Among the Four Horsemen, “The Hitch” is certainly the most rhetorically gifted. Plus, he’s a full-blooded journalist focused on history and politics, and he damn sure made his homework on the relationship between religion and the state.
Christopher Hitchens’s book was the last from the “great four” I happened to read, and it didn’t disappoint. In fact, although I have watched numerous presentations, discussions, and one-on-one disputes with Christopher Hitchens on YouTube or Google Video, God is Not Great was still fresh and enlightening. He has a vast repertoire of arguments, and he enjoys arranging and amending them in ever new and entertaining ways. While he also enjoys the quick and dirty fight in television debates against preachers and political commentators on Fox News and elsewhere, he is an excellent, and excellently prepared, sharpshooter in his written texts and presentations.
Hitchens often comes across as condescending, even arrogant. But it is quite obvious that he does so quite consciously, not least to set himself apart from the faithfuls’ “becoming modesty” or “boastful humility,” as he likes to put it, which often serves as an inroad for his relentless attacks:
[The] supercilious expression on the faces of those who practice religion ostentatiously: pray excuse my modesty and humility but I happen to be busy on an errand for god. (74)
Moreover, Hitchens is always the first to openly, and repeatedly, admit factual or logical errors he made—which also stands in stark contrast to the targets of his elaborate attacks.
If you have something valuable to add or some interesting point to discuss, I’ll be looking forward to meeting you on Mastodon!