He has done this deliberately – this is a scripted video, which took time to write, shoot, and edit. And he has not, in fact, apologized. If he did, it would have to show contrition on a scale appropriate to all of the above, and it would likely involve using his position as governor of Texas to push through strong anti-discrimination legislation for sexual orientation and religion, and using his platform to actively work for tolerance and acceptance.

    Gelato Guy said he’s sorry and gave you a 10% discount. I’m cool with that.

  30. ButchKitties says

    If the USA has no separation of church and state merely because that exact phrase does not appear in the Constitution, then Jesus was just a man and there is no holy Trinity. The word “trinity” is every bit as absent from the Bible as the phrase “wall of separation of church and state” is absent from the Constitution.

  31. paul says

    Italians should not be allowed to serve in the military. Keep them in the kitchen where they belong!

    Seriously jonesing for some good tortellini. None of the Italian joints around here do it right.

  32. says

    Rick Perry and his ilk live in a much more exciting world than I do: gay stormtroopers, Christmas as a secret rite, demons lurking around every corner…
    Actually, I hope someone takes these ideas and runs with them; that would make for a far more badass Christmas movie than has been seen in recent decades.

  33. HeavyG says

    “Gelato Guy said he’s sorry and gave you a 10% discount. I’m cool with that.”

    Oh…I didn’t know he also offered a 10% discount. Well, that changes everything.

  34. The Lorax says

    This is like an old cartoon being paused right at the moment when Wile E. Coyote realizes he just ran off a cliff. Pretty soon, Perry will be nothing more than a small puff of dust. Keeping my fingers crossed!

    Advice for the man:
    Stop flinging shit, though you can
    Lest it hits the fan

  35. heironymous says

    Article VI of the US Constitution: (before the Bill of Rights was passed)

    The Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and the Members of the several State Legislatures, and all executive and judicial Officers, both of the United States and of the several States, shall be bound by Oath or Affirmation, to support this Constitution; but no religious Test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any Office or public Trust under the United States.

  36. says

    Friday wasn’t the most hated; Justin Bieber’s “Baby” got over two million dislikes.

    That being said, in terms of the ratio between views and dislikes (for a popular video, not one with just a thousand views or something), “Strong” has to be the leader.

  37. paul says

    Why is everyone trying to discourage this guy? I don’t know about the rest of you, but I would prefer that Perry, or Bachman, or Santorum, or one of the other real nutcases win this nomination.

    Rather than someone who might be able to win in the actual election.

    I have been wondering where to donate campaign money this time around, if anywhere, and I think the most effective use of it would be an organization trying to drum up Christian opposition to Romney based on his religion. Anyone know of any that look like they could get the job done?

  38. 1000 Needles says

    I’ll post the reply here that I posted to a Christian friend of mine that said the video made “a good point.”

    This video is indefensible. I can’t imagine what point you think he’s making.

    – “Gays can serve openly in the military, but…”
    It’s sad to see people trying to rationalize this by calling it ‘bad speech writing.’ This phrase couldn’t be more clear: Perry has a problem with gays being open in the military (and anywhere else, really). Study after study has demonstrated that the only way to end discrimination against non-heterosexuals is to encourage them to be open about their sexuality.

    – “Kids can’t celebrate Christmas openly”
    Kids can celebrate whatever they want. Perry is complaining about the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment, which prevents government from endorsing a particular religion.

    – “[Kids] can’t pray in school.”
    Kids CAN pray in school. Schools are not allowed to endorse prayer because not every student is a Christian. This is a key part of the First Amendment of the Constitution!

    – “Obama’s War on Religion”
    This is purely in the realm of ‘making shit up.’ If you think I’m wrong, them please demonstrate for me exactly how Obama is waging war on religion.

    – “Liberal attacks on religious heritage.”
    When people of a different religion, or no religion, seek to be represented in politics and government, this is hardly an ‘attack on religious heritage.’ Christians seem to suffer from some sort of victimhood complex even though they are the majority religion in the U.S.

  39. ubermalark says

    I went to youtube and was going to bunker down and prepare for reading some good old fashioned online comment hilarity. Sadly the comments for this video was disabled.

  40. Walter says

    His kids can pray in school and they can openly celebrate Christmas. He just can’t force MY kids to do that.

  41. says

    “…spewing vile ignorance?”

    The Perry ad was never anti-gay.

    Let me break the ad down for you. Perry is drawing a parallel. If you’re saying its wrong to force people to conceal their sexual orientation, then it is equally wrong to force folk to conceal their faith.

    Gays and the new atheists want everyone to see issues through the prism of their personal beliefs.

    That will never happen.

    Gays and atheists want everyone to stop bullying them, neglecting how their own personal or political actions are often tantamount to the very same type of bullying…or bigotry, of others, not in agreement with themselves.

    Bullying and bigotry must stop. It matters not WHO is doing it.

    In the United States the state religion is secular humanism. No authentic Christian will ever agree with that false Gospel. Catholic schools in my province are state-funded and Catholics have a constitutional right to educate their kids according to their beliefs. The public school system also exists to serve those groups that do not find themselves in a special relationship, or covenant status, with the God of revelation.

    The American outlook is a very tired and antiquated approach to the real needs of so many diverse peoples found within the nation.

  42. says

    WELL AJ…why would I have to go live in Saudi Arabia where no religion but Islam is allowed?

    It’s becoming quite clear no religion but anti-Christian secularism is being allowed to thrive in the good ole’ USA. Same vile intolerance, different religion.

