Thursday, January 12, 2006

"Root of all Evil?" review

See also here and here.

I didn't watch Richard Dawkins. There wouldn't be much point in me offering my opinions here, anyway - you don't need to read many of my posts to work out what I am likely to have thought of it. Instead, here's a few thoughts from Joe Joseph's reviews in "The Times" - which I couldn't find on the Times Online site.

... Dawkins, one of our smartest scientists, masks his disgust for religion and those who believe in it the way Jordan masks her cleavage...

[Dawkins] challenged cartoon opponents - an American evangelical Christian and an Islamic fundamentalist who trilled about "soldiers of Allah" .... You didn't necessarily have to disagree with Dawkins about God's existence to wish that he had picked meatier adversaries.

... If a scientist is happily allowed to believe something else that is wrong simply because he knows no better, to what extent might Christians, or Muslims or Jews be allowed a similar licence? What makes one kind of false belief honourable and another not?

... Might it not have been interesting for him to take his argument to a religious scientist ... just to see where the debate led?
So it's not only Christians who found the exercise somewhat unsatisfactory.

Incidentally, Dawkins has refused to engage in debate with creationists (under which heading he would presumably also include proponents of Intelligent Design) on the pretext that he doesn't want to give them credibility. There are many amongst the creationist/ID community that believe that he simply couldn't come up with answers. His choice of less than challenging examples will have done little to dispel that impression.