Dawkins vs. O’Reilly (Video) April 24, 2007

Dawkins vs. O’Reilly (Video)


Here’s a link to the video of Richard Dawkins on the O’Reilly Factor.

O’Reilly, like many other Christians that interview atheists, doesn’t stray from the usual, refutable, stop-using-them-because-they-don’t-work arguments.

As OneGoodMove writes:

Apparently Bill’s only standard for truth is that he believes it. My only complaint, it was too short.

EvolutionBlog provides an unofficial (but accurate) transcript of the interview.

(Thanks to Joe for the picture)

[tags]atheist, atheism, Richard Dawkins O’Reilly Factor, Bill O’Reilly, OneGoodMove, EvolutionBlog[/tags]

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  • Susan

    Although I saw the Stephen Colbert clip with Richard Dawkins back when it was first shown, I’ve recently been watching him a bit more, and it seems to me that event Colbert could probably have made a better argument that O’Reilly.

    Dawkins, as usual, handled himself very well, despite being allowed no time to actually make any arguments (but that’s to be expected). I don’t always agree with what he says, but the fact that he can keep calm and keep a straight face with some of the stupid things people say to him makes me want to keep listening to him.

  • Mriana

    O’Reilly was a JERK! BTW, Dawkins is right about Hitler, he was a Roman Catholic, but many Christians wish to label him as an atheist. I guess so they can continue to have personal gain. I don’t know. Christians seem to do this a lot for some reason.

  • Susan

    It’s the “not a true Christian” argument. If any Christian does something bad and someone else calls them on it, the other Christians can respond by saying that that person is clearly not a true Christian. (Christians are of course not the only ones who do this.)

  • Mriana

    Yes, even I have been pushed back and forth. The thing is I do not believe in a supernatural deity, a reincarnated Zeus, or an anthropomorphic deity. I am a non-theist, a Humanist. (Forgive me if I seem like I digress for a moment, but it will become clearer, I hope) However, I have no label for things that trigger the feelings of transcendence and my vague discription, sometimes with a lower case “g” for god, yet does not literally mean a deity gets me pushed back and forth by Christians and some atheists.

    Christians will insist I’m an atheist and atheists misunderstand totally sometimes and push me another direction, but Dawkins, in a CFI or an HNN interview, has pointed out that some think that when a scientist [or alike] speaks of “god” they think s/he is talking about the Christian God and Dawkins strongly said, “No, he is not!” He would be one of the few who would understand what I was trying hard to convey and struggling to describe with the only language I know to explain something that truly is not a deity. Dawkins has even stated in an article that if one meant love, nature, or alike as “god” then he was not talking about them. Something that, from what I gather, The New Humanist conference struggled with, but there were other problems with that situation too.

    Finding a word that best describes something is a great struggle sometimes with the words we have. Use the wrong word and you get pushed back and forth, like you are a child that is 1/2 this and 1/2 that, (My sons are mixed, so I have an idea) because no one understands what you truly mean.

    Likewise, and here’s where I return to topic, if one does the unthinkable and people are quick to assume the person was something they were not- like an atheist in Hitler’s case, and then they refuse to see the evidence to the contrary, esp if it was one of their own who did the unthinkable. So, they push him, theoretically, to the atheists. The atheists who know better, not appreciating such stereotypes, push him back and say, “He was one of yours. Look at the evidence for yourself.”

    From the major autrocities of this world, to a minor thing like finding the right words- Humans can end up acting truly insane.

  • Raghu Mani

    One interesting thing to note – someone on the internet did a word count of the transcript and looks like O’Rielly out-talked Dawkins almost 2 to 1 (609 to 342)!. This is supposed to be an interview, right? Contrast that with Paula Zahn’s interview with Dawkins where she actually gave him time to speak.

    If O’Rielly is so much in love with his own voice, why does he bother having people on his show?


  • Darryl

    Yes, O’Reilly is in love with his own voice.

    Since Dawkins was recently allied with Chris Hitchens and Prof. Grayling in the Oxford debate, I couldn’t resist passing on Hitchens view of the media aftermath of the Virginia Tech slayings:


    And just for fun, this article from Slate mag on purgatory. Purgatory: a typical result of reasoning applied to a set of irrational assumptions. Now the Pope is having his doubts:


  • Tim

    Thank you SO much for the transcript link. I always like to read about Bill O’Reilly’s failed attempts to shock people into submission. Also, I like to see how intelligent people handle themselves in the face of such ignorance. A heartening find, indeed!

    BTW, I say thanks so much because I wanted to watch that so badly when I heard it was coming on, but I don’t have cable….alas….:(

  • Daryle

    People don’t watch Jerry Springer to gain more insight into the lives of incest trailer trash, they watch it to see chairs get thrown and the occasional breast or two. Likewise people watch Bill O’Reilly to see him do what he does, and that isn’t to give a reasonable interview. I suppose since Dawkins is not from the states he could be excused for not knowing who O’Reilly is and agreeing to appear on his show, but only an idiot would think they will get their fair share of talk time when appearing with O’Reilly if they know who he is, especially if their views are in opposition to O’Reilly’s.

    Also, the fact that Hitler claimed to be a Catholic doesn’t make him a Christian. Do you people have any idea how many people say they are Catholic but don’t believe in God? Or do whatever they feel like doing but call themselves Catholic because they were born into it? People act like Catholicism is a race or nationality. A person is Canadian because they were born in Canada. A person is white because they were born light skin. A person is not a Christian because they were born into a Catholic family.

    Atheists seem to have a really hard time understanding that Christianity is not passed from parent to child. You can not be born a Christian. You MUST decide to become one and then you must act on it. Christ said love your enemies, not slaughter them by the millions. He said pray for them, not round them up and put them in gas chambers. He said spread the gospel, not terror. A Christian is someone who has chosen to live like Christ and follow Christ’s rules. I’m sorry if you don’t like it, but that means no matter what a person claims, if they slaughter millions of people, they are not Christians. I realize that doesn’t make them atheists either, and I’m not going to say that Hitler was an atheist. It’s possible he thought himself to be Christian. It’s possible he thought himself to be doing the work of God. But if that is the case, it wasn’t because he read the Bible and determined it was his job to help along evolution by killing those unfit to live. It was because, like many atheists I’ve had the pleasure of talking with, he was quite confused about what Christianity is and decided to use it to justify his own hatred.

    Arguments like calling Hitler a Christian belong in the
    [quote]usual, refutable, stop-using-them-because-they-don’t-work arguments[/quote] pile.

  • Bud

    I’m sorry if you don’t like it, but that means no matter what a person claims, if they slaughter millions of people, they are not Christians.

    I guess George W Bush is not a Christian …

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