Tuesday, May 8, 2007

Hitchens vs. Sharpton

Promoting his latest book, subtitled "How Religion Poisons Everything," Christopher Hitchens debated Al Sharpton last night on the question, Is God great? Based on a (fascinating) review in the NYT's NY blog, I'd say Sharpton triumphed on substance, even as Hitch overpowered him with a peerless rhetorical arsenal.

But I'd be remiss not to note that Sharpton had his moments flashing the wit that originally brought him to fame. For instance, "At the end, what is refreshing is that you are a man of faith," Sharpton told the warmongering atheist, "because any man that at this point has faith that there were weapons of mass destruction in Iraq has more faith than any religious person I know."

I was disappointed, though, that Hitch shirked both Sharpton's repeated request to debate the existence of God as well as the moderator's question, "What is your problem with faith divorced from religious text or literalism?"