Dawkins and US atheists prove it’s not about reason, it’s about hate

Last Saturday’s gathering of 8,000 – 10,000 US atheists and agnostics in Washington for the Reason Rally was billed as seeking to ‘unify, energize, and embolden secular people nationwide, while dispelling the negative opinions held by so much of American society’.

It was also billed “the largest gathering of the secular movement in world history’, but only managed about the same low numbers as 2010 Protest the Pope demonstration, around 8,000.

The Reason Rally was supposed to be a “positive experience” to celebrate “secular values” and motivate atheists to “become more active”, but it soon degenerated into the New Atheists’ usual hate fueled ridicule of religion, particularly Catholicism.

Tim Minchin, originator the vile anti-Catholic Pope Song, thrilled the crowd with his refrain ‘F— the motherf—-, f— the mother—- pope’.

Bill Maher did his usual sneering comedy routine,  playing up to the atheists sense of teenage superiority, “When it comes to religion, we’re not two sides of the same coin and you don’t get to put your unreason on the same shelf as my reason. Your stuff has to go over there on the shelf with Zeus and Thor and the Kracken.’

Richard Dawkins chose the Eucharist as the focus of his attack on Faith, calling on atheists and agnostics to “ridicule and show contempt” for the Catholic doctrine of Transubstantiation:

“Do you really believe that when a priest blesses a wafer, it turns into the body of Christ? Are you seriously telling me you believe that?  Are you seriously saying that wine turns into blood?”

“Mock them, ridicule them in public, don’t fall for the convention that we’re far to polite to talk about religion. Religion is not off the table. Religion is not off limits. Religion makes specific claims about the universe, which need to be substantiated.  They should be challenged and ridiculed with contempt.”

Charlie Spiering of Crisis Magazine concludes:

‘The speakers that drew the loudest applause were not the people who praised reason, but persecuted faith. Unchallenged and in like-minded company, the cultural and political leaders of the atheist movement freely mocked and dismissed people of faith.  The brash superiority preached by atheists such as Dawkins shows that they are not content with a right to “unreligious freedom,” but seek suppression of religious expression.

If people of faith allow themselves to be bullied into silence, we can expect this sentiment to grow in our society. The existence of such a society requires submission from people of faith.’

Protect the Pope comment: Tim Minchin mouthing mindless obscenities to rapturous applause shows the extent to which these new atheists have abandoned reason.

And this is the company that  Richard Dawkins, emeritus professor of Oxford, now chooses to keep. He has become such a diminished and shrill figure that he invites sympathy but for the fact that his hatred of faith, and the Catholic Church in particular, is destroying other people’s lives with bitterness and anger and the denial of God.

http://www.crisismagazine.com/2012/a-rally-without-faith#.T3I0ttHBnoM.twitter

http://online.worldmag.com/2012/03/28/richard-dawkins-encourages-atheists-to-mock-and-ridicule-christians/

 

 

21 comments to Dawkins and US atheists prove it’s not about reason, it’s about hate

  • Jon

    Mocking and ridiculing people with different views sure sounds like a great scientific approach to me….

  • Not only that, but also he was directing his comments specifically at Catholics since we seem to make the most outrageous claims. The Eucharist certainly isn’t something you come to believe in by accident buy it also isn’t something that is without its examples of baffling scientists occasionally. Dawkins in his book the God Delusion briefly mentions these occurances but brushes them off as scams. Once again, follow your scientific creed Mr. Dawkins. Prove they are scams.

    Also there is another “Rally” being staged for Holy Week in Madrid by secularists…take a look here: http://goo.gl/M8B52 and sign the petition if you wish.

  • Karla

    Reason Rally website said:

    ‘Q: Are we going to trash religion?
    A: No. This will be a positive experience.’

    They must of been lying because if they invited people like Tim Minchin they must of known what he would be singing and that it would be anti religious.

    Maybe this reason rally has done us all a favor, it has really exposed the new atheists, not for showing reason, but showing hate mongering and bigotry.

  • I was told by an atheist that certitude leads to violence. I asked him if he was certain about this belief.

  • [...] Deacon Nick: Last Saturday’s gathering of 8,000 – 10,000 US atheists and agnostics in Washington for the [...]

