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


← Insulting religion

danconquer's Avatar Jump to comment 28 by danconquer

Comment 22 by JackR :

Totally with Pat on this. I am so tired of the "Attack the belief, not the believer" nonsense. People should be held responsible for their beliefs - and treated accordingly. Should we have attacked Nazism but respected Hitler?

Your analogy doesn't hold up to logical comparison... As the chief architect and promulgator of Nazism, Hitler fully deserves the blame for the terrible outcomes of the vicious ideology he created. But at the same time, it is possible (as I, and probably most people do) to have some understanding, perhaps sympathy, for the 40-odd percent of German people who naively voted for this lunatic, due to a mixture of unfortunate circumstances in which they found themselves. You don't really hold the unemployed, semi-educated, fearful, propaganda-fed German worker who voted for the party on the same level of moral culpability as the likes of Goebbels, Himmler and Eichmann... Do you?!

And so too it is with those who subscribe to the "Attack the belief, not the believer" principle. I think you will find that most of us who think this is a sensible policy make a clear distinction between the blindly following (often uneducated) masses on the one hand, and the architects, masters and ringleaders of the organised delusions. When we talk about not attacking the 'believers' it means the passive mass, rather than the orchestrating popes, imams, rabbis, gurus and the other charlatans upon whom it always is, and always should be, open season.

Sat, 16 Jul 2011 13:26:50 UTC | #850153