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Civil liberties crusader defends Richard Dawkins on … civil liberties

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Mark Steyn/Tanya Gale

And quite rightly, too:

Full disclosure: Five years ago, when I was battling Canada’s “human rights” commissions to restore free speech to my native land, Richard Dawkins was one of the few prominent figures in Her Majesty’s dominions to lend unequivocal support. He put it this way:

I have over the years developed a dislike for Mark Steyn, although I’ve always admired his forceful writing. On this issue, however, he is clearly 1000% in the right and should receive all the support anybody can give him.

Let me return the compliment: I have over the years developed a dislike for Richard Dawkins’s forceful writing (the God of the Torah is “the most unpleasant character in all fiction,” etc.), but I am coming round rather to admire him personally. It’s creepy and unnerving how swiftly the West’s chattering classes have accepted that the peculiar sensitivities of Islam require a deference extended to no other identity group. I doubt The Satanic Verses would be accepted for publication today, but, if it were, I’m certain no major author would come out swinging on Salman Rushdie’s behalf the way his fellow novelist Fay Weldon did:

Just why Dawkins, who doesn’t apparently believe in free will, thinks the nanny state is a problem, is unclear. But who cares?

The fact is, loyal Canadians fought one mother of a battle and got Section 13 of the Human Rights Act, under which Steyn was dragged through multiple courts for questioning Islamic influence repealed. Wonder whether anyone other than the Danes will match that. Maybe not the Americans.

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3 Responses to Civil liberties crusader defends Richard Dawkins on … civil liberties

  1. “Just why Dawkins, who doesn’t apparently believe in free will, thinks the nanny state is a problem, is unclear.”

    Well, because Dawkins likes contradiction?. Gotta have something that humanizes you.

    “But who cares?”

    Ok, you got me there.

    The way I see it, Dawkins doesn’t see the many contradictions under his own skin, while perceiving them of others. This is why he’s able to admire Stein, and render whatever he dislikes to that perception er…projection. I think if Dawkins actually thought through whatever to him counts as a philosophy, clear thinkers like Stein might appear even more “likeable.”

  2. “But who cares?” You should ask?

    Small gaggles, facing the voracious and vicious nanny state alone – and seeing how others have been swallowed, got their paycheques, and no longer care – look over the horizon for any help that may come.

    Americans’ turn for this is coming faster than they think.

    O’Leary for News was at Queen’s Park when Mark Steyn made a presentation.

    It is no little thing to decide that the mind doesn’t really exist, that there is no free will, … , that some naturally selected enlightened thug should govern …

    In Canada, we are trying to beat it back. That Dawkins’ position doesn’t make any sense may not matter as much as you think. We need sandbags.

  3. Dawkins needs free speech because he confronts deeply held beliefs like religion. He probably thinks censorship could be used against him or anyone.
    While to the rest of us it seems censorship is a tool of the left.
    Canada today is a state/establishment controlled nation and so stops dissent.
    They made a blunder attacking Jews who wanted to attack Islam.
    Thats the only reason there was a dustup. Whoops.
    A pox on all their houses.
    north america today has been invaded and is occupied and part of this is a actual evil establishment in our times.
    More power to Dawkins for his support for freedom to speak the truth.

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