Church members and atheists alike attended God and Country Day at the Wilson County Fair Sunday.
For years the fair has offered a $2 discount to church members.
This year, the rules changed after a group of atheists contacted fair officials saying the discount is unfair.
“The $2 discount only to Christians is a discriminatory practice. You might as well put only white people get a discount today,” expressed Blair Scott with the National American Atheists affiliate.
Fair officials compromised and agreed to accept printouts from all organizations, including atheists.
About a dozen atheists came to the fair on Sunday wearing shirts to identify their group.
Several church organizations did the same.
One local church distributed t-shirts to members that read “God loves Atheists too.”
Fair officials said they've never had trouble in the years past.
“The biggest controversy we'd like to have here is who won the blue ribbon in the cherry pie contest,” laughed fair President Hale Moss.
The group of American Atheists said they didn't come to cause problems.
“We aren't here to cause trouble at all,” said Scott. “We are here specifically to support the fact that Wilson County has lifted the discriminatory policy that they had, and to support Foxhole Atheists in the military parade.”
Moss said he plans to continue God and Country Day in the future and will evaluate this year's results of extending the discount to all non-Christian faiths and non-believers.
“We feel like we haven't compromised our mission of celebrating God and Country Day at the Wilson County Fair, we have given other people who would like to come and enjoy all the things that are here at the fair,” said Moss.
The Wilson County Fair continues through Saturday.Previous Story:
- August 14, 2008: Wilson Co. Fair to offer discount to atheists