June 23, 2012
So I have all these snippets of comments and posts that never made the cut for one reason or another, and instead of just delete them, I wanted to figure out a way to incorporate them into the blog. Thus, TWIM’s new Recycle Bin category.
June 15, 2012
I did not know that Richard Dawkins was fondled by a “Latin master” when he was 9, but if this “Latin master” was a religious figure, that explains just about everything about Dawkins’ stance on religion. Does anybody know anything else about this?
—Religion’s Real Child Abuse, Free Inquiry, Fall 2002, Vol. 22, No. 4., p. 9.
June 14, 2012
So I’ve been checking out the nice links y’all left in the Gnu Survey. In response to Charlotte Allen’s poignant article, Atheists: No God, No Reason, Just Whining, a self-proclaimed “angry atheist” named Landon Ross writes,
[Allen] is blind to her own argument as she spews vitriol throughout. The quotes she cites are either taken out of context, with some clever editing, or false altogether. Sam Harris is quoted as saying “that it ‘may be ethical to kill people’ on the basis of their beliefs.” This is a blatant misrepresentation. Harris, in fact, makes plain that only if one believes that the canon they subscribe to is the divine word of god, does it become ethical, or seem reasonable, to kill someone for their religious belief.
LOLOLOLOLOL! And the haters say *I* nitpick and split hairs! Friends, this is pure comedy. Nah, Harris didn’t say it “may be ethical to kill people” on the basis of their beliefs, not at all. After all, we atheists are moral! Respectable! We’d never spout a line of tribalistic paleolithic nonsense because by golly, we’re atheists, we’re modern, and we’re more evolved! Harris only said it may be ethical to kill people “if they believe the canon they subscribe to is the divine word of God.”
In other words, Harris said it may be ethical to kill people on the basis of their beliefs. In other words, Allen’s reporting was spotless, and Landon Ross confirms her depiction of your average atheist as a whiny hater spouting anger and vacuity. By the way, since Landon conveniently neglected to cite his atheist pal, what did Harris actually say?
Some beliefs are so dangerous that it may be ethical to kill people for believing them —Sam Harris, The End of Faith, pp.52-53
In other news, I’ve added a Gnu category to TWIM. LOL!
June 10, 2012
Howdy all. Hopefully it’s as beautiful in your part of the world as it is in mine. So, here’s the skinny: I’m looking to compile a list of New Atheist-types for an upcoming project. Who do you see as a New Atheist worth exposing? The first people that come to my mind are obviously the obvious ones like Dawkins, PZ, Coyne, Harris, Carrier and the late Hitchens (can anyone explain why Dennett is always lumped in this category? Most of what I’ve seen from him seems rational, or, at least not blatantly irrational unlike the others, but maybe I just haven’t seen enough).
1. What would you list as the defining characteristics of particular New Atheists, and/or the New Atheist movement in general?
2. Who would you list as the most competent and/or entertaining critics of New Atheism, online or elsewhere?
3. What are some of the better New Atheist exposés you’ve read online?
June 9, 2012
Sorry for the delay. I’ve been waiting for Peter to clarify himself, but I think I’ll just go ahead and post what I wrote last week.
I closed Round 1 of DBT01 by addressing Peter Hurford’s claim that, “knowledge of germ theory of disease contained in the Bible [...] would prove God’s goodness and glory beyond a shadow of a doubt.” I supplied examples of Old Testament hygienic commands which I argued were consistent with Peter’s gauntlet, enough that he had no rational alternative but to abandon his atheism and acknowledge the God of the Bible. Peter proudly claimed that he “busted” my proof, but as we’ll see, he misrepresented my argument more than once and his response is chock full of irrelevant links suggesting that his history is on par with Dawkins’ philosophy.