This site is not maintained. Click here for the new website of Richard Dawkins.

← New Atheists Are Not Great

New Atheists Are Not Great - Comments

nickthelight's Avatar Comment 1 by nickthelight

There is nothing 'new' about disbelief.

Mon, 17 Mar 2008 09:01:00 UTC | #137701

al-rawandi's Avatar Comment 2 by al-rawandi

The 10 Commandments are the foundation of morality?

Does he plan to go out and slaughter Hindus for their worship of multiple gods and idols?

Mon, 17 Mar 2008 09:09:00 UTC | #137705

Steve Zara's Avatar Comment 3 by Steve Zara

No other religion dares claim that God walked among us as fully human. None describes the Lord as a servant rather than overlord. None contemplates an Almighty who humbly offers the bread and cup of love or gives his children complete freedom to grasp his outstretched hand or slap it away.

Translation: Christianity is so crazy it MUST be true. (I have actually heard this argument used many times before)

Mon, 17 Mar 2008 09:11:00 UTC | #137707

Stephen Maxwell's Avatar Comment 5 by Stephen Maxwell

"They're like the man who perishes in a fire because he refuses to believe the net below will hold."

One of the more ludicrous statements I've heard in recent memory.

Mon, 17 Mar 2008 09:12:00 UTC | #137709

Quetzalcoatl's Avatar Comment 4 by Quetzalcoatl

Atheism cannot reach our hearts. A rigorous atheist cannot console in a time of grief, cannot explain love, cannot sigh in happy wonder at life's endless surprises. He can only utter, "What is, is."


Mon, 17 Mar 2008 09:12:00 UTC | #137708

Steve Zara's Avatar Comment 6 by Steve Zara

Comment #145110 by Quetzalcoatl

I find that statement you quote very offensive. I have had dear friends die in recent years, and they required no religion to console them, and their secular funerals were sad but wonderful celebrations of life. (The most recent one, last year, was for someone who was a fan of Monty Python. We walked out of the funeral to the sound of "Always look on the bright side of life" from Life of Brian. I knew what it was like to laugh and cry at the same time).

Mon, 17 Mar 2008 09:15:00 UTC | #137711

TheSwede's Avatar Comment 7 by TheSwede

"The world even now takes for granted America's uncommon generosity, especially in times of disaster and crisis. These traits spring directly from our faith."

This argument doesn't hold empirically. The most generous nations aren't the Christian ones but the secular ones.

Who is really "turning the other cheek?" one might also ask? Is it our Christian Nation to the west that hasn't had a decade without participating in a war for as long as anyone can remember? Or is it the world's most atheistic nation, Sweden (where only 8% believe in God), that hasn't been in a war for over 200 years?

Mon, 17 Mar 2008 09:16:00 UTC | #137712

ThoughtsonCommonToad's Avatar Comment 8 by ThoughtsonCommonToad

Steve. I think always look on the bright side of life is one of the most poignant songs ever written.

Mon, 17 Mar 2008 09:17:00 UTC | #137714

discipline's Avatar Comment 9 by discipline

> Atheists may be selling books
> but they're not making converts.

The author apparently hasn't seen the Pew survey, which shows that atheists/agnostics/unaffiliated is the fastest growing segment of the US population:


Mon, 17 Mar 2008 09:17:00 UTC | #137716

Apathy personified's Avatar Comment 10 by Apathy personified

This is article is long, is it worth me reading or shall I assume it's full of the generic lies and bullshit?

Mon, 17 Mar 2008 09:18:00 UTC | #137718

Saerain's Avatar Comment 11 by Saerain

I had actually hoped that Tony Snow was a marginally intelligent man outside of the very difficult job of apologising for the Bush administration, but now evidently he is just finding other insufferable men to defend.

Mon, 17 Mar 2008 09:20:00 UTC | #137719

al-rawandi's Avatar Comment 12 by al-rawandi


Snow Job was his nickname. Apparently well earned.

Mon, 17 Mar 2008 09:22:00 UTC | #137720

Oromasdes1978's Avatar Comment 13 by Oromasdes1978

D Souza is a disgusting man, I really can't find words to describe how much I am offended by his dismissal of non religious people as he has been quoted by Quetz.

I remember that article he did about the school shootings and the highly offensive things he said, even after that brilliant man wrote back to him explaining how he was dealing with it.

This is definitely one of the things I dislike about how religion can make people think, the total lack of understanding of what it is to love and have compassion for people without having to claim a higher, invisible, authority to make it somehow more perfect.



Mon, 17 Mar 2008 09:29:00 UTC | #137722

F_A_F's Avatar Comment 14 by F_A_F

""arguably the most unpleasant character in all fiction: jealous and proud of it; a petty, unjust, unforgiving control-freak; a vindictive, bloodthirsty ethnic cleanser; a misogynistic, homophobic, racist, infanticidal, genocidal, filicidal, pestilential, megalomaniacal, sadomasochistic, capriciously malevolent bully." Such invective clings like chewing gum to atheist polemics and raises the question of why these people are so worked up about a creator they don't believe exists."

