‘Ignoramuses are holding America back’ says Richard Dawkins


 
I have to tread a bit lightly here since every blood relative of mine is a Creationist, so I’l just link to what Richard Dawkins has to say about American science being held back by religious myths and sidestep whatever familial shit I might personally step in.

On Monday, Dawkins and Steven Pinker appeared on Capitol Hill on behalf of the Secular Coalition for America.

Via Raw Story:

A reporter asked Dawkins about the fact that more than 40 percent of Americans believe the Christian creation myth, that God created the world in seven days.

“This country is, without a doubt, the leading scientific nation in the world, beyond the shadow of a doubt,” Dawkins replied. “I can’t help wondering how much more advanced this country would be if you were not held back by this astonishing burden of 40 percent of the people who literally think the world, the universe is less than 10,000 years old.”

“I mean,” he said, “that is a staggering piece of ignorance. It’s a scandal.”

Believing that the world is less than 10,000 years old, Dawkins said, “is not a small error. It’s a gigantic, ridiculous error.”

The problem, he said, is based in part on the fact that school boards are elected in local elections, and that “in particular districts, it may be that the electors are electing ignoramuses.”

I’m more partial to the way Charles P. Pierce writes the plural form“ignorami.” That has an even meaner sounding ring to it and I appreciate that.
 

Written by Richard Metzger | Discussion
Richard Dawkins’ psychedelic rap about Internet memes live on stage
06.24.2013
09:30 am

Topics:
Pop Culture

Tags:
Richard Dawkins


 
I’m not entirely sure what I just witnessed here. Did Dawkins find an old stash of “Purple Owsley”? Perhaps.

Here the world famous scientist is seen introducing the Saatchi & Saatchi New Directors’ Showcase 2013 in Cannes. Then the high weirdness gets going at the 4:51 mark.
 

 
Via Nerdcore

Written by Tara McGinley | Discussion
Richard Dawkins trolls Mitt Romney on Twitter
08.08.2012
11:17 am

Topics:
Belief
Politics

Tags:
Mitt Romney
Richard Dawkins
Mormonism
Written by Richard Metzger | Discussion
Richard Dawkins on Rick Perry, Republicans and Tea party ignoramuses


 
In a Q and A in the Washington Post’s “On Faith” column, famed evolutionary biologist and outspoken smart person, Dr. Richard Dawkins ridiculed Texas governor and GOP theocrat Richard Perry in a manner both highbrow and low-ball simultaneously. I found it most satisfying:

There is nothing unusual about Governor Rick Perry. Uneducated fools can be found in every country and every period of history, and they are not unknown in high office. What is unusual about today’s Republican party (I disavow the ridiculous ‘GOP’ nickname, because the party of Lincoln and Theodore Roosevelt has lately forfeited all claim to be considered ‘grand’) is this: In any other party and in any other country, an individual may occasionally rise to the top in spite of being an uneducated ignoramus. In today’s Republican Party ‘in spite of’ is not the phrase we need. Ignorance and lack of education are positive qualifications, bordering on obligatory. Intellect, knowledge and linguistic mastery are mistrusted by Republican voters, who, when choosing a president, would apparently prefer someone like themselves over someone actually qualified for the job.

***

A politician’s attitude to evolution is perhaps not directly important in itself. It can have unfortunate consequences on education and science policy but, compared to Perry’s and the Tea Party’s pronouncements on other topics such as economics, taxation, history and sexual politics, their ignorance of evolutionary science might be overlooked. Except that a politician’s attitude to evolution, however peripheral it might seem, is a surprisingly apposite litmus test of more general inadequacy. This is because unlike, say, string theory where scientific opinion is genuinely divided, there is about the fact of evolution no doubt at all. Evolution is a fact, as securely established as any in science, and he who denies it betrays woeful ignorance and lack of education, which likely extends to other fields as well. Evolution is not some recondite backwater of science, ignorance of which would be pardonable. It is the stunningly simple but elegant explanation of our very existence and the existence of every living creature on the planet. Thanks to Darwin, we now understand why we are here and why we are the way we are. You cannot be ignorant of evolution and be a cultivated and adequate citizen of today.

