In the last posting, we saw that Dawkins, because of his atheistic worldview, sees himself as behaving immorally when he eats meat. In fact, so immoral that he compares his own meat-eating with owning slaves. What’s more, Singer compares Dawkins to the Germans who looked the other way when the Nazi’s were putting Jews in death camps. In other words, we have some heavy duty unethical behavior going on here.
So what is Dawkin’s response to confronting his deeply unethical behavior? He chooses to continue to engage in behavior that he himself likens to owning a slave. He blames society, but we all know that is a cop out. In fact, it’s a nonsensical cop-out.
So what we have here is a real world demonstration of atheism’s problem with morality.
The internet is full of debates about “Why should we be moral if no God exists?” Those debates are loaded with unrealistic extreme examples (“what’s to keep you from being an axe murderer!?) and idealistic, abstract discussions that don’t quite match empirical reality. But what we have here is concrete reality. Richard Dawkins, leader of the New Atheist movement, acknowledges he is behaving immorally and willingly continues to behave as such. He thinks eating meat is wrong, yet he does it all the time. His empathy tells him he is wrong, yet he has no serious desire or motivation to stop his unethical behavior. He only claims the willingness to change if first everyone else does. And then he would only cease his immoral behavior because he wouldn’t want to be viewed as a bad person.
So this concrete example indicates atheists do have a real morality problem. There is no reason to think Dawkins is the only atheist who freely chooses to adopt an immoral lifestyle. His atheism seems to lead to this conclusion: Yes, it’s immoral. It’s a shame. Maybe someday I’ll stop being immoral. If you do first, that is. In the meantime, it’s just not that important.