Atheist billboard campaign in Australia tells people to 'escape' religion

(Photo: Dave Edmonds)

A group of atheists in Australia has commenced an advertising campaign telling people to escape religion. reported that the group, Sydney Atheists, has posted billboards along M4 Freeway at West Homebush in Sydney with the message: "Have you escaped religion? We have!"

The group alleged that the suffering experienced by the people in this world is caused by religion. "This world suffers so much at the hands of religion; it doesn't make any sense to believe these stories. It's just fantasy," Sydney Atheists President Steve Marton said in an interview. 

Marton also told that the group believes every religion has an "agenda," and that they aim to "control people." He also said religion is all about power and money - their ultimate end goals - and that there were fallacies in the holy texts or Scriptures in each religion.

"If you read the Bible or the Quran, as I have, there's so much contradiction, inconsistency, and hate and anger that's all directed for a purpose," he said.

Despite the nature of their message, Marton stressed that the campaign is not meant to be "derogatory" towards people of religion.

"We just want to ask a question. It's an invitation to people. If they are offended by the billboard, I find that sad and unfortunate," he said. 

"What we're really trying to do is to free yourselves of the bonds, of the chains that enveloped you. If you are offended, by that, we are very sorry," the Sydney Atheist president concluded.

The director of the Centre for Public Christianity, however, sees the campaign as an "opportunity to discuss important questions relating to society." 

"The Christian faith is about finding the fullest life imaginable," centre director Simon Smart said. 

"You've got to get to the heart of the Christian faith. Jesus' voice was a call to true freedom and a connection to God and, through that connection, to other people, such that you would find meaning, purpose and, in fact, joy."