Saturday, August 18, 2007

Sam Harris in a Nutshell

Most theists, in attacking Mr. Harris' arguments, have noted his profound ignorance of the finer points of theology. Although they are correct, I've chosen to avoid arguments based on theology for the most part because I believe such arguments are too easily dismissed by Mr. Harris and his supporters. It is not that I myself reject theology, only that I wish to reach an audience that, I believe, wants the cold, hard facts. So, laid out here and in my four part review of Letter to a Christian Nation are the cold, hard facts.

Mr. Harris' arguments are consistent with his ideology. They are not consistent with either the evidence or the basic rules of reason and logic. In the space of a mere 91 pages, Letter to a Christian Nation is filled with inconsistencies, logically fallacious arguments, factual inaccuracies and outright lies. In addition to Mr. Harris' previously noted ignorance of theology, a reasonable reader must admit that Mr. Harris has demonstrated either an intention to deceive or a profound ignorance of history, politics, economics, current events, basic common sense, and the findings of science in regards to human nature and behavior.

In the end, the only thing this book proves is that an atheist can be just as ignorant, fanatical, and dogmatic as any religious fundamentalist. Of course, what can one expect from a man who, in his previous book, argued that it may be ethical to kill people for their beliefs?


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