An atheist group based in Wisconsin has launched a web page that aims to convince people that God is "the most unpleasant character."
In a news release dated June 9, the Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF) announced the launch of the new pro-blasphemy website that was inspired by a quote from Richard Dawkins' book, "The God Delusion."
In the second chapter of the book, Dawkins wrote: "The God of the Old Testament is arguably the most unpleasant character in all fiction; jealous and proud of it; a petty, unjust, unforgiving, control-freak; a vindictive, bloodthirsty ethnic cleanser; a misogynistic, homophobic, racist,infanticidal, genocidal, filicidal, pestilential,megalomaniacal, sadomasochistic, capriciously malevolent bully."
After receiving criticisms for the remark, Dawkins asked FFRF Co-President and former minister Dan Barker to compile a list of verses to help him back up his claim. The resulting book, "GOD: The Most Unpleasant Character in All Fiction," lists verses for each of the descriptions provided by Dawkins, and eight further descriptions have been contributed by Barker.
"God is every bit as depraved as Dawkins painted him, and more," Barker said. "The new site includes biblical passages revealing that God is also pyromaniacal, angry, merciless, curse-hurling, vaccicidal, aborticidal, cannibalistic and a slavemonger," he added.
The FFRF, which describes itself as a nonprofit organization that promotes the constitutional principle of separation of church and state, frequently files complaints and lawsuits against state and local governments over what it sees as an endorsement of religion. The front page of the new website includes a paragraph that boasts of the FFRF's legal victories and appeals for donations to help the group carry out its objectives.
In its most recent complaint, the FFRF is seeking the removal of welcome signs in Oconomowoc, Wisconsin due to its religious content. The group has sent a letter to the mayor of Oconomowoc, pointing out that the city has two signs on public property that read, "The Churches of Oconomowoc Welcome You."
The FFRF argued that the message of the signs could make unbelievers feel unwelcome and that it violates the constitutional mandate of neutrality by endorsing Christianity over other faiths.
The Wisconsin Institute for Law and Liberty also wrote a letter to the mayor, refuting the FFRF's assertion that the signs violate the Establishment Clause of the U.S. Constitution. The legal group pointed out that the signs do not exclude anyone and that they were paid for and maintained by a private party.