Thursday, December 15, 2011

The Stupid! It Burns! (launderette edition)

the stupid! it burns! The Atheist Delusion
If the chief problem of religion is that it whips up tensions between different groups of people and disturbs peace, then Richard Dawkins and Christopher Hitchens are the consummate hypocrites.
The chief problem of religion is that it isn't true.
The militant atheists of our generation are forever badgering people of faith, asking us to justify our own personal beliefs.
We're asking people of faith to justify the beliefs they want to impose on others and/or pay for with public money.
We get it, you don’t believe in God. Can you just leave the rest of us alone?
Happy to. You first, though.
The debate over the existence of a higher being is a question that has been the bane of mankind for centuries, and it isn’t going to be resolved any time soon.
It has been resolved. There isn't one, at least not one worth talking about. (Yes, God might be hiding behind my couch; so what?)
And it certainly isn’t going to be answered by a flustered old bible basher who thinks it’s clever to compare the question of a divine creator with a child’s belief in fairies.
If we look at what actual believers say they actually believe, rather than what "sophisticated theologians" say that believers really believe, Dawkins is spot on.
If you want to know the real reason why Dawkins declined the debate [with William Lane Craig], I’d recommend watching a few clips of Craig debating Christopher Hitchens on Youtube at Balliol College, and observe how the erudite chain-smoking alcoholic gets verbally taken to the launderette.
I haven't watched the debate (I find them tedious in general), but the idea that anyone could hand Hitchens his ass seems... highly dubious. This whole
Craig defeated Hitchens" idea sounds a lot like the Vietnamesque "declare victory then retreat." In any event, Dawkins has talked about the real reason he has declined to debate Craig; why not take him at his word? Author Conor Kenny appears to be simultaneously arguing for amity, condemning hypocrisy, and presuming his opponent is lying. Quite the feat.

According to Kenny, it seems that there are few religious people in the world and nobody takes religion seriously, so how dare Dawkins et al. go around not taking religion seriously!?

I'll close with a quotation that needs no commentary.
For example, the conflict in the Middle East between Israel and Palestine has nothing to do with religion; it’s about the illegal occupation of someone else’s land. You’d also be hard pressed to find a UVF or IRA extremist in Ulster who genuinely believes in the doctrine of the religion they claim to belong to.

(via Godless Business)

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