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Athiest group’s billboard vandalized in Colorado Springs

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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. -- A billboard put up by an atheist group was vandalized in Colorado Springs.

It encouraged people to skip church and just be good during the holiday seasons. But the vandal clearly did not like that message.

"I would have hoped that we would have just been able to come together as friends, neighbors, brothers and sisters.  But some people still just want to spread intolerance," said Randy Gotovich, the Colorado regional director of American Atheists.

The group launched a holiday billboard campaign in Colorado Springs.  Gotovich expected some backlash, but not the kind that happened. Someone spray-painted "God is not dead" across the billboard.

"Their rather childish show of hateful intolerance did nothing to help their position, did nothing to help honestly good Christians too. It tends to make them look bad and nobody wants that," Gotovich said.

People who live near the billboard were divided about the vandalism.

"That's an 'amen' for whoever did it you know. I was like wondering if it was a Christian person or somebody who was trying just to help," Steve Martinez said.

"It's pretty sad to see something vandalized like that, no matter whose opinion it is," Amparo Meray said.

Gotovich said the vandalism won't stop his group from putting up a similar message next Christmas. He also said the group's message was about to be removed from the billboard within days.