    “I also fail to see where Obama has declared a war on religion.”

    —That’s right, you do. Bathhouse Barack prefers to do things under the radar. There must be a reason why Catholic agencies all around the USA are pulling out of adoption services, expressing concern over Obama meddling with Catholic health-care benefit plans, etc.

    If Bathhouse Obama had been raised in a normal family, he’d have understood where his boundaries should be.

    Unfortunately for Americans, your shiny pony was socialized first in a madrassa, and later in a bathhouse.

  43. Tony says

    It’s a difference of premeditation. Gelato guy got pissed off dashed off a quick sign. Perry agreed to be in the ad, agreed to the script, made the ad where he deliberately read the script on camera, presumably watched it, and allowed it to be released. There’s a huge difference.

  44. says

    Then you have James’ assertion that “God is one.” Which means that trinitarianism contradicts the Bible, and all that guff about God being three in one is nothing but weasel worded malarky. :)

  45. says

    You’re not aware of all the Christians, Jews, and Muslim carted off to concentration, and all the churches, temples, and mosque converted to Wal-marts and homeless shelters?

    Neither am I.

  46. G.Shelley says

    He defended it on CNN
    Apparently, Obama’s “War on Religion” is that some Catholic organisations are complaining that they are having difficulties and a judge once told students not to pray at graduations.
    The host takes him to task on the second (ie that it wasn’t Obama) and Perry claims that both are part of the left, so it is justified. The host also asks him about Obama setting up a Christmas tree and being openly Christian, so Perry says he never claimed that everything Obama does is a war on religion.
    Unfortunately the segment is pretty short, so there doesn’t seem to have been time to thoroughly debunk all the lies and nonsense, though Perry does get to say “Freedom of Religion, not Freedom from Religion”

  47. SLC says

    Separation of church and state is an American concept. But, it ain’t in your doodle-dandy constitution.

    Neither is the authorization to establish a separate air force. The Constitution explicitly authorizes the government to establish an army and a navy. Nary a mention of an air force.

  48. Azkyroth says

    Hmm. I wonder if we could get some of our liberal theist allies to tweet/like/whatever “Despite Rick Perry’s best efforts, I’m still not ashamed to be a Christian.” >.>

  49. Danaleigh says

    In the United States the state religion is secular humanism.

    No, in the United States *there is no state religion*. That’s kind of what that little thing called the Establishment Clause means. The state not using its power to talk about and promote your religion at every turn is not the same thing as the state endorsing atheism.

  50. jenningsthecat says

    I would argue that homosexuality isn’t an aberration, but that fundamentalist religion is. We should help our fundamentalist brothers and sisters, (Rick Perry among them), to abandon their destructive ‘lifestyle choice’ and be ‘cured’ of their ‘condition’!

  51. says


    I could say that I think that you’re a moron but that would be an ad hominem attack and I don’t play that way.

    Barack Obama was born in HAWAII, not Indonesiaor Kenya (and a birth certificate has been provided for that). He did not attend a madrassah in Indonesia but a regular school — his mother was doing graduate research which is why they were there, not to indoctrinate him in Islam. He’s a Christian which you would know if you paid any attention to the 2008 campaign where he had to distance himself from his pastor Jeremiah Wright who was making some inappropriate comments. Additionally, he *is* half-white which most of the birthers like you tend to forget — his mom is from Kansas.

    As for the Catholic agencies pulling out of adoptions, it’s happened in only one state: Illinois. I have yet to see it happen here in California. With regard to the uproar in the Catholic Church over Obama’s health plan, birth control is against their teachings and they feel that they’re being forced to go against what they believe. If there was a way to opt out (i.e. Catholic dioceses wouldn’t have to provide it for their members), that would be a decent compromise. Unfortunately, that’s not a reality. None of this is a war on religion — Christians are not being rounded up, imprisoned, and shot.

    Now unless you want to make a rational argument, go eat your troll cookies someplace else, m’kay?

  52. says

    Just as not all of you are as militant as Madalyn Murray O’Hare and not all Muslims are suicide bombers, not all Christians are fans of Focus on the Family and want to impose our faith on you. A lot of us are content to leave you alone and let you believe or not believe as you desire.

    And for the record, I grew up atheist/agnostic and became Christian as part of my teenage rebellion. I *KNOW* how obnoxious Christians in the media can be and I’ve had occasions where I’ve wanted to dopeslap people who want to “win” my soul for Christ (which is kind of questionable theology in the first place). Dubya annoyed the hell out of me (though I did have fun playing “name the hymn lyrics he is misquoting” during his speeches) because he beat the country over the head with his faith.

  53. says

    Huh, I seem to recall the great awakenings in america as the times when progress went backwards or was at a standstill. We didn’t become a superpower until the industrial revolution, which happened after both great awakenings. Yup, science, math, and engineering is what turned us into a major player on the global stage for such events as the Spanish American war and the world wars. And it’s not as if it was science and technology that allowed us to end the second world r with a mimimal loss of life (compared to the alternatives) and allow us to become one of two global superppowers. And it’s not like our massive indistrial growth and our science and industry and such that allowed us to simply last and remain the global superpower after the soviet union fell.
    Oh, wait, all that is due to science and engineering. Industry and secilar work did that, not praying feverishly while doing nothing.
    Well, it just shows that no republican candidate has even the slightest grasp of the history of this country. Maybe they will reverse worker safety laws and we will have a repeat of the triangle shirtwaist fire, or some new thing to replace the radium girls.

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