The porn industry, like the newspaper business, is struggling with the problem of free content. How can they revive their business? Strategists desperate for ideas might look at an event devised by college atheists at the University of Texas, San Antonio. The group Atheist Agenda is hosting a "Smut for Smut" event in which they encourage people to swap holy texts--the Bible, Torah, Koran, etc.--for "Playboy, Penthouse and other adult magazines," as the college paper reports.
The stunt is intended to show that religious texts are no better than the "smut" they're being traded for. And, of course, it's intended to rile people up, which it's done extremely well. Fox News has the televised reaction. We have the blogosphere response below.
- Explains One Thing "In case you've ever wondered why, even in a post-9/11 world, atheists rank below Muslims in terms of traits the public dislikes in a politician," writes Hot Air's Allahpundit, "wonder no longer."
- Nonsensical "I'm all about being a little controversial to spark conversation," writes Fordham University student Ashley Tedesco at Jewcy, "but equating the Book of Psalms with Hustler just doesn't make any sense. It's these kinds of college students that give the rest of us a bad name."
- 'Gives Atheism a Bad Name,' fumes Rob at SayAnything. "Heck, I don't believe in god and I'm fully prepared to admit that the bible has more value to it than Debbie Does Dallas."
- Offensive "It appears to be more about the degradation of other people's beliefs than it is about propagating their own," observes Shannon Bell at Right Pundits.
- Oh Calm Down, Playboy Isn't Really Porn, points out Ed Brayton at Dispatches from the Culture Wars. That in mind, he finds it "hard to disasgree" with the atheists' argument that "the disgusting, depraved acts that are within the Bible, Koran and Vedas completely outnumber any [faults] of any pornographic image." Brayton's reasoning: "The worst thing you're going to learn from Playboy is that one of Brandi's turnoffs is waiting for her hair dye to set. That's a damn sight better than learning that God wants you to kill gay people."