God is Not Great: Book Review and Rant

I recently finished Christopher Hitchens' new book God is Not Great: Why Religion Poisons Everything and I thought it was reaffirming, although it got a little bit repetitive in the end. How many examples of the absurdity of religion are necessary to prove the point? How many examples of religious intolerance does it take to sway the tide? I guess for others it might require more argument, but I was bought in from the get go.

Unfortunately, what the book does not do is pave a way for creating a more agnostic society or more importantly a tolerant society. Hitchens is the serial contrarian, not the reformist. How do you fight for a non-idea vs. a bad idea? Kind of like the democrats vs republicans in the past 4 years, although recently the democratic debate borders on substance.

How do you preach such a simple concept of inclusion and objectivity when fanatical charmers are wooing followers by the thousands, dominating the educational system in areas, and commanding communication. How do you stand up and say "I don’t know what I believe but you are not right,” and make that a battle cry? (the not right being about intolerance not faith, although frankly ...).

I think a lot will be about changing the semantics of arguments. Evolution is a “scientific theory” which is the equivalent in natural English of a “law.” No one would argue with the law of gravity. What about the law of evolution? What if we could extend hate crimes bill to people who are targeted for lacking faith? What else can we do? The estate tax didn’t get repealed until it was relabeled the “death tax.” How do we change the language to make it more difficult? Intelligent design is not an “alternative scientific theory” just a “theory” like the Flying Spaghetti Monster, but somehow we are losing this debate, and badly, I might add. If we can’t win one with such weighty evidence (they just found one of the highly publicized missing links in a glacier in Canada), how can we win at all?

When can we return to the age of reason? Was that an illusion too? All I know is I am getting pretty aggravated with the level of idealogical violence in the world today. God forbid you let kids name a Teddy Bear Muhammed or publish a cartoon or ... or ... or ...