March 2, 2011; Source: Buffalo Business First | There's no mistaking the message behind a new public awareness campaign being launched by a nonprofit group whose mission is to advocate a secular society. To let people know that they can live a fulfilling life without believing in a higher power, the Center for Inquiry is paying for billboards in Indianapolis and Houston, as well as on buses Washington, D.C., to carry ads that read: “You don’t need God—to hope, to care, to love, to live.”

The campaign already is underway in Washington, and the other two cities will follow next week. The purpose of the campaign is to dispel the "myth that the nonreligious lead empty, meaningless, selfish, self-centered lives," said Ronald Lindsay, president and CEO of the Center for Inquiry, which is based in Amherst, N.Y. He adds that such beliefs are "not only false," but they are "ridiculous." Lindsay says that "all too many people accept this myth because that’s what they hear about nonbelievers.”

Along with the billboards that carry the campaign message, the group has created a website, Among the information on the site are findings from national surveys that show some 16 percent of Americans say they have no religious affiliation and that 10 percent of the public doesn't believe in God.—Bruce Trachtenberg