Remember when Deepak Chopra appeared on Bill O’Reilly‘s show last month?
O’Reilly had previously invited Richard Dawkins on his show to discuss his book The Magic of Reality. Now, it was Chopra’s turn to refute what Dawkins had said.
Even though Dawkins wasn’t present to defend himself, Chopra took the bait from O’Reilly and went off on the famous atheist and author.
Among the things Chopra complained about was an interview that Dawkins had with him for a documentary called Enemies of Reason. Chopra said Dawkins “ambushed me when I was in Oxford” to make that interview happen and then used an edited clip to basically portray Chopra as a buffoon. (You can see/judge that clip for yourself here.)
Later in the interview with O’Reilly, Chopra accused Dawkins of using “his scientific credentials to camouflage his bigotry,” adding that Dawkins used his scientific accomplishments to appear “more credible” than he really is.
Chopra surprised even himself in that interview. For a guy who’s passes himself off as calm, rational, and relaxed, this was a lot of pent up emotion coming out on national TV.
Now, Chopra is issuing a public apology to Dawkins on YouTube for the way he acted.
He says that he was “unfair in [his] criticism” of Dawkins, though he doesn’t go into specifics. He adds that he “understands totally where [Dawkins] is coming from” and he gets how “dogmatic fundamentalism and religion can hurt and damage mankind and humanity…”
Finally, he says he’s more aligned with Dawkins’ thinking than with O’Reilly’s, despite their differences. (I find that hard to believe, but that’s besides the point.)
I’m not sure what prompted the apology, and I’m not even sure which comments Chopra is referring to, but good for him for taking this step.
To paraphrase one of the commenters at YouTube, maybe Chopra’s next trick should be apologizing for misrepresenting physics.
(Thanks to @supercheetah for the link!)