07 July 2007

"Spiritual" incoherence

A massive report -- with transcripts, photos, and videos -- of an unusual debate on religion, terrorism, and politics. Arch-atheist Christopher Hitchens triumphs, as he usually does. Found via Atheist Self.

The odd political crosscurrents in this debate highlight a peculiar contradiction in American political thinking. Today, the right wing in the US is dominated by religious fundamentalism, while the left is opposed to it and favors secularism. The world's ultimate, most extreme religious fundamentalists, who seek to impose a global totalitarian theocracy and eradicate secularism and personal freedom from the planet, are the Islamic imperialists. Logically, one would expect the left to be most vigorous in defending liberal, secular Western civilization against Islamic imperialism, while the right would be arguing for accommodation and spewing endless self-deluding rationalizations to downplay the threat. Yet, in fact, it is mostly the other way around.

Eventually, somehow, this contradiction must and will come to a head.

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