I have to acknowledge the very silly Mark Vernon, who considers the award a triumph. Apparently, Martin Rees accepted the award to hit back vengefully at Richard Dawkins — oh, how I wish I were in a position to wreak havoc on mine enemies by getting £1,000,000 handed to me.
He really does see this as a Victory for Science, though.
When the cultural history of our times comes to be written, Templeton 2011 could be mentioned, at least in a footnote, as marking a turning point in the “God wars”. The power of voices like that of Dawkins and Sam Harris — who will be on the British stage next week — may actually have peaked, and now be on the wane. Science could be said, in effect, to have rejected their advocacy. Rees brings a preferable attitude to the debate.
Huh? The Templeton Foundation is a lushly endowed, private religious organization. It does not represent Science. Science did not have a voice in granting this award, only the trustees of the Templeton Foundation. I don’t see any sign of the diminution of the popularity of Dawkins and Harris, and I doubt that either of them were ever very high on the short list of potential awardees, anyway.
Besides, I’m planning to pay for a pizza for the good students of the Morris Freethought group tomorrow, which I think will be an awesome turning point in the history of atheism, and will mark the moment when religion began to ebb away and disappear. So there.
Blame UberFoo. He mentioned this song, and now I can’t get it out of my head, either…so I inflict it on you as well.