Pharyngula

Minuscule, even. Flea-sized. How else am I to interpret Dinesh D’Souza’s challenge that he should pick on someone his own size, meaning D’Souza? I’ve heard D’Souza. He’s a babbling pipsqueak. But now he thinks he is a worthy opponent to confront Hitchens, because all the pastors that Hitchens knocks aside as if wielding the jawbone of an ass are such weak and timid little flowers.

Besides, Hitchens is tough and mean. Pastors are inhbited because of their position. They can’t respond in kind. So Hitchens can call them names but they can’t call him names because they have to show Christian forbearance.

Weird. Check out the Reverend Phelps sometime, or look back at the arrogance and slander of Falwell or Dobson or Robertson. I hate to defend Christians, but good grief…Martin Luther King? William Jennings Bryan? John Brown? Jonathan Edwards? I don’t think we should automatically assume we can simply blame wilting Christian forbearance for their failures before the rhetorical onslaught of Hitchens (or Dawkins or any of the other Furies of Atheism, for that matter), since we know at least some are capable of throwing thunderbolts from the pulpit. Rather, we should find fault with their pathetic arguments, and experience shows that D’Souza is capable of waving around a pathetic argument with all the self-confidence of a clown armed with a bladder on a stick.

Despite his pompous bragging about how he’d be a worthy opponent, I don’t think I’d be that interested in seeing Bambi meet Godzilla again.

Comments

  1. #1 Moses
    May 30, 2007

    Christian forbearance to slander and bully? On what fucking planet is that – Delusionia IX?

  2. #2 Mosasaurus rex
    May 30, 2007

    Ah, Christian forbearance- Preachers politely saying that you will be damned for all eternity if you disagree with them. That’s not mean, no, not mean at all. Jeebus.

    I think a debate between Hitch and Dinesh would be rather entertaining actually.

  3. #3 Ed B
    May 30, 2007

    Well, Dinesh did get something right:

    “Pastors are used to speaking in churches where everyone already shares their assumptions.”

    True, it IS a lot easier to preach to the already converted (isn’t there even a saying to that effect…).

    “What pastors talk about…is completely irrelevant when they encounter an opponent like Hitchens who rejects the authority of Scripture to adjudicate these questions.”

    Also true. As long as one concedes the authority of an ancient holy book it is hard to argue against that holy book. Captain Obvious is betting that Hitch would lose all of his debates regarding religion if he started out by saying that he thinks the Bible is correct.

    Maybe D’Souza is hoping that Hitch will be wasted and just concede the correctness of the Bible from the start. Maybe D’Souza will arrange to leave some good Scotch out in plain sight…

  4. #4 Warren
    May 30, 2007

    I’m so pleased to know — as will 300,000 or so dead Iraqis — that this is a Christian, and hence forbearing, nation.

    On another tangent:

    D’Souza is capable of waving around a pathetic argument with all the self-confidence of a clown armed with a bladder on a stick.

    PZ, I believe D’Souza is a bladder on a stick.

  5. #5 mndarwinist
    May 30, 2007

    How about Hitchens’ encounter with Sean Insanity? He is not known for his self-restraint, and Hitchens made mince meat of him.

  6. #6 Mosasaurus rex
    May 30, 2007

    I hope Hitch takes Dinesh up on this.

    Hats off to Hitch- he’s really been doing the leg work with this book tour of his. He’s been talking to EVERYBODY.

  7. #7 John McKay
    May 30, 2007

    I don’t like Christopher Hitchens. He’s a bully and a lout. The fact that he’s undeniably brilliant and that I more often than not agree with him doesn’t make me like him any more.

    On the other hand, I’d pay to watch him disassemble Dinesh D’Souza.

  8. #8 mjs
    May 30, 2007

    I fear the scotch will make a mesh
    Of more than just that sap Dinesh
    Still, a Hitchens’ soused would be enough
    To end D’Souza’s little bluff
    If all are sober, well, more’s the pity
    We’ll see whose bloomers get all shitty

    +++

  9. #9 Torbjörn Larsson, OM
    May 30, 2007

    As if Hitchens would have trouble with d’ souse.

