Monday, 1 October 2007

Deliver us from Dawkins?

Richard Dawkins is continually his campaign against religion - now in political terms. He's seeing to help the victimized lobby of atheists in America to gain public political influence. Read about it here. I can't help thinking that Dawkins fails to appreciate the difference between religious and secularized. The US is much more religious than Europe (a shock to liberals) but still incredibly secular (a shock to religious people). I don't think Dawkins has all that much to worry about to be honest. The media constantly hype up the role religion plays in American politics. Just mentioning God does not mean that God is really taken seriously. Anyway, there is an (unusually) excellent comment on this in the Guardian which gives his whole approach a great critique. Here's a taster.

"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."