My copy is signed! How cool is that? Well, probably not very cool if you are a frequent or regular God-botherer. Dawkins has very little time for you at all.
And let’s face it, the arguments for believing in God are pretty weak. “There must be something” or “It doesn’t make sense that this [or that] could happen”. I’m sorry, but there mustn’t be anything, and yes, it does make sense if you think about it. The only bit of the universe that science can’t really explain is the very start, and it doesn’t add much if you imagine that some dude with a beard did it. (There are quite a lot of bits that science can’t explain properly, actually, but they don’t seem to make much difference to the way most of us get on with things, unlike chemistry or sensible-sized gravity, say.)
Anyway, Dawkins goes through most of these arguments and destroys them, then gets to the problem with religion in the world: it encourages sloppy thinking and terrorism. “God did it” isn’t much use as an explanation (Incidentally, I’ve always wondered why people like to ask “what would Jesus do?” as a way of deciding how to act. What Jesus did ended up with him nailed to a fucking cross, guys. Unless you are confident of surviving this, it might be an idea to do what Jesus wouldn’t do.) unless you also ask “how?” and then you’re basically ignoring Him anway.
But what really riles Dicky (besides being called Dicky, I imagine) is that it isn’t possible to argue with religious people – their faith isn’t open to debate. But because of this, it’s possible to hold some pretty nasty beliefs without being held properly to account for them, and the logical extension of this is religious warfare and people blowing themselves up in shopping centres.
And he has a very good point. But there is clearly something out there that makes people believe in something, it seems to be an important part of our psychological makeup for a good reason, so just shouting about it won’t make it go away. On the other hand, shouting about it does make people pay attention to what they’re thinking, and that can only be a good thing in the (probably very, very) long run.
Also, I want to go on record and say how dismayed I am in a recent study that shows that half of Britons do not accept (it’s not a matter of belief) evolution. For shame, Britain. FOR SHAME.