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

Rick Perry's God

Does the Texas governor believe his idiotic religious rhetoric, or is he just pandering for votes?

I happened to spend several weeks in Texas earlier this year, while the Lone Star State lay under the pitiless glare of an unremitting drought. After a protracted arid interval, the state's immodest governor, Rick Perry, announced that he was using the authority vested in him to call for prayers for rain. These incantations and beseechments, carrying the imprimatur of government, were duly offered to the heavens. The heavens responded by remaining, along with the parched lands below, obstinately dry.

Perry did not, of course, suffer politically for making an idiot of himself in this way. Not even the true believers really expect that prayers for precipitation will be answered, or believe that a failed rainmaker is a false prophet. And, had Perry's entreaties actually been followed by a moistening of the clouds and the coming of the healing showers, it is unlikely that anybody would really have claimed a connection between post hoc and propter hoc. No, religion in politics is more like an insurance policy than a true act of faith. Professing allegiance to it seldom does you any harm, at least in Republican primary season, and can do you some good. It's a question of prudence.
Read more

TAGGED: CHRISTOPHER HITCHENS, POLITICS, RELIGION


RELATED CONTENT

Viewpoints: Why is faith falling in the...

- - 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.

Blasphemy Laws Exposed: The...

- - human rights first Comments

Blasphemy Laws Exposed: The Consequences of Criminalizing “Defamation of Religions”

Update - Too crazy even for the...

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?

Pussy Riot's closing statement

Cory Doctorow - BoingBoing Comments

Pussy Riot member Yekaterina Samutsevich has given a tremendous closing statement, which is a masterful summary of Russian oligarchy

Refuting Richard: Dawkins Doesn’t “Get”...

Graham Veale - Saints & Sceptics? Comments

Refuting Richard: Dawkins Doesn’t “Get” God

Witchcraft-based child abuse: Action...

- - BBC News Comments

The government has launched an action plan to tackle child abuse linked to witchcraft or religion in England.

MORE

MORE BY CHRISTOPHER HITCHENS

In Defense of Richard Dawkins

Christopher Hitchens - Free Inquiry 52 Comments

Why should he sit still and see a valued and precious discipline being insulted, even threatened with not being taught?

Forced Merriment: The True Spirit of...

Christopher Hitchens - The Wall... 27 Comments


Christopher Hitchens

Trial of the Will

Christopher Hitchens - Vanity Fair 40 Comments

Christopher Hitchens: No Deathbed...

Christopher Hitchens - Open Culture &... 33 Comments

Hitchens on the Catholic Church

Christopher Hitchens - YouTube -... 174 Comments

One of the great rants by Christopher Hitchens was when he participated in a debate in England put on by the Intelligence Squared organization in October 2009.

Death of a Madman

Christopher Hitchens - Slate 159 Comments

MORE

Comments

Comment RSS Feed

Please sign in or register to comment