No, it’s not Robert Ludlum, it’s Richard Dawkins. He mocked a British comic who professes belief in some sort of supreme being because he finds it “very comforting.” The excellent Jessa Crispin of Bookslut is so fed up with Dawkins that she threatens to start believing in God herself. (Original story here.)
Dawkins was surely impolite to point out the foolishness. (My take on his book is here.) But was he wrong? Many years ago when I lived downstate, I drove my pickup to work piled high with miscellaneous junk tied on in various improvised ways. Someone at work commented that my load was “n—– rigged.” (Trust me, ironic appropriation was not involved.)
I’ve always felt bad that I didn’t call him out then and there. It would have been impolite, but there are times when impolite is right. When a Bush flunky says, “We create our own reality,” it’s good to point out that he’s a moron. When someone says it makes sense to believe something because it’s “comfortable,” why should they be given a free pass?
That’s not a rhetorical question. When and where do you say the impolite truth? Or, the other way: when and where do you wish you’d done a Dawkins?