Thursday, May 05, 2011

Fail Quote: California mayor don’t like no atheist billboards

| »
Mayor Margie Rice of Westminster, Orange County, California
Margie Rice

From Westminster, California’s Bible-thumping Mayor Margie Rice, reacting to the new godless billboards to be hosted by her city (and featuring the ever-so-offensive message of “Don’t believe in God? You are not alone.”):

Mayor Margie Rice, who helped spearhead the In God We Trust movement in Orange County, said she still believes in God, but that the atheists have their rights and freedom of speech.

"That billboard is going to turn my stomach every time I drive by," she said. "But there is not much I can do about it. I guess it's fine to make a statement, but if I could help it, I would not allow it."

Rice said she will be seeking the advice of the city's legal counsel to find out what their options are. At the same time, Rice said, she will also wait to see the community's reaction to the sign.

So we have a god-bothering politician who explicitly admitted that she’d love to strip atheists of their free speech rights, especially if she can use public protest to her advantage. How simultaneously sickening and unsurprising.

Hemant Mehta explains just what she really meant to say:

Let me paraphrase:

I know atheists have the same rights that I do… but if I had the power, I’d take their rights away. How DARE they put up a completely inoffensive billboard like that?!

Maybe if the locals complain, I can circumvent the law. Because that’s how “rights” work. We can take them away based on the whims of the masses.

Actually, sorry to say it, but that’s actually exactly how rights work, at least in this society. Marriage equality? Abortion rights? Even the more controversial (but, in the end, equally self-evident) ones like recreational drugs and prostitution? All things that ought to be basic civil rights for all, and all things that are currently being fought against, with varying levels of success, by a narrow-minded majority, especially those on the political Right.

(via Friendly Atheist)