Friday, December 01, 2006

Dawkins on Nazism

This post is in response to the ruckus in the comments section of my "Give the Gift of Life" post regarding whether Richard Dawkins is arguing in favor of a Nazi style eugenics program.

For an interesting take on the controversy, please check out Orac's commentary at his blog Respectful Insolence.

As for what Dawkins believes about Hitler and Nazi eugenics, I have almost finished reading "The God Delusion" (I'm a very fast reader) and here is what he writes about it:

"Stalin and Hitler did extremely evil things, in the name of, respectively, dogmatic and doctrinaire Marxism, and an insane and unscientific eugenics theory tinged with sub-Wagnerian ravings."

It is quite clear then what Dawkins thinks about Nazi eugenics. "Insane" and "unscientific". It does not leave any room for ambiguity. What he meant quite clearly in his remarks that have caused this controversy is that the spectre of Nazism prevents meaningful discussion about eugenics itself. Therefore, anyone who argues that Dawkins is in favor or sympathetic to Nazi eugenics is either willfully ignorant or intellectually dishonest.

16 comments:

Stardust said...

Richard Dawkins has posted a comment in a thread on his website.

Part of his comment:What actually IS the moral distinction between breeding for musical ability and forcing a child to take music lessons. I said that I thought there probably is a moral distinction, but I thought people should at least ask themselves the question of what that distinction might be. Don't you think it is an interesting question? Do you have an answer to it yourself? Above all, why do you think somebody who asks such a question needs "defence"?

Sable Chicken said...

Well Richard Dawkins is getting what he wanted, a lot of discussion about eugenics.

Theerasak Photha said...

Hitler was a vegetarian.

Therefore a vegetarian diet is cruel, inhuman, and anti-Semitic.

Sable Chicken said...

Tommy we were talking about the Aborigines before and how they might have gotten over to Australia...remember?
I thought this was very interesting about what they say their origin is from
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_gF4tNmcBLc&mode=related&search=
Evolution vs Creation : # 4 We Found The Missing Link?!

It would be good if you could watch the whole thing, but if you can't start at the 7:30 minutes spot to hear about the Aborigines.

Theerasak Photha said...

THREAD HIJACKER!

Theerasak Photha said...

They can't even spell Homo habilis, LOL!!!

Is that George Lucas' dad in the video?

Sable Chicken said...

TP THREAD HIJACKER! come on...you should talk.
I am still on topic, I still think that eugenics is dangerous. Look what happened to the Aborigines because people thought that they were animals. Dawkins ideas about Evolution coupled with eugenics is going to be bad.

Theerasak Photha said...

I'm a nigger with slanty eyes. That doesn't mean I feel compelled to use lame Argumentum Ad Hitlerum attacks against the theory of evolution. (BTW, I listen to Blekbala Mujik. Do you?)

Sable, just can it already. It's embarrassing.

Theerasak Photha said...

People have committed atrocties in the name of Christianity. The Lord's Resistance Army are still doing it today.

This must mean Christianity is dangerous and evil.

Theerasak Photha said...

I also have a heavily illustrated book on Australian Aboriginal artwork. It's a good read.

Tommy said...

Sable,

That video offers no supporting evidence. We hear the voice of an allegedly aboriginal man, but we do not see him, what position he holds in aboriginal society, nor are we told if he is a Christian or had exposure to Christian missionaries.

Here is a link regarding aboriginal creation myths:

http://www.acropolis.org.au/Aboriginals_article.htm

But I am pleased to see that my raising the subject of the Australian aboriginals at least inspired you to try to find a counter-argument.

Stardust said...

Here is an excellent blog with many informative links that I highly recommend by John Hawks, Assistant Professor of Anthropology at the University of Wisconsin—Madison. There you will find lots and lots of information to contemplate.

John Hawks Weblog: paleoanthropology, genetics, and evolution

Sirkowski said...

Here's a good rule of eugenics.
Don't breed with Republicans.

Sirkowski said...

On a serious note, eugenics does not imply coercion. Which means whenever you make a decision about whom you're breeding with based on who you're breeding with, you're applying eugenics.

Tommy said...

Hi Sirk,

Thanks for stopping by!

TK

Theerasak Photha said...

On a serious note, eugenics does not imply coercion. Which means whenever you make a decision about whom you're breeding with based on who you're breeding with, you're applying eugenics.

That means Sable's animal husbandry qualifies as eugenics.

Coercion possibly included.