Friday, October 05, 2007

Dawkins Again

I am not the only one who sees something repulsive in Richard Dawkin's arguments. I do not mean his arguments against the existence of God, which are not very good, and which have certainly been made better by other people. Rather, it is his views on religion in society which are bothersome.

See Theo Hobson in the Guardian 1 Oct 2007

The truth is that Dawkins does not want equal rights; he wants what he says that the Jewish lobby has: disproportionate influence. If atheists had more political power, "the world would be a better place". He wants the gospel of atheism to spread; he wants it to change the culture.

I have been chided in the past for referring to the "militant" atheism of Dawkins and his like. But the desire for one's creed to spread, in order to make the world a better place, surely merits the label. Atheists reply that there is nothing dangerous or sinister in the desire to see more rationality, less superstition. Really? Dawkins was asked what he hoped an atheist bloc in the US might achieve, and this is the first part of the answer he gave: "I would free children of being indoctrinated with the religion of their parents or their community." Is this not amazing? I have seldom read a sentence that has induced such a sharp shiver of revulsion. This man evidently dreams of a state in which it is illegal to take one's children to a place of worship, or to say prayers with them as one puts them to bed.

Do I overreact? What else does he mean by wanting to "free" children from a parent's ability to "indoctrinate" them? He wants a culture in which saying bedtime prayers is considered child abuse. Presumably in this bravely rationalised new world, atheist teachers will encourage children to inform on their parents.


Other people have picked up on the Dawkins problem:


Daniel Finkelstein, The Times 5 Oct 2007

Andrew Sullivan, The Daily Dish 5 Oct 2007

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Condeleeza Rice: A Lesbian

That seems to be what Paul Schindler is saying here.

Hmmm. Condi may be a Dyke!

I suppose that will make her the perfect running partner for Giuliani against the Clinton-Obama ticket.

Monday, October 01, 2007

Is Richard Dawkins an Anti-Semite?

"When you think about how fantastically successful the Jewish lobby has been, though, in fact, they are less numerous I am told - religious Jews anyway - than atheists and [yet they] more or less monopolise American foreign policy as far as many people can see. So if atheists could achieve a small fraction of that influence, the world would be a better place."

The Guardian Oct 1 2007

I have discussed before whether Richard Dawkins might be ant anti-Semite because his if put into practice his views would lead to the disappearance of the Jewish people. In his defence it could be argued that this was simply a by product of his desire to see the demise of all religious groups.

But with this comment in the Guardian this morning, I am increasingly worried. While there is a strong pro-Israel lobby in the USA (just as there are strong lobbies for many other causes), American Jews do not constitute a "they" in the sense Dawkins implies. Very many secular, and indeed atheist, Jews are strong supporters of Israel, whereas the largest group of (ultra)-Orthodox Jews (the Satmar Hasidism) actively oppose Israel.

Citing "Jews" as a group that monopolises American foreign policy is often a sign of anti-Semitism, as for example in the case of the politician Pat Buchanan.