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Hitchens-Haters Get Their Day Online

Critics assail his atheism, pro-war stance, 'random bile'
By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 17, 2011 2:13 PM CST
Critics of Christopher Hitchens Assail His 'Hagiography'
Writer Christopher Hitchens participates in a panel discussion at the 9th Annual LA Times Festival of Books on April 25, 2004 at UCLA in Westwood, California.   (Getty Images)

(Newser) – Sure Christopher Hitchens was erudite, bold, and endowed with a stunning memory. But now that he's been dead for two days, the complaints are rolling in ... and they're none-too-pretty:

  • "His writing contained provocation aplenty, but far too much of it ... a few hundred words of dashed off substance wrapped around many more hundred words of tired reminiscences, random bile, and frustratingly circuitous filler," writes Kevin Drum in Mother Jones. "The hagiography is getting a little too thick to bear."

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  • "Everyone has a blind spot ... and for Hitchens it was religion," writes religious scholar Stephen Prothero on CNN. "He let his emotions get the best of him. ... [and] he helped to lead a whole generation of New Atheists down a rabbit hole of their own imagining."
  • Hitchens' support for the Iraq "is still viewed as a mere run-of-the-mill 'mistake'—hey, we all make them, so we shouldn’t hold it against Hitch—rather than what it is: the generation’s worst political crime, one for which he remained fully unrepentant and even proud," writes Glenn Greenwald on Salon.
  • Rev. Douglas Wilson, who had debated Hitchens, summed up his demise: There was “no indication that Christopher ever called on the Lord before he died, and if he did not, then Scriptures plainly teach that he is lost forever.” The New American runs down other reactions to Hitchens' death by Christian leaders.
Love him or hate him, Hitchens has a posthumous book coming out. (Read more Christopher Hitchens stories.)

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