Don't Question The Existence Of God On Your Starbucks Cup Or Else

Starbucks is running a promotion whereby customers can submit their thoughts for inclusion on Starbucks cups, as part of an effort by Starbucks to “to promote open, respectful conversation among a wide variety of individuals,” according to their spokesperson.

That didn’t sit right with Michelle Incanno. She got a cup featuring a quote from an Ontario customer that questions the existence of god. Now Michelle will never drink Starbucks again. Ever.

The cup reads:

“Why in moments of crisis do we ask God for strength and help? As cognitive beings, why would we ask something that may well be a figment of our imaginations for guidance? Why not search inside ourselves for the power to overcome? After all, we are strong enough to cause most of the catastrophes we need to endure.” Bill Schell, a Starbucks customer from London, Ontario. He describes himself as a “modern day nobody.”

Michelle says:

“As someone who loves God, I was so offended by that. I don’t think there needs to be religious dialogue on it. I just want coffee,” said Incanno, a married mother of three who is Catholic. “I wouldn’t feel right going back,” she said.

Take that, Freethought. You have no place on a coffee cup. —MEGHANN MARCO

Woman expresses indignation at quote on Starbucks cup [Dayton Daily News via Starbucks Gossip]
(Photo: Ron Alvey, Dayton Daily News)


Edit Your Comment

  1. tentimesodds says:

    I actually agree with her. That quote has no business showing up on a coffee cup.

  2. Canadian Impostor says:

    I’ll agree that the quote is a bad idea on a coffee cup, just like a quote about God or Jesus would be as well.

    As a society we all need to shut up about religion and keep it private.

  3. Skiffer says:

    I agree too – I was raised Roman Catholic with 12 years of Catholic schooling. Granted, now I’m rather disillusioned and probably as humanist and agnostic as Bill Schnell (the cup’s author) – but, still…

    That is not something I want to see on my cup of coffee – and would probably turn me off from starbucks, too…

  4. The Walking Eye says:

    I will now drink more Starbucks to make up for her not drinking it ever again. Kudos to Starbucks for putting that on there in the first place.

  5. Greeper says:

    I wonder if she was equally offended when the Pope called gay people evil.

  6. Falconfire says:

    @tentimesodds: And I agree with you two too, if only because Douglas Adams did a much better job at proving there is no god.

    The argument goes something like this: “I refuse to prove that I exist,” says God, “for proof denies faith, and without faith I am nothing.”
    “But,” says Man, “the Babel fish is a dead giveaway isn’t it? It could not have evolved by chance. It proves you exist, and so therefore, by your own arguments, you don’t. QED”
    “Oh dear,” says God, “I hadn’t thought of that,” and promptly vanishes in a puff of logic.

    I mean seriously, its a coffee cup. If that statement has that much of a profound effect on your belief in a diety, you where questioning your faith long before you decided on that half caf moacha soy latte with

  7. Falconfire says:

    cinnamon on top, damn my quick send finger.

  8. leftistcoast says:

    To quote someone far cleverer than myself (who posted a comment regarding this article on digg last week):

    ‘Title should read: “Christian intellectually outmaneuvered by coffee cup.”‘

  9. Anonymously says:

    It doesn’t bother me either way. Isn’t religion a central topic of philosophy, and doesn’t Starbucks target a demographic likely to hold a philosophical discussion?

  10. Meat_Shield says:


    Sorry about that. Had to get it out.

    Anyway, I have seen ‘pro’-God sayings on these cups as well. Now I know I am being dangerously open-minded about this, but aren’t coffee shops supposed to be places that encourage the free expression and sharing of ideas? The cup-author makes a good point. It echoes a quote I read once from a survivor of the firebombing of Hamburg (going way back, if I got the quote or attribution wrong I apologize).

    Essentially it went something like this. One survivor, on observing the remains of his home city, remarked to the other, “How could God allow such things?” To which the other replied, “Leave God out of this. Men make war, not God.”

  11. BStu says:

    What was that about demanding retail locations wish all their customers a “Merry Christmas”? Seems like if religious people want to insist on bringing religion into the retail sphere, they shouldn’t be outraged when equal time is made for all belief systems.

    Of course, Starbucks could have seen this one coming and simply stood out of the way of the uncoming truck. Don’t know if I should applaud their courage or mock their stupidity.

  12. axiomatic says:

    I submit that your patronage of a coffee vendor does not rest on its religious platitudes whether its on a coffee cup or in the company credo.

    If this lady truly was offended, then she needs to brew her own coffee because there is much more offending things posted for public reading all over US cities. Billboards come to mind.

    Oh and one short note to the coffee nazi lady: “There is more than one “God” on this planet lady, go sell crazy elsewhere.”

  13. AnnC says:

    Starbucks should put the quote on the bottom of the cup like In-N-Out Burger does. Although it may be hard to fit on the bottom of a cup.

  14. ID-voice-of-reason says:

    I am an Industrial Designer–by degree and trade. I have a viewpoint that I think people should consider at times–with a bit of comedy.

  15. Reminds me of

  16. quantum-shaman says:

    Well the whole phenomenon of existential debate coupled with overpriced coffee is pretty fascinating to me. I only want to know if Starbucks will quote my heart-felt ponderings about the socio-economic impact impact of $6 lattes and urban gentrification vis a vis the exploitation of bean pickers living in third-world poverty ‘n stuff. And when will the fist-fights break out?

  17. sliceofbread says:

    Starbucks is marketing to individuals who like to question and know more about themselvesGodother people’s views. Christians do not do these types of things, it is much easier for them to look at something objective like the Bible (and screw anyone else who hasn’t “felt God work in their lives”.)

  18. Uriel says:

    I’d go with God on this one. If you don’t like God, get your own fuckin planet.

  19. dezknife says:

    I want to go to the Starbucks she’s not going back to. It will ensure one less closed-minded person will be there.

  20. kerry says:

    @Falconfire and leftistcoast: Very well put. If she’s so ready to be angry at Starbucks and never shop there again – her prerogative – the least she can do is find a good reason.

  21. Jeff says:

    @leftistcoast: That’s just comic gold, right there.

    @idledebonair: That too.

    Seriously. People get so offended over the littlest things, sometimes.

    Oh Christ, a coffee cup hurt your feelings, so you’re never going to Starbucks again. Fine with me. One less douchebag to wait in line with. Nice job, Starbucks.

  22. timmus says:

    Well, even though I have an unshakable belief in God I actually I applaud such brash openness on a coffee cup. All intellectual debate and all knowledge is good; anything else is just another form of censorship.

  23. partyone says:

    Who cares? Have things gotten so bad that anyone actually cares whats on a paper cup? Life is to short, and personally I do not care what a paper cup says or doesn’t say.

    I’m secure in my beliefs that a paper cup doesn’t threaten me or mine. Life is too short to worry about the little things. A little freedom of speech doesn’t hurt. So show some compassion and forgiveness for someone who doesn’t share your beliefs.

  24. timmus says:

    And what Jeff said.

  25. Mojosan says:

    It has no place on a coffee cup.

    If the cup had a 200 word essay on Jesus and why you should turn to Him in a time that called for strength the usual suspects would be sreaming bloody murder.

    The consumer is expressing her free will to not patronize an establisment that acts in a way she disagrees with. Good for her.

  26. zentec says:

    I’m offended that Michelle is spending $3 for a cup of coffee. Maybe a little less caffeine in her body would do her some good; she seems edgy.

    As far as religion goes, what I’ve been finding is that in one breath it has a place in public (the nativity scene in a town square) and in the next breath religion has no place in public. Or, put more succinctly, Michelle is offended by speech she doesn’t want to hear. Sorry darlin’, the problem with free speech is that occasionally, you’ll get some guy from Canada trying to tell you that everything you’ve held dear to your heart is all bullshit. God is testing you, sort it out and move along with a cheaper cup of coffee.

