Breaking NEWS: Bill Maher, Dawkins Fan ‘New Atheist’ Charged with Shooting Three Arab Students Execution Style– Hicks Loved Guns and Richard Dawkins

Breaking NEWS: Bill Maher, Dawkins Fan ‘New Atheist’ Charged with Shooting Three Arab Students Execution Style– Hicks Loved Guns and Richard Dawkins February 11, 2015

So do we have our first New Atheist-motivated sectarian killing? According to Zaid Jilani of Alternet  (@zaidjilani)– Yusor Mohammad as well as her sister Razan Abu-Salha – were brutally murdered, with execution-style shots to the head. The same day, a self-identified Bill Maher, New Atheist fan, Craig S. Hicks, was arrested and charged with three counts of murder.

And if you are an atheist and angry that your good movement is being dragged into the blame game about this killing– now you know how religious people feel every time some religious person kills in the name of God and the story breaks blaming religion for all the evils in the world before all the evidence is in. 

No national media outlet reported the story, provoking the hashtag #ChapelHillShooting, which soon trended worldwide. Finally, after midnight, Buzzfeed became the first national outlet to report on the killings.

Craig Hicks has been identified as a 46-year-old North Carolina man, and as of this writing, his apparent Facebook page is still up. Perusing the page reveals the fact that Hicks was both a fervent New Atheist – his page is littered with references to Bill Maher and disdain for religious belief – and a gun enthusiast.

Here he is showing off a pistol he owned last month:

 

Click to enlarge.

Here he is quoting Richard Dawkins about how 9/11 made him hate religion:

 

Click to enlarge.

And here he is proclaiming his fears of gun control:

 

Also, an apparent Amazon wishlist for “Craig Hicks” shows off a variety of armaments, including sniper scopes and a ghillie suit – a kind of camouflage suit.

Although the students appear to have been targeted for their religion, police officials are saying that the motive for the shooting has yet to be determined.

Here are some other offerings from Hicks’ his apparent Facebook page is still up as I posted this :

Cover Photo

Radical Christians vs Radical Muslims, do you see any difference in both sides? (Dustin)

Atheism & The Middle East Problem. ~Jr Grover

Atheism & The Middle East Problem. ~Jr Grover

As the Muslim community in the area mourns, they’ve set up the Facebook page “Our Three Winners” to commemorate the lives of the three young souls taken from them far too soon.

Zaid Jilani is an AlterNet contributing writer. Follow @zaidjilani on Twitter.

Maybe — was a fan of Sam Harris too:

As Glenn Greenwald wrote in the Guardian:  “Sam Harris, the New Atheists, and anti-Muslim animus”

 

Two columns have been published in the past week harshly criticizing the so-called “New Atheists” such as Richard Dawkins, Sam Harris, and Christopher Hitchens: this one by Nathan Lean in Salon, and this one by Murtaza Hussain in Al Jazeera. The crux of those columns is that these advocates have increasingly embraced a toxic form of anti-Muslim bigotry masquerading as rational atheism. Yesterday, I posted a tweet to Hussain’s article without comment except to highlight what I called a “very revealing quote” flagged by Hussain, one in which Harris opined that “the people who speak most sensibly about the threat that Islam poses to Europe are actually fascists.”

Shortly after posting the tweet, I received an angry email from Harris, who claimed that Hussain’s column was “garbage”, and he eventually said the same thing about Lean’s column in Salon. That then led to a somewhat lengthy email exchange with Harris in which I did not attempt to defend every claim in those columns from his attacks because I didn’t make those claims: the authors of those columns can defend themselves perfectly well. If Harris had problems with what those columns claim, he should go take it up with them.

I do, however, absolutely agree with the general argument made in both columns that the New Atheists have flirted with and at times vigorously embraced irrational anti-Muslim animus. I repeatedly offered to post Harris’ email to me and then tweet it so that anyone inclined to do so could read his response to those columns and make up their own minds. Once he requested that I do so, I posted our exchange here.

Harris himself then wrote about and posted our exchange on his blog, causing a couple dozen of his followers to send me emails. I also engaged in a discussion with a few Harris defenders on Facebook. What seemed to bother them most was the accusation in Hussain’s column that there is “racism” in Harris’ anti-Muslim advocacy. A few of Harris’ defenders were rage-filled and incoherent, but the bulk of them were cogent and reasoned, so I concluded that a more developed substantive response to Harris was warranted.

So do we have our first New Atheist-motivated sectarian killing?

Like I said: And if you are an atheist and angry that your good movement is being dragged into the blame game about this killing– now you know how religious people feel every time some religious person kills in the name of God and the story breaks blaming religion for all the evils in the world before all the evidence is in. 

Frank Schaeffer is a writer. His latest book —WHY I AM AN ATHEIST WHO BELIEVES IN GOD: How to give love, create beauty and find peace

Available now on Amazon

Picture
Follow Frank on Twitter www.twitter.com/frank_schaefferSee Frank’s paintings http://www.frankschaefferart.com/Follow Frank on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/frank.schaeffer.16Contact Frank at http://www.frankschaeffer.com/

 

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