The LA Times published Charlotte Allen‘s anti-atheist rant on Sunday.
Guess which of the two pieces makes more sense?
I love the piece, but I find it interesting that it doesn’t directly respond to Allen’s attacks (not that they really deserve a response).
She should drop the pretense that the objectionable part of our character is our lack of excitement. What really annoys Allen is that in our books, blogs and media appearances, we challenge religious preconceptions. That’s all we do. It’s admittedly not exactly a roller-coaster ride of thrills, but it does annoy the superstitious and the fervent true believers in things unseen and unevidenced. We are also, admittedly, often abrasive in being outspoken critics of religious dogma, but it’s also very hard to restrain our laughter and contempt when we see the spectacle of god-belief in full flower.
Allen requests that we atheists take religious belief seriously. We do; it’s hard not to take seriously a bizarre collection of antiquated superstitions that are furiously waved in our faces in our schools, on television, in our politics and even on newspaper editorial pages. That we take the intellectually bankrupt beliefs of religion seriously is precisely why we do question it, and will continue to question it, in our boring way: by simply speaking out.
It just uses a couple of her points to make a much larger statement: Atheists are everywhere and there is nothing abnormal about our way of thinking. He goes after religious belief in itself (the head of the beast) rather than going after Allen (a mere arm of the beast), and it works to his advantage.
The fact that they published Myers piece, though, should not exonerate the LA Times Op-ed team from the fact that they gave Allen space to write her tripe in the first place.
(Thanks to Claudia for the link!)