She hopes to raise the more than $25,000 to put her own billboard up in this borough of New York City promoting Christianity.
This Beeville woman first saw the billboard while watching Fox News in mid-December.
With a picture of Santa Claus above an image of Christ, the sign, sponsored by New Jersey-based American Atheists, urges passersby to “Keep the Merry!” and “Dump the Myth!”
“I don’t care if an atheist believes in Christ,” Beck said.
She is upset because this attack on Christianity and her beliefs comes at time when so many are turning to their faith for hope.
The news report in question aired only two days after the Sandy Hook Elementary shooting that left 26 people, most them children, dead.
“A lot of people are clinging to their faith, and they don’t need to hear news of what you believe in is a myth,” she said. “We don’t need someone telling us, ‘You are, basically, dumb.’”
That sentiment is also shared by the Catholic League, which goes head to head every year with the atheist group that sponsored the billboard.
“This year, it’s different,” Bill Donohue, league spokesman told Fox News during its Dec. 16 report. “This is vile. When you depict Jesus on the cross with a crown of thorns, this is exploitative. We as Christians never harass, intimidate or insult atheists. But they can’t seem to say, ‘We simply disagree with you.’ They have to insult us.”
David Silverman, president of American Atheists, told news media that their message was simply that the holiday doesn’t have to be about religious belief.
“Most Christians are really atheists who feel trapped in their family’s religion,” Silverman told FoxNews.com. “They need not be Christian to enjoy the holiday season.”
Beck said that she is determined to spread a different message to the multitude of people who pass by the Manhattan billboard.
“My husband and I are going to pay and have the ad put. I am a fifth of the way there,” she said, adding that another couple also helped contribute to this first amount. “I already have other people wanting to contribute.”
She hopes that the community here will offer their financial support to make this happen.
“I am not trying to be in anyone’s face with religion,” she said. “I am just tired of the hypocrisy.”
The billboard, owned by Lamar Outdoor Advertising, was only booked through Thursday, and she wants to have something up within the next couple of months.
An account at First National Bank has been set up under the name Hope is Alive for donations. Money can also be contributed at New Life Church.
“We are hoping to have a billboard up for Easter promoting Christianity,” she said.
Jason Collins is the editor at the Bee-Picayune and can be reached at 358-2550, ext. 121, or at editor@mySouTex.com.