Thursday, March 20, 2008

Sad and funny

Sad, because this kind of crap happens. What happened to freedom (intellectual or otherwise)?

Funny because, well, read it in PZ Myers' own words......

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Robb said...

That's hilarious.

Dawkins is still an @$$hole though.

Anonymoustache said...

You may not agree with Dawkins' views but he's far from being an asshole, man. He makes his case bluntly, to be sure, but also in an extremely reasoned and erudite manner; and often in the face of vituperative fundamentalist rhetoric. With organized religion actively trying to drive the world back a millennium or two, I think we need more voices like Dawkins to get people thinking.

Robb said...

Dawkins obviously has legitimate points. However, he is arrogantly unwilling to even listen to opposing viewpoints in much the same way the religious fundamentalists won't listen to facts on evolution.

I.e., and ergo, @$$hole.

Anonymoustache said...

I am unaware of when Dawkins was unwilling to listen to opposing viewpoints.
I can see how that may appear though. Dawkins (and other rationalists or even cogent proponents of atheism) base their views strictly on evidence and reasoning. They are arguing against belief-in-the-absence-of-proof and against untestable hypotheses. So at some point there remains no rational ground for intersection in the dialogue between the two camps. Fundies on the other hand, repudiate established fact. Unwillingness to accept someone's faith is not the same as repudiating well-established facts. I think it is grossly unfair to equate the two and thereby to label Dawkins an asshole.
If you think Dawkins is an asshole for not giving credence to arguments based on faith, then you should concede that all Muslims can deem all Christians, Hindus etc to be assholes 'cos they don't accept Islam as the true way. And vice-versa and verce-visa and vire-vesca (OK i just made that up, but u get the point).
THAT is the problem with faith-based arguments, and that is the great argument in favor of more rationalism in popular thought.
Also, rationalism can, by definition, never be fundamentalist---you can question a stand and look for the evidence underlying it; if you're not satisfied, you don't accept the stand.
Organized religion, on the other hand, marching under the guise of spirituality, actually lays the ground work for mass-delusion and all consequent ills because there is little room for thinking involved----just accepting and acting.
Anyway, as re the asshole status, I guess we'll agree to disagree on this one.

Robb said...

"Unwillingness to accept someone's faith is not the same as repudiating well-established facts."

The problem isn't accepting someone's religious beliefs as the one true faith. That's a straw man that I never suggested. The problem is that he doesn't accept that people who have faith are not idiots for believing in something that can't be empirically tested.

It is the height of arrogance to pre-suppose that you (not you, him) understand the vast complexities of the universe and its underpinnings well enough to definitively say that someone else who is humble enough to take a different position is a fool.

If you are instantly dismissive of your opponents core principle (e.g., evolution or the existence of God), then there is no room for rational discourse. That's what makes him the same as the fundies - he has his own inerrant philosophy in which he has no room for dissent.

@$$hole (not you, him).

Anonymoustache said...

My whole point is that the core-principles as you call them are diametrically opposed in their fundamentals. Evolution, for instance, is substantiated by a body of evidence as scientific principles will validate. Faith in God is not. Hence the difference in opinion on the term 'rational discourse' itself.
In any case, if he calls someone a fool for having faith, I suppose you should be able to call him an asshole for not giving credence to faith.
I do apologize for commenting on/trying to evaluate your opinion in that regard.
I guess what I'm trying to say is that I'll beg to disagree in my opinion on this one.