Sunday, April 27, 2008

One fewer stupid idea

Chris Hallquist proves that sometimes an atheist is someone with just one fewer stupid idea than a theist. Hallquist weighs in with a stunning display of mindless irony, faulty reasoning and an utter lack of concern with notions of factual truth more typically associated with Christian fundamentalists and neoconservative fascists. (We know he isn't a fundamentalist, so that kind of narrows it down.)
PZ posted a link to [Geert Wilder's film Fitna], and after some angry comments, declared he didn’t really endorse the video, and called Wilders a racist. This sort of overblown rhetoric, directed at people with different political perspectives than he [sic], is something we’ve seen from PZ before. The idea that the film itself is racist is a lie of Orwellian proportions, a sign the speaker is trying to bully the truth into submission, or is at best thoughtlessly passing the Kool Aid served by someone of the first type. Islam isn’t a race, it’s a religion, a belief system, and deserves to be judged as any other belief system would be. (Or, as As Jihad Watch puts it, “He’s a racist, but not toward a race. Got it.”) Sure, people are in some sense born into it, but the fact that a belief system relies mainly on people unthinkingly adopting the beliefs of their parents is reason for embarrassment, not grounds for respect.
First, let's look at PZ Myers actual comment, which prompts Hallquist's own overblown rhetoric (e.g. "a lie of Orwellian proportions") directed at someone with a different (i.e. sane) political perspective. Sayeth PZ:
I think Wilders is a flaming nutcase; I deplore his racist angle and his desire to exclude and oppress rather than educate.

Let's examine Hallquist's stupidity point by point.

First, where is Myers' overblown rhetoric? "Flaming nutcase" and deploring a "racist angle" seems like rather mild rhetoric to me. If Hallquist believes this to be overblown rhetoric, I hope he doesn't ever read PhysioProf or The Rude Pundit; his poor little Republican head will probably explode.

Second, note how abruptly Hallquist transforms "PZ... called Wilders a racist" to "The idea that the film itself is racist..." without even a segue. Then Hallquist develops actual telepathy to determine that Myers calls Wilders racist because Myers disagrees with Wilders' politics.

Hallquist maintains that the "idea that the film itself is racist is a lie of Orwellian proportions." Why? Because "Islam isn’t a race, it’s a religion," don'tcha know. This is a non sequitur fallacy, and a particularly retarded one. Yes, Islam is a religion, a religion practiced mostly by brown people, Arabs and South Asians. If Wilders were to denounce the "dirty and smelly" immigrants, I'm sure Hallquist would call a charge of racism a lie of Orwellian proportions: the comment is about hygiene, innit, not about race.

Third, the notion that PZ Myers would even indirectly or peripherally demand respect for any religion on any grounds is so monumentally retarded that I'm tempted to call 911: I suspect a screwdriver has become deeply lodged in Hallquist's frontal cortex.

Yes folks, all you have to do to be an atheist is not believe in God. As Hallquist shows, we have no standards on intelligence, honesty, and character.


  1. (1) "Racist" at least used to be regarded as a serious accusation, not something to be thrown around for no good reason. Not a string of curse words or anything, but still "overblown rhetoric" as far as I'm concerned.

    (2) I didn't equate the statements "PZ... called Wilders a racist" and "The idea that the film itself is racist..." That's why I tried to find some evidence of racist remarks by Wilders in other contexts. Unable to find any, I took "the accusation of racism is based on the film" as a reasonable working hypothesis. Politics is the only motive I can find for the accusation of racism. If you can find some other reason to call Wilders a racist, by all means tell me.

    (3) I didn't quite say Myers was advocating respect for Islam. I used the word in the context of a general comment. See also (2), to an extent I had to guess why PZ would say something as odd as he did.


  2. Chris, you're a member and supporter of an explicitly racist political party (i.e. Republican). The quality of the work on your blog is consistently poor, and your opinions are typically immature, vapid and trivial.

    So I'm entirely unsurprised that you would strenuously object to charges of racism and unable to find it anywhere you looked.

  3. Note too that in the original article you say, "Yes, Wilders is talking moratorium on immigration..."

    According to Wikipedia, "Geert Wilders favors the restriction of immigration to the Netherlands, particularly from non-Western countries." [emphasis added]

    Curious how you omit the qualifier in your own post.


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