Christopher Hitchens citáty

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Christopher Hitchens

Datum narození: 13. duben 1949
Datum úmrtí: 15. prosinec 2011
Další jména: Christopher Eric Hitchens

Christopher Eric Hitchens byl anglicko-americký spisovatel a novinář, jehož kariéra trvala více než čtyři desetiletí. Byl sloupkařem a literárním kritikem pro The Atlantic, Vanity Fair, Slate, World Affairs, The Nation a Free Inquiry. Byl častým hostem talk show a přednáškových sálů a v roce 2005 byl zvolen za pátého nejvlivnějšího intelektuála v hlasování magazínů Prospect/Foreign Policy.

Byl známý pro svůj obdiv George Orwella, Thomase Paina a Thomase Jeffersona a pro kritiku matky Terezy, Billa Clintona, Hillary Clintonové a Henryho Kissingera. Pro svůj konfrontační styl se stal vychvalovanou i kontroverzní osobností. Jako politický pozorovatel, polemik a politický radikalista vydal v USA a Spojeném království několik levicově orientovaných publikací. Od zavedené politické levice se začal vymezovat v roce 1989 po „vlažné reakci“ evropské levice na udělení fatvy na Salmana Rushdieho Rúholláhem Chomejním. Teroristické útoky 11. září 2001 posílily jeho kritiku „fašismu s islámskou tváří“. Kvůli jeho podpoře války v Iráku ho někteří lidé začali označovat za neokonzervatistu, ale on tvrdil, že není „konzervativní v jakémkoli smyslu“.

Spolu s Richardem Dawkinsem, Samem Harrisem a Danielem Dennettem byl přední postavou nového ateismu a sám sebe popisoval jako antiteistu, který věří ve filosofické hodnoty osvícenství. Říkal, že člověk „může být ateistou a zároveň věřit, že víra v boha je správná“, ale že „antiteista je někdo, kdo si myslí, že pro takový předpoklad nejsou žádné důkazy.“ Také tvrdil, že myšlenka boha nebo nejvyšší bytosti je totalitní víra, která ničí individuální svobodu. O ateismu a povaze náboženství napsal v roce 2007 knihu Bůh není veliký.

13. dubna 2007, v den svých 58. narozenin, se stal občanem USA, ale své britské občanství si ponechal. Jeho poslední kniha Hitch-22: A Memoir byla publikována v červnu 2010. Ještě ten stejný měsíc se začal léčit z nově diagnostikované rakoviny jícnu, jejímž následkům nakonec 15. prosince 2011 podlehl.

Citáty Christopher Hitchens

„Jedním z důvodů, proč rád debatuji s věřícími, je, že nikdy nevíte, co řeknou příště.“

—  Christopher Hitchens

Zdroj: HITCHENS, Christopher. Is there an afterlife?. [Diskuze se Samem Harrisem a rabíny Davidem Wolpem a Bradleym Artsonem Shavitem]. 15. 2. 2011. Videozáznam http://www.jewishtvnetwork.com/?bcpid=533363107&bctid=802338105001 (anglicky).

„That which can be asserted without evidence, can be dismissed without evidence.“

—  Christopher Hitchens

2000s, 2003
Varianta: "What can be asserted without proof can be dismissed without proof." in
"What can be asserted without evidence can also be dismissed without evidence." appears by itself in God Is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything (2007).
Translation of the Latin phrase "Quod gratis asseritur, gratis negatur.".
Varianta: What can be asserted without proof can be dismissed without proof.
Zdroj: god is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything
Kontext: Forgotten were the elementary rules of logic, that extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence and that what can be asserted without evidence can also be dismissed without evidence.

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„The essence of the independent mind lies not in what it thinks, but in how it thinks.“

—  Christopher Hitchens, Letters to a Young Contrarian

Zdroj: 2000s, 2001, Letters to a Young Contrarian (2001)

„You either accept the principle of royal intervention or you don't. And if you don't, you always have the choice of an actual 'Commonwealth' - the beautiful and resonant name given by the English revolutionaries to the most forbidden passage of our history after the removal of the Stuarts.“

—  Christopher Hitchens

1990s, The Monarchy: A Critique of Britain's Favourite Fetish
Kontext: The evidence is that on 'Commonwealth' questions Her Majesty reserves a certain autonomy when it comes to the expression of an opinion. But you can't have it both ways. Queen Victoria used to browbeat poor Mr Gladstone most dreadfully when it came to overseas or, as they were then called, 'imperial' matters. Either this is proper or it isn't. You either accept the principle of royal intervention or you don't. And if you don't, you always have the choice of an actual 'Commonwealth' - the beautiful and resonant name given by the English revolutionaries to the most forbidden passage of our history after the removal of the Stuarts.

