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August 25, 2012

Is tolerance for each others' beliefs too much to ask?


The Daily Star —

I generally keep my views on God and human existence to myself. But when asked, I can tactfully exchange ideas with the faithful — a touch apparently lost on comedian and fellow atheist Bill Maher.

In his 2008 film “Religulous,” Maher reciprocated the hospitality of seven truckers who welcomed him into their North Carolina rest stop chapel by heaping scorn and mockery on their beliefs. Their brief, terse chat enlightened neither side and accomplished nothing, aside from producing footage of Maher’s barbed one-liners eliciting stern glares.

What Maher doesn’t realize is that believers and non-believers aren’t as far apart as one might think. We’re all just trying to make sense of an existence that is often, as Thomas Hobbes said: “solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short.”


is a copy editor at The Daily Star. Email him at



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