Thursday, 14 March 2013
The New Inquisition
Five hundred years ago we had the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith aka the Inquisition wandering the Earth, poking their noses into humanity's very thoughts, burning people and generally, you know, making complete arseholes of themselves. And us.
The guardians of the faith admitted of no contrary view. Heresy was having a thought which didn't accord with their dogma. They were quite sure that they had the right of it, and smugly set about lighting fires under people they considered to be not-right.
Today we have the "New Atheists". The arch skeptics and debunkers who wander the Earth sniffing out heresy in the form of thoughts which do not accord with their dogma. Their very narrow, non-negotiable definition of what is true by way of "science".
Instead of burning people alive, however, these latter-day inquisitors have to settle for cajoling public broadcasters into taking down videos of talks by people they don't agree with.
People like PZ Myers, Jerry Coyne, James Randi, Richard Wiseman and that other Dick, Richard Dawkins, never seem to tire of frothing at the mouth whenever they spy someone behaving heretically. Someone like Graham Hancock or Rupert Sheldrake, whose talks on TEDx have been marked for deletion after complaints by these whiny fundamentalist evangelists of the Only Way.
My gods - and all the Dicks are God, too - I'm killing myself laughing here. No need to light a fire under me.