„I haven't met anyone, in holy orders or out of it, who isn't also a primate. And neither have you.“

—  Christopher Hitchens

"Does Religion Poison Everything?", Festival of Dangerous Ideas, October 2009.
2000s, 2009
Kontext: If this was the plan - was it made by someone who likes us? And if so, why have 99.9% of all the other species that have ever been created already died out? And part of what plan was that?; If it is a plan or a design, the planner must be either very capricious - really toying with his creation; and/or very clumsy, very tinkering and fantastically wasteful - throw away 99.9% of what you've made; or very cruel and very callous; or just perhaps very indifferent; or some combination of all the above. And so it's no good saying that He moves in mysterious ways, or that He has purposes that are opaque to us, because even that kind of evasion has to make itself predicate on the assumption that the person saying this knows more than I do about the supernatural, and I haven't yet met anyone who does have a private line to the creator, of the sort that would be required even to speculate about it. In other words, I haven't met anyone, in holy orders or out of it, who isn't also a primate. And neither have you. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IVvJf9wTQXo

„What is it like to lie to children and tell them that they have an authority, that they must love and be terrified of it at the same time. What's that like? I want to know.“

—  Christopher Hitchens

Christopher Hitchens vs. Alister McGrath, 11/10/2007 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xq-KiDdYvsY&t=15m17s
2000s, 2007
Kontext: On our integrity, our basic integrity, knowing right from wrong and being able to choose a right action over a wrong one, I think one must repudiate the claim that one doesn't have this moral discrimination innately, that, no, it must come only from the agency of a celestial dictatorship which one must love and simultaneously fear. What is it like to lie to children and tell them that they have an authority, that they must love and be terrified of it at the same time. What's that like? I want to know. And that we don't have an innate sense of right and wrong, children don't have an innate sense of fairness and decency, which of course they do. What is it like?

„I'll give you all the miracles and you'll still be left exactly where you are now, holding an empty sack.“

—  Christopher Hitchens

"Does God Exist?" debate http://hitchensdebates.blogspot.com/2010/11/hitchens-vs-turek-vcu.html vs.
2010s, 2010
Kontext: I'll grant you that it would possible to track the pregnancy of the woman Mary who's mentioned about three times in the Bible and to show there was no male intervention in her life at all but yet she delivered herself of a healthy baby boy. I can say— I don't say that's impossible. Parthenogenesis is not completely unthinkable. It does not prove that his paternity is divine and it wouldn't prove that any of his moral teachings were thereby correct. Nor, if I was to see him executed one day and see him walking the streets the next, would that show that his father was God or his mother was a virgin or that his teachings were true, especially given the commonplace nature of resurrection at that time and place. After all, Lazarus was raised, never said a word about it. The was raised, didn't say a thing about what she'd been through. And the Gospels tell us that at the time of the crucifixion all the graves in Jerusalem opened and their occupants wandered around the streets to greet people. So it seems resurrection was something of a banality at the time. Not all of those people clearly were divinely conceived. So I'll give you all the miracles and you'll still be left exactly where you are now, holding an empty sack.

„For all I know it does, it may, but that does not recommend it, to me, nor does it prove anything of its theology.“

—  Christopher Hitchens

Authors@Google, August 16, 2007, YouTube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sD0B-X9LJjs
2000s, 2007
Kontext: It is said that Louis Farrakhan’s racist crackpot Nation of Islam and its sectarian gang gets young men off drugs. For all I know it does, it may, but that does not recommend it, to me, nor does it prove anything of its theology. Whereas I can tell you that of the suicide bombing population one hundred percent is faith-based. And I don’t think that in itself disapproves faith, but I think it should make you skeptical of that kind of random sampling. Of the genital mutilation community the same can be said.

„Of the genital mutilation community the same can be said“

—  Christopher Hitchens

Authors@Google, August 16, 2007, YouTube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sD0B-X9LJjs
2000s, 2007
Kontext: It is said that Louis Farrakhan’s racist crackpot Nation of Islam and its sectarian gang gets young men off drugs. For all I know it does, it may, but that does not recommend it, to me, nor does it prove anything of its theology. Whereas I can tell you that of the suicide bombing population one hundred percent is faith-based. And I don’t think that in itself disapproves faith, but I think it should make you skeptical of that kind of random sampling. Of the genital mutilation community the same can be said.

„A moment later, the same speaker is telling another listener of all the good things that monarchy is a 'force' for. These good things invariably turn out to be connected to power. They are things like 'stability', 'unity', 'national cohesion', 'continuity' and other things for which powerless people would find it difficult to be a force. Edmund Wilson would have had little trouble noticing, furthermore, that all the above good things are keywords for conservative and establishment values.“

—  Christopher Hitchens

1990s, The Monarchy: A Critique of Britain's Favourite Fetish
Kontext: The first False Issue one normally encounters is the claim that it has 'no real power'. One never quite knows what 'real' is intended to mean here, but the conventions of the False Issue lead one to guess that the word is doing duty for 'formal'. Thus is the red herring introduced. A moment later, the same speaker is telling another listener of all the good things that monarchy is a 'force' for. These good things invariably turn out to be connected to power. They are things like 'stability', 'unity', 'national cohesion', 'continuity' and other things for which powerless people would find it difficult to be a force. Edmund Wilson would have had little trouble noticing, furthermore, that all the above good things are keywords for conservative and establishment values.

„Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit. Etiam egestas wisi a erat. Morbi imperdiet, mauris ac auctor dictum.“

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