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The War on God

Toby Westerman

During this Christmas Season forces advocating the elimination of God and religion are massing for a new push of America towards Atheism in 2007.

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The Nativity Scene remains a popular feature each year at the Metropolitan Museum of Art
The New Atheism is militant, strong, and confident. Moving beyond the removal of nativity scenes and Christmas trees in public places, the New Atheists are arming themselves with evangelical zeal to convert American society from being publicly apathetic to actively hostile toward God and religion.

Leading the charge in this new thrust to dethrone God is Richard Dawkins, Chair for Public Understanding of Science at Oxford University. Dawkins has sought to use reason and science as arguments against the existence of God. He is the author of the popular works Blind Watchmaker and A Devil's Chaplain. His newest work, The God Delusion was near the top of The New York Times best seller list for 8 weeks.

In January 2006, Dawkins presented a documentary called “The Root of All Evil?” in which he argued that organized religion is the cause of most of the world's troubles. Now, in The God Delusion, Dawkins asserts that religion in general is harmful to society and the individual. Religion, he claims, is "truly evil." He has called religious instruction of children "brainwashing" and "child abuse."

Joining Dawkins in his Atheistic apostolate is Sam Harris, author of The New York Times best seller, The End of Faith: Religion, Terror and the Future of Reason. Harris gives an historical outline of death and destruction committed in the name of Islam, and he then asserts that all religions have a similar pattern of violence.

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Dawkins: religion is "evil" and "harmful to society"
Harris claims that the God of the Holy Bible is a violent power that is dangerous to worship lest His behavior be emulated. Harris declares that religion ought to be given "conversational intolerance," and be treated as something patently false and inherently dangerous.

Harris also maintains that today non-Islamic religions are the cause of much of the world's suffering. He claims that the Catholic Church, for its prohibition of condoms, is responsible for the AIDS plague in Africa. Christians in the U.S. are responsible for hamstringing science in general for their opposition to embryonic stem-cell research.

Early in November 2006, Dawkins and Harris attended the Salk Institute's Conference in La Jolla, California. This gathering was called "Beyond Belief: Science, Religion, Reason, and Survival." The conference was a watershed event. Nobel laureates and world famous physicists, astronomers, biologists and other scientists gathered at what some would call a militant rally of intellectuals bent on transforming America into an atheistic state.

Carolyn Porco, an influential research scientist at the Space Science Institute in Boulder, Colorado, intoned "We should let the success of the religious formula guide us … Let's teach our children from a very young age about the story of the universe … It is already so much more glorious and awesome than anything offered by any scripture or God concept I know."

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Atheists met at the Salk Institute's Conference to berate God and religion

Professor Richard P. Sloan of the Columbia University Medical Center, author of the book Blind Faith: The Unholy Alliance of Religion and Medicine, spoke on what he claimed was the falsehood of prayer as a source of physical healing.

Nobel laureate and physicist Steven Weinberg, author of The First Three Minutes, stated to conference attendees that, "Anything that we scientists can do to weaken the hold of religion should be done, and, in the end, may be our greatest contribution to civilization."

Neil deGrasse Tyson, director of the Hayden Planetarium in New York City proclaimed at the conference that, "Science is a philosophy of discovery; intelligent design is a philosophy of ignorance."

When one scientist drew a parallel between religion and an eccentric old aunt and stated, "When she's gone, we may miss her," Dawkins responded, "I won't miss her at all…not a scrap. Not a smidgen."

The success of angry, polemical, atheistic authors such as Richard Dawkins and Sam Harris should raise concern among religious believers. Atheism has frequently found a receptive audience among intellectuals. Now militant Atheism is packaging its anti-God propaganda for a more general audience, and seeks to build popular sentiment against the Divinity and those who worship Him.

Some Supreme Court Justices have stated their support of using foreign law sources in their judicial opinions and rulings. Resorting to international precedents could provide the New Atheists with the legal support they need to call for the elimination or regulation of religious education for children.

Scientists and writers who think that science and God are not antagonists should produce works accessible to the general public. Richard Dawkins generally refuses to debate those who oppose his views, claiming that he cannot tolerate an opposition he describes as "ignorant." When differing views are compared, truth will prevail. Dawkins should not be allowed to hide from his opponents. Let the debate with the New Atheists begin.

Posted January 10, 2006


Toby Westerman writes and edits
International News Analysis - Today
An investigative, analytical, and uncompromising weekly analysis of the world situation

Contact T. Westerman at www.inatoday.com
or P.O. BOX 5182, Rockford, ILL, 61125-0182


This article was published in the January 7, 2007 online edition of INA Today



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