KDLT Home KDLT on Facebook KDLT on Twitter Get the KDLT iPhone App Get the KDLT Android App

Controversial Billboards Pop Up In SD



Bookmark and Share

Billboards are everywhere, lining the roads and highways and doing their job of catching a driver's attention.

But one billboard is causing some drivers to do a double take. The newest additions to South Dakota roads and interstates are hard to miss.

The words, "Don't believe in God? Join the Club, "superimposed over an image of the Earth, no doubt catch your eye. But what exactly is the message behind them?

"We are just looking for other non-believers in South Dakota and letting them know that there are groups across the state and we're here and they're not alone, so to come out and join us," said Amanda Novotny.

The appearance of these larger than life posters marks the formal launch of the South Dakota Coalition of Reason, an alliance of the seven atheist and agnostic groups in the state.

“Atheists are your friends, your family, your neighbors they're not anything different. And so we need to raise that awareness that we're just everyday people like everyone else,” explained Novotny.

The campaign is part of a nationwide program that started in 2009, igniting campaigns in 33 other states since then. The billboards, some of them illuminated, stand tall in 5 cities across South Dakota displaying a message some say could cause some controversy.

“Anytime people poke at something we believe in, it's going to evoke some emotions. We can expect people to get very angry,” said Dennis Thum.

For the past 22 years, Dennis Thum has been a pastor at the University of Sioux Falls. He says although the billboards may shock some people in the conservative state, Christians do the same thing just by sending a different message.

“As a Christian I have to say they're very entitled to do that. Christians have been doing that, and sometimes very insensitively, for years so if people are offended by it they have to also remember that Christians are also outspoken and aggressive as other religious groups have been with their posters over the years,” said Thum.

While the billboards may not be for everyone, one thing is for certain; they're doing of their job of getting people talking.

“We always need a dialogue so I welcome the dialogue that's coming," said Thum.

There are 7 billboards total in South Dakota. They’re located in Brookings, Rapid City, Sioux Falls, Spearfish and Vermilion. The billboards, funded by The South Dakota Coalition of Reason and an anonymous donor, will remain up through September 15th. The one in Brookings will remain up until October 13th.
< Prev Story Back To Top Next Story >
     

Several Groups Oppose Keystone XL Pipeline  story with video

South Dakota landowners and Native American tribes are joining forces against the ...

Two Injured In Tandem Bike And SUV Crash  story with video

Two bicyclists from Norway were injured when an SUV ran into the tandem ...

Homan: "I Will Always Be The District's Greatest Cheerleader"  story with video

After serving 36 years as an educator in both Minnesota and ...

Senators Call For AF Academy Sex Assaults Review  Aug. 22

Tidemann To Ask Joop Bollen To Speak On EB-5  Aug. 22

Vikings Adding $19M To Stadium Project  Aug. 22

Tribal Officer Fired After Stun Gun Incident  Aug. 22

Day Care Abuse Victim Improving, Fund Set Up  Aug. 22

SF School Dist. Superintendent Stepping Down  Aug. 22

McCrossan Boys Ranch Gears Up For Rodeo  story with video  Aug. 22

Morning Crew Takes The Air Guard Challenge  story with video  Aug. 22

SD School Gets Over $59K For Training Of Miners  Aug. 22

Rapid City Businessman Fined For Illegal Workers  Aug. 22

Football Players Get A Toasty Welcome Back   story with video  Aug. 21

Iowa Man Accused Of Selling Cocaine In Candy Store  Aug. 21

Firefighters Undergo Structure Collapse Training  story with video  Aug. 21

Ag-Drones Show Off Skills At Dakotafest  story with video  Aug. 21

DUI Implied Consent Law Unconstitutional  story with video  Aug. 21

South Dakota Tops Another List  story with video  Aug. 21

Wildlife Officials Increase Limits On Lake Yankton  Aug. 21

Steamy Weather Prompts Schools To Dismiss Students  Aug. 21

Sutton Named New CEO, President At Pierre Hospital  Aug. 21

Police Arrest SF Kidnapping, Assault Suspect  Aug. 21

KDLT News Archive
     

Restaurant Won't Pass Higher Wage To Workers

A St. Paul restaurant chain that dipped into employee tips ...

Police Arrest SF Kidnapping, Assault Suspect

Sioux Falls Police have arrested a 19-year-old man accused ...

SD DUI Implied Consent Law Ruled Unconstitutional

The South Dakota Supreme Court has ruled that the ...

South Dakota Tops Another List  story with video  Aug. 21

SF School Dist. Superintendent Stepping Down  Aug. 22

DUI Implied Consent Law Unconstitutional  story with video  Aug. 21

Day Care Abuse Victim Improving, Fund Set Up  Aug. 22

Ag-Drones Show Off Skills At Dakotafest  story with video  Aug. 21

KDLT News Archive
     

Opportunity Knocks For Local Fighters At RFA 17  story with video

SIOUX FALLS, S. D.   --  In addition to giving South ...

Zenner "Freakishly" Good!  story with video

BROOKINGS, S. D.   --  South Dakota State opens their season next weekend at ...

Cougars Ready To Shock NSIC  story with video

SIOUX FALLS, S. D.   --  For the second straight year the University of Sioux Falls ...

Explorers quick start too much for Birds  story with video  Aug. 20

Scheels Plays of Week from August 11th-17th  story with video  Aug. 20

Bougher pitching well for Railcats  story with video  Aug. 20

Birds go extras behind Kirby-Jones HR's  story with video  Aug. 19

MMA Fights finally come to South Dakota  story with video  Aug. 19

KDLT Sports Stories
     
Back To Top