  • asrajit

    But do not be too hard on Dawkins. He did say something sensible when he asked those who call themselves Christians but who do not accept all revealed truths to opt out of the Church.
    Now that he has become a carricature, I like to think of him as “Deputy Dawk.” Wonder if it will catch on?

  • Dawkins may be a caricature to some but so was Hitler in his day. His kind of hatred has effects, it spreads. His diatribe approaches the demonic especially when he urges mockery of the Eucharist. This from a man who believes he’s related to monkeys! It’s as if the threats we face today are from those who would make us dhimmis under Islam and those who would make us dhimmis under militant secularism. The positives are that those who are not really committed to the faith may reconsider and return or just get out. It could lead to a purification of the Church. In the meantime he’s an embarrassment to moderate atheists and a pernicious influence against the rest of us.

  • Gurn

    The new atheists are an absolute joke, they are all logical positivists, too intellectually shallow to see the obvious faults with their position. Do they not realise that they are all cultural sheep, following what popular media deems to be right and true, of course one must distinguish between the classical atheists and this new breed of atheism.

    These new atheists bash religious morality often claiming it is “evil” have they ever heard of the ‘is ought’ gap. Or do they flippantly dismiss it and let themselves judge what is good and bad by their emotional and personal whims rather than the reason which they purport to love so much. This movement is motivated by selfishness and arrogance.

    But if 8000-10000 is the best they can do then that is pathetic, it was supposed to be the “largest secular gathering in history” right… compare that to the Pope’s recent visit in Mexico where half a million were gathered for Sunday mass. And yet pro same sex marriage, pro abortion, anti family and pro equality legislation is regularly being pumped through parliament. Rule of the minority it would seem.

    • Pedro

      “The new atheists are an absolute joke,they are all logical positivists”

      And worst of all, they’re prone to sweeping generalisations. :)

      Presumably this assertion is based on the atheist’s demand for evidence. That does not, in itself, make someone a logical positivist. We all demand evidence when faced with another’s beliefs if they contradict our own experience or beliefs. If someone were to tell us they had an iron weight that floated on water, most would want some evidence of that. The more extraordinary the claim the more robust we normally expect the evidence to be. As religious claims are about as extraordinary as it’s possible to be, it’s not unreasonable for an unbeliever to demand quite significant evidence.

      Nor is this restricted to atheists. If I were to tell you that the pantheon of Greek gods really do exist, presumably the first question you would ask would be what’s my evidence.

      The real difference is not that one group are logical positivists and one are not, it’s what is accepted as evidence that divides them. Catholics accept revelation, tradition, miracles and scripture as evidence, whereas the so called new atheists do not.

      • Gurn

        “That does not,in itself,make someone a logical positivist.”
        It does, if a claim is not analytic then they will demand sensory evidence for any synthetic claim a person were to make. The new atheism stinks of logical positivism.

        “If I were to tell you that the pantheon of Greek gods really do exist,presumably the first question you would ask would be what’s my evidence.”
        The old polytheism comparison. Firstly, reason can be used to ascertain the possibility of such gods, if indeed they were just arbitrary magical beings then of course it’s highly unlikely that such beings exist. Whereas with monotheism with an omniperfect absolute God, a necessary being, the first mover (I’m sure you are familiar with the cosmological and teleological arguments) is far more possible and reasonable than polytheism.

    • michael

      “Firstly,reason can be used to ascertain the possibility of such gods,if indeed they were just arbitrary magical beings then of course it’s highly unlikely that such beings exist. Whereas with monotheism with an omniperfect absolute God…is far more reasonable than polytheism.”

      I’m sorry, what?. First, they were not arbitrary, the greek pantheon was a personification of everything that was a mystery or something to be celebrated. They weren’t sure why the sun moved across the sky, so they created a god for that. How can you say this is unreasonable, yet when we say we aren’t sure what started the big bang, saying that an omnipresent, all powerful God is a reasonable claim? Even the greeks didn’t claim their gods were perfect and all powerful. If anything, I would say they were more reasonable than you.

      • Gurn

        “I’m sorry,what?”

        Monotheism is more reasonable than polytheism.

        “They weren’t sure why the sun moved across the sky,so they created a god for that.”

        Yes, but these are limited and finite gods that personify natural things and/or events and so you have just backed up my case against polytheism, thanks. The monotheistic God is eternal and not confined to these petty natural occurrences.

