Richard Dawkins

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My niece has Down's syndrome. Besides, nobody was talking about force.
Shaming those who want to raise their children into not doing so is coercion, and establishing a moral imperative that people should not have down syndrome kids may well lead to legal measures enforcing the same. If you have a personal connection to the matter, how can you in good conscience support Dawkin's case?
 

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To sum up my views on this, I have nothing against Atheism, it's a fine philosophy stretching back thousands of years, but I beleive it deserves a nobler proponent than Mr Dawkin's, one with their heart and humanity hooked up to their brain, and with less of a tendency to dismiss other worldveiw, and more of an emphasis on what is good and beautiful about atheism.
People's worldveiws will never be wholly determined by reason or argument,but also by emotion and intuition, and their whole life experience. In short, nobody's going to tell me what to think :)
 

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The God Delusion is one of those books which is impressive while you are reading it, but when you've finished it, and put it aside, you sort of go: `Hmmm...Yes, but...`.

My main beef with the Dawk is a class one, sad to say. I'm a soft, nicey-nicey kind of a guy, but he just manages to bring out the class-warrior-thug in me somehow.

I mean, that high-pitched plummy voice! That inherently Upper-Middle-Class army general's face! Well, he's like a throwback to the nineteen fifties, isn't he? And all the while we know that he's banging Doctor Who's girlfriend into the bargain!

It makes me want to stick my tongue out at him, and gob into his wine rentier!

I hope it's not just me....
 

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The God Delusion is one of those books which is impressive while you are reading it, but when you've finished it, and put it aside, you sort of go: `Hmmm...Yes, but...`.

My main beef with the Dawk is a class one, sad to say. I'm a soft, nicey-nicey kind of a guy, but he just manages to bring out the class-warrior-thug in me somehow.

I mean, that high-pitched plummy voice! That inherently Upper-Middle-Class army general's face! Well, he's like a throwback to the nineteen fifties, isn't he? And all the while we know that he's banging Doctor Who's girlfriend into the bargain!

It makes me want to stick my tongue out at him, and gob into his wine rentier!

I hope it's not just me....
It's just you. :p
 

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So we are now blaming him for having the wrong face and voice? Would you feel better if he acted more like a beer & hotdogs kind of guy?
 

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The God Delusion is one of those books which is impressive while you are reading it, but when you've finished it, and put it aside, you sort of go: `Hmmm...Yes, but...`.

My main beef with the Dawk is a class one, sad to say. I'm a soft, nicey-nicey kind of a guy, but he just manages to bring out the class-warrior-thug in me somehow.

I mean, that high-pitched plummy voice! That inherently Upper-Middle-Class army general's face! Well, he's like a throwback to the nineteen fifties, isn't he? And all the while we know that he's banging Doctor Who's girlfriend into the bargain!

It makes me want to stick my tongue out at him, and gob into his wine rentier!

I hope it's not just me....
Heh! Heh!
 

PeteByrdie

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The God Delusion is one of those books which is impressive while you are reading it, but when you've finished it, and put it aside, you sort of go: `Hmmm...Yes, but...`.

My main beef with the Dawk is a class one, sad to say. I'm a soft, nicey-nicey kind of a guy, but he just manages to bring out the class-warrior-thug in me somehow.

I mean, that high-pitched plummy voice! That inherently Upper-Middle-Class army general's face! Well, he's like a throwback to the nineteen fifties, isn't he? And all the while we know that he's banging Doctor Who's girlfriend into the bargain!

It makes me want to stick my tongue out at him, and gob into his wine rentier!

I hope it's not just me....
I had the same experience when reading The God Delusion. As far as your feelings about Dawkins himself are concerned, one could perhaps infer from it more about yourself than about him. ;) But it wouldn't hurt for rationalist views to be propagated by people from more varied backgrounds. Indeed, a surprising number of the atheists I follow on twitter are young black Americans, a demographic I'd always thought to be especially religious. But Dawkins is among the most prominent atheists at the moment, and I suspect we're stuck with him for now.
 

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Dawkins does have quite a patrician air about him. In a world where most public figures apparently aspire to be Jamie Oliver I find him quite refreshing.
I used to have a soft spot for the art critic Brian Sewell for the reason which you mention, so I'm not doctrinaire in my anti-nobbishness. For some reason, though, the same trick doesn't work with Dawkins (I also feel a somewhat the same about the sainted David Attenborough too).

