Pat Condell tells it like it is

Ok, I think I’ve plagiarized (from Pharyngula) how to properly link a youtube vid — as well as the youtube vid in question, one Pat Condell, telling it like it is.


I’m with Pat on this. Faith, believing things to a degree of certainty which exceeds what is warranted by the available evidence, does not deserve respect, does not deserve polite debate — it deserves only scorn and mockery.


Edit:  I should clarify, I do think that people have the right to believe (or disbelieve) whatever it is that they believe or disbelieve.  However, they do not have the right to deprive other private citizens of the right to challenge or mock those beliefs, as I see it..  I think people should generally be allowed to say what they think, except under very very extreme circumstances (yelling “fire” in a crowded theater as the classic extreme example), and if some people want to say that other people’s cherished beliefs are nonsense, then that is, I think, their right.  The fools (or wise men, as the case might be) are free to go on believing in the face of this mockery, or mount counter arguments, or what have you, but are not free to suppress the opposition by force.

~ by scaryreasoner on November 29, 2007.

2 Responses to “Pat Condell tells it like it is”

  1. I just read a book about Emma Goldman, atheist, anarchist, advocate of birth control, amongst other things,and was struck by her end of life conclusions that she had failed in her efforts to lead or enlighten the masses. Sometimes I feel like trying to tell believers anything is a waste of time. It would be as if you took a laptop out to a pasture and baited a herd of cows over and played Pat Condell’s video for them and expected a reaction. Flatus would happen, manure would fall, but without loud sudden sounds, no reaction. The cattle have a right to their beliefs, but to harness their energies for the betterment of mankind takes more than rational argument. McDonalds has figured out what to do with them. In India they take a different approach, but how does one relate to a fellow creature who is below condescension? Toleration, even benevolent tolerance is one approach I prefer. But I also like hamburgers, so I also tolerate the McDonalds of the world. I love truth. Flatus and manure violate some parameters of orderly conscious thought, but not truth. A bull might kill me, but not because he lied to me, and I called him on it, but because I pissed him off. Humans will kill me for telling the truth. It pisses them off. I used to think we were evolving inexorably toward awareness of truth, but S.J.Gould says we’re just evolving. Vive la Evolucion!

  2. Hi John!

    I’ve seen a couple of hardcore cases figure it out, to the utter amazement of all who were allowed to know about it, but in one case it took *two years* of hammering away, and in the other, even longer (more than a decade, I would guess), and even more intense hammering away. It’s really very weird. I think there’s a place for mockery and scorn, and done well those can also subsume debate points, as well as polite debate. Those that manage to figure it out some times need many hard and soft shoves in the right direction, from many angles. The difference between those who eventually figure it out and those who don’t is often, I think, a willingness to at least be engaged, even if that engagement takes the form of preaching. Those that just shut their ears and say “lalalalalala” and walk away, those are the folks that seem unlikely to figure it out.

    So, while the so called arguments of the religious may deserve only mockery and scorn, those who put forth those arguments may benefit not only from mockery and scorn, but from undeserved polite debate as well.

    I tend to vacillate a bit between frustration driven mockery and scorn, and a somewhat more polite debate. It’s hard to offer the same counter argument against the same so-called point for the 10000th time without a bit of scorn dripping through though.

    I guess my point is… out of a hundred cattle 2 or 3 will be smarter than the average cow, and whether by scorn, mockery, polite debate, or a combination of them applied continously or intermittently over a period of years, some few cows may be made less cowardly, or should I say, some sheep, less sheepish.

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