        “How can you say this is unreasonable”

        I said they were highly unlikely, I am absolutely not saying that the Greeks were idiots for their polytheism. I hope you are not committing the genetic fallacy here.

        “yet when we say we aren’t sure what started the big bang,saying that an omnipresent,all powerful God is a reasonable claim?”

        Even before the Big Bang theory existed the cosmological and teleological arguments still argued strongly in favour of a monotheistic God, you could not use such arguments to argue for the existence of polytheistic gods as they are limited to particular natural occurrences. These arguments do not depend on science.
        The article in question here highlights the “reason” rally’s caricature of religious people (particularly monotheistic believers) as idiots/fools/backward/gullible/moronic/pathetic/ignorant, to the extent that we are worthy of extensive ridicule according to Dawkins. I think my response is quite tame in comparison, pointing out the contradictory position new atheists tend to hold. So yes God is reasonable.

        “If anything,I would say they were more reasonable than you.”

        And for the reasons given above I would say that you could not be more wrong about the monotheist position.

        • Pedro

          “pointing out the contradictory position new atheists tend to hold”

          Let me see if I understand you correctly. New atheists hold a contradictory position because they are all logical positivists. Logical positivism is self contradictory because it requires verification of statements in order for a statement to be meaningful. But there is no way to verify this premiss, therefore by its own definition LP is meaningless.

          Your basis for calling all new atheists LP is that they keep asking for evidence of your claims, thus equating asking for evidence with verification. So you are claiming there is no evidence that having evidence for claims is any better than not having evidence for claims.

          Do you have any evidence for that claim?

          • Gurn

            “New atheists hold a contradictory position because they are all logical positivists.”

            For the most part, absolutely. I stress the difference between atheists and new atheists.

            “Your basis for calling all new atheists LP is that they keep asking for evidence of your claims.”

            Sensory evidence, yes.

            “So you are claiming there is no evidence that having evidence for claims is any better than not having evidence for claims. thus equating asking for evidence with verification.”

            Yes, the new atheists demand empirical evidence for anything to be deemed true.
            I am saying that sensory evidence in and of itself is not how knowledge is gained, and is self refuting, does not acknowledge metaphysical truths or metaphysics in general. Reason is needed.

  • Teresa

    “Do you really believe that when a priest blesses a wafer,it turns into the body of Christ? Are you seriously telling me you believe that? Are you seriously saying that wine turns into blood?”

    Dawkins can believe what he likes. Who is forcing him to believe it?! The Church doesn’t! The Church may oblige the faithful, but nobody is forced to belong to it. I have no issue with him if he does not wish to believe it or in the existence of God. I don’t mock him for his disbelief.

    British Humanist Society values: “recognising the dignity of individuals and treating them with fairness and respect” and “being cooperative, working with others of different beliefs for the common good”

    National Secular Society aims: “Secularism seeks to ensure and protect freedom of religious belief and practice for all citizens” and “protect the right to manifest religious belief..”

    Seems Dawkins & Co are out of tune with certain atheist & secularist aims & values, if indeed they are to be taken seriously.

    “They should be challenged and ridiculed with contempt.”

    Nothing wrong with engaging in respectful debate. Unfortunately it seems “respect” is not part of his vocabulary. On his own website he denounces “intolerance”. He is so twisted with hatred he is blinded to his own intolerance. He is living in a very dark place indeed. He needs our prayers.

    Just a thought … has anyone heard him mock Islam? Perhaps that should be the topic of his next rally?!

    • Teresa

      “Are you seriously telling me you believe that?”

      Sorry, misread this so first sentence won’t make sense – thought is said “Are you seriously telling me TO believe that?”

  • Irony is obviously lost on our atheist friends. They’re obsession with Catholicism is a massive ( unintended, no doubt ) compliment to the latter. Atheism, per se, is obviously not all that intellectually satisfying. We Catholics should be delighted for the free publicity. As Oscar Wilde said, ” there’s only one thing worse than being talked about, that’s not being talked about “. Thank’s Dickie.

  • asrajit

    Pedro, it really seems that you are looking for the Truth and I pray you find Him. I have spent most my adult life studying science. We should not base every piece of evidence on science. Supposing a husband turns to his wife and says : ” I want scientific evidence to show you love me. ” That would be less than generous. Similarly, Jesus tells me that He is the Bread of Life. That is sufficient evidence, evidence rooted in love.

