I just saw the TV documentary “The root of all evil?” hosted by Richard Dawkins, who is one of today’s most ardent defenders of evolutionary theory, and of science in general. Over two episodes Dawkins argues that the world would be better off without religion, since it distorts our view of ourselves as human beings and our place in the universe, of society and of morals and law.Dawkins seeks out confrontation with religious leaders such as Pastor Ted Haggard in The New Life Church in Colorado Springs, and Joseph Cohen, now Yousef al-Khattab in Jerusalem, an American-born Jew who came to Israel as a settler before converting to Islam. On both occasions, Dawkins attempts to discuss the difference in their respective understandings of humanity, the world, morals and so on. The problem is that neither Haggard or al-Khattab agree that scientific evidence must be regarded as true. Basically, they think that science is “just another religion”, and that you have to believe it, just as you do in God or Allah.
So what does Dawkins do, this ardent proponent of evolution? He goes numb! No doubt he is utterly suprised of the backwards logic that the religious representatives display. But why doesn’t he do as he says in the beginning of his documentary:
The time has come for people of reason to say: enough is enough. Religious faith discourages independent thought, it’s divisive, and it’s dangerous.
No, Dawkins goes numb and has little else to say, it seems. Although Wikipedia gives you the details of this documentary, it does not convey fully how Dawkins fails to apply his otherwise crisp and clear logic, as you can read in any of his books.
I think what we need is a new Darwin’s bulldog, or maybe a Dawkin’s bulldog? Or even better, evolution needs a butcher. We need someone who can piece out every single misinformation, failed logic and stupidity that can be found in religion. We need it to happen on-line, in front of our eyes, on the tele, on the radio. We need someone to ridicule religious belief, to show how it relies on nothing but anecdotes presented as axioms. That they are cultural memes, potential lethal mental viruses. Someone who asks “why should I believe in your religion rather than this over here?”, “why cannot my self-made, armchair philosophy religion be just as good as yours?”. Someone who get rabbis, muftis and bishops together to tell us what’s really right, why we should listen to only some of the Bible, or Koran, and decline other parts as culturally twisted tales.
Science has played the nice guy all along, because science is not a movement. It’s a method. It’s a way of asking “is this true, and can you prove it or reject it?”. How you choose to study a phenomenon is your own choice, but you open up to test whether theory A, B, and C are correct, whether only one is correct or whether all are false.
So we need a butcher, probably a whole association of evolutionary butchers. Let’s call them Dawkins’ Butchers. Who wants to join?