Monday, 8 October 2007

Our survey says...

Dear reader, our blog has moved to a new address.

Do come on over (and change your bookmarks accordingly): rationalist.org.uk

In lieu of any real poll in the near future, the British electorate can take great comfort in the fact that our survey on whether Dawkins and Hitchens are good for humanism is now closed and the results are in.

The Returning Officer (i.e. Blogger via myself) is pleased to announce that from a staggeringly high turnout of 5,350 people, the responses to the question "Are Richard Dawkins and Christopher Hitchens a good thing for humanism?" came in as follows:

Yes, it's time to get serious in our rejection of religion – 4,186 (78%)

Yes, they enliven the debate – 943 (17%)

No, their aggressive tone is unhelpful – 186 (3%)

No, they're a menace to humanism – 35 (0%)

So what does it all mean? No doubt pollsters will be debating this result for months on end, but in the meantime I'll offer one obvious observation – Dawkins and the Hitch have whipped up a real following, many of whom will passionately jump at the opportunity to defend them. Some will even take offence at any attempt to question their writings – just take a look at the many comments we received about this poll. What do readers think? Leave us your comments on this post.

Watch out for our next poll, launching later today...

1 comments:

A Lot Of Art Is Boring said...

I think what they're doing is important, and I've personally found their points intriguing and intelligent. However, as a humanist, I am of the opinion that what we need now is a movement towards getting our position understood and accepted by the mainstream. The change to a secular society* will involve lots of small steps and will not happen overnight. The most important step is education, and by that I mean a reformed approach to science education in schools (let's teach the wonder of science and the scientific method first, and facts later), but also education about what it means to be a secular humanist. Theists need to realize that those of us without faith are not cruel, deluded, or cynical; rather, life, rights, and truth are of the utmost importance to us. We need to show them that the best way to understand the world is through science, and that a naturalistic view of the world is both humbling and awe-inspiring.

*Keep in mind that I am an American and therefore my ideas may not apply to other societies. I think that these would be positive steps to take in America's disturbingly credulous society, but from what I can see, it looks like many countries in Western Europe have been making strides towards secularism for a while now.

...Maybe I should just move to Europe.