  27. quantum-shaman says:

    @partyone: I agree but prefer Jeff’s scenario. The more people that storm out with their shorts all in the wad, the better. Prices down, lines shorter. Yay.

  28. jzulli says:

    I don’t believe that comment is offensive. I believe it’s stating that we, as cognitive creatures, are contradicting rational thought by asking for support from something that is, by its very nature, not assured to be real.

  29. @BStu: Perhaps the they thought the word “may” would avoid causing offense.

    Though the Christmas bit is a good point.

  30. Hell's Donut House says:

    So who can I write at Starbucks in order to voice my support of their decision to put that idea on their cups in the first place??

  31. Falconfire says:

    @Mojosan: your right, and we are expressing our free will to point out that she has some major issues with her belief if a piece of 100% recycled cardboard with a quote from some guy in Canada would so greatly effect her as to call up a journalist and proclaim her hatred of all things Starbucks.

    Got to say though, as a self proclaimed “Starbucks addict” she probably is going to start saving herself a good 120 dollars or more a month now. So maybe god is on her side to point out how stupid she was to be buying 4 dollar burnt dirty water.

  32. Technick says:

    @nerodiavola – Your a fucking idiot.

    This lady needs to move into the mountains, buy a horse and never speak to anybody again. That is my honest opinion, should everybody in the world be forced to live with my opinion? No.

  33. mikyrok says:

    As someone who loves God, I was so offended by that.

    I see this and read:

    As a religious Christian I am offended by people whose opinions and beliefs differ from mine.

  34. Uriel says:

    I hope John Paul III is up in heaven right now figuring out a way to phantasmically urinate in this grotesque woman’s cappuccino. WTG Bill “Scheel?”.

  35. nweaver says:

    Is it any worse than John 3:16 on the bottom of every I/O burger cup?

  36. Uriel says:

    Technick, you can join her.

  37. chipslave says:

    I can’t beleive that God would let people drink that charred swill that is Starbucks anyway…

  38. Kaj says:

    So I take it that she’s equally as offended by the message from Pastor Rick Warren that found its way on to other coffee cups in the same series?

    The whole point of these “As I See It” cups, I believe, was to get people talking. Mission accomplished.

  39. partyone says:

    @quantum-shaman: I don’t see how not having a “douchebag” in line can keep prices down? However, I do agree that there will be one less person in some Starbucks somewhere, sometime, and someplace that won’t hopefully be in front of me.

    What gripes me is when people (not everyone, just some) start complaining about freedom of speech. Which to me is just as important as freedom of religion. They go hand in hand.

    It’s sad. We as a society get too easily offended.

  40. revmatty says:

    @Greeper: Of course not. Christians forcing their beliefs on everyone is AOK. Non-Christians being allowed to speak or have any representation in the public sphere is not.

    For just this reason alone I now vow to go to Starbucks every day.

  41. Mojosan says:

    My, my.

    There is no more smug, fervent defender, and evangelizer of their religion than athiests.

  42. Mike_ says:

    My atheism is not affected by pervasive references to God and Jesus in our culture. If you’re freaking out over a coffee cup, your relationship with God is probably more tenuous than you’re willing to acknowledge.

  43. Youthier says:

    @BStu: I don’t think this is a fair assumption. I’m fairly religious but I don’t think retailers should wish people Merry Christmas. I know I wouldn’t want to be wished a Happy Hannukah. I don’t like school vouchers for paraochial schools because I don’t want the government influencing religious studies. And I don’t want creationism taught in schools (although in some ways, it’s probably good for older kids to know that such a belief exists even if it’s taught as fiction).

    I also don’t want to be told there is no God on my coffee cup just like an atheist doesn’t want to be told there is a God on their coffee cup.

  44. Aston14 says:

    Starbucks also put this on one of their cups:

    “Darwinism’s impact on traditional social values has not been as benign as its advocates would like us to believe. Despite the efforts of its modern defenders to distance themselves from its baleful social consequences, Darwinism’s connection with eugenics, abortion and racism is a matter of historical record, and the record is not pretty.”
    Dr. Jonathan Wells,
    biologist and author of The Politically Incorrect Guide to Darwinism and Intelligent Design

    And religious people didn’t really have a problem with that one. Though biologists sure did. I don’t read my coffee cups. I prefer to get my knowledge elsewhere… like books… and consumerist.

  45. dantsea says:


  46. parrott_b says:

    Somebody look at me. Somebody look at me. Good God honey find something better to do. Please. Nobody forced you to buy it, drink it, read it, even look at it.

    P.S. Make sure you bring this up when you meet him after the next botox shot sends you to our maker.

  47. captainbozo says:


    Show me the quote where the Pope called gay *people* evil. I’ve definitely never seen it. Probably because he’s never said it. People aren’t evil, but we definitely do evil things.

    If a person is inclined to be an alcoholic or a kleptomaniac (whether by genetics or some external cause) we don’t applaud him for “just being who he is”. The truth isn’t just about what feels good to us this minute. It isn’t fleeting, and it isn’t always easy.

  48. Spider Jerusalem says:

    No one should patronize Starbucks anyway, so I categorically don’t care.

    That said, I also refuse to patronize In N Out because of their Jesus cups and their gross fries.

  49. gopher646 says:

    I don’t see what the big deal is. Just as someone already mentioned, if Merry Christmas was plastered all over the cup, no one would think twice about how it was “offending” non-Christians.

    I’ll have a cup of Starbucks in support of this free speech.

  50. Spider Jerusalem says:

    @captainbozo: Um, after this weekend when the Vatican *edited* a transcript of what the Pope actually said, I wouldn’t go tempting people to turn up other stuff that was edited.

  51. Falconfire says:

    “Homosexual marriages are part of a new ideology of evil that is insidiously threatening society”

    Pope John Paul II

  52. Mojosan says:

    To all the “She’s freaking out over this” the quote is

    “I don’t think there needs to be religious dialogue on it. I just want coffee,”

    Sounds perfectly rational and reasonable. Much more so than the irrelevant, snarky comment by the poster at th end of the article.

  53. BStu says:

    @missbrooke06: The difference being that the athiest who doesn’t want to be told that there is a God on their coffee cup will be not make national news except maybe as an object of ridicule. Very few athiests complain about religion in the public sphere. Those who do are loudly blasted as insufferable fools for doing so. If that’s the standard applied to athiests, it ought to be applied to Christians complaining about athiests, too. Gotta be even-handed, don’t you know.

  54. jurgis says:

    @captainbozo: “Although the particular inclination of the homosexual person is not a sin, it is a more or less strong tendency ordered to an intrinsic moral evil, and thus the inclination itself must be seen as an objective disorder.” –
    “Letter to the Bishops of the Catholic Church on the Pastoral Care of Homosexual Persons,” 1986, National Catholic Reporter

    Suffice it to say, this outrage over the concepts

  55. Youthier says:

    @Falconfire: That doesn’t say gay people are evil. It says gay marriage is evil. There’s a difference.

    (And no, I don’t believe gay marriage is evil.)

  56. quantum-shaman says:

    To be more correct, it wasn’t a religious dialogue since no “religion” was mentioned, merely “God”. And if all she *really* wants is just coffee, then why doesn’t she just shut the fuck up and drink it?

  57. @missbrooke06: BStu was referring to the bruhahaw of this past winter when people actually got offended that retailers had their people say Happy Holidays instead of Merry Christmas.

    @parrott_b: At least she isn’t wasting taxpayer money like that Laura Mallory chick.

  58. Spider Jerusalem says:

    @BStu: Silly. Like anyone really believes there’s a universal standard of decency. “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you” unless they’re smaller than you.

  59. VA_White says:

    Sweet buttery Jesus. It’s a CUP. Get over yourself.

  60. The HZA. says:

    Ok, considering I had a cup that was pro religious faith once, it only makes sense that there is the opposite idea. I wasn’t offended. I shrugged and continued on with my latte.

    As an athiest, it didn’t change my day or make me stop drinknig their coffee. Everyone can have thier opinion. So just freaking walk it off.