  10. #10 Torbjörn Larsson, OM
    May 30, 2007

    As if Hitchens would have trouble with d’ souse.

  11. #11 forsen
    May 30, 2007

    Oh, another interesting debate came to my mind. Given Hitchens’ support for the war and GN’s founding of the Islamic Free Market Institute, wouldn’t it be nice to see him show off against Grover Norquist? I highly doubt the encounter could end in anything but physical violence.

  12. #12 John Danley
    May 30, 2007

    D’dumbass can’t even write a factual column, let alone argue with an intellectual.

  13. #13 Mosasaurus rex
    May 30, 2007

    What do you suppose Dinesh’s motivation for this debate is? Is he so deluded that he thinks he actually has a chance of besting Hitch? Or do you think that it’s just a chance to give himself a higher profile, even though he knows that he will be on the losing end of it?

  14. #14 Kel
    May 30, 2007

    “Furies of Atheism”

    Oh, I like that very much. It has a nice ring to it.

    It’s posts like these PZ that make it hard to believe that people that have met you in real life describe you as ‘mild-mannered’. Maybe you should do a video post one day to show us all just how badass you really are :D

  15. #15 Dan
    May 30, 2007

    D’Souza’s a whimpering little prat. This latest outburst is nothing but a feeble attempt by a wannabe media whore to gain a little attention.

    He’s jealous –plain and simple.

  16. #16 QrazyQat
    May 30, 2007

    Weak preachers? Let’s see, MLK was told if he went to Memphis he was fairly likely to be killed. His response, more or less “So?” Yeah, D’Souza, MLK was a wimp. Sure.

  17. #17 Opisthokont
    May 30, 2007

    Wait, I am confused. Why do you want to defend Christians? I certainly acknowledge that there are some remarkable and good people amongst them (such as MLK), but I do not see how that is relevant when you are indicating that being Christian in no way mandates that one show forbearance.

  18. #18 craig
    May 30, 2007

    Speaking of Rev. Phelps, I just watched Louis Theroux’s “The Most Hated Family In America,” about the Phelpses. It would be funny if it weren’t so sad seeing those poor abused kids, and the clearly tormented young woman who was mouthing the “church’s” propaganda while her conflicting emotions played out on her face.

  19. #19 CalGeorge
    May 30, 2007

    Hitchens is smart. Dinesh is a pseudo-intellectual windbag. He’s also an apologist for violent Islam.

    He has said:

    How can traditional Muslims be expected to show any sympathy toward assaults on their most sacred beliefs and the founder of their way of life? Even if true, such accusations should not be made publicly because their effect is likely to strengthen the worst elements in Islam and make terrorism worse.

    http://www.townhall.com/columnists/DineshDSouza/2007/04/02/islam,_a_religion_of_violence?page=full&comments=true

    That’s an appalling thing to say. We’re not to exercise our right to free speech and publically criticize the Islamic religion because some nut might become violent if we do? Do we just whisper our criticisms to our significant others in the privacy of our own homes?

    Someone is batshit insane. He’s one step away from advocating violence.

    I hope they debate because I want to see Hitchens decimate D’Souza.

    On two hours sleep and staggeringly drunk Hitchens would still make mincemeat of that worthless piece of shit.

  20. #20 SLC
    May 30, 2007

    The trouble is, will Hitchens be sober when the debate takes place. Hitchens in the bag can get pretty incoherent.

  21. #21 Bill
    May 30, 2007

    Preachers are trained to preach, not argue/debate/discuss. Going against a Dawkins or Hitchens is out of their weight class. What I’d like to see is a debate with a well-trained Jesuit theologian type.

  22. #22 Aris
    May 30, 2007

    Which pastors is Hitchens dispatching? Is anyone keeping a list? Any links to debates?

  23. #23 Ian
    May 31, 2007

    Funny thought really – D’Souza is an opponent of the neocon’s war, Hitchens is a supporter. What’s a person supposed to do when you disagree with the decent human being, and agree with the thoroughly despicable one?