Being patrician makes you sound like an Establishment Insider regardless of what you are saying: Dawkins looks and sounds like someone who is patiently justifying the status quo to the underlings - even when he is very far from doing that most of the time. Also you feel that his intellectual brilliance and confidence is but the inevitable result of the best education that a private income could buy.
 

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Re: Dawkins again - but apropos nothing in particular.

He once gave a radio interview which has always haunted me- but I'm not sure why.This must have been fourteen odd years ago, and was when we still had Talk Radio (later rebranded as Talk Sport). The interviewer was the late shock-jock Mike Dicken. It was just before Christmas.

Dicken was famously grouchy and not exactly an intellectual, hence it was a bit surprising that he was all over Dawkins, almost like a groupie asking for an autograph.

Anyway, at one point they were discussing the role religion plays as a source of solace for people, and what we need in our lives to keep us wanting to live. This lead to the following exchange:

Dawkins [in a rare moment of self-reflection] Well...I don't think I could live without love.
Dicken [ quick as a flash] Well. I'm not sure I can either!

This seemed to release tension, and then they signed off by laughingly wishing each other `happy Christmas`.

A few months down the line Dickens was killed in a tragic car accident.....

Make of that what you will. I am not sure what to make of it myself, but it haunts me a bit.

(BTW: I have lived without love for many years - It's do-able).
 

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Ha ha! I asked for that! Very good (and mildly depressing). :D:(
 

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I too have an instinctive dislike of Dawkins. There are plenty of reasons to feel that way but I'm pretty sure his atheism isn't it. As much as I accept the reality of much paranormal material I rarely bring "God" as a concept into it at all, at least in my own mind. It may be that he represents the opposition to somethng I increasingly accept as real. But I don't think its that either.. there are plenty of prominent media sceptics after all and I don't actively take against James Randi for example. I think, for me, the personal dislike is very much to do with his worshippers rather than the man himself. You see it in the comment section of any online broadsheet that covers him in anything other than unwilting adoration....they cannot abide criticism of the man, his words or deeds. He truly is revered irrationally and unquestioningly. He has all the qualities of a cult leader, an infallible chosen one, a prophet whose word is sacrosanct and the questioning of whom is sacrilige from the mouths of infididels. They quote his books like scripture. It's all so odd and uncomfortable to me that I find myself internally cheering on any story or article that brings him down.

As for religion, I'm lapsed through laziness rather than rebellion and so have a very indifferent attitude to it. I don't follow it or have a personal theology but was certainly a church attendee through habit way beyond the age of my irreligious peers, and for the life of me I don't recognise the portrait he and they paint of religion at all. In over 30 years of going to Catholic mass, and catholic schools, I never ever heard a priest or anyone else stand up and mention homosexuality, contraception, or all the rest of it. Never got a letter from the pope instructing me what to believe this week. Nada. The congregation are the most liberal, private, ordinary decent and thoroughly unbrainwashed people, not scripture spouting characters I see in soap operas....and this disconnect between the atheist lobby's version of reality and the experience of the masses (no pun intended) riles me to the point I'm a non religious person who finds them far more irrational and objectionable than the thing they're obsessed with.
 

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Gattino, you're talking about Catholicism, which will let you get away with stuff if you confess and ask for absolution.
Some other people (myself included) were brought up in other denominations, which are (possibly) less forgiving.
 

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But I never mentioned confession.. very few catholics ever go. The "you can do what you want and confess" thing is like the pope being infallible..its largely a fantasy of non catholics.

And as far as I can see online and in anti-religious discussion the catholic church is hte number one enemy after or jointly with Islam. I have lots of muslim friends...all of whom drink and have enviable sex lives. That's not the same as saying the religion "allows them to", or gives the slightest approval, but rahter that they no less identify themselves as muslim for it and they bear no relation to the supposed "evil clerics and brainwashed/tortured masses" view of religion I'm constantly being...well..brainwashed into believing.

I'm not saying there aren't mad men, perverts and gulls in pulpits and congregations around the world...of course there are. But they're also in lobby groups, political movements, online forums and anywhere else where one person can try and influence the views of another.
 

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But I never mentioned confession.. very few catholics ever go. The "you can do what you want and confess" thing is like the pope being infallible..its largely a fantasy of non catholics.

