Today was my free day — a post-conference breather and a chance to explore Köln, rather than lurching off on the next available plane. So I did! First thing this morning I grabbed a map and headed off on a walking tour.
Aww, I got mentioned in a paper published in Philosophia Christi. I’m only an afterthought, brought in at the very end — the paper is primarily a criticism of Richard Dawkins — but it’s always nice to be remembered.
It is, however, a rather strange paper. Erik Wielenberg’s argument is basically that The God Delusion was not written by David Hume, and that everyone ought to go read Hume instead of Dawkins. Which is fine; Hume is devastatingly thorough. But then why am I wasting my time reading Wielenberg? Just go read Hume instead. (It’s easy, too: Dialogues Concerning Natural Religion is available online, and it’s shorter than The God Delusion.)
It’s looking like the Irish referendum on gay marriage is going to pass — the regressive villains have conceded. The most important thing is that lesbians and gays have won some rights they should have had all along, but I have to say it’s also satisfying to see all those Irish people thumbing their nose at the Catholic church.
I have arrived at my hotel in Köln. I did not sleep at all on the flight. It is a bright sunny morning here in Germany, and I’m still wide awake. I’m afraid my brain has been whipsawed through so many time zones lately that it has decided screw it, it’s not going to bother sorting out that pointless sleep/wake cycle anymore, which probably means I’ll muddle along in a delirium until I die.
Who decided we should live on a spinning sphere anyway? It makes no sense.
Once again, the timer has run out on the ongoing discussion of American racism, so here’s a fresh thread for you all. I thought you might appreciate the magnitude of the Black Problem: black people get gunned down by the police. The police are far less trigger-happy when it’s a mob of hundreds of heavily armed white people shooting each other.
I think this suggests an easy solution to the problem of police brutality. Instead of 40 acres and a mule, give every black person in the country a black leather jacket and a shotgun.
Don’t worry, though. The Waco incident was completely thug-free.
Lindsay is immensely courageous. He is willing to have bad people executed, and he’s not afraid to say so! Everyone should go and give him a cookie because he is willing to be unorthodox and support the death penalty.
About ten days ago, I wrote an essay for Huffington Post on the death penalty, in particular, focusing on how some of those who oppose the death penalty support imprisonment in a supermax facility as a supposedly more humane alternative—a position I find logically dubious if not hypocritical. The recent decision of the Dzhohkar Tsarnaev jury to sentence him to death made me think about this issue again. It also made me think about how humanists all too often commit the cardinal intellectual sin of many of the religious. That is, they hold certain principles as beyond question. This is not a good thing.
All of you people who say the state shouldn’t kill people are just being dogmatic: it’s positively sinful that you don’t think through the issues and agree with Ron. The only way you could possibly be disagreeing is because you’re unwilling to question everything.