The American Spectator opens up a broadside against Christopher Hitchens’ god is not Great:
Many, many refutations have been written of Christopher Hitchens’s god is not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything. Readers can take some small comfort that this won’t be another.
After all, what would even be the fun in piling on at this point? The Washington Post reviewer cast Hitchens as a latter day incarnation of the censorious anti-liberal Pope Pius IX and professed to have “never encountered a book whose author is so fundamentally unacquainted with its subject.”
In religious venues — even tolerant, liberal, kitten-hugging ones like Commonweal–the response has been not shock and outrage but open mockery. Conservative publications from this one to the Claremont Review of Books to Taki’s Top Drawer have dissected and made a study of the book’s many errors and eccentricities. On the other side of the pond, Hitchens’s brother Peter dropped the normal sibling non-review rule and had a run at it in the Daily Mail.
Hitchens’s public defenses of his thesis haven’t been much more successful. True, he bested the Reverend Al Sharpton in a televised debate — barely. But whenever he’s come up against serious opponents, it’s been ugly. Near the end of their exchange in Christianity Today, Douglas Wilson borrowed a line from Wyatt Earp in Tombstone to ask Hitchens, “You gonna do something or just stand there and bleed?”
His argumentation has been found flimsy by philosophers and rhetoricians; riddled with errors by biblical scholars and theologians; sloppy and tendentious by historians of religion; unrigorous by social scientists; breezy and brazen by literary critics; and obnoxious by most readers of good will. One is half surprised that