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Tuesday, October 25, 2011

The conundrum of the anti-Christian

Brian Philips examines the dichotomy of the Tebow hater's cheering for the failure of the Denver quarterback:
I find myself half-consciously rooting for Tebow to fail, even though I have nothing against him, have lots of religious friends, am not especially tribal by nature, and wouldn't want to be responsible for the nacho-related deaths of any prominent evangelical leaders, even if I detest their politics. Doesn't matter. The part of me that wants to eat pork and not stone people just switches on and cheers for the blitzing linebacker.

There's a problem with this, though, a problem that I'm convinced lies at the heart of the minor cultural puzzle that Tebow represents. The problem is that if you're rooting against Tebow because he's religious, you're giving way to the trial-by-combat impulse. And the whole idea of the trial by combat is that there's a higher power adjudicating the combat. It means something for the blue knight to kill the green knight only if God is moving the swords. So what I, many secular football fans, and Imaginary Daniel Dennett are really rooting for is for God to make Tim Tebow fail as a means of discrediting Himself, God, in accordance with our wishes, and against His, God's, own interests.

This — arguably — doesn't make a whole lot of sense.
It all comes down to atheist logic. Which, as FA von Hayek could have pointed out for us, is simply not logic at all.

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