I'm sure most of my regular readers already know this, but Richard Dawkins and Daniel Dennett did not invent the term "bright" - used as a noun to mean "person with a naturalistic worldview". I'm sick of seeing this claim, made explicitly or insinuated by other wording that links them to the term. The fact of the matter is that, yes, they gave the term some support in articles that they published in 2003 (in The Guardian and Wired magazine in Dawkins' case and in The New York Times (available along with Dawkins' Guardian piece at the Edge) in Dennett's case). But they did not coin it.
The term "bright" was first employed by Paul Geisert and Mynga Futrell when they launched the “Brights movement” early in 2003. According to the Wikipedia article on the subject, it was actually thought up by Geisert the previous year. Be that as it may, the idea was to find a positive-sounding word for people who have a naturalistic worldview, analogous to the word “gay” for homosexuals. It is supposed to be a word with uplifting connotations, as with cheerfulness and bright colors ... and thus much like "gay".
Hence the word is supposed to be a positive label for a class of people whom Geisert and Myngell saw as despised. Geisert and Futrell have maintained that the main basis for selecting the word is its association of philosophical naturalism with the Enlightenment.
This coinage may or may not have been the, um, brightest idea, considering how it has been used ever since as a stick to beat atheists and philosophical naturalists. But it was not coined by the high-profile atheists it's so often associated with. And a fair reading shows that they gave it some support not as an arrogant boast of intellectual superiority - something that they explicitly address and disclaim in the articles I've linked to - but in the hope that the word would operate much like the word "gay" if it got a bit of a help along.
That may or may not have been a misjudgment on their part. Maybe coining this new noun accomplished some good. But anyway I'm sick of reading inaccurate - and I suspect often downright dishonest - claims about it.
As for whether philosophical naturalists really are more intelligent, on average, than the general population, there's some circumstantial basis to think they are, at least in populations where the opposite view is held by default (and usually arrived at through indoctrination/socialisation). In any such population, there's more chance that a person with a naturalistic worldview will have arrived at her position through intellectual inquiry rather than some non-rational process. But this is, as I said, circumstantial, and in any event it does not suggest that theists and others with supernatural beliefs are stupid or that none of them arrived at their positions by intellectual inquiry. Doubtless some did.
In some populations, the situation may even be reversed for various reasons (it certainly seemed that way when I was at high school, where most of the smartest kids happened to be Christians, partly because of socialisation but partly because it was the most readily available set of answers for inquiring minds in a social milieu that was godless, and even anti-religious, by default).
But the take home message here, regardless of whether philosophical naturalists are, on average, smarter than the general population, is that that was not the primary meaning of the coinage "bright" - and the coinage came from Geisert and Futrell. Give the credit or the blame where it's due.