Tangled Bank 50 turned up some nice reads, not least the self-selected “carnival of the vanities” post by James Hrynyshyn, this edition’s editor.

In Getting our act together ... not he wittily conjoins two separate ideas.

Exhibit A is the never-ending argument among scientists over the role, if any, of atheism in the evolution-versus-creationism battle. Meanwhile, we have Exhibit B: the progressive political community’s inability to decide how to address the less patient elements among them as they desperately search for a winning strategy for retaking Congress and the White House.

I’m not too bothered by the disarray among the Democrats, except inasmuch as the other lot seems to be making things difficult not only for the people who didn’t vote for them (that’s democracy) but for much of the rest of the world too (that’s tyranny). Hrynyshan rounds up some choice examples of biologists on both sides of the divide, from the oh-so-sensitive Rusians to the take-no-prisoners Dennettites. And in the end he concludes that while it is possible to be too tolerant of other opinions, it is also possible to advance an argument together without being all, absolutely, on the same note of the same hymn.

I know. “Up with heterogeneity” isn’t exactly a good campaign slogan, but I’m arguing that you don't really need a slogan. Not if you’re trying to rid our schools of creationist claptrap and not if you’re campaigning for votes from the side that champions reason.
So what if atheists offend some sensibilities? Get over it. People are always going to get offended by something. And what if some Americans are going to take offense at rebuking the president while we’re allegedly at war? Get over it.

I left a comment to the effect that I’d said much the same thing myself in exposing my own credo, but it didn’t take. Atheism will never be more than a minority taste. Get over it.

As the good Viscount LaCarte says in his blog’s colophon: “It is impossible to reason someone out of something that he did not reason himself into in the first place.” Jonathan Swift

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