What I’m Reading 3/23/12: Orientalism, Horrible Billboards, & Critiques of Neo-Atheism
Ah, is it spring already? Birds chirping, balmy 60 degree sun-filled days, leaves sprouting… Holy shrimp, this is March in Minnesota? Uh… yay? Technological progress and fossil fuel consumption for the win? I can hardly wait to see what summer’s going to be like.
Now, along with this unnatural spring, comes political rallies on the mall in our nation’s capitol. Normally, people wait until April to hold their DC rallies and marches because March weather is highly unpredictable in the Mid Atlantic states. Oddly, tomorrow is the Reason Rally. It’s almost as though our warriors for Reason and Science knew that technologically driven ecological destruction would bring unnaturally sunny skies and warm weather. Or is this just the usual ironic absurdity that pops up in the world?
I just checked the weather for DC. Looks like a day of rain for the rally. Oops. At least they’ll get 69 degrees in March. Today, it’s going to be 80 and sunny. I grew up in Maryland. They’re getting May weather in March. The same thing is happening here in Minnesota. This is really, really wrong. But, just remember, science and technology are our saviors. It brought us our filth spewing factories and automobiles. It’ll bring us the solution to our self-destructing planet, too. Right?
Onward to other matters. Here’s what I’ve been reading of late:
Three critiques of new atheism:
Against the New Atheism: a critique by Ned Curthoys
A Faith in Ends: Sam Harris and the Gospel of Neo-Atheism (link to a pdf file)
The White Atheist’s Burden: Save the Savages
Several critiques of the atheist slavery billboard in Harrisburg, PA:
Dear White Atheists
When White Atheists Come Out To Play (a follow up of Dear White Atheists)
Slaves like Us: American Atheists on the Plantation
Atheist Group Appropriates Slavery, Apologizes
Lastly, we have a video that juxtaposes Sam Harris’ analysis of terrorism vs. Robert Pape’s analysis of terrorism:
I wish new atheism could be more than it is. However, as long as atheism remains dominated by economically comfortable white guys who have no understanding of social justice, intersecting oppressions, or the effects of Western colonialism, we will have the disappointing mess that we now see.
Should it collapse under the weight of it’s own dysfunction, I won’t be disappointed.