I made the mistake of reading Richard Dawkins‘ Christmas Eve opinion piece in the Guardian the other day. It wasn’t a mistake so much because I should not have read it, but that once again I went into reading it hoping that Dawkins would have something more intelligent to say than what he did, and I was once again disappointed by what I read.
I was disappointed because Dawkins, and so many people like him, are so infatuated with a single-minded way of thinking about themselves and the world that they cannot see that they have limited their thinking to such a narrow view that it cannot help but fail.
I do not begrudge Dawkins the fact that he is an atheist or even the fact that he thinks people who believe differently than him are pathetic at best. What I begrudge Dawkins is his vitriol against anything that is not his own way of thinking, his clear hatred of anything outside his own narrow view, and his insistence that he should be able to bend all the forces of humanity to his will to stamp out any other views.
What makes me sad is that, beneath his vitriol, he does have some good points; points worth exploring; points worth debating. But, instead of presenting an opportunity for exploration or debate, he presents another battle-line in the never-ending rhetorical war between extremist thinkers.
It is because of the vitriol spewed by people like Dawkins that there can be no advancement of reason and that there will never be peace. There can never be peace as long as anyone hates and wants to destroy, and Dawkins is chief among those who want to do both.