Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Roger Scruton: Pathos piece

This is taken from an article on the American Spectator, the quote in particular, including the cuts are as cut by Stephen Law. Full text can be found here.

"Like so many modern ideologies, the new humanism seeks to define itself through what it is against rather than what it is for. It is for nothing, or at any rate for nothing in particular."

The new humanism "seems to have no consciousness of what is clearly announced between the lines of the text [ON THE ATHEIST BUSES], namely that there are no ideals higher than pleasure."

The BHA's "publications imply that there is only one thing that stands between man and his happiness, and that is the belief in God. "

The BHA is the British Humanist Association, and according to the whackaloons on the right wing they don't stand for anything. Now, if you want a discussion of the philosophical problems with this, I'll recommend you go to Stephen Law's blog. What I'm here to discuss is just the pathos of this.

This article is not really an argumentative piece. Its a pieve consisting entirely of pathos. There is nothing here that any Atheist, secularist, or agnostic would be convinced by. Clearly the piece was written for Spectator, well known as a right wing site, to further polarize against the growing tide of non-christianity. In essence, much like Ray Comfort he's making unsubstantiated claims simply in order to help convince his audience they are in the right and not alone; nothing terribly novel, every demographic does it for better or worse.

Possibly most annoying in this piece is Scruton's unending appeals to Jebus as the fundamental rock of morality, as if morality via threat was really a good thing. But by and large they eat it up! The comments show a disgusting amount of hatred for atheism and secularism. One person did bring up a good point though, and its one I don't think about too much, but it is true nonetheless. Atheists are treated in the United States as second class citizens.

To be fair, its not just Atheists. In many ways Women, black people, Muslims, Jews... well, any nonchristian really, is subjected to some discrimination. And they wonder why we don't like their attitudes, and the way they interfere in politics with their religious bronze-aged morals.

The recent decline of Christianity is telling us that the acceptance of atheism in the mainstream is coming, but I dont think it could come too soon.


  1. I did a post on why, even if this god were proven to me to be real, I couldn't worship it- it's too cruel, a psycopath on steroids, really.

    And we will have an atheist president right after the lesbian, disabled, mormon president.

  2. I think we have an atheist president right now. He's just too politic to admit it.