April Fool's 2023 - The Folly of Decision-Making
2 months ago
"The Lowell City Council is starting session with the Lord's Prayer! I've posted an article at the blog , and there's a hearty discussion going on at the Left in Lowell forum (didn't know there were so many atheists in Lowell!). What we need to do is write to these councilors and let them know that prayer is unacceptable at government functions. It doesn't matter whether you're from Lowell, this is happening in our Commonwealth!"If you find the time to dash off a note objecting to this unwelcome intrusion of personal shortcomings into what should properly be a forum for clear and rational thinking, visit the Lowell Atheists blog and share your letter with Steve. Let him know that he isn't the only one who thinks religion should be kept out of government.
"... as soon as I saw the hands-clasped, heads-down group talking to themselves I ripped off the coat like I was Superman."My initial reaction to this escapade was triumphal applause. Go get 'em, etc. But as I thought about the incident, I realized that Mr. Gibson's act failed as protest and as an act of rational criticism. Atheists often respond with indignation to the suggestion that their professed worldview is a religious one, but isn't the proud and defiant defense of his beliefs shown by our young compatriot here just as fundamentalist as the culturally-determined prayerfulness of his classmates?
The article is concise, but he doesn't go far enough. By characterizing the reaction against school board creationism as "not against faith, but against ignorance", he fails to acknowledge that such ignorance is predicated upon an anti-intellectual religious culture... a culture that in various ways impedes progress toward a more competent democracy.When Krauss says elsewhere that Intelligent Design is "not just bad science, but bad theology to imply that it is better to remain ignorant," one wonders what comprises good theology. But of course the complaint should not be directed at theology, which is a profession carried out to good effect by intelligent men and women. ID isn't theology, but rather an inviable chimera, misbegotten offspring of incompatible parents. Faith is not found through reason, though reasons it may have. A battle against faith is a battle against ignorance, and indeed shall in the long run have more enduring benefit by undermining the cause of ignorance as well as correcting it.