The plan worked perfectly!!! BWAHAHAHA!
Though Im not part of the 'Media Control' division of the EAC, I am proud of their sneakiness. Check this out-- they threw out 'The Golden Compass' as an easy target for the Biblos, got em all worked up in a froth, put 'OMG AN ATHEIST MOVIE THUR GONNA EAT UR KIDS'! on every news station. And while all this was going on, they snuck 'Atonement' in the back door! Though we wont get to see the 'Golden Globes' this year, 'Atonement' has the most nominations, and it was written by... AN ATHEIST!
Like, a REAL atheist!
I just read a quote of yours, "Atheists have as much conscience, possibly more, than people with deep religious convictions," and I have noticed that recently you have been talking a little more about atheism. You also contributed an essay to a new book called The Portable Atheist. What are your thoughts on the "New Atheist" movement, which has gotten so much publicity and sold so many books in the last year or so. Do you think it differs from strains of atheism in the past?
I am a little baffled as to why it is called the "New Atheism." There is a very long tradition of free thinking, and the arguments made against religion tend to be the same but made over and over again. But I think what has happened is that there have been a number of good, articulate books--Hitchens, Dawkins, Dennett, Sam Harris, and so on. What they have discovered to their own great surprise is that in the
, and right across the South too, there are an enormous number of people who also think this way. I don't think they have suddenly been persuaded by this rash of books--the feelings were there anyway--but they didn't have a voice, they didn't have a focus. When Hitchens took his book across the Bible Belt and debated with Baptist ministers in churches, there were huge audiences, most of whom, it seems, from when they spoke to him afterwards, were somewhat irritated that the place in the United States that they lived in was called the Bible Belt. I think there was something there that people had not taken into account. Quite heartening really, given that United States is meant to be a secular republic with a strong tradition of upholding all freedom of thought. America
But my questions are these: Why can't atheists make their case without too often resorting to absolutism like McEwan's here? Why can't Hitchens stand up for godlessness without telling people that they're thick to believe otherwise? As authors, they should know that people are more interesting than that.He also referrs everyone to an 'excellent' piece by Damon Linker. Ya, excellent. **rolleyes**
Anyway, props to the 'Media Control Division', bonus points for getting TNR to print awesome pro-reason comments!!