Richard Dawkins Denies the Moon

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The old prankster cracks a smile.

I've been meaning to write up a big ol' post about Time's 2006 Man of the Year, Richard Dawkins. But then I got bored of him, so I'll just repost something I wrote a while ago. Because you deserve to know what I think.

The quotes are pulled from a Slate interview with Dawkins and responses from people who read it.

I have a lot of issues with Richard Dawkins. And it's not mainly that he's an atheist. It's that he's an pompous windbag who has apparently never taken his opponent's viewpoints with the slightest bit of seriousness. He doesn't seem to stop to subject his opinions to the same rigor that he requires of religious thinkers.

This quote is a great example:
Salon's interview with Richard Dawkins: "Everybody nowadays is an atheist about Thor and Apollo. Some of us just go one god further."
That's just blatant ignorance of what religious people believe. We aren't atheistic about Zeus in the sense that atheism is used in any other context. We still believe in the concept of God, just not that the concept of God takes the form of Zeus.

Everyone today disbelieves that the moon is cheese. Why doesn't he go all the way and disbelieve in the moon?

But, of course, he doesn't stop to make subtle distinctions like form vs concept. If science is the only form of knowledge, why bother yourself with stupid things like philosophy?

I heard him on Penn Jillette's radio show a couple of weeks ago. He claims that we are better off without God or any sense of spirituality. He says there is beauty in the universe and that there can be aesthetics without God. Yet, just moments later he spoke of people breeding dogs that "look funny" and roses that "look useful."

If looking "funny" or "useful" are the depths of his sense of aesthetics, I don't think he really does have any concept of beauty.
Dawkins has also claimed "the more intelligent you are, the more likely you are to be an atheist"
Another axample of how cold and humorless this man is: he didn't know from watching The Colbert Report that Stephen Colbert was joking. He did finally catch on and guested on the show. Now says with total confidence that the reported church-going Catholic Colbert doesn't "really" believe in God, because he seems too intelligent for that.
[Dawkins says] that the question what is our purpose in life? "[is] not a question that deserves an answer."
And possibly the most convincing evidence that he is as much a closed-minded bigot as any religious person: when he senses that there might be questions science can't answer, he doesn't entertain the question and think how to answer it. He simply refuses to ask the question and speaks scornfully of people who do.

I'll close with a quote from Time Magazine's 2006 Man of the Year, Mark Shea: "Honestly, don't these people have something useful to do with their time?"

Sorry, that was a portion of a long rant I've been saving up for a while. Thanks for listening (or, more likely, skimming).