It’s a couple of days march, at least, until Richard Dawkins and George Pell go head to head on ABC’s QANDA. Of course, I’m not referring to them when I talk about ‘wankers’.
The ‘March’, is the predictable plodding of anxious and pretentious sods and sodettes, who lament the discussion in advance, down the bridge of their noses.
Personally, The Question – does God exist? – does bore me somewhat. As far as I’m concerned Kant settled the nature of the debate in The Critique of Pure Reason, and everything that’s been added since, has been either redundant and/or silly.
But I’m not going to resent you, or Dawkins, or Pell, for being interested in it.
Personally, I’d rather talk about climate change, or the denial of evolution, or the religious segregation of students, or ethics (in which case I’d rather have Peter Singer or Russell Blackford vs George Pell), or civics (again, either Blackford, or Graham Oppy vs George Pell), or any other number of topics that intersect with people’s religious beliefs. But that’s my preference, and the ABC doesn’t live to serve me, or for that matter, any other single Australian.
Maybe I’ll be entertained. Maybe not.
But oh, the vapid posturing…
‘Oh, I feel I’d be better represented as a Christian if [insert name here] took Pell’s place. Now everyone is going to think I’m just like George Pell! I’m so persecuted! Why does Australia hate me for my beliefs?’ – Suzy Quagmire, Cultural Studies student from ANU.
‘Dawkins is a crude atheist, really. *Sniff* Not like Alain de Botton or John Shook. Hmmm… Yes.’ – Professor Trevor Snapes of Twitter U, aspiring political powerbroker, reader of book covers on Amazon, and author of the 140 character epic, How You Too Can Work From Home.
‘Did I ever tell you how I’m better than all these militant atheists and Catholics? Well I am!’ – The escaped id of 1001, meek, agnostic, religion bloggers.
‘I’d be able to take this discussion seriously, if it were between intellectuals like say, Peter Slezak and Gary Bouma. Religion is more than just an opiate [insert ridiculously over-pamphleteered, now-clichéd article that nobody ever critically discusses]!’ – JZ Teacosy, RadiCool Marxist street-writer.
‘Even I can reach consensus with conservatives that Dawkins called the Pope a Nazi! Just watch these two cartoons try to negotiate an agreement! BAH!’ – John McNab, angry, retired skim-reader of The Economist.
‘Why do they give these well-off, establishment types, even more opportunities to spread their orthodox views?’ – Guy Rundle’s wine tab.
I guess this is inevitable. Insecure people, envious people, passive aggressive and narcissistic people, in the lead-up to any contentious debate, are going to try to position themselves in advance if they have anything approximating an interest.
I guess we should be thankful they tip us off in advance.
But by sweet fuck, it’s annoying.