Any fool can make a rule and any fool will mind it
By MIRANDA CELESTE HALE - MIRANDA CELESTE HALE - EWL
Added: Tue, 29 Jun 2010 22:18:47 UTC
Andrew Brown, the Guardian’s Fool in Residence, has written another painfully ridiculous excuse for a column: “Richard Dawkins’s backwards logic over atheist schooling,” subtitled “Richard Dawkins’s belief that any properly brought up child will naturally be an atheist leads him into absurdity.”
Some choice bits from The Fool:
But “evidence”, tends to be defined backwards in these polemics – in other words, he starts from the axiom that there is no evidence whatsoever for the existence of God, (implied here in his remark that “Every atheist I know would change their mind in a heartbeat if any evidence appeared in favour of religious belief”) and then find meanings for the term that fit this use. This is of course the same trick as defining faith as belief without evidence and then using this definition as proof that faith is irrational.
Andrew Brown, listen up. Try to follow me here:
- There is no evidence whatsoever for the existence of God.
- Any intellectually honest atheist indeed would change their position were there any such evidence.
- Faith, by definition, is “belief without evidence.” Of course it is “irrational.”
He goes on:
If that sounds unfair, consider the uses of “evidence” in his discussion of education here: “Children should be taught to ask for evidence, to be sceptical, critical, open-minded. If children understand that beliefs should be substantiated with evidence, as opposed to tradition, authority, revelation or faith, they will automatically work out for themselves that they are atheists.” It’s clear here that Dawkins is starting from the definition that “evidence” is what can’t justify a belief in God, whereas “tradition, authority, revelation, and faith” have all been used to justify religious belief, so they must be bad.
- Again: there is no evidence whatsoever for the existence of God.
- Yes, believing something without evidence is “bad.” Teaching a child that tradition, authority, and revelation are good reasons for believing something to be true is cruel. Cruel. It stunts their intellectual and emotional growth. It discourages them from asking questions and thinking critically. It makes them into gullible little creatures, many of whom never develop the ability to think for themselves. It deprives them.
... Continue reading
- - BBC News Comments
A new poll suggests that atheism is on the rise in the US, while those who consider themselves religious has dropped. What's the cause? Two writers debate.
- - human rights first Comments
Blasphemy Laws Exposed: The Consequences of Criminalizing “Defamation of Religions”
Ed Kilgore - Political Animal Comments
update - too crazy even for the evangelical right
Barton’s Fall From Grace
David Barton says his documents prove that the Founding Fathers were deeply religious men who built America on Christian ideas - but do his sources check out?
Cory Doctorow - BoingBoing Comments
Pussy Riot member Yekaterina Samutsevich has given a tremendous closing statement, which is a masterful summary of Russian oligarchy
Graham Veale - Saints & Sceptics? Comments
Refuting Richard: Dawkins Doesn’t “Get” God
- - BBC News Comments
The government has launched an action plan to tackle child abuse linked to witchcraft or religion in England.