Friday, April 22, 2011

"Our weapons are the ironic mind against the literal: the open mind against the credulous ..."

Message to American Atheists - Christopher Hitchens - AA Conference, via Pharyngula -

Our weapons are the ironic mind against the literal: the open mind against the credulous; the courageous pursuit of truth against the fearful and abject forces who would set limits to investigation (and who stupidly claim that we already have all the truth we need). Perhaps above all, we affirm life over the cults of death and human sacrifice and are afraid, not of inevitable death, but rather of a human life that is cramped and distorted by the pathetic need to offer mindless adulation, or the dismal belief that the laws of nature respond to wailings and incantations.

Contrast Mr. Hitchens' principled intelligence with Texas Governor Rick Perry's recent request that Texans pray (precisely the "wailings and incantantions" Hitchens addresses) for rain to help combat wildfires. And the MSM, ABC News in this case, covers this without, so far as I can tell, a trace of irony:
Perhaps it's working. The first day of prayer began today, on Good Friday, and is forecasting isolated thunderstorms today and tomorrow -- with a 30 percent chance of rain in Fort Worth.
So wrote ABC's Tia Castaneda, willing to ascribe a 30% chance of rain the forecast to the power of prayer. The power of which will have been proven should it rain; the failure of Texans to pray hard enough -- perhaps due to the presence of homosexuals and atheists within the states borders? -- demonstrated should it not.

Pathetic indeed.
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