  61. jurgis says:

    @Greg P: Sadly, no.

    However Starbucks is a popular place for self described “religious” intellectuals who embrace traditions and concepts that are not even hinted at in the Bible. If they disagree with something, instead of studying it, to see if it has merit, they disregard it entirely… claiming it as blasphemous or illogical.

    All that said, this is the typical “lazy moral outrage” of a placated group of citizens who dream of a Theocracy.

  62. elf6c says:

    I will drink twice as much now, just to offset that idiot.

  63. notebook says:

    Hey, unless it’s something really crude, or just cursing out, I don’t see the big deal. You can ignore it, can’t you?

    Goodness, people get so irritated over the stupidest things, nowadays.

  64. bluemeep says:

    So… That whole “promote open […] conversation among a wide variety of individuals” thing? I’d say it worked, minus the word I subtracted.

    Raises all around to the marketing department! Hooray!

  65. Beerad says:

    @Mojosan: “My, my. There is no more smug, fervent defender, and evangelizer of their religion than athiests.”

    Yeah, you’re totally right. Remember all those atheist-led crusades in history? And don’t forget the Inquisition – curse those bloodthirsty naysayers! And I’m sorry to bring it up, but all those terrorist attacks of the modern world caused by atheists offended by, uh, God-loving heathens.

    Clearly atheists are the troublemakers, always foisting their belief systems on others.

  66. CaptainRoin says:

    There’s words on coffee cups?

  67. TSS says:

    I just read a Newsweek poll that said that 91% of Americans believe in God. If that’s true, then it’s probably not the smartest business practice to possibly piss off some of those people.

  68. @VA_White: Is that a Simpson’s quote?

  69. mac-phisto says:

    i believe in god & i see no problem w/ the questions presented on this particular cup. i have an answer to each that falls in line w/ my belief system. to be honest, my church officials offend me more than this freakin cup.

  70. Avacasso says:

    I usually just make my own coffee and read something of my own choosing. I don’t understand why one would react in such a fashion, but I also don’t understand why people would get pissed at a person for reacting in such a fashion. I advise less caffeine, more alcohol…it should help calm everybody down.

  71. Onouris says:

    One day, all the bible bashing god loving people who insist everything be done their way will be so shocked that the rest of the world laughs at their ideas that they’ll be forced to jump off cliffs in protest.

    Ahhh what a wonderful thought.

    This woman needs an actual education.

  72. phrygian says:

    Doubt is as important as faith in this world, for without doubt there is no faith. (You can’t transcend doubt of God’s existence without faith.) I’m not a religious person, but I do remember being taught this in theology classes when I attended a Catholic high school. Apparently, the offended woman didn’t learn those lessons and is now offended by her overpriced coffee.

  73. TheName says:

    Well I say kudos to her. I’m boycotting because of this one:
    There is a great deal one can learn from their parents. One is eating your vegetables. It’s not that your parents are getting you to eat them, it’s that they are teaching you that not everything in life is going to be sweet.
    — David Warstler

    As a lover of sweets, I was so offended by that. Oh, but I will miss my triple venti vanilla caramel, extra cold Frappucino blended coffee beverage with three packets of Splenda. Damn you Starbucks!

  74. Craig says:

    Wow. Regardless of my feelings about the cup incident I find it ironic how fervently the non-religious people here are condemning other people’s beliefs and trying to shove their own beliefs down their throats.

  75. faust1200 says:

    For those of you needing a refresher course on the origin of man click this.

  76. costanza007 says:

    haha, the cup author has a right to say whatever she wants, but the customer doesn’t have the right to disagree with her and choose to buy her coffee elsewhere? darn her and her rights in this country… grrr….


  77. Buran says:

    @tentimesodds: And what about those of us who agree with the sentiment? If it’s OK to print pro-religious sentiments on the plastic water cup sent home with a family member from a hospital, why’s it not OK to print anti-religious sentiments on coffee cups?

    Face it… some people believe in a deity or in deities. Some people do not. And it’s mighty hypocritical of how neither side will respect any differing beliefs, and will stop at nearly nothing to shove their pro/anti-deity preferences down everyone else’s throats.

  78. @Avacasso: I think it’s that she went to the press with this that cheesed everybody off.

  79. BII says:

    Starbucks (a little background, I worked for them for nearly five years, starting in 2000), fancies itself as being in the vein of old school, European, coffeehouses. Never mind how far from reality their perception of themselves are, this is what Starbucks believes they are, a throwback to old Vienna.

    In this context, they feel that by printing people’s opinions on their coffee cups, that they are furthering debate, since that’s what goes on in the European coffeehouses of yesteryear (apparently they also sold overpriced cold sandwiches, CDs, non-coffee related merchandise, etc, etc.)

  80. Buran says:

    Stuff like that only reminds me every day of how moronic the Catholic Church is. They need to STFU and learn some respect of other peoples’ beliefs, lives, and attributes.

  81. Elvisisdead says:


    It achieved goal. The problem is that there’s currently a culture of closed-mindedness that most people adopt. That, and an intolerance of anyone’s free speech but their own.

    I’m sure Bucks couldn’t care less about this woman. If she doesn’t like it, then shop somewhere else. They have chosen to put sayings on their cups. You don’t like the saying then don’t buy one. You don’t like the company for doing it, then don’t patronize the company. They aren’t in business to serve her (and by extension Christians) alone.

    Actually, what if she’s mistaken and it doesn’t refer to the Christian concept of God at all? What a silly, self-centered Catholic she would be then.

  82. MeanMachine says:

    Feh. They put “In God We Trust” on all the money but I still use it anyway.

  83. Mojosan says:

    They need to STFU and learn some respect of other peoples’ beliefs, lives, and attributes.

    So, anyone with an opinion other than yours needs to STFU?


  84. mkmead says:

    I agree with VA_White. My thoughts exactly.

  85. r81984 says:

    God does not exist. If you think there is a God, then there would have be hundreds of Gods. What happen to all the ancient greek Gods?

    Every religion today is just as credible as scientology. If you think scientology is crap then all religions are crap.

  86. Elvisisdead says:


    Every single Sarbucks I have ever been in is about as far away as one can get from Cafe Central and Sandeman in Vienna. In atmosphere, appearance, and most importantly, coffee.

  87. tph says:

    So here’s the thing: is the quote really all that anti-religious?

    I basically read it as another way of wording the whole “God helps those who help themselves” thing. When you are in trouble, don’t look for someone/thing to help you…do it yourself.

    The quote author doesn’t say there is no god, just that there might not be one. And even if there is one, it’s still not his/her problem.

  88. MisterMusante says:

    I think someone just wanted some attention. How firm in your beliefs can you be when you’re offended by the mere presence of an opposing view?

    Who cares if you “just wanted some coffee”? The other day I “just wanted some groceries”, but wound up getting into a heated sports argument at the supermarket, and ended up with a new acquaintance.

    Life’s funny like that, and if you can’t accept something new pushing you out of your comfort zone, which you can even consider as “testing your faith”, then just lock yourself in your house.

    Get over it. I actually love this Starbucks idea.

  89. Wormfather says:

    Only someone that belives in god could actually drink that crap.

  90. Locally, there’s a “Christian” coffee house, I get annoyed just driving by it.

    Pretentious, vocal viewpoints are annoying no matter what side of the aisle they come from. Looks like atheists can be just as annoying as Bible thumpers — thankfully, I don’t drink coffee.

  91. tinychicken says:

    For the record, Starbucks actually has a little disclaimer on all of the cups stating that the views of the “author” may not necessarily be the view of Starbucks. That said, one would think they’d be a bit more selective about what may potentially alienate paying customers, religious or non-religious.

  92. jlrolin says:

    This is the third time I’ve heard this story, and it upsets me everytime I hear it. I have to listen to a lady complain about how she doesn’t want to read about the existence of God on a coffee cup. Even after she finds out that it isn’t the company’s stance, and is to entice conversation and discussion among fellow coffee drinkers at the store, she doesn’t care. She’s still upset over some words on a cup.

