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Australian philosopher, literary critic, legal scholar, and professional writer. Based in Newcastle, NSW. My latest books are THE TYRANNY OF OPINION: CONFORMITY AND THE FUTURE OF LIBERALISM (2019); AT THE DAWN OF A GREAT TRANSITION: THE QUESTION OF RADICAL ENHANCEMENT (2021); and HOW WE BECAME POST-LIBERAL: THE RISE AND FALL OF TOLERATION (2024).

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Walter Sinnott-Armstrong on telling it like it is...

From his essay in Louise M. Antony's book:

...most atheists see little to be gained by broadcasting their beliefs. Theists won't listen, and atheists don't need to listen. This defeatist attitude means that fundamentalists get away with spouting harmful nonsense. They gain confidence, and many undecided people with open minds hear only one side of this important issue. If atheists let themselves be cowed, our country's [he means the U.S.; I do wish people wouldn't talk this way in pieces that are being published internationally ...it sounds so frakking parochial] policies will continue to be distorted by ancient religious myths. More religious wars will arise. And there will be more suffering among people who need abortions or stem-cell treatments or just sexual freedom. Our best hope for progress is for atheists to speak out and (as politely as possible) tell any theists who will listen why religious beliefs are ridiculous.
Apart from my bit of carping about parochialism ... well frakking said!

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