And as far as I can see online and in anti-religious discussion the catholic church is hte number one enemy after or jointly with Islam. I have lots of muslim friends...all of whom drink and have enviable sex lives. That's not the same as saying the religion "allows them to", or gives the slightest approval, but rahter that they no less identify themselves as muslim for it and they bear no relation to the supposed "evil clerics and brainwashed/tortured masses" view of religion I'm constantly being...well..brainwashed into believing.

I'm not saying there aren't mad men, perverts and gulls in pulpits and congregations around the world...of course there are. But they're also in lobby groups, political movements, online forums and anywhere else where one person can try and influence the views of another.
In Islamic countries the sharia has the force of law. Muslims whatever their level of belief do not have a choice.
 

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In Islamic countries the sharia has the force of law. Muslims whatever their level of belief do not have a choice.
In some countries, and to different degrees. And where it is it should be opposed. But that doesn't tell me anything about religion per se, or that one in particular even, only about what is used in this or that society to control ththat particular population. In North Korea country, communism and the leader are the source of authority and control, disobedience to which invite death. But one wouldn't conclude that countries and leaders are by extension wicked things.
 

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In some countries, and to different degrees. And where it is it should be opposed. But that doesn't tell me anything about religion per se, or that one in particular even, only about what is used in this or that society to control ththat particular population. In North Korea country, communism and the leader are the source of authority and control, disobedience to which invite death. But one wouldn't conclude that countries and leaders are by extension wicked things.
In many countries and even in the UK, Islamic practices are enforced, on women in particular. There are hundreds of news stories to that effect on this board which aren't writen by Dawkins.

If that doesn't tell you anything about that religion them imho you should think again.

No sane honest person outside of NK supports Kim.
 

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In many countries and even in the UK, Islamic practices are enforced, on women in particular. There are hundreds of news stories to that effect on this board which aren't writen by Dawkins.

If that doesn't tell you anything about that religion them imho you should think again.

No sane honest person outside of NK supports Kim.

Much of what you refer to as "islamic practices" are arab or north african practices. Whether its do with burhkas, beards, female mutiliaton or what have you...none of them are inherent i the religion. But I'm not defending islam in any case. If someone or something imposes force upon the innocent in any way oppose and condemn them. The point is the image of "believers" as fanatics or idiots, mind controllers or obedient children is cartoon that bears little or no resemblance to reality.

No "sane honest person outside NK supports Kim". I'm not sure what your point is. No Sane honest person supports beheadings in the name of islam either. They're eitehr insane or dishonest, surely by defintion.
 

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Much of what you refer to as "islamic practices" are arab or north african practices. Whether its do with burhkas, beards, female mutiliaton or what have you...none of them are inherent i the religion. But I'm not defending islam in any case. If someone or something imposes force upon the innocent in any way oppose and condemn them. The point is the image of "believers" as fanatics or idiots, mind controllers or obedient children is cartoon that bears little or no resemblance to reality.

No "sane honest person outside NK supports Kim". I'm not sure what your point is. No Sane honest person supports beheadings in the name of islam either. They're eitehr insane or dishonest, surely by defintion.
But many muslims support imposing the veil on women, whipping if not the death penalty for adultery and gay sex, honour kllings.

You have to deny a lot of evidence to deny this.

Inherent in the religion or not, practices are enforced under sharia law by Muslim clerics , scholars and legislators.

Thats the reality.

You're not helping secular or reform minded Muslims by denying that reality.

There are hundreds if not thousands of news stories here which counter your narrative. No amount of sophistry will change the facts.

I'll leave it that.
 

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But many muslims support imposing the veil on women, whipping if not the death penalty for adultery and gay sex, honour kllings.

You have to deny a lot of evidence to deny this.
I don't have to deny anything. Of course many people who are muslim support those things. Just as many hindus support honour killings...but its not on instructions from a deity. And many americans support the death penalty and call themselves christians....but its nothing to do with the gospels.

People do evil things and support evil things. In some places, times and cultures they get away with it and recruit masses of their fellow men to participate, tolerate or look the other way. Religion can indeed be used to justify one's own or one's group's evil practices or an individuals's control over mobs. Of course it can. But so can - and does - politics, ethnicitiy (eg hutus and tutsis) and national identity.

But there is no Dawkins of politics, no nagging movement against nationality. Because one would have to be an idiot to not be able to separate the abuser from the thing he's abusing.
 

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Dawkins? HAHAHAHHA. The guy who said that the particle of the big bang came from the future? A future that didn't exist yet? HAHAHAHAH!
 
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