    Wow lady! Kudos to you! For being a close-minded jackass! Apparently, if an opinion is spoken or written in public at a merchant, her patronage to your establishment is gone.

    Fact is, we’re in America, not Iran. I’m sure Starbucks was horribly upset that somebody so offended by an opinion on a coffee cup is gone from their customer base.

    And what’s even more humourous is the fact that some people actually think it’s a ploy to put the non-believer belief onto the general population. It’s an opinion. It’s supposed to spur conversation, which is most certainly has done here. It’s not a hidden agenda to cram atheism down your throat.

    I think more people who are believers should take the stance such as mac-phisto has taken. Open-mindedness to the fact that other people have differing opinions than themselves.

    Cry me a river lady, Dunkin Donuts wants your business.

  93. exkon says:

    Kudos to Starbucks, way to invigorate intellectual discussion among your caffeine starved customers.

    This lady offends me because of her religious views. Doesn’t feel right to talk to her.

  94. Youthier says:

    Look, it boils down to this. The majority of people can’t handle opinions different from their own. If you want evidence, please reread this thread. Therefore, Starbucks should probably keep the quotes to things like the vegetable one.

    @Onouris: One day, all the bible bashing god loving people who insist everything be done their way will be so shocked that the rest of the world laughs at their ideas that they’ll be forced to jump off cliffs in protest.

    I believe you mean Bible thumping. And thank you for proving afforementioned point.

    And to be fair, there was also a ridiculous “pro-religion” comment but I’m too lazy to go find it.

  95. bgglaser says:

    I wonder if anyone bothered to mention that there has been a quote from a few religious leaders as well? Rick Warren a Pastor who seems to always be in the news wrote this when this campaign started:
    “You are not an accident. Your parents may not have planned you, but God did. He wanted you alive and created you for a purpose. Focusing on yourself will never reveal your real purpose. You were made by God and for God, and until you understand that, life will never make sense. Only in God do we discover our origin, our identity, our meaning, our purpose, our significance and our destiny.”

    – The Rev. Rick Warren for Starbucks

  96. sporesdeezeez says:


    “I also don’t want to be told there is no God on my coffee cup just like an atheist doesn’t want to be told there is a God on their coffee cup.”

    What about when an athiest is told there is a God on their dollar bill? Or testifying in court? Or in any number of situations, be they familial, social, commercial, or otherwise?

    This happens all the time. We are constantly exposed to beliefs that are contrary to ours. I believe several Consumerist commenters are idiots; they do not believe so. Vice versa exists, I’m sure. Why do we ever feel the need to alert the local media when this happens? Why do they respond? Isn’t this old news? I guess the War on Christianity still garners ratings.

    As for atheists being the most “smug” and “fervent” among evangelizers, I question that. I’ve never had an athiest knock on my door (unless it was to come hang out), or threaten me with fire and brimstone. The attitude of most atheists I know is frank, but not smug. Smug sounds like projection to me. I can’t think of any way atheists evangelize. Atheists do publish atheist books and writings, but those are passive and can be easily avoided.

    When it comes right down to it, atheism has an important aspect that most worldviews/religions do not. There is no penalty for not believing what atheists believe. That difference is fundamental, and it gives their “religion” an inclusiveness that makes me a heck of a lot more comfortable being around them than most people who view the world through a revealed truth.

  97. Chryss says:

    Of course this was covered in the Dayton Daily News. When I lived out there, I postulated the DDN could save a ton of money and paper by continually printing: “Folks, nothing happened. Uh…go watch some more of The Simpsons.

  98. MeanMachine says:

    I wonder if this lady is offended by any food packaging marked with the kosher trademark?

  99. quantum-shaman says:

    But if the body is a temple to God, then why is she defiling it with caffeine? Just asking.

  100. raindog says:

    Nnnnngggh, brain attack! Must hate Starbucks for lousy high priced coffee, yet must love Starbucks for promoting humanism! I am error!

    Good thing a friend of mine got a cup there a couple weeks ago with a hokey Jesus-loving message on it. Now I can continue to get my beverages elsewhere.

  101. MeOhMy says:

    The sad thing is that if John 3:16 was on the cup, she would probably be all for it. In fact, “pro-religion” quotes have appeared on past SBUX cups. If you want to be able to dish it out, you have to be able to take it.

    Sounds like Ms Incanno could use a nice Get Out Of Hell Free card.

  102. The question is: would Starbucks place a Bible verse or a pro-God thought on a coffee cup?

  103. vongarr says:

    So now we need a coffehouse that defends traditonal values. Man, I’d love to see the fights…Beret wearing, goateed, turtle necked art crowd on one side, versus the straight laced, bible armed, bespectactled christian side. FIGHT.

  104. blah999 says:

    I don’t understand the point of the post. The woman didn’t like the quote on a coffee cup. She states she’s not going there again. Why is this important? She’s not suing anyone, she’s not threatening anyone, etc. Just expressing her opinion but I’m guessing its the wrong opinion according to the author so that’s why there was a post.

    I do love the title of the post “Don’t Question The Existence Of God On Your Starbucks Cup Or Else”…

    Umm…or else what? A soccer mom isn’t going to buy your coffee? WOW!

  105. nick says:

    I was about to make a similar point. I frequent my local Starbucks a few times a week, and in the hundreds of lattes I’ve probably drank from there in my life, I think I’ve read the words on the cup *maybe* once. And it was probably the words on the little paper sleeve about recycled post-consumer product.

    You took the words right out of my mouth.

    But now, on to more important matters…

    How can you think In-N-Out fries are gross??? BLASPHEMY!

  106. Juliekins says:

    Because of this article, I stopped on my way to class and got a light mocha Frappuccino. Thanks, crazy fundie lady! It was tasty.

    I’m just sad that Starbucks made the grocery store chain that has Starbucks in it (Dillon’s in Kansas, if you’re keeping score at home) discontinue their frequent customer program. For every five jeebus hating coffees you got, you got a cup of the blood of puppies free. Mmmm, puppies.

  107. I object to how it says “the product you are about to enjoy may be hot”.

    Don’t tell me what I enjoy Starbucks! Fuck off! Don’t tread on me!

  108. LAGirl says:


    …said the guy who wears a dress and a big, fancy hat.

    oh calm down, jesus freaks. i kid. i kid the pope!

  109. rixatrix says:

    All this over the words “may well”. Yes, and God may well be real, too.

    Ask for another cup. Starbucks will endure, with or without her business. The coffee loss will probably make a much bigger dent in her life. Maybe God can fill it.

  110. capstinence says:

    @JLP at AllFinancialMatters:

    Yes, there are pro-God thoughts on Starbucks cups. For instance:

    In reality hell is not such an intention of God as it is an invention of man. God is love and people are precious. Authentic truth is not so much taught or learned as it is remembered. Somewhere in your pre-incarnate consciousness you were loved absolutely because you were. Loved absolutely, and in reality, you still are! Remember who you are! – Bishop Carlton Pearson

    Also, there is a quote from the guy who wrote A Purpose Driven Life, which is religious in nature.

    Heaven forbid that there be both sides represented.

  111. jeffrayc says:

    I’m angered that this is even news. The media just eats this stuff up every time. It’s a “war on religion”. No, it’s a quote on a freakin’ coffee cup. Get over yourself lady.

  112. MeanMachine says:

    Maybe that crazy heathen Bill Schell should wash out his blasphemous mouth with this….

  113. @sliceofbread: “Starbucks is marketing to individuals who like to question and know more about themselvesGodother people’s views. Christians do not do these types of things, it is much easier for them to look at something objective like the Bible (and screw anyone else who hasn’t “felt God work in their lives”.)”

    Oh please. That’s why there are so many Christian-founded universities in the U.S., right? All those Christians who are threatened by critical thinking? THOSE NASTY ANTI-INTELLECTUAL HARVARD-FOUNDING CHRISTIANS!

