It was, I suppose, only a matter of time. In their effort to step out of the shadow of the religious community, and truly come into its own as a movement, this was the logical next step.
After all, they have their own “church” services already… complete with their own “church” splits. But that’s old news. They also have their own “send-me-your-money” huckster celebrities, which the truly devoted inexplicably fawn over.
(If you didn’t already hear, this is a reference to Richard Dawkins. He’s shamelessly selling access to himself, not unlike certain TV hucksters one could mention.)
The Richard Dawkins website offers followers the chance to join the ‘Reason Circle’, which, like Dante’s Hell, is arranged in concentric circles. For $85 a month, you get discounts on his merchandise, and the chance to meet ‘Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science personalities’. Obviously that’s not enough to meet the man himself. For that you pay $210 a month — or $5,000 a year — for the chance to attend an event where he will speak. … for $100,000 a year or more he gets to have a private breakfast or lunch with Richard Dawkins,
No, time has come to go one step further, and launch their own television network: All atheism. All the time.
The result was something so banal that even the more rabid anti-theists among the Leftosphere find it beneath them. Salon.com, a website that generally loves whacking away at traditional, religious and conservative pinatas, took the time to review AtheistTV… and it wasn’t pretty.
The use of the word “horrifying” in the title might indicate just how bad it was. What was the problem? The reviewer (Daniel D’Addario), who self-identifies as irreligious, says:
AtheistTV adheres to nasty stereotypes about atheism — smugness, gleeful disregard for others’ beliefs — to a degree that’s close to unwatchable.
D’Addario criticizes the cheap rhetorical stunts by hosts, some “homophobia and misogyny in a frankly mean-spirited song about” [a specific sexual act involving Jesus], some Zombie Jew references. He goes on to sum up the overall tone of the network this way:
AtheistTV frames atheism as a perpetual reaction against a conquering force. And that reaction isn’t reasoned debate. It’s unattractive nihilism.
The reviewer suggests this might have been something better, something more. Those responsible for the content failed to learn lessons available both from actual religious programming strategies, or even from successful programming by noted atheists, specifically Tyson’s “Cosmos”.
If this review is any indication, anyone still interested might want to check it out sooner rather than later. It could go the way of the Air America Radio Network… and maybe for similar reasons.