Atheists Use Images of Santa, Reindeer to Promote Gathering

A Nativity Scene is included on a billboard paid for by a national atheist group in Dallas, saying "Just Skip Church. It's All Fake News." Similar billboards have also popped up in Oklahoma promoting its upcoming convention in Oklahoma City. The American Atheists organization says advertising with Christmas imagery on billboards in `the buckle of the Bible Belt' will reach atheists whose voices may be muted in conservative states, Wednesday December 6, 2017. NBC 5 News

A Nativity Scene is included on a billboard paid for by a national atheist group in Dallas, saying "Just Skip Church. It's All Fake News." Similar billboards have also popped up in Oklahoma promoting its upcoming convention in Oklahoma City.

The American Atheists organization says advertising with Christmas imagery on billboards in `the buckle of the Bible Belt' will reach atheists whose voices may be muted in conservative states.

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One billboard features an image of Santa flying his sleigh over the Oklahoma City skyline and reads, "Just like Santa Claus, the atheists are comin' to town!" Another in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and Dallas features a Nativity scene that says "Just Skip Church. It's All Fake News!"

Albuquerque pastor Richard Mansfield called the Nativity billboard near his church offensive to Christians.

Dramatic video shows a car drive in reverse at the end of a police pursuit in south Los Angeles. He exited the vehicle and surrendered to police. Initial reports say the driver is wanted for a felony hit and run. 

(Published Wednesday, July 11, 2018)

American Atheists leaders told The Oklahoman the billboards are meant to encourage dialogue.

The convention is March 30-April 1.