The Summer of Hope Reply

By Tom Quiner

As seen in the Des Moines Register on Saturday, July 24, 2010

Millions turned out to see the Man in White

It began on June 2nd.  The year was 1979 when the Alitalia jetliner set down in a land that history forgot for 123 years of its thousand year history.  A Man in White with kind eyes stepped onto the tarmac.  He knelt and kissed the earth.

His next nine days in Poland would change the world.  For objective reporters on the scene, he would spark a revolution with 37 well-crafted speeches, delivered with the intelligence of a scholar and the heart of a poet.  [Continued here …]

Now for some beautiful bus advertising… Reply

By Tom Quiner

This beautiful ad appears on four Des Moines buses this summer.

Illumination Media is a group that helps pro-life groups get their message out to the local community.  I’m proud to say I’m on their Board.  The ad above is now appearing on four buses here in Des Moines.  What a refreshing change of pace from atheist bus ads.

If you agree with the pro-life cause, be sure to check out Illumination Media’s website (  If you’re in a position to do so, click the donation button on the far right of their navigation bar.  Every dollar is precious to the pro-life cause.


Why atheists advertise on buses 1

By Tom Quiner

A typical bus ad for evangelical atheists

Does God exist?

This question is in the news more than ever.  We live in strange times.  Atheists have become evangelical.  Here in Des Moines and around the world, they advertised on buses last year in an effort to recruit acolytes.  Nationally, their books are best sellers.  Christianity is now under attack more than ever. Why?

After all, Christianity offers a message of hope to believers, namely eternal salvation.  Their belief system makes the case that there is more to life than the pain and superficiality of this world.  On the other hand, atheism offers no hope. An atheist denies the possibility of God’s existence.  So why are atheists working so hard to make converts?  And why in the world would anyone be attracted to such a nihilistic philosophy?

Atheism appeals to some for political reasons and to others for moral reasons.  Let’s start with the political.

The Judeo-Christian religions claim man was made in God’s image.  The great psalmist, King David, said God knew us “before we were born.”  If you accept that premise, it is very difficult to sanction abortion.  You’ll note that the political Left in this country has something in common:  they embrace abortion on demand at any point in a woman’s pregnancy.  In addition, they are disproportionately atheistic when compared to the rest of America.

You may ask if I have any proof of that claim.  Yes.

The Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life surveyed 35,000 Americans on how religious attitudes influence values.  The differences between atheists and evangelical Christians, for example, are profound.  Only 13 percent of atheists believe abortion should be illegal in all or most cases, compared with 61 percent for evangelical Christians.  This is not to say that all atheists are liberal.  They’re not.  Statistically, though, more are concentrated in the political Left.  They are motivated to attract adherents to their own “religion” in order to advance their political agenda.

Do people really become atheists because of politics?

I’m suggesting that people without faith tend to view the world through a different political prism than people with faith.  The atheist ads on Des Moines buses let the faithless know that “they’re not alone.”  In other words, join our club.  Let’s change the world … in our image, not a phony god’s.

What’s the other reason for evangelical atheism?

In the eyes of some, religion has caused more harm than good in this world.

Think about the attack on the World Trade Center and Pentagon.  Think about the Spanish Inquisition, about the Salem Witch Trials.  Think about all the people who have been killed in the name of God or Allah down through history.  As best selling atheistic author Christopher Hitchens puts it, “God isn’t so great.”  A lot of non-believers are sick of what they view as self-righteous pontificators who try to cram their religion down others’ throats, when they themselves lead less than exemplary lives.  They view Christianity in particular as being hypocritical.

I would respond by saying that although many bad things have been done in the name of God, those actions are in direct contradiction to the Christian beliefs they represent.  On the other hand, the 20th century witnessed cold-blooded carnage in the name of atheism like history has never seen.

Without God, there is no such thing as good and evil.

Without God, we are merely automatons whose actions are subject to the whims of our genes and environment.

Without God, art itself becomes ugly.

So why are atheists organizing to spread their gospel of non-belief?

Because without God, they are liberated to make society’s rules subject to the whims of the day.  Do you trust unrestrained human nature?  I don’t.

I choose God.

How much confidence do you have in Congress? Reply

By Tom Quiner

The Pelosi Congress generates the least confidence of any in history

The Gallup Poll surveyed Americans about their attitude toward critical institutions. The poll was conducted July eight through eleventh.  Gallup asked people if they have alot/great deal of confidence in various institutions.  Here are a few high points.

The military and small business ranked highest, with 76% and 66% confidence respectively.

Congress finished dead last with but 11% confidence.

The biggest drop came with the institution of the Presidency which fell 15% from last year, down to 36%, but still higher than President Bush’ 26% confidence rating in his last year in office.  Congress and the military both saw their confidence rating drop 6% from last year.  Newspapers enjoyed an anemic 25% confidence rating.

Why does Congress elicit such little confidence?  What do you think?

Does Congress represent your interests … or theirs?  Based on Gallup, I suspect the latter.

Do they exercise statesmanship or partisanship?  Based on Gallup, I suspect the latter.

Do they pass clean, understandable legislation?  Or do they create 2000 page bills that they haven’t even read that unelected bureaucrats will end up interpreting … and imposing on us?  Based on Gallup, I suspect the latter.

I am bothered that not only Congress is held in such little confidence, but all institutions surveyed, including our churches and schools, are less than 50% with the exception of the military, small business, and the police.

We all are connected in one way or another to critical institutions in our communities.  We have some serious work to do to rebuild confidence.  Let’s get started.

Live this Friday night! Reply

By Tom Quiner

Scott Stilwell plays at Grounds for Celebration this Friday at 6:30 PM

I had the pleasure of working with Scott Stilwell in a musical I produced earlier this year called “A Living Heaven.”  Scott was that perfect blend of being fun, professional, and just plain good!  Check out the music section of this blog for a clip of Scott in action in the role of Jesus.

This Friday, he’s playing at Grounds for Celebration Coffee Shop from 6:30 to 8:30 PM. You’ll enjoy his great keyboard playing and vocal stylings to original music.

Grounds for Celebration is located at 2645 Beaver Avenue, in the heart of the Beaverdale Shopping district.

I plan on being there right at 6:30. I hope some faithful Quiner’s Diner readers can make it, too. There’s no cover charge, so bring the kids.  Grounds for Celebration has a nice selection of appealing desserts, including a wide variety of gelato flavors.