STANFORD – We all know the Tree. Its lovably bizarre costume, its happy dancing at Stanford games, the annually recurring tales of misbehavior. All in good fun, some might say. But AHA!—Atheists, Humanists, and Agnostics @Stanford—is calling foul.
“Open your eyes,” said Lewish Marshall, public relations officer, speaking at an anti-tree rally AHA! held Monday at White plaza. The organization claims that the Tree’s presence in Stanford sports and culture will lead students, impressionable freshmen especially, to accept irrationality “just because it’s fun.” Marshall continued, saying that “talking trees, ghosts, and stuff like that teach people to make bad decisions based on a false reality.”
Pro-Tree groups have come together to respond to what they call AHA!’s “militant anti-treeness.”
More moderate groups claim that they accept the Tree in a figurative way, citing statistics showing that people who believe in the Tree live longer, commit less crime, and donate more to charity.
Tuesday, February 18th, an open debate will be held in Memorial Auditorium between the Stanford Tree and Richard Dawkins.