    I don’t give a rat’s ass what Starbucks puts on a coffee cup. But I’m getting a sick and friggin’ tired of being told I’m a brainless, thoughtless automaton because I’m a Christian. That must be why I went through eight years of post-secondary education at two top-25 universities to get two degrees in theology and one in law. It’s my total lack of interest in knowing more about myself, God, or other people’s points of view. That must be why I teach philosophy, too: A burning desire NOT to learn things or think about things!

    Memo to secular left: Quit alienating your natural allies, the social-justice Christians (that’d be, like, all of us who actually paid attention to the Gospels), by insisting they’re brainless, brainwashed idiots.

    It may feel oh-so-good for militant atheists to fire off their mouths at “Christians in general,” but then I don’t think they have much room to bitch and moan when the U.S. right wing continues to campaign on “Christian values” and capture moderate Christian voters who have been clearly told there is no place for them on the left and they are not welcome.

  114. tentimesodds says:

    @Buran: Controversial statements that engender firey responses from either side of the table don’t belong on coffee cups. HTH

  115. Youthier says:

    @sporesdeezeez: What about when an athiest is told there is a God on their dollar bill? Or testifying in court? Or in any number of situations, be they familial, social, commercial, or otherwise?

    I totally agree. I don’t think that’s right either. Everyone would be a lot happier if there was complete seperation of state and church.

    I constantly feel stereotyped as an idiot because I believe in God and I think that if athiests were not constantly beleagured with religion, they might stop stereotyping me that way.

  116. TheName says:

    Well, I for one am taking the cup’s side. Has anyone considered how offended it was by this lady’s actions? Poor cup.

    In other news, Starbucks discovered that encouraging people to converse with their coffee cups is a losing bargain. The cups always seem to get the last word.

  117. MeanMachine says:


  118. jurgis says:

    @JLP at AllFinancialMatters: They did that too…

    “It’s tragic that extremists co-opt the notion of God, and that hipsters and artists reject spirituality out of hand. I don’t have a fixed idea of God. But I feel that it’s us – the messed-up, the half-crazy, the burning, the questing – that need God, a lot more than the goody-two-shoes do.” – AP

    Remember what Chomsky says:

    “If you believe in freedom of speech, you believe in freedom of speech for views you don’t like. Goebbels was in favor of freedom of speech for views he liked. So was Stalin. If you’re in favor of freedom of speech, that means you’re in favor of freedom of speech precisely for views you despise.”

  119. superlayne says:

    Great, a large debate on religion and it’s place in the public sphere.

    I am so sick of in school prayer I- Oh, wait, coffee cup? Seriously? I love my cat a lot, and someone questioning him existing would just make me laugh at them being stupid. Come on, people…Have a superior attitude about your religion…So you can finally shut up about them.

  120. Hackoff says:

    Oh please! Someone questioned the existence of god! Someone call the police! I am offended that Blockbuster supports Pro-Life right wing Republican nutballs!

    What are we living in the old days where people who questioned god had their heads lopped off for being heretics?

  121. mrg8000 says:

    Re: JLP at AllFinancialMatters:

    The Way I See It #92
    “You are not an accident. Your parents may not have planned you, but God did. He wanted you alive and created you for a purpose. Focusing on yourself will never reveal your purpose. You were made by God and for God, and until you understand that, life will never make sense. Only in God do we discover our origin, our identity, our meaning, our purpose, our significance, and our destiny.”

  122. Large says:

    Doesn’t the Bible forbid the use of stimulants?

  123. Snakeophelia says:

    I don’t believe in the slightest that Starbucks printed these cups up to “foster debate.” Starbucks printed these in order to get publicity. This quote definitely has the feel of something that is not blatantly offensive, yet is guaranteed to cheese off a paying customer or two, and presto – free publicity via the news articles! And everyone who wants to bash this woman and her viewpoints will go to Starbucks to make up for her boycott.

    Meh. It’s just marketing. If I want philosophical debate, I’ll crack a book and call a friend.

  124. 5h17h34d says:

    It never ceases to amaze me how hypocritical “christians” are.

  125. Asherah says:


    Amen, brother!

  126. Motor_Head says:

    I will be increasing my starbucks consumption by one cup a day.

    I like to support rational thought.

  127. SOhp101 says:

    The comment is not offensive at all. If she is, she should write a ‘The Way I See It’ herself and submit it to Starbucks so she can submit her own views.

  128. zolielo says:

    I have gotten a wide range quote Starbuck cups. No big deal…

  129. Motor_Head says:

    @Eyebrows McGee: I agree with you on the social conscious aspect of Christianity. I would only point out that moderate Christians, like you purport to be, are enabling the fundamentalists. Those fundamentalists are hurting your cause, and you should clean house.

    Need proof that they are hurting your cause: this person got upset over a rational thought printed on a coffee cup, and had to tell everyone about it.

  130. camas22 says:

    @bstu: I don’t think Christians asked massive corporations to bastardize their holidays for corporate gain.

    and isn’t being an educated consumer all about voting with your dollars?

  131. Brian Sexton says:

    How many bills and coins that say “IN GOD WE TRUST” has Michelle Incanno handed over to Starbucks? Probably a lot more than the number of cups she has received with that “may well be a figment” point-a point that is not even a denial of God, but merely a secondary point along the way to the main point, which is a suggestion that people search themselves for the power they already have. And instead of raising a holy stink, a true believer could easily suggest that this may be true and claim credit for imbuing such power into all people for the deity of her choice.

    Non-religious people and non-Christian religious people have no choice but to hear and see Christian religious statements all the time-on money, on signs and magnets and stickers and figurines at business of all kinds, on television, etc.-and while some probably do complain about the incessant deluge of Christian religious propaganda, especially at public expense or via theoretically public resources such as television and radio, few are likely to utter a peep about Christian religious messages in business settings or via a generous public service such as the one Starbucks is offering. It’s called tolerance; try it.

    If the statement had been Jewish or Islamic in nature or from some other denomination or sect of Christianity than that of Michelle Incanno, would she have complained? Does she complain about the religious and philosophically related decorations of Chinese restaurants? What about holiday decorations? In other words, what is the extent of this woman’s intolerance? Is she intolerant of all beliefs other than her own or only those that merely state that God *MAY* be a figment of our imaginations?

    A religious person who cannot handle being exposed to someone else’s beliefs-or lack thereof-is being both intolerant and unfair.

  132. Buran says:

    @Falconfire: As far as I’m concerned, anyone who tells other people who they can and can’t marry is evil. And an asshole. And a busybody. And needs to go stuff themselves.

  133. etinterrapax says:

    Oh my God. If this lady thinks her coffee cups have a moral conscience of any sort, she needs psychiatric treatment. I’m embarrassed as an educated person and as a Catholic, even as a lapsed Catholic. I don’t think Starbucks will miss her. Neither will I, once this inevitably dies down and the world continues in its usual course.

  134. faust1200 says:

    Thank (insert your favorite deity) that I don’t like coffee!

  135. Slytherin says:

    Michelle has too much time on her hands, and is obviously one to easily get offended. Because of such soft nature, the world is going to eat her up alive as life isn’t peachy-f’in-keen with everybody saying, listening, and reading just the right thing.

  136. Onouris says:

    Honestly, people like that woman are what I hate most about America. There’s absolutely no place for someone who doesn’t kiss the ass of a fictional character.

    They say people should respect their beliefs yet they are the ones forcing them on other people. I saw a sign outside a church in America saying the truly intelligent don’t go to college, or something like that.

    Oh ok, so thinking man was created 7 DAYS after the Earth is the sign of an intelligent person, despite the PROOF otherwise? Mmmmhmm.

  137. Speaking as someone who is “in the ministry”, I think this quote on the cup is fine. But, Starbucks has to do one of two things…

    1) Allow the other side(s) to express the opposite opinion on their cups.
    2) Deal with the fact that they’re probably going to piss people off.

