Quite a few creationists, conservatives, and religious-right-types appear to be enthusiastic about Ann Coulter’s latest rant, Godless. So I stopped by at a bookstore and hastily read about half of it. (I’m not buying the thing. Being a bibliomaniac, I spend enough on books that I don’t feel guilty stting down in Borders occasionally and reading loony literature I have no intention of supporting financially.)

It was kind of interesting. It has quite a lot of anti-evolutionary posturing, aside from its perhaps more predictable attacks on secularism and “liberals.” There’s nothing resembling a real argument in the book — it’s a series of insults against “liberals,” can-you-believe-this anecdotes etc. Nothing wrong with that — much of it is actually kind of humorous, even when it’s my ox that’s being gored. But Coulter (and her audience, presumably) clearly have no regard for truth as I understand it. My first reaction was to think that she’s just lying in every other sentence, but now I’m not sure. Perhaps she just doesn’t care. Ideology frames everything — her “facts” and attempts at reasoning are just apologetic devices for a position that has little to do with any actual argument.

Thing is, when reading stuff like this, I invariably start wondering if this is the way most people think about political and religious matters. Scary thought…

About Taner Edis

Professor of physics at Truman State University

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/01194234762628826158 Phil Smith

    Scary indeed… The fact that you managed to read any of Coulter’s nonsense is impressive to say the least. Did you or any nearby patrons require medical attention during or afterwards?

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/12459891984373393444 Taner Edis

    No. But if I owned the copy, I would have flung it across the room a number of times.

    Actually, I like reading loony stuff…