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In _____ we trust

Gazette staff July 16th, 2013

Hobby Lobby’s famous — or infamous, some might say — full-page “holiday message” advertisements propagating Christian principles run in newspapers nationwide, including its hometown daily, The Oklahoman. This Independence Day was no different.

Illustration: Brad Gregg
What Oklahoman readers didn’t see was a full-page counter-ad released by Freedom From Religion Foundation, a nonprofit committed to preserving the separation of church and state.

While Hobby Lobby’s “In God We Trust” ad included quotes from presidents, founding fathers, Supreme Court rulings and even “foreigners” (their words), FFRF’s “In Reason We Trust” ad contained illustrations of American Revolutionaries and founding fathers, accompanied by quotes and short history lessons about how they weren’t quite as pious as Hobby Lobby would have you think (and we don’t mean Ben Franklin’s whoremongering).

The FFRF ad appeared in 24 papers across the country, including news giants The New York Times and Chicago Tribune, and even was printed back- to-back with Hobby Lobby’s in the Peoria Journal Star.

But not in The Oklahoman.

The FFRF told Friendly Atheist blogger Hemant Mehta that the paper had indicated it could not run the ad. When pressed as to why, a sales executive allegedly told Mehta she “[couldn’t] comment on an advertiser relationship.”

“We’re shocked that our ad, featuring bona fide quotes from early founders and presidents, would be censored, while Hobby Lobby’s disinformation runs without balance,” said Annie Laurie Gaylor, FFRF’s co-president. “Why can’t Oklahoma City readers be permitted to read a view challenging Hobby Lobby’s disinformation and our message of ‘In Reason We Trust’?”

Why, you ask, Ms. Gaylor? You need a reason? Boy, reason is like a religion with you people.

Hey! Read This:
Crossing Obamacare: Hobby Lobby's legal battle against the Affordable Care Act has made it a darling of evangelical Christians nationwide    

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