THE GREAT DEBATE
by Maura Hanrahan
In his characteristic caustic tone, Christopher Hitchens tells us that religion is the cause of every evil in the world. According to Hitchens, most recently the author of God is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything, religion is to blame for, among other things, the long-term war in Northern Ireland. Hitchens fails to recognize that people there were not killing each other for religious reasons. Northern Ireland is a relatively homogenous society, and such societies tend to divide along religious lines. That in itself doesn’t necessarily cause problems. But in this case, it translated into economic privilege for some and deprivation for others. All this is lost on Hitchens, who is, tellingly, a supporter of the American war against Iraq.
Also secure on the bestseller lists is Richard Dawkins’ The God Delusion. In this book, the evolutionary biologist condemns the false and "pernicious" belief in God. Sam Harris also attacks Christianity in his Letter to a Christian Nation: The End of Faith.