    I absolutely believe that an individual’s faith should be personal, but not necessarily private; just like political viewpoints. If people (both “believers” and otherwise) would be more willing to have their views challenged and open to discussion about differing faiths and opinions I am convinced there would be less hurt in the world.

    I don’t really like Starbucks either, but it has nothing to do with their cuppa-quotes. I’d love to sit down with a student (I am a college-campus minister) and have this quote on one of our cups, for the same reasons that Starbucks puts them there – they are GREAT conversation starters.

  138. Onouris says:


    Er no, I used the phrase bible bashing and I meant bible bashing. That is the term used here.

    Thanks ever so much for trying, though.

  139. quantum-shaman says:

    @Eyebrows McGee: Quoting someone else: “Starbucks is marketing to individuals who like to question and know more about themselvesGodother people’s views. Christians do not do these types of things…”

    Admittedly, the statement would have been more accurate if “fundamentalist” (or “stupid fundamentalist” or some other qualifier were inserted in front of “Christians”, but I think the gist of most of the critical comments here are related not to the blanket assumption that ALL Christians are stupid, but that this particular woman is clearly a moron and a hypocrite and, from what we can tell, a filthy little attention whore on top of it. You gotta admit that’s a combination ripe for ripping.

  140. legerdemain says:

    I don’t believe in god. Chik Fil A does, and because of that, closes on Sunday. This makes me angry.

    I shall boycott Chik Fil A, refusing to eat there on Sundays until they change this deplorable practice.

    Okay, that’s a little goofy. Starbucks was crazy to put that on a cup. The customer was crazy to let something printed on a cup get her so indignant.

  141. spidra says:

    I’m an ex-Catholic and I have to say I agree with her. I was appalled at the Christian stuff that gets shoved down your throat when you fly Alaskan Airlines and I can imagine that a believer wouldn’t be any happier about something that questions the existence of their supreme being being on something they just paid for.

    In a nation that is supposed to be tolerant of absence of religion as well as religion, either should be something people can take or leave. She chose, as a consumer, to leave it. And that’s her right.

  142. Dr_Love says:

    Hey guys, I have a great idea! Lets use the corrupt and/or misled parts of organized Christianity to represent the whole thing, and then flame about how horrible it all is! Stereotypes ftw! AMIRITE?!?!???

    Thats called taking a biased sample, which is a fallacy.

    Seriously though, not all Christians are Bible-thumping morons. Quite a few of us are very reasonable people, believe it or not.

  143. stenk says:

    I agree with her, there is no need for Starbucks to have this on a coffee cup, but I will defend Starbucks right to do it!

  144. oldbluebox says:

    love the quote. I shall now consume more starbucks

  145. AcidReign says:

    …..I think Jesus would laugh at you for paying $3 for what is essentially a burnt cup of Folgers or 8 o’clock! Jesus could make water out of wine, but he can’t make coffee out of Starbucks.

  146. AcidReign says:

    …..Disclaimer: That IS how the tee-totalers in my state misquote that bible story…

  147. Youthier says:

    @Onouris: Okay, than what is a bible basher?

    I just ran it through Google and it says that it means the same thing as Bible thumper in the U.K. So I was wrong? But you can see how that would be somewhat confusing, right?

    Anyway, the jump off the cliff thing is still an asshole comment.

  148. TheName says:

    @jaysonwhelpley: Ahem.
    See this for suggestion 1. See this (check the part after “Please note”) for suggestions 2.

    That said, if you can utilize this or another quote in the same vein to inspire an enlightened conversation with even one student then maybe all this hooey will be worth it. ‘Cause [deity of your choice] knows, it appears that rational discussion has gone the way of the dinosaurs (no matter how long ago you think they lived).

  149. zl9600 says:

    For Christ’s sake. I just looked at my Grande Latte for $4.39 I bought 2 hours ago as I was enjoying the comments here and this is what it is:

    The way I see It #205 is from DR. LAURA.

    Who is not a Dr. unless she’s a Dr. of Bigotry.

    So I’m going to the Newspaper today to hold up my little cup with my glasses on and complain that I was so offended by having a bigoted non-doctor on my cup.

    Let’s see where that gets me.

  150. smarty says:

    Do so many people have no life that they take the time to read what’s on a coffee cup?

  151. Onouris says:


    Yes and assuming that everyone in the world uses American English isn’t?

  152. Uriel says:

    If she lets a cup rule her life, she better hope God is on the side of it giving her strength and hope. Weeeeeeeeeeeeeiiiiiiiiiiirrrrdooooooooo.

  153. Me. says:

    Are we all forgetting that any customer can just bring in their own mug/tumbler and
    a) reduce waste
    b) receive at least a $.10 discount
    & c) avoid this whole mess?

    The mug doesn’t even have to be from Starbucks, fyi!

  154. @quantum-shaman: “Those fundamentalists are hurting your cause, and you should clean house.”

    In what way exactly should I do that? They’re not part of my denomination. My church is happy to tell you they’re basically heretics. Should we proceed with the violent repressions of free speech of morons who believe in stupid things who happen to think their God has the same name ours does?

    I can’t do a damned thing about the fact that the media loves Jerry Falwell and the loopy fundies who listen to him. The crazier someone is, the better the quote. The measured, well-reasoned statements of mainline Christianity just aren’t good copy.

    I’m happy to talk to anyone who has questions, and I try to be as Francis Assisi as possible — “Teach the Gospel at all times. If necessary, use words.” But I can’t SILENCE them without BECOMING them.

  155. royal72 says:

    woohoo, you have the right not to go back to starbucks and i have the right to tell you, i think you’re a fucking idiot. freedom of speech is a wonderful thing. now if only we could truly have freedom of religion, that would be great hmmkay. with other words take the fucking words “in god we trust” out and off of anything having to with government and that includes our money.

  156. Mary says:

    Starbucks is marketing to individuals who like to question and know more about themselvesGodother people’s views. Christians do not do these types of things, it is much easier for them to look at something objective like the Bible (and screw anyone else who hasn’t “felt God work in their lives”.)

    I think that statement is just as closeminded and juvenile as the woman who is raising a ruckus over a coffee cup. In this case, I think she has every right to be offended if she likes, but she should have just not gone there and told her friends about it so they could decide for themselves. Involving a national media (or media at all) is bordering on overkill.

    But I think that most people who spout “freedom of ideas” and “you should think about other people’s views” are doing one fundamental thing wrong, and it is very clear in these comments:

    Her view is JUST as valid as yours, and Christians views of the world are JUST as important and have JUST as many reasons to be expressed. You have to defend all speech if you’re going to defend any of it

    I myself am Christian, but I belong to the small contingent that doesn’t feel it’s my place to think about what other people do in their lives (Since it is in the bible that we should “Judge not, lest thou be judged” and all that). I would also have been upset about this cup but only because I think it has faulty reasoning and is more somebody being cranky rather than actually thoughtful. If I wanted to hear somebody actually talk about God and the nature of faith from an Aethist point of view, I’d pick up The God Delusion.

  157. FriarJohn says:

    Two things spring to mind, not having read most of the comments preceding this one:

    1) That’s the beautiful thing about capitalism. If you don’t agree with a corporations supposed beliefs (of course, no where does it say Starbucks is a collection of godless heathens, but I suppose you can assume it) you don’t have to shop there.

    2) Is her faith so weak that it can’t tolerate musings on a coffee cup? Not that she should have to (see #1).

    Now, pardon me while I make a Starbucks run…

  158. @meiran: “I belong to the small contingent that doesn’t feel it’s my place to think about what other people do in their lives”

    You’re not a small contingent. You’re not even a minority. You’re just not the sort of Christian who gets on TV, or spouts off about Jesus 24/7 while running for president.

    But it’s deeply, deeply sad that even a Christian with mainline beliefs such as yourself believes him/herself to be part of a “small contingent.” It shows how very successful the hate-filled idolatrous heretics of the tiny ultra-right fundie churches have been at co-opting the very word “Christian.”

