Dawkins has flatly dismissed any need to know anything about religion itself, saying such a requirement would be akin to demanding expertise in “fairyology” before being able to dismiss belief in fairies. Yet the fact is, if someone is going to actually criticise the substance of a system of belief and rituals relating to fairies, and claim that those practices and beliefs are actually harmful, that person should actually know what they’re talking about. One doesn’t need to know much about fairies to dismiss belief in them as nonsense.

However, Dawkins goes much further, without feeling any concomitant need to actually be informed on the subjects he talks about. The new atheists have garnered quite a devoted, even fanatical following, and it’s not hard to see why. Their message is essentially that religious people are idiots, atheists are really rational and logical, and the super-smart atheists need to band together to fight backwards religious folk and their pernicious beliefs and agenda.

(Michael Brull  New Matilda  19 Aug 2015)

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