In Australia we had a National Television (ABC) comedy satirical game show entitled: "Good News Week", where the majority of the comedians were atheist, especially the host (Paul McDermott) who continually, openly and blatantly denigrated religion and mocked Jesus.
This program in it's original format was open to a studio audience who also openly laughed at these satirical pokes at the deeply held beliefs in religion, they even had an Arabian comedian on who threw similar satirical remarks about Allah and Islam to produce an air of raucous laughter. Another comedian who also regularly denigrated religious values was Graham Kennedy, who also gained a massive following throughout the 60s and 70s.
This laughter and casual denigration of religious stupidity, such as end of the world prophesies helped produce much of the casual attitude towards atheism in Australia.
This open public denigration of religion through comedy also engendered a common perception of the stupidity of religion and thus assisted intelligent thinkers in making a choice of atheism.
Because closet/secretive atheists could go to a house or even join the GNW studio audience and laugh out loud at religious stupidity as part of a large also laughing group, they felt no shame nor uneasiness at enjoying such denigration of religious belief. Shy/secretive potential atheists also don't feel any threat or sense of being indoctrinated into atheism as myths concerning atheism suggest.
Thus, I strongly believe that comedy and humor have been key elements in giving atheism a strong representation in Australia, even in gaining an openly atheist Prime Minister, who herself even made a comedy skit concerning the Mayan Calendar stupidity.
Promoting and producing such humor in national television stations and supporting the writers of these programs by supporting their work is essential to promote atheism.
Such shows like the American "Good Christian Bitches" which religious bigots got taken off air, because it mocked Christianity, need our support and we as a group should protest and try to get such programs back on American Television.
Eventually humor will conquer superstition/religion by highlighting the idiocies of superstitious/religious belief in a funny way that often prompts open minded thinkers to question such beliefs.
Aye M8z! :D
Enjoyed reading your discussion. I agree with you that humor can help highlight how stupid these religious beliefs are. I do think it will cause people to stop and think.
Always enjoy meeting Aussies. Great sense of humor in the ones I've met. Hope we can catch up with you in the comedy arena. DJesus Unchained is our best effort of late. Hopefully, it will inspire others to create more.
Interesting. Are some of these comedy sketches available on YouTube? Is there a channel?
There's a heap of sketches from "Good News Week" here which is a secular, somewhat atheist group of stand-up comedians with a show full of laughs and many skits mocking religion, evil and other concepts precious to religion.
Here's one about Evil dictators or is it??? :-D~ I've watched every episode until they changed the format.
I prefer the original format with direct interaction from the audience, who laugh at all their digs at god and Jesus Christ, so the audience is also secular, bordering on anti-theistic.
This was our favorite show for years.
Thanks for the links - will check those out GOD'aye
Most of the best Secular comedy comes from Britain and Australia/New Zealand.
From Britain we have:
Mrs Browns Boys: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QarofaycN3c
The Vicar of Dibley: http://freethoughtblogs.com/singham/2012/04/15/five-end-jokes-from-...