Surely all that description stems from what anyone could read and understand based upon the text presented as the basis of many religions.....the old testament. Atheists haven't made those descriptions up, anyone who has read the old testament could come to the same conclusion.

Mon, 17 Mar 2008 09:31:00 UTC | #137723

Saerain's Avatar Comment 15 by Saerain

Atheists may be selling books, but they're not making converts. Christianity is --
Christianity makes more converts amongst those who are already religious. On the other hand, agnostic atheism is the default position one is born into, and the point is that Christianity is converting fewer atheists than ever before.

That is to say: the rate at which Christians are failing to convert new generations of atheists is surpassing the rate at which they are succeeding in converting other theists.

D'Souza's statement is correct, but misleading.

Mon, 17 Mar 2008 09:32:00 UTC | #137725

Clapton_is_God's Avatar Comment 16 by Clapton_is_God

"They seethe with disapproval of God."

I just seethe whenever an apologist suggests that atheists have a god to seethe at.

Why don't they get the simple fact that as far as atheists are concerned, there is no god to hate, dislike, detest, abhor, seethe at or even have mild disapproval of. THERE IS JUST NOT A GOD AT ALL, never has been, never will be.

I (almost) give up trying to drill this simple fact into them.


Mon, 17 Mar 2008 09:35:00 UTC | #137726

Double Bass Atheist's Avatar Comment 17 by Double Bass Atheist

Another irritating pile of feces for the 'fleas' to snack on.

There is so much to pick apart from this drivel. Skipping the obvious assertions that atheists are responsible for more deaths then theists (this one's old and tired), I'll pick just a few others:

Yet science has insurmountable limits. It cannot answer empirical questions about the origins of the universe, for instance.
But religion can?!?! So, why is a made-up answer better then no answer at all?!

If reason can explain everything, why can't it explain where things come from?
'Reason' CAN explain where things come from. We've already shown, for example, how the heavier elements came from the lighter elements via fusion in stars. Of course, there are hundreds more examples, but why bother? These people will never take the time to read the complex subject matter. 'God did it' is just so much easier.

Moral laws have changed less over the millennia than the recognized laws of physics and mathematics

WTF???!!! That has to be one of the most ridiculous statements I've ever heard. The mathematical laws have never changed! They are the cornerstone of all understanding. The laws of physics haven't changed either, they've only been enhanced (ie. Newton/Einstein on gravity). BUT, "moral law" changes almost daily... courts review/reinterpret law, governments pass new ones, and even the Catholic Chuch just passed a new set of sins!!!

Atheism cannot reach our hearts. A rigorous atheist cannot console in a time of grief, cannot explain love, cannot sigh in happy wonder at life's endless surprises. He can only utter, "What is, is."
This is perhaps the most disgusting part of this diatribe. These people simply cannot fathom the idea of life without their sky daddy! Why can't we "console in a time of grief" or "sigh in happy wonder at life's endless surprises"? I have been to many funerals, expressed my condolences, and cried with the family. 'God' was not ever mentioned! I am constantly in 'happy wonder' as new discoveries are made!

Mon, 17 Mar 2008 09:41:00 UTC | #137727

Quetzalcoatl's Avatar Comment 19 by Quetzalcoatl

Compare and contrast this:

exposing atheism more as a bundle of sentiments than a coherent doctrine

with this:

Every child has felt a shiver of God as night closes and the world grows quiet. Adults, amid the bustle and din, know he's there. When trouble comes, we whisper his name. We cannot see, hear, or yet walk with him. But from time to time we experience a presence that defies description. The God of love is also the God of surprise.

Another believer who is oblivious to the concept of irony.

Mon, 17 Mar 2008 09:42:00 UTC | #137730

Agrajag's Avatar Comment 18 by Agrajag

A rigorous atheist cannot console in a time of grief, cannot explain love, cannot sigh in happy wonder at life's endless surprises. He can only utter, "What is, is."

I wonder where he got this idea. I have experienced the grief of a parent's death, loved the same wife for going on 26 years, and shed tears at the birth of two children, among other things. Yet I have never to my best recollection uttered the prescribed words. What is wrong with me?

Mon, 17 Mar 2008 09:42:00 UTC | #137728

Apathy personified's Avatar Comment 20 by Apathy personified

Sigh, i did read it, what a waste of time.

I agree with Steve and Double Bass atheist, that is probably the worst and maybe, the only really offensive thing he states.

Mon, 17 Mar 2008 09:47:00 UTC | #137731

STLstrike3's Avatar Comment 21 by STLstrike3

I seriously needed compazine to even make it 2/3rds of the way through this piece of apologetic drivel.

