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Atheist speaker draws crowd

blankWhat would New York Times bestseller, world-renowned biologist and former Oxford biology chairperson Richard Dawkins tell children taught creation by their parents?

“Your parents are talking complete and utter rubbish,” Dawkins said.
And how does Dawkins classify religion in general?
“Like a computer virus.”

For those Dawkins aficionados at the Carolina Coliseum Tuesday night, the pointed comments weren’t surprising. Dawkins, known for his in-your-face teaching and his deep British accent brought almost two hours of scientific discussion to approximately 2,000 people for the annual A.C. Moore Lecture of Biological Sciences.

The event, co-sponsored by the campus atheist group Pastafarians, drew no outside protestors and remained civil for the entire discourse, surprising some who said before the lecture they expected the debate to turn vitriolic.

Even during some of Dawkins’ most controversial statements the majority of the audience clapped. No boos or derogatory comments were audible, and when audiences were posed with the opportunity to ask Dawkins questions, none were defamatory or attacking.

Dawkins said he wasn’t surprised.

“The more I do these events in the so-called ‘Bible Belt,’ the more I see enormous support from people who feel beleaguered and even oppressed in their own communities,” Dawkins said. “Then they see that they’re not the only one.”



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