“The People I Call Rationalists . . . Let’s Have Our Voices Heard and Be in the Debate”: Bill Maher on Out-of-the-Closet Agnosticism, and His New Film, “Religulous”

Bill Maher talked to Salon.com today about his new film, Religulous.

Money quote:

I don’t use the word “atheist” about myself, because I think it mirrors the certitude I’m so opposed to in religion. What I say in the film is that I don’t know. I don’t know what happens when you die, and all the religious people who claim they do know are being ridiculous. I know that they don’t know any more than I do. They do not have special powers that I don’t possess. When they speak about the afterlife with such certainty and so many specifics, it just makes me laugh.

People can tell you, “Oh yes, when you get to Paradise there are 72 virgins, not 70, not 75.” Or they say, “Jesus will be there sitting at the right hand of the Father, wearing a white robe with red piping. There will be three angels playing trumpets.” Well, how do you know this? It’s just so preposterous. So, yes, I would like to say to the atheists and agnostics, the people who I call rationalists, let’s stop ceding the moral high ground to the people who believe in the talking snake. Let’s have our voices heard and be in the debate. Let’s stand up and say we’re not ready to let the country be given over to the Sarah Palins of the world.

About Santi Tafarella

I teach writing and literature at Antelope Valley College in California.
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One Response to “The People I Call Rationalists . . . Let’s Have Our Voices Heard and Be in the Debate”: Bill Maher on Out-of-the-Closet Agnosticism, and His New Film, “Religulous”

  1. Anonymous says:

    Thank god! *snickers* I’ve been looking for the Maher quote from the movie where me mentions people’s lack of special powers to know about the afterlife. Thanks!!!

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