Did you all find that, at nearly every "point" that he made, that you wanted to interject and force him to reply?

"Such invective clings like chewing gum to atheist polemics and raises the question of why these people are so worked up about a creator they don't believe exists."

Um, perhaps because the followers of this god are responsible for keeping enclaves of our society in the dark ages and hindering scientific progress by brainwashing their litters of children into the same delusion about a sky fairy?

"So when atheists invoke natural law standards, they embrace the Creator they most wish to deny."

Lies. The creators of this religion would have made tree ornaments out of my testicles if I had attempted to explain such "natural law standards" back in the day.

"He (D'Souza) describes how Christian principles of free choice and human dignity laid the groundwork for democratic political systems built on inalienable human rights."

How does D'Souza continue to get away with this ridiculous lie? When he printed a version of this comment in USA Today, I almost swore off newspapers forever. When D'Souza speaks, I literally get nauseous. Someone that stupid should not be making more money than I do.

"Religious faith is not in opposition to reason."

If you ever needed someone to say something that let you know they will forever lack the intellectual weapons to spar with you... that sentence should remove all doubt.

Mon, 17 Mar 2008 09:55:00 UTC | #137733

the way's Avatar Comment 22 by the way

exposing atheism more as a bundle of sentiments than a coherent doctrine.

Damn! And there I was thinking all along that Atheists had a common creed! Well spotted.

Mon, 17 Mar 2008 09:56:00 UTC | #137734

FightingFalcon's Avatar Comment 23 by FightingFalcon

"He describes how Christian principles of free choice and human dignity laid the groundwork for democratic political systems built on inalienable human rights. They inspired free markets in economics and intellectual pursuit."

I stopped reading at this point. Christianity is responsible for democratic ideals and free markets? I know Tony Snow is just a talking-head for the conservative element in America (he was, after all, President Bush's press secretary) but comments like that are just ridiculous. A large portion of Enlightenment thinkers were Deists at best and rabidly anti-religious Atheists at "worst".

Mon, 17 Mar 2008 10:00:00 UTC | #137737

Steve Zara's Avatar Comment 24 by Steve Zara

Damn! And there I was thinking all along that Atheists had a common creed! Well spotted.

Maybe we should get D'Souza to debate David Robertson on this matter.

Mon, 17 Mar 2008 10:01:00 UTC | #137739

al-rawandi's Avatar Comment 25 by al-rawandi


That would be like watching two hens in a cock fight.

Mon, 17 Mar 2008 10:02:00 UTC | #137740

mr-zero's Avatar Comment 26 by mr-zero

Apathy personified - don't bother - same old nonsense.

Mon, 17 Mar 2008 10:05:00 UTC | #137744

Arcturus's Avatar Comment 27 by Arcturus

Jebus F-ing Christ!

Look how's talking about love and caring for the poor and weak. The spokesman for the Bush administration. The guys how lied the whole world just to go on their Iraq adventure.

This guy just makes me puke!

I can understand Hedges, but Snow and Bush? What kind of Christians are they? How many killed Iraqis do they have on their conscience.

And Dinesh, well we know him ... he's a moron.

Mon, 17 Mar 2008 10:17:00 UTC | #137750

Johan's Avatar Comment 29 by Johan

"Tony Snow, former press secretary for President George W. Bush."

That about says it all, doesn't it. The only good word in that sentence is "former".


Mon, 17 Mar 2008 10:18:00 UTC | #137752

DamnDirtyApe's Avatar Comment 28 by DamnDirtyApe

A few Jefferson quotes can undermine most of what the former press secretary of one of America's worst presidents is saying:

There is no act, however virtuous, for which ingenuity may not find some bad motive.

Bigotry is the disease of ignorance, of morbid minds; enthusiasm of the free and buoyant. Education & free discussion are the antidotes of both.

The Newtonian principle of gravitation is now more firmly established, on the basis of reason, than it would be were the government to step in, and to make it an article of necessary faith. Reason and experiment have been indulged, and error has fled before them.

The legitimate powers of government extend to such acts only as are injurious to others. But it does me no injury for my neighbor to say there are twenty gods or no God. It neither picks my pocket nor breaks my leg.

In conclusion, Snow is nothing. He also missed the point that we atheists are technically agnostics (in the same sense we are teapot agnostics that is) as well. I think he's just trying to appeal to his former base and keep idiots throwing money at him.

Mon, 17 Mar 2008 10:18:00 UTC | #137751

petermun's Avatar Comment 30 by petermun

"A rigorous atheist cannot console in a time of grief" - what absolute tripe. When first wife died 6 years ago I found many of those with faith who tried to console me made things so very much worse - it was those without faith who were the greatest consolation - and the most "real".

Mon, 17 Mar 2008 10:21:00 UTC | #137754