Feb 052007

As if we needed any more evidence of just how disingenuous Richard Dawkins is, check out this little tidbit I got from a friend of mine.

Richard Dawkins: 4 December 2006

Richard Dawkins You Ask The Questions

Question: Why have you not engaged in public debate with Alister McGrath, Mary Midgley, Michael Ruse, Keith Ward, or indeed anyone else who would present you with a serious challenge? JAMES RADFORD, By e-mail

RD: The producers of my Channel 4 documentary [Root of All Evil?] invited the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Cardinal Archbishop of Westminster and the Chief Rabbi to be interviewed by me. All declined, doubtless for good reasons. I don’t enjoy the debate format, but I once had a public debate with the then Archbishop of York, and The Observer quoted the verdict of one disconsolate clergyman as he left the hall: “That was easy to sum up – Lions 10, Christians nil.”

Alister McGrath: 3 February 2007

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/pages/live/articles/news/StartComments [note: this link might be gone]

Dawkins and I both love the sciences; we both believe in evidence-based reasoning. So how do we make sense of our different ways of looking at the world? That is one of the issues about which I have often wished we might have a proper discussion. Our paths do cross on the television networks and we even managed to spar briefly across a BBC sofa a few months back. We were also filmed having a debate for Dawkins’s recent Channel 4 programme, The Root Of All Evil? Dawkins outlined his main criticisms of God, and I offered answers to what were clearly exaggerations and misunderstandings. It was hardly rocket science.

For instance, Dawkins often compares belief in God to an infantile belief in Santa Claus or the Tooth Fairy, saying it is something we should all outgrow. But the analogy is flawed. How many people do you know who started to believe in Santa Claus in adulthood?

Many people discover God decades after they have ceased believing in the Tooth Fairy. Dawkins, of course, would just respond that people such as this are senile or mad, but that is not logical argument. Dawkins can no more ‘prove’ the non-existence of God than anyone else can prove He does exist.

Most of us are aware that we hold many beliefs we cannot prove to be true. It reminds us that we need to treat those who disagree with us with intellectual respect, rather than dismissing them – as Dawkins does – as liars, knaves and charlatans. But when I debated these points with him, Dawkins seemed uncomfortable. I was not surprised to be told that my contribution was to be cut. The Root Of All Evil? was subsequently panned for its blatant unfairness. Where, the critics asked, was a responsible, informed Christian response to Dawkins? The answer: on the cutting-room floor.

So there you have it folks. If you either disagree with or challenge anything His Dawkishness says, and he has editorial control (which he ueally does), then snip snip you’re on the cutting room floor. After all, he wouldn’t want to risk tarnishing that shiny thin veneer of academic respectibility, now would he?

What a sham. Pass this story on as often as possible an expose this guys disingenousness with the public.

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15 years ago

This is the same kind of hypocritical garbage that Sam Harris pushes, spewing their venomous hatred behind the guise of tolerance and fictitious fairness.

15 years ago

Well neither of them have ever been accused of having tact, that’s for sure. I wouldn’t accuse them of knowing anything about Religion in general or Christianity in particular either. As we’ve discussed before here, their whole attack is predicated on their own straw man versions of the Christian faith.

How can anyone take these guys seriously anymore? They’ve become the bufoons of atheism in my judgement. I guess every three-ring circus needs its clowns!