Sometimes it’s worth getting upset

I work, on this blog, to speak both to those who already agree with me (whether they call themselves humanists, atheists, freethinkers, agnostics, brights, something else, or take on no particular label at all), and to those who do not (religious, post-religious, spiritual-but-not-religious, etc).

I strive to live up to the name I took for the blog – a standard that I think is worth reaching for: to be friendly. To avoid unnecessary conflict. To speak in a way that people remain willing to listen.

And yet …

And yet, I really enjoy a good zinger. I love listening to someone take down a stupid argument with all the acidic vitriol or dismissive contempt that it deserves. It appeals to something base and undeniable in me.

And it’s not a completely bad thing – not some dirty pleasure. Motivating me in my friendly approach is the same zeal for connection, for truth, and for making the world a better place as motivates PZ Myers, Richard Dawkins, and a hundred other, louder voices. The same values motivate me as motivated Christopher Hitchens.

And so I commend to you, my fellow humanists (etc), these two compilations of Hitchens’ sharp and uncompromising style and wit in action. If you are religious and find that Hitchens’ tone puts you off, feel free to avoid these. Or, if you’re feeling bold and open, watch them anyway and try to see what motivates him to say the things he says, and to say them in that way.

Part 1:

Part 2:

[Edit: There’s a new one! Enjoy …]

Part 3:

[Edit: And more …]

Part 4:

 

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