Is a jealous god, and will allow nothing but 100% worship and obedience. So Salon, one of the left of Lenin rags on the Internet completely devoted to the Leftist State, swoops in to attack various former superstars of the "New Atheist" movement. Why? Because such thinkers as Richard Dawkins and Sam Harris have begun to question the intolerance and thought control of the modern Left.
Whether it's the Left's invoking the glorious censorship of offensive art and literature, or punishing a scientist who believes boys and girls exist, these former warriors for the secular have begun to question where this beloved leftwing movement they once proclaimed has gone. They aren't alone of course. Bill Maher, Stephen Fry, John Cleese - the list is endless of hard left, secular, atheist, or pro-liberal dogma advocates who are nonetheless squeamish about the Red Scare mentality of the New Left.
The funny part of this? Behold, the good deacon and film critic Steven Greydanus rushes in on Twitter and gives his thumbs up - to Salon:
Yep. Note that. His only beef? Salon's hatred of religion is too broad and could include people like, well, possibly Deacon Greydanus. If they narrowed the hate and intolerance a bit to focus on those religious types who are clearly the problem, then this assessment of atheists daring to question the dogmas of the Leftist State would be spot on. Apparently they are now irrelevant because they dare support those on the Right worried about the totalitarian mentality emerging to the left of center, as opposed to being radical atheists whose atheism was often plagued with problems from a religious perspective.
Of all the Catholic internet stars who have fallen from the firmament, few have done so as quickly or completely as the good deacon. Few exemplify the necessary belief that the Left will ever and always go after *them* as opposed to me as he does.
I personally think that is one of the more harmful aspects of the Pope Francis pontificate. He seems to have sanctioned this idea that we have found the problems of the world, and it's 'those' believers over there. You know, the rigid ones who do things like apply adjectives to other people. Though that attitude would be necessary for the 'I'm sure they'll do it to thee, but never to me' attitude that has to be behind such support for what we're seeing today.
They establish a precedent of silencing any who question, and then act baffled when they later get silenced for questioning.ReplyDelete
There is a certain reaping of the whirlwind that some on the left are beginning to experience. Whether they learn in time or not remains to be seen.Delete
I saw this linked on Shea's page and I smh'd my way through the whole Salon piece, wondering when I was going to actually see evidence of "merging". I have to conclude that the merging was all in the author's head. Those awful people I hate over there must be in cahoots with those other awful people over there. Perfect logic of the the paranoiac.ReplyDelete
I didn't see much either. I saw a slam attack against a bunch of people who really aren't that different. Most of them, and most I referenced above, are still far to the left, proud liberal, not religious, no love for conservatives ... they simply dislike where the modern Left is going. That appears to be the problem Salon is having.Delete
That's something that sets them apart from many former conservatives who slam conservatism. Often, those who say they're fed up with this or that of conservatism begin abandoning the whole thing and eventually swing to the left. Consider how many anti-Trump conservatives are now quite happy being liberal. Those liberals upset about the Left, however, remain happily liberal and no friends of conservatism. It's something I've noticed.
Part of that might tie into the question of whether the words Liberal and Conservative even mean anything anymoreDelete
The article was a mixed bag. It called Dawkins out for being a jackass (which he is) but then it attacked him on some bogus grounds as well. Some of the points it made about other new atheists seemed legitimate as well, while there was also a bunch of woke nonsense.ReplyDelete
There are plenty of things to criticize the news atheists over. As Nate points out, many of them in their day seemed quite happy at first with those religious types being put in their place. Remember Harris rose to stardom with his first book which was basically a call to end tolerance of religion. But funny thing about sowing the wind, you can often reap the whirlwind, which is what's happening with many of these liberals today. That seems to be Salon's beef, that they dare to question one of the worst developments within the modern Left, not for reasons many sane people had for opposing them for years.Delete
In light of the difficulty of properly expressing ideas of consequence on twitter, I am going to say that the singular point of Deacon G. Seems to be a simple notation that the hoi poloi of Salon has taken note that their overlying message of the past could use some nuance. Have no concern about a coming revolution among the progressive literati. The good deacon does not seem to be saying change is at hand, only that some of the members have seen that there is little honor among our betters either.ReplyDelete
I think you're close, but what caught my eye was his idea that Salon saying the same thing, but more directly about certain religious believers, would be OK. That keeps with Deacon Greydanus's frequent lament about all those other believers bringing their politics into his church - as opposed to him, who apparently has no politics. That's long been a distinctive of liberalism. Conservatives, for all their faults and failings, at least call themselves conservative. For as long as I can remember, most liberals refuse to define themselves as such, instead acting as thought they're simply correct.Delete
No. Not "certain religious believers". No sane person defends all "religious believers". Greydanus said "most evangelists". If by THAT he meant telegangelists and pastors of megachurches built on the "gospel of prosperity", he has a point. He may also have in mind the kind of person who goes onto a university campus to yell at people about how all university women are whores and everyone on campus (other than him) is going to hell. There really are a lot of bad examples of supposed "evangelists" out there.Delete
And yet ... "And I will leave me seven thousand men in Israel, whose knees have not been bowed before Baal, and every mouth that hath not worshipped him kissing the hands."
Oh sure, you can point out some Catholics or some Protestants or anyone who can be a problem. But set in the context of Deacon Greydanus's frequent laments about those other Catholics who bring politics into his church (as opposed to him, who apparently doesn't), that smacks a lot of the current 'Hey world, let's get them' attitude that too many believers seem to be warming up to.Delete
Again, I'm the first to admit there are bad actors in any theater. But there comes a time when you look around and realize as much as I might disagree with Communism, if we're in the middle of Germany in the 1930s, it might be time to put differences aside and not help the prevailing powers single out and take out those bad apples over there.
So are you criticizing what he actually wrote, or what you think he meant when he was writing? THE WORD HE USED WAS EVANGELIST. Not believer. He also seems to think most evangelists today are "irrelevant". Does the world you live in look like it is the product of evangelists doing a great job? Are churches growing? Is the culture being converted for Christ?Delete
Now you can make a good argument that firefighters are particularly relevant when a fire is out of control, and in the same way evangelists are particularly relevant when a society is out of control. In both cases, though, you could also say that if they had responded more quickly and effectively to the crisis in its early stages, the problem would not now be out of control. There may be some accountability for the past as well as hope for the future. And that's even for the good firefighters and the good evangelists, not the wolves in sheep's clothing, of whom there are plenty.
If you want to prove Greydanus is a stinker, how about you cite examples that actually back up your point, instead of changing the words to make him seem more sinister.
He used the word evangelist (which I hope he didn't mean, since evangelist is a biblical calling), but it's all the same to me. Salon wrote the piece to blast its once heroic atheists who used to support the Left's new intolerance for things like religion. Now, those atheists find themselves the targets of this new Left, and they are beginning to ask questions about where the Left has gone. They join a growing number of liberals doing the same thing. So Salon swooped in to attack them, accusing them - as one is often accused when questioning anything left of center - of joining 'the Right.'Delete
Now, Deacon Greydanus could have jumped on that, or pointed out the hypocrisy of Salon for holding to the tolerance for leftists only movement. Or anything. Instead, he takes issue that Salon was too broad, and then more or less agrees that now these atheists are irrelevant (because I guess not liking the modern censorship is a loser thing?), and had Salon only kept the vitriol aimed at certain - other - type Christians, it would have been fine.
Personally, I find that bothersome. I see many problem with Salons 'we'll attack dissenters wherever we find them' piece. My problem is not that the general religion hate might unfortunately include me.