Hypocrisy on Wheels
A recent campaign launched in England to promote atheism has jumped across the pond onto our very doorstep. The program was originally created to counter the religious advertisement and promotion in England. While Calgary and Toronto has accepted the idea, Vancouver will not see this atheist campaign. The public transportation in Vancouver, otherwise known as Translink, has decided that the advertisement goes against their policy. Translink has stated that "No advertisement will be accepted which promotes or opposes a specific theology or religious ethic, point of view, policy or action”. Although the advertisement policy seems fair on a surface level, all advertisements requires promoting a certain point of view. While I take public transit on a daily basis, I have the opportunity to observe quite a few advertisements on busses, skytrains and their respective stops. I have recently noticed an advertisement promoting pomegranate juice which claims to help prevent heart disease. This advertisement promotes the point of view of healthy living. Although it may seem trivial to question the moral aspect of healthy living, the advertisement goes unquestioned by Translink. Just a few months ago, I witnessed a banner around a skytrian station promoting the New Democratic Party of Canada. While this is apparently within the boundaries of the transit advertisement policy, the atheist banner stating "You can be good without God" is rejected. Translink should take time to reconsider both the atheist’s proposition and the current advertisements being displayed. Although I am an atheist, and come from a bias point of view, I would not be upset if I saw religious promotion either. If a group is asking to show their side of the argument while remaining sincere and thoughtful, there is no reason to disallow their proposal.