  159. RandomHookup says:

    Because of this Starbucks quote, I have questioned my beliefs and lost all faith in a higher power.

  160. asherchang says:

    If I’m paying 4 dollars for a freaking cup of coffee, I wouldn’t want to be bothered by the unasked-for musings of either a pro-God or anti-God random Starbucks customer. That’s what forums and Myspace bulletins are for.

  161. whitespider says:

    @Skiffer: Wow. Same here. Except I was in Roman Catholic school for 11 years. Word for word except the number of years you discribed my reply to this topic.. except the inclusion in the cup.

    I believe it bold of Starbucks to standup to conventional taboo and show that an Athiest or Agnostic may be offended to some religious beliefs just as a religious person may be offended at the thought of athiesm.

    Beliefs are offensive. It isn’t may or if. They are. It is silly to believe the word should cater to your thoughts on don’t ask don’t tell if you will still tell, just on diffrent grounds.

  162. AcidReign says:

    …..You know what? It’s FREE. Free salvation, or else Satan’s greatest snare. We might find out when we’re dead… Post it on a coffee cup, and you’ll get hundreds of comments. This is definitely Lifehacker territory, getting this kind of response!

    …..Great job, Meghann!

  163. Kalik says:

    Is the day near that people will be offended by a fortune cookie?

    Seriously – this quote is one person’s opinion. That is what Starbucks asked for and it is “to promote open, respectful conversation among a wide variety of individuals”. Instead, we get hard core religious zealots who don’t really do that and instead shoves their version of religion down our throats.

    As an agnostic and someone who thinks liberally, I f***ing don’t care what the damn cup says. Just live with it. We all think differently and we should accept that instead of acting like communists.

  164. Elle Rayne says:

    I just don’t get how this offended her. It wasn’t even anti-God, it was more about personal power and choice. And really, it was a coffee cup. You throw it away when you’re done with it anyway.

  165. bedofnails says:

    Michelle deserves a punch in the balls.

  166. Trick says:

    I was thinking that Starbucks sucks for this, but when I read the quote I didn’t find it all that bad.

    One person asks a legitimate question over if God is real or a figment of our imagination.

    People are free to believe what they want. I am not bothered by In-N-Burger (my favorite hamburger joint) and tell people if they don’t like the bible verse, don’t eat there.

    Well, if you don’t like Starbucks because they are a godless corporation, don’t go there.

    I don’t care so much for Starbucks because they are very expensive. However I don’t drink the expensive drinks… and don’t mind a $1.80 coffee which is pretty good.

    Even if some believe I will rot in hell if I drink that godless cup of-o-coffee.

  167. ShadowFalls says:

    I do wonder, does it really matter? in teh end, it is just a quote, no one makes you read them, no one makes you believe everything you say. I wouldn’t be a offended regardless of what it said. If it was a quote from a religious nut, I would more likely just laugh it off. She must hit Starbucks up more than once a day to be that hyped up about it.

  168. lestat730 says:

    She needs to just get over it already! Why can’t an athiest express himself the same way a person with religious beliefs can? Personally I really like the message he wrote on the cup. What’s wrong with finding the strength within yourself to overcome a problem? Then when you overcome the problem why should you have to credit anyone other then yourself for it? I can’t stand these people who think they are so high and mighty and get so offended at the slightest mention of other beliefs. Then they go around thinking its ok to tell people they’re “lost” and “going to hell” if they don’t except their beliefs. You don’t see me getting all upset because someone placed a bible on the night stand of my hotel room, or wrote “In god we trust” on my money. Part of life is hearing the views and beliefs of others, if you don’t like those beliefs just ignore them!

  169. Her Grace says:

    You know, speaking as an atheist, I really do agree. The minuate of life that are covered in religion–especially bits that should not be because they are governmental–often do upset atheistic types. Then we get angry and bitter about it. If everyone could accept that religion (and lack thereof) should play no part in governmental sorts of things, life would probably improve on all sides. I believe firmly in a common, human morality that is shared across religious beliefs, and that this shared, inherent knowledge of what is right (don’t steal, don’t cheat, don’t hurt, don’t kill, etc) does underly most laws that already exist, and should be the basis for new laws–not morality that is founded upon any specific religion (and I do mean ANY). Without religion being unconciously pushed in the public sphere, there would be little reason for most atheists to care about religion. I may think you’re dumb for believing in something, you may think I’m dumb for not. Whatever, it’s fine; I’ve read a bit about how some/most people’s brains are hardwired for believing in something, and I guess I can’t blame you for that if I don’t want you blaming me for being queer. Besides, you make good comments ’round here.

    Ultimately, I think most atheists (and probably most Christians, Jews, and other religious people, but I don’t feel comfortable speaking for a group I don’t belong to) believe in a basic live-and-let-live principle. Removing religious statements from government would be a big step in fostering that goal.

  170. Jesus On A Pogo Stick says:

    Fuck her… Keep on truckin’, Starbucks!

    @Troy F.: I bet if John 3:16 was on a cup and an atheist complained, nothing would be done and no one would hear about it. But HEAVEN forbin a Christian hears something negative about lil’ baby Jesus and the whole world has to stop.

  171. dale3h says:

    This happened at the on-campus Starbucks Coffee at Baylor University in Waco, TX, except it had to do with homosexuality instead of religion.

    That got pulled IMMEDIATELY! It’s sad that people can’t even live by their constitutional rights these days:

    “In the United States freedom of expression is protected by the First Amendment to the United States Constitution. There are several exceptions to this general rule, including copyright protection, the Miller test for obscenity and greater regulation of so-called commercial speech, such as advertising. The Miller test in particular rarely comes into effect.”

  172. Red_Eye says:

    In the end this simply proves some are so weak, that they must give power over their faith away.

    Just like the person of (insert social, racial or idealogical group here) who allows themselves to be hurt by being called a(n) (insert social, racial or idealogical slur here).

    You give people the power to hurt you with their words by choice. A word is as inert as dirt until you give it the power with which it can hurt you, just like your belief in fairies keeps Tinkerbell alive.

  173. cynon says:

    Way tired of religious people pushing their faith in my face, assuming that I’m just like them, that Jesus is my path to enlightenment and GWB knows what he’s doing. OTOH, putting quotes about religion (kinda like what I just wrote) on things like coffee cups or umbrellas, is likely to cause issues because people have forgotten something important:

    You Don’t Have The Right To Go Through Life And Not Be Offended.

    It’s called living in a free society.

  174. TVarmy says:

    I’m an atheist, and I feel that shouldn’t be on the cup. I think it’s offensive to represent religion (Or lack of) on a product meant to be enjoyed by everyone. A lot of people would be pissed if we had to take Jack Chick tracts with our coffee and Jerry Falwell had quotes on the cups.

    However, I think the woman is overreacting. Starbucks themselves did not make that statement, they merely acted as a soapbox. It’s somewhat inspiring, and I can see their logic behind it. I don’t think it’s a good idea to post religion on coffee, but it’s really not that bad.

  175. Yourhero88 says:

    First of all, I do believe in God.

    That being said, if this womans faith was as strong as she claims it is, then i hardly think that some speculative interjection printed on the side of a coffee cup would bother her. “Oh no, the coffee cups are against us, they’re gonna kill God!” Please. As a die-hard, level-headed Christian, I believe that we really need to pick our battles. It just makes me sick every time the media focuses on a “Christian group” or some offended believer who is trying to get a show off the air, or close an abortion clinic, or get a coffee cup smote down by the fist of God.

    Nowhere in the Bible does it instruct us to police the world, or try to control people’s lives, but simply to share Christ’s love with others. When nut jobs like this wave their arms about looking for attention, they just give us a bad name.

    It’s a coffee cup, get over it.

  176. MalichiDemonos says:

    I cant believe you people are getting so crazy over somone’s personal thoughts. I say we rewrite the first amendment to state “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances” Instad of “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances” Come on people… if you look to your coffee cup for guidence then you seriously have some issues.