  24. #24 tim gueguen
    May 31, 2007

    The old saw about a broken clock being right twice a day no doubt applies.

  25. #25 David Marjanovi?
    May 31, 2007

    Preachers are trained to preach, not argue/debate/discuss. Going against a Dawkins or Hitchens is out of their weight class. What I’d like to see is a debate with a well-trained Jesuit theologian type.

    Yes!

    However, I’ve recently read a book on faith and science by such a guy (Hans Küng). Deeply disappointing. Having (of course) established that God can’t be disproven, he makes it pretty clear that he just believes because he wants to. He gets a few facts about science wrong in the process, BTW.

  26. #26 David Marjanovi?
    May 31, 2007

    Preachers are trained to preach, not argue/debate/discuss. Going against a Dawkins or Hitchens is out of their weight class. What I’d like to see is a debate with a well-trained Jesuit theologian type.

    Yes!

    However, I’ve recently read a book on faith and science by such a guy (Hans Küng). Deeply disappointing. Having (of course) established that God can’t be disproven, he makes it pretty clear that he just believes because he wants to. He gets a few facts about science wrong in the process, BTW.

  27. #27 David Marjanovi?
    May 31, 2007

    who could barely form a coherent sentence as well.

    ROTFL!!!

  28. #28 yourname
    May 31, 2007

    Hitchens is a good debater, but the Scot George Galloway did make mincemeat out of him.

    Oy vey…i couldn’t disagree more. galloway came off as an evasive blowhard and spoke in slogans. his colour by numbers reasoning had him bellowing to the audience…whose supporters outnumbered hitchens…he knows what his phoney antiwar supporters like to hear. no substance. he and d’souza are nothing by fascist apologists.

  29. #29 Anon
    May 31, 2007

    Is it true that Mr. Hitchens is a total homophobe? I’ve been meaning to read his new book, but don’t feel like forking the money over if it means it’s going to a bad cause.

  30. #30 Phila
    May 31, 2007

    Hitchens and D’Souza can both be fired into the sun for all I care. I’ll consider Hitchens a force for rationally when he apologizes for being wrong about Iraq (and for viciously slandering everyone who was right about it).

    If he wants to blow his goddamn brains out immediately afterwards, that’d win him a few more points.

  31. #31 Phila
    May 31, 2007

    A force for rationality, that is.

  32. #32 Rey Fox
    May 31, 2007

    Such a compassionate view you have, Philla.

  33. #33 Pete
    May 31, 2007

    It is my belief that Christopher Hitchens probably has a brother who was seperated from him at birth, and who says exactly the opposite of what Hitchens says.

    Wouldn’t that be amazing if it were true? It would show that the cosmos was in balance.

    Your wish is my command !

    Peter Hitchens

  34. #34 frog
    May 31, 2007

    Coattails! D’Souza sales must be going down, so he’s trying to pull an Muhammed Ali, and taunt a big-seller into the ring with him. Hah! Ali was a champ, D’Souza is a third-rate pug limited to a jab. The worst thing Hitchens could do to D’Souza is to ignore him, and allow him to fade back into his richly deserved obscurity.

  35. #35 Boko999
    May 31, 2007

    I hope you realize that the footage of Bambi getting squashed by Godzilla was caught by a film crew of ancient Canadians 6000ish years ago. It is well known that Bambi’s demise was inadvertant because the Godillas of that time were peace loving vegetarian.

  36. #36 Steven Sullivan
    June 1, 2007

    Hitchens would destroy D’Souza. It could be fun to watch.

    Btw, D’Souza has a column out today blasting Brownback’s NY Times Op-Ed. Strange bedfellows and all that…

  37. #37 Steven Sullivan
    June 1, 2007

    (Formatting is all kinds of FUBAR in that last post, sorry. First two sentences are anon’s. And the italics in the bbc quote should extend from ‘One reason’ to ‘Orwell’s case. The last bit about the New Yorker article is mine.)