God and Father Christmas

In recent years, atheism has enjoyed something of a resurgence, especially with the rise of the so called “New Atheism”. That term was first coined back in 2006 to describe the group of media-savvy atheists—men like Richard Dawkins, Sam Harris, Daniel Dennett and the late Christopher Hitchens—whose books attacking religion in general and Christianity in particular have sold by the truckload. Yet despite its popularity, much of contemporary atheism thrives on poor arguments and cheap soundbites, making claims that simply don’t stand up to the slightest scrutiny. Like a cheaply made cardigan, they’re full of loose threads that quickly unravel if you tug them.

Let me illustrate with an example from New Atheism’s founding father, Richard Dawkins, whose books have sold millions of copies. Dawkins thinks religion isn’t merely wrong, but insane, that those who believe in God are quite literally deluded. Faith in God is as crazy as belief in—well, let’s allow Dawkins to speak for himself: