An atheist billboard that was reportedly stolen from Streator's City Park in Streator, Illinois, has officially been replaced. But this time, the church-state separatist group Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF) decided to add to its former message with a lesson from the Ten Commandments.
A new banner reads the same as the old: "Nobody died for our 'sins.' Jesus Christ is a myth." But the FFRF decided to drive its message home, while poking the individual or individuals behind the theft of the group’s banner. So, below the anti-resurrection message is a small note: "P.S. your god says, 'Thou shalt not steal.'"
According to MyWebTimes.com, the sign is displayed in the northwest corner of City Park. It resides – intentionally – near crosses that were posted by the Streator Freedom Association. This pro-Christian group has also put up a new sign that reads, “He is risen.” The atheist message will be displayed until Friday, the original permit expiration date for the FFRF.
The atheist group continues to offer a $1,500 reward for information about the parties behind the original banner’s theft. So far, no arrests have been made in the case, as authorities continue to explore who is responsible. The FFRF, at least based on preliminary comments, seems interested in seeing the person or persons involved being brought up on Illinois hate crimes charges (Class 4), although the alleged crimes associated are technically misdemeanors.
Although the FFRF believes that no religious banner should be permitted in the park, the group pledges to, once again, display its message next year if Streator Freedom Association posts any faith-based signs.
The foundation frequently finds itself in these localized debates in communities across America. Last Christmas, FFRF Co-President Annie Laurie Gaylor derided Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker over his proclamation that the tree in the state capitol would be referred to as a “Christmas” and not a “holiday” tree. Additionally, the group has become infamous for posting secular alternatives to nativity scenes if and when they pop up on government property.