  177. BII says:


    I know, I thought I had addressed that. I in no way agree with their distorted self-perception, I was merely giving context to why they even put these quotes on their cups in the first place.

    Howard Schultz has this romantic notion of Starbucks retail outlets that could only be conjured up in the far away, lofty ivory towers of Seattle, far, far, removed from the realities of the stores, the reality I worked in for 5 years.

    “Howie” is starting to wake up though, according to a much circulated (in coffee circles anyways) memo that was leaked back in Feburary:

  178. Rajio says:

    Only in amedica.

  179. raindog says:

    Dr_Love, faith isn’t reasonable. If it were, it wouldn’t be faith, it would be reason. Then, random people would go back to hating Starbucks for having overpriced, mediocre coffee and predatory competitive tactics instead of printing banal mumbo-jumbo that disagrees with them.

    They just wouldn’t get any sympathy, or press, for doing so.

  180. Trai_Dep says:

    “I just read a Newsweek poll that said that 91% of Americans believe in God.”

    Said reflexively in response to a absurdly open-ended question.

    Ask them to list the 10 Commandments are, what concrete sacrifices they’ve done in His name, which wars they’ve stopped their leaders from starting, which strangers they’ve brought into their house and fed, which powerless group they’ve lobbied for getting relief from being preyed upon by the wealthy and powerful, or 1,000 other things that Jesus would ask them to do and they’d look at you as though you were insane.

    Simple fact is Christians want the sense of belonging without any of the self-sacrifice, contemplation, rejection of mammon or open-minded pursuit of ideas that their Jesus commands them to do.

    PS: Jesus was a raghead, not a blue-eyed white dude. Deal with it.

  181. Trai_Dep says:

    Err, the loud, praying-in-public, judgemental Xtians, of course. I have several friends that are Christian (Catholic, even) who spend their vacations helping the poor in Central America. And they’re VERY non-demonstrative of their faith, since they figure it’s no one’s business besides their own.

  182. metalhaze says:

    She looks like a bitch that has nothing better to do at work than complain about mundane shit in an effort to get people to pay attention to her.

    In actuality, she sucks at life and should realize it’s someone’s opinion and no one’s opinions can be labeled as being either right or wrong. You live in America and we have something known as “free speech” here.

    If she wanted to do something about it, she should submit a story to Starbucks talking about why she LOVES God so much. And if she really loved God, comments from a non-believer shouldn’t be able to sway her faith or change the way she does business with Starbucks. She should be able to be smart emough to look past writings on the cup and realize Starbucks does not share the same beliefs as the author of the story on the cup.

    I mean really….who cares about this chicks ramblings? Just more noise on the internet….

  183. dantsea says:

    @dale3h: “It’s sad that people can’t even live by their constitutional rights these days”

    While the dismantling of the Bill of Rights through selective interpretation by the Supreme Court is indeed disturbing, and the Baylor incident you mention was certainly depressing (not to mention silly), there was nothing about that incident that had anything to do with constitutional rights. The government was not involved.

  184. jeblis says:


    Personally I don’t think we should shut up about it at all. After all religion is based upon pretty specious logic. Silly ideas need to be duly mocked.

  185. IRSistherootofallevil says:

    There are messages on starbucks cups? I never noticed. Gee, if you don’t like Starbucks for being openminded, well, go shop somewhere else. I’ll buy her portion of the revenue she generates because I like Starbucks’ openness. And I like their coffee (white chocolate mocha…yum damn it, now I want one)

    Welcome to the First Amendment. As an atheist, I’m not offended by people claiming there is a god or people who practice their religion. Like it matters. Just like I don’t say the Pledge of Allegiance (I don’t believe in pledging alliance to a goddamn piece of cloth…..yeesh I think that’s stupid) but I don’t go around telling people off for not being atheist or refusing to pledge allegiance to a silly flag….and notice christians and muslims, THE most religiously devoted peoples of the world, have been at each other for millenia. I don’t see the Dalai Lama criticizing christians. Geez, grow the hell up.

  186. IRSistherootofallevil says:

    I mean for NOT refusing to pledge allegiance. Oops.

  187. jimhalpert says:

    Above the quote in green it says, “The way I see it #—-“… So that is just how the author sees it, it doesn’t mean everybody sees things that way. And, they have had pro-religion on their cups. It’s a two way street; if they can have pro-religion, then they can have anti-god.

  188. mconfoy says:

    i now have a reason to start patronizing starbucks again, thanks for the update

  189. RogueFace says:

    I’m sure somebody mentioned this, but I’m too lazy to read 187 comments. Here’s the thing that Starbucks needs to worry about. They lost a customer. And, considering that it would have made at least local news (not to mention this site), I’m sure they lost at least one other customer. Now, as a practicing Christian with a fully functioning brain, I realize that not everyone believes the same things that I do. But Starbucks could have just as easily NOT printed that quote, and they would have, at the very least, one more customer than they do now. While one customer means very little in the grand scheme of Starbucks, that’s still, what, five hundred dollars a year (at least) that they aren’t getting. Assume she’d have been buying $500 a year worth of Starbucks for another 35 years, that’s $17500 that Starbucks lost by printing something that somebody MIGHT find offensive.

  190. olegna says:

    Awesome! I think she should move to Saudi Arabia:

  191. parabola101 says:

    Gee, somehow I always thought that religious always included the right NOT to choose…

  192. doctor_cos wants you to remain calm says:

    The origin of man?? Touched by His noodly appendage.

  193. spidra says:

    That is really weird. I wrote a comment on this the day it appeared and my comment disappeared. Spoooooky.

    Anyway, as an ex-Catholic and no lover of organized religion, I think she’s perfectly fine doing what she’s doing. When I flew Alaska Airlines, I didn’t appreciate the Christian references on their placemats, napkins, and ephemera. If someone wants to run a business that in some way takes a stand on religion, they have to expect that some people will object to it and on that basis take their business elsewhere.

    If more Christians exercised their choice this way rather than trying to legislate our society into a theocracy, I’d consider it an improvement.

  194. cojo721 says:

    I’m a minister and I get really annoyed at Christians who refuse to hear the other side of the religious discussion. I agree with Troy F., if a scripture had been on the cup no Christian would stand up and say, “Hey! That shouldn’t be there!” I’m absolutely certain, however, that someone else would have. I don’t think we need to keep religion to ourselves, I just think we need to face the fact that not everyone sees things the same way, and we should feel open to discuss those differences, not boycott places who promote open dialogue.

  195. hibiscusroto says:

    the best part of waking up…is Jesus in your cup!

  196. CoffeeAddict says:

    I was quite surprised when I saw that comment on the side of my starbucks cup. I go to starbucks at least 3 times a day and it really bugs when I get the cup with that comment on it. Although it won’t stop me from getting coffee from them I am really unimpressed that they used it based on the diverse group that purchase starbucks coffee. I wish starbucks would pull that cup as I am sure someone will likely sue them based on it. I do ussually enjoy “the Way I See It” they have become more stupid lately and I think it may be time to scrap the idea for the time being. It may be a time to consider a new idea for filling that space, perhaps with interesting facts about starbucks or even feature unique looking starbucks locations, something in the Jones Soda style. I think this would go over very well.

  197. SgtRich says:

    wait, you mean in a public forum you got offended by something you saw on a coffee cup?
    Should atheists be able to protest how offended they get by what they perceive as fairy tales on chuch signs, or the billboards from ‘God’ on the side of the road?
    As an adult, I think we should take DE sensitivity training, and learn to ignore things like that, and realize people have different opinions.
    If your faith is such that you cannot tolerate a person in another country questioning God, I would suggest moving because it turns out there’s a WHOLE army stationed somewhere that doesn’t really like your god, lady

  198. AliyaPriam says:

    I find it funny that this Canadian’s comment was intended “to promote open, respectful conversation among a wide variety of individuals.” Isn’t that what this thread ended up fulfilling? Way to go Starbucks…