We had a fun Easter Podcast today, talking about United, which led to this great combination of show themes and one hilarious music video.
We also discussed Trump, North Korea and the unlikely existence of Neo Nazi Steve Miller.
“Hitchens secretly loved my Jesus,” is the overarching message that Larry Taunton tells himself but shows absolutely no evidence for in “The Faith of Christopher Hitchens: The Restless Soul of the World’s Most Notorious Atheist.” The radical, religious fundamentalist slanders the late atheist writer and thinker, Christopher Hitchens, in a short, badly argued book, designed not to illuminate, but rather to make yet another religious huckster a lot of money. In the book, Taunton wholesale invents an inner life and struggle of the superior author, creating a straw man so flimsy Hitchens himself could have blown it down with a single puff of cigarette smoke.
As an atheist myself, I’m not nearly as well read as Hitchens, but even I have heard every one of the shallow arguments presented in the book many times over. The author isn’t even an effective or interesting advocate for his faith. He’s trite and lazy, lobbing the sort of silly claptrap Hitchens spent a lifetime refuting. The central conceit of the book is that the author’s arguments were so “persuasive” that Hitchens began to warm to Jesus. It would be laughable, except that it’s utterly disrespectful to the deceased man and his life’s work.
It could be ignored or laughed at, except that the book isn’t just a mediocre hit job on Hitchens himself. It’s filled with subtle jabs, outright insults and fiery damnation aimed at the usual fundamentalist boogeymen—atheists, gays and liberals. Aside from insulting Hitchens, Taunton creates something much more sinister. He denies the rights of all atheists, agnostic and freethinkers—every single one of us—to exist. Continue reading The Ugly Slandering of Christopher Hitchens
Discussion on Orlando and other issues. A sad day in Florida and beyond. Also, discussion on Christopher Hitchens and the god-awful piece of garbage hit piece “The Faith of Christopher Hitchens.”
The last two podcasts hosted on Armchair Blasphemy have been extra long and filled with profanity.
The first one: Living in a work-a-day world goes in depth on our collective work malaise.
The second one: Posted today, this podcast covers the massive news last week about gay marriage, Bristol Palin and the Confederate flag.
We’re up to our fifteenth podcast. As we do them, I think they get more relevant. Join us and don’t forget to subscribe!
This week’s podcast was particularly fun, with Edwin, Rick and RobRoy sitting down to talk the presidential contest and then discussing the Josh Dugger scandal. For a preview of the issue with the Dugger’s check out this piece in Slate and then listen:
There is a lot of interesting stuff going in with religion, hypocrisy and social issues in America– check out my latest on Salon for a taste. You can be sure we’ll be chatting up these issues again soon.
The Pew Religious Landscape Study came out last week showing big gains for atheists, agnostics and so-called “nones,” those who profess no religious faith. The Armchair Blasphemy team sat down to discuss their respective beliefs: CLICK HERE for Podcast 11.
On a side note: I wrote a piece for Salon spiking the football just a little about the study. I just couldn’t help myself. At any rate, watch for more discussion on this blog about America’s dramatic culture shift. There are a great many implications for an ever-more-secular America.
Editor’s Note: This is one of the first pieces I wrote several years ago for the original Armchair Blasphemy Blog. My thinking is similar but I would not write it like this today. That said, it’s worth reposing on our new site.
People ask me sometimes why I chose the word “blasphemy” for this blog. They often wonder aloud if I am buying into the concept itself. I have been told that this is a religious word and that atheists should not acknowledge the very existence, even the concept of “blasphemy.”
I understand this thinking and rationale, but I find power in appropriating the words and concepts of ideological / religious opponents. It’s the same concept with Santa Clause. I can use Santa, a construct, side effect or at least first cousin of Christianity to make a very strong case that the entire mythology is fabricated.
I know other atheists who are wary of the “atheist” label for a similar reason. They embrace the humanist, freethinking or even “brights” identity instead. They feel that to be atheists is to be “against” something, as in anti-theist. I don’t hold this view. The most fundamentalist religions hate and try to shame “atheists.” They view atheists as “of the devil.” If they are so afraid, so disgusted by this identity, then I totally want a piece of it. There is an inherent strength go embracing something that fundamentalists loathe and fear. It’s the same fear they have of evolution, science and—back to it–blasphemy. It’s the intellectual side I want to be on. Continue reading From the vault: Appropriating the Language of Religion
This week, Edwin, Rick and RobRoy talk about the latest Duck Dynasty scandal, as Phil Robertson says some of the worst comments ever uttered by an american extremist. Tune in.
This week’s podcast is a discussion of a recent editorial written by Edwin and published in the Reno Gazette Journal. The piece dissects a particularly awful law being considered in the Nevada legislature that would privilege religion in public schools: