The Times reports on Tony Blair’s recent speech at Georgetown University, where he had some strong words to say about the irreligious:
“We face an aggressive secular attack from without. We face the threat of extremism from within.”
Arguing that there was “no hope” from atheists who scorn God, he said the best way to confront the secularist agenda was for all faiths to unite against it.
He said: “Those who scorn God and those who do violence in God’s name, both represent views of religion. But both offer no hope for faith in the twenty first century.”
Infuriating. Really, really, really infuriating. Is there even one Western politician out there who would ever stand up for secularism and call for all rationalists to unite against the threat of faith the way this former Prime Minister is singling out and baselessly stigmatizing those whose only crime is to stand up for the very secularization that liberated Europe from theocracy centuries ago and opened the gates to modernism and technological revolution?
Yet another example of “As long as you’re believe in something, that’s okay.” It’s troubling when such a prominent politician feel the need to attack non-theists and compare us to religious extremists. When’s the last time an atheist has flown a plane into a building, or performed a suicide bombing?
This kind of bullying from the powerful who use their power to bully those to whom they have no good counter-argument makes me really, really livid. But I’m only going to blog about it, not bomb over it. And I won’t even threaten bombing over things like this. It would be nice if those trying to shove atheists out of the discussion would appreciate such subtle distinctions.