I feel you’ve defrauded me, sir. You see, I used to think your outrage at religion and creationism was genuine, that the ideas you expressed were due to sincerely held positions, and I bought books in good faith. Now I know this was just a scheme. Your passionate arguments and righteous anger weren’t at all real. That was fake outrage. You only ever wrote the things you did for money. I feel you have defrauded me, and I demand a refund in full.
I’m sure you understand, as you yourself would never wish to enrich those employing fake outrage. Let us be consistent, then. Your $135 million net worth can surely absorb the blow.
Here are the books I require you to reimburse me for:
This is a book filled with outrage – which I now understand was faked, as no one writes from a position of impassioned and angry honesty, but only feigns these emotions for attention. This might explain the outrageous comparison of teaching a child about hell to abusing a child. I understood at the time that you believed some children were so traumatized by the fear they would end up in hell forever, it affected their psyche worse than physical abuse would have done. However, it appears now that you were just being an outrageous asshole and infuriating child abuse survivors for attention. Anything to sell another book, eh, Richard?
List price: $15.95
This whole book is one huge sneer at creationists, but Chapter 6, in which you print creationist comments made to you, only to denigrate those poor misinformed people cruelly and make fun of their “crocoduck” and monkey arguments, is especially vicious. You had us all rolling with your readings from it when you toured. I know now your rapier wit with its bright edge of anger was not being employed in service of evolution and against creationists, but merely to pick our pockets. And since I bought this book brand-new at a Barnes and Noble, hardcover, with no discount, in order to have it there in case you deigned do a signing that night (either you did not, or I was unable to get your signature), I am asking for the full hardcover price.
List price: $30.00
This one is mostly about evolution, and I don’t remember you being particularly outraged in it, but right at the very beginning, you say, “This is a work of unabashed advocacy.” As you are advocating for evolution, and I can only think you are advocating against creationists whenever you do so, this book counts as part of your fake outrage oeuvre.
Besides, it’s in 10 point font, which is an outrage all its own.
List price: $19.99
This book is basically nothing more than a gigantic “fuck you” to creationists, who think that evolution cannot possibly lead to such variation in forms as we see today. You shit all over religious metaphor in order to show creationists that Eden’s apple (which was, according to someone you heard lecture once, was actually a fig, and isn’t it silly anyone believes it matters because fake story is fake, duh) wasn’t designed, but evolved in a long series of tiny steps. I’m sure you wrote it just to upset creationists rather than any regard for the truth.
List price: $16.95
You were really going all-out with this one, weren’t you, Richard? First you insult Paley’s work by filching his title and adding a sneering (ableist) word to it, then right in your new introduction, you call creationists “backwoodsmen.” Insult = outrage, and so this is a work of fake outrage rather than reasoned, dispassionate sifting of evidence for evolution. You spend the whole book bringing up creationist arguments only to stomp on them. According to you, criticism is fake outrage, and one only engages in it for the money, so you obviously didn’t believe a single word in this thick tome. All fraud. For shame, sir.
List price: $19.95
Why, the whole of the new introduction is nothing but you criticizing your critics, and as we all know, criticism is fake outrage. Plus, you spend time calling God a “meme” and saying, “It provides a superficially plausible answer to deep and troubling questions about existence,” which seems to be unnecessarily provocative language – unless you were trying to drum up some outrage in order to nudge sales up a bit.
I tell you, it is unconscionable.
List price: $19.95
At long last, have you no decency, sir? Fake outrage is one thing, but deliberately poking sharp sticks at the sincerely religious folk by titling your book after their treasured myth, and including as your title quote a verse from their most holy book, and then proceeding for nearly two hundred pages to bash their simple worldview? That is not only fake outrage (as we know you were only doing these things to sell more books), but bloody cheek. I should charge you double.
But I am an honorable person.
List price: $15.95
Your fake outrage is right there in the index, which is supposed to be the most dispassionate part of a book! Under “creationists,” you have the following:
“on alleged unevolvability of bacterial flagellar motor”
“going on about ‘gaps'”
“hopes dashed on improbability of large molecules”
“love of Cambrian Explosion”
So not only is the entire book a fine fuck-you to those who argue for a literal interpretation of Genesis, but you get snide in even the driest bits, and so I can only conclude you meant to drum up a lot of fake outrage to drive sales. Otherwise, you would have been relentlessly Vulcan in your language, I am sure.
List price: $16.95
Right. So that is a total of $155.69 US dollars you owe me for playing upon my good faith and my trusting emotions, sir. Now, I am nothing if not fair. I admit I seem to have had a small bump in traffic after blogging about yourself, your bosom pal Michael Shermer, and your buddy James Randi. I admit to using heated language against people who had done reprehensible things, which, by your estimation and that of your friends over there on your side of the Deep Rifts™, means I am an “outrage junkie” blogging for all that sweet, sweet victim money, of which there is lots. Give me a moment to tot up the total and deduct it from your bill.
Oh, for… fine. Fine. Stupid !#[email protected] solar-powered crap in a place notorious for lack of sunshine.
Okay. After doing some strenuous math and diligently checking the figures, your new total is $153.83. You’ll find my donate button in the sidebar. I encourage you to make use of it, as that will save you the trouble of scrounging up your checkbook.
I shall be donating my copies of your tomes of faux outrage to our local no-kill animal shelter, which can always use things for the puppies to chew on.