Thursday, May 05, 2005

Hitchens Takes On The Religious Right

If you follow this blog, you know I love the work of Christopher Hitchens. If you follow Hitchens, you know he hates religion and faith with a passion. At least he's articulate about it, but his powers of reasoning, usually so incisive, sometimes fail him here. Such is the case with this Wall Street Journal article. No one who reads Hitchens can doubt that he has a strong moral compass, despite his atheism, and he's right that secularism and atheism are not equivalent; but here, Hitchens is flailing against a straw man.

Who among us takes their marching orders from Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell? Who among us wants a theocracy? If such people exist, their numbers are small indeed. To fight against intolerance is a noble cause when applied to homosexuals, minorities, and the disabled; why are the religious exempt from this? Hitchens speaks as if Americans of faith want religious rule imposed on America, in the manner of the Taliban; nothing could be further from the truth. I suspect the vast majority just want an America that acknowledges the important role religion has always played in its affairs, regardless of how painful that may be to our good friend Christopher. To be continued, no doubt...

No comments: