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The Friendlier Atheist

I am pretty well established vocal atheist. On the scale of atheism, I am often lumped in with Dawkins, Hitchens, and Harris as a “New Atheist” or “militant atheist.” I prefer to see myself more as a “bad cop” of atheism. So imagine my surprise when I found out that on at least one issue I am a friendlier atheist than popular atheist blogger Hemant Mehta, better known as “The Friendly Atheist.”

I will admit that I am not generally a fan of his blog, although I do check it out from time to time. I tend to be more of a PZ Myers fan. Still, in my book we are all on the same side and we should all do our best to help each other out.

Late last night, I found out that former Catholic, turned atheist, turned Catholic Anne Rice has once again left Christianity. I quickly wrote up an Examiner article about this. I loved most of Rice’s Vampire series and to this date still consider her vampire mythology to be the standard for all vampire stories (Twilight stacks up poorly compared to Interview).

While Rice hasn’t broken completely from the Christian mythology, she has made a giant leap in a very public way. De-conversion is a journey and rarely happens overnight. Still, Hemant Mehta was not so friendly about Rice’s announcement.

On his blog, he criticized Rice for falling into the “follower of Christ” camp. While there is a place for this criticism, I think the more important message is that Christianity is being called out for being immoral. Even many atheists who commented on Hemant’s blog think he was a little mean and off base with this one.

For me, it is a chance to say that on this issue I am friendlier than the Friendly Atheist. 😉

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