Nope, but you might become the Republican nominee for President of the United States. Funny how it works that way…

Written by Richard Metzger | Discussion
Richard Dawkins: Faith School Menace?

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Following on from the post on Becky Fischer’s weirdo fundamentalist brainwashing for preteens, here’s Richard Dawkins’ recent documentary on faith schools and the damage they do to the minds of impressionable children. Here a more subdued Dawkins, who has been in these situations enough times to learn that all you have to do is let a fundie (of any religion) start talking and they will hang themselves with their own words, providing you with television gold in the process, does just that: He lets them talk

God Man, it must have been so demoralizing for him to go on these shoots! Some of this is just tragic. Supernatural beliefs should have no part in a proper education.

The number of faith schools in Britain is rising. Around 7,000 publicly-funded schools - one in three - now has a religious affiliation. As the coalition government paves the way for more faith-based education by promoting ‘free schools’, the renowned atheist and evolutionary biologist Professor Richard Dawkins says enough is enough.

In this passionately argued film, Dawkins calls on us to reconsider the consequences of faith education, which, he argues, bamboozles parents and indoctrinates and divides children. The film features robust exchanges with former Secretary of State for Education Charles Clarke, Head of the Church of England Education Service Reverend Janina Ainsworth, and the Chair of the Association of Muslim Schools, Dr Mohammed Mukadam.

It also features insights from child psychologists and key players in faith education as well as insights from both parents and pupils.

Dawkins also draws on his own personal history as a father, arguing that the government must stop funding new faith schools, and urges society to respect a child’s right to freedom of belief.

 

Written by Richard Metzger | Discussion
Richard Dawkins reads hate mail and answers Reddit questions
11.15.2010
12:34 pm

Topics:
Belief
Current Events
Thinkers

Tags:
Richard Dawkins
Reddit

 
(via Nerdcore)

Written by Tara McGinley | Discussion
Richard Dawkins at the “Protest The Pope” rally, 18th September 2010
09.20.2010
01:56 am

Topics:
Belief

Tags:
Richard Dawkins
Protest the Pope

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Richard Dawkins at the “Protest The Pope” rally, 18th September 2010. London.
 

“I say quite deliberately that the Christian religion, as organized in its churches, has been and still is the principal enemy of moral progress in the world.”  Bertrand Russell

 

 

Written by Marc Campbell | Discussion
The Last Supper with scientists

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The Last Supper with scientists: Galileo Galilei, Marie Curie, J. Robert Oppenheimer, Isaac Newton, Louis Pasteur, Stephen Hawking, Albert Einstein, Carl Sagan, Thomas Edison, Aristotle, Neil deGrasse Tyson, Richard Dawkins and Charles Darwin.
 
(via I.Z. Reloaded and Nerdcore)

Written by Tara McGinley | Discussion
The Truth Behind Muslim Creationist Harun Yahya

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Meet the patron saint of Muslim creationism, Harun Yahya.  Haven’t yet heard of “Muslim creationism?”  Well, according to The New Humanist‘s Halil Arda, it’s

becoming increasingly visible and confident.  On scores of websites and in dozens of books with titles like The Evolution Deceit and The Dark Face of Darwinism, a new and well-funded version of evolution-denialism, carefully calibrated to exploit the current fashion for religiously inspired attacks on scientific orthodoxy and ?

Written by Bradley Novicoff | Discussion
Atheist Summer Camp for Kids Offers “Godless” Alternative
07.31.2009
04:16 pm

Topics:
Current Events

Tags:
Richard Dawkins
Atheism


BBC News posted this wonderfully neutral report about a Summer camp for parents who would prefer that their children not be fed religious propaganda.

It’s hard to imagine something like this on US news. If a story like this was on Fox News, they’d probably make it out like only “bad parents” would send their kids to a camp like this and turn it into some form of child abuse.

For the “centrepiece” of its scientific approach to religion the camp asks its participants to search for two invisible unicorns.

The unicorns cannot be seen or heard, tasted, smelt or touched, they cannot escape from the camp and they eat nothing.

The only proof of their existence is contained in an ancient book handed down over “countless generations.”

A prize - a ?Ǭ

Written by Richard Metzger | Discussion