    • CathChap

      I wondered how long it would be before someone bought up the “no scientific evenidence that my wife loves me” arguement. I’ve never quite understood that one myself. I know that my wife loves me precisely because of the evidence – what she does, says (and doesn’t say), how she acts, her smile and other things I can observe with my senses. And there are certain behaviours that a wife could endulge in with would would be good eveidence that she did no longer love me

      People who think that someone (a celeb for example) loves then in teh absence of imperical evidence are usually considered delusional.

  • Michael B Rooke

    Pope John Paul II published his last Encyclical in 2003 on the Blessed Sacrament. The Encyclical is Ecclesia De Eucharistia.

    He opens by stating

    “The Church draws her life from the Eucharist. This truth does not simply express a daily experience of faith, but recapitulates the heart of the mystery of the Church. In a variety of ways she joyfully experiences the constant fulfilment of the promise: “Lo, I am with you always, to the close of the age” (Mt 28:20), but in the Holy Eucharist, through the changing of bread and wine into the body and blood of the Lord, she rejoices in this presence with unique intensity. Ever since Pentecost, when the Church, the People of the New Covenant, began her pilgrim journey towards her heavenly homeland, the Divine Sacrament has continued to mark the passing of her days, filling them with confident hope.”

    The Encyclical is on the Vatican web site in two forms.

    The original contains internal links to other documents of the Magisterium.
    http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/john_paul_ii/encyclicals/documents/hf_jp-ii_enc_17042003_ecclesia-de-eucharistia_en.html

    The second version is formatted with a concordance for word search. The concordance toggle link to switch on or off is at the top of each page.

    Click on “Read this document as a whole page” on the index page to be able to scroll through the whole document.

    http://www.vatican.va/edocs/ENG0821/_INDEX.HTM

  • fd

    can you imagine the anger of many who were once again confronted with reality this week as the Pope met with huge and most enthusiastic crowds erywhere he went?
    I should note that 1.5 million Italians watched the Mass the Pope gave in Cuba which was broadcast by the RAI 1 channel and one of the active channels of Italy’s skynews channel on Wednesday. And this was another blow for some parts of the Italian media which decided that the Pope’s visit to Mexico was not important.
    On Monday la Repubblica,which I had a look at in the library, had an entire page devoted to a march by secularists and atheists in Washington who gathered because they say they want to affirm their rights of atheists. At the end of the same page there was a little frame with 2 lines in it which said: “Mexico: Pope doesn’t meet with sex abuse victims.” The hundreds of thousands of people who had welcome him had been erased, in favour of just 2,000 atheists who marched in Washington. As the days went by though La Repubblica reported more fairly on the visit and on the huge number of enthusiastic pilgrims. On the Avvenire column which deals with misreporting in the press Gianni Gennari writes that Il Fatto Quotidiano, on the other hand, has published a scathing editorial bashing and insulting both the Pope and the ” naive Cuban poor who naively and stupidly believe that the Pope wants their good ” Gennari says : it reminded me of a passage in the Gospel which says “He talked about the poor but he didn’t care about them”
    And on Sunday night a RAI NEWS journalist from Mexico who was interviewing a woman there who was thrilled about the Pope , tried to have some criticism of the Pope by this woman asking her about abortion. And then the interviewed woman said : Yes , we hope the Pope will defend life. And at that point the interviewer of the rai- news channel blushed, ad-libbed a smile and stopped her abruptly and gave the line back to her colleague in the studio ,who tried to help her saying: ask her if she is disappointed that he didn’t meet with abuse victims. As she didn’t manage to get criticism of the Pope even there she had to say, a bit disappointed : yes people are happy here about the Pope, line back to Rome.
    And ,to conclude , I post the link to a Spanish newspaper, La Gaceta, which is always very attentive to the Pope,which says that the Pope,once arrived back in Rome, was very tired but absolutely happy with his journey.
    Here’s the article in Spanish.

    http://www.intereconomia.com/noticias-gaceta/iglesia/papa-concluye-su-viaje-demandando-%E2%80%9Creconciliacion-y-libertad-religiosa%E2%80%9D-cuba

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