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Great Radio Interview on Richard Dawkins by Brian Lehrer Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Posted by Henry in Brian Lehrer, evolution, faith, God, radio interview, radio talk show, rationality, religion, Richard Dawkins.

Here is the audio of an intelligent and civilised radio interview of Richard Dawkins conducted by Brian Lehrer of WNYC. In this 25 minutes or so interview Dawkins outlines why he is almost certain that God does not exist, why the indoctrination of religion to children is considered almost child-abuse, why he is spiritual in the sense of arts and poetry, and much more.

I have spent quite a bit of time in writing down the entire transcripts as accurately as I could. There are certain words that I could not understand, which I have marked with “[???]”. Hopefully some of you can help me with them, and point to any other mistakes I might have made.

I thought this interview is much more in depth than the highly anticipated television interview with Bill O’Reilly, where a transcript can be found here. This is the first time I come across Brian Lehrer, and he seems rather thoughtful.

Download the video, read the transcript, and enjoy the interview.

Richard Dawkins

Full Transcript of Brian Lehrer Interviewing Richard Dawkins Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Posted by Henry in Brian Lehrer, evolution, faith, God, radio interview, radio talk show, rationality, religion, Richard Dawkins, science, transcript, WNYC.

Lehrer: Brian Lehrer, WNYC. We have something new on our webpage, by the way, it’s our online video-picks. Every week we will choose five videos from the web, which I anchor in our Picks Video. This week they include a clip of Karl Rove when he was an unknown colleague student, working for the Nixon campaign. And for others, check out our online Video Picks at WNYC.org, click on Brian Lehrer Show.

Lehrer: My guest now has been described as Darwin’s Rottweiler – a scientist and an atheist, he’s come to the conclusion that religious belief is not only irrational, but harmful – a case he makes in his latest book The God Delusion, which was published in 2006 by Houghton Mifflin. He is a renowned zoologist, evolutionary biologist, and best selling author and he teaches at Oxford University where he is the professor of The Public Understanding of Science. Richard Dawkins, welcome back to WNYC.

Dawkins: Thank you.

Lehrer: He is in New York today, by the way, to accept the Lewis Thomas Price at Rockefeller University. Maybe some of you, er, as I did, read Lewis Thomas’ essays on science which certainly contributed to the public understanding, so congratulations on that price, Dr. Dawkins.

Lehrer: I see you are not wearing your Atheists for Jesus t-shirt (Dawkins laughs) today. You have such a shirt?

Dawkins: I do have such a shirt. I wrote an article in the magazine Free Inquiry called Atheists for Jesus, and then somebody presented me with a t-shirt which I occasionally enjoy wearing.

Lehrer: What’s the basic Atheists for Jesus argument?

Dawkins: Jesus was a very good man; if Jesus had been alive today, and if he had known what we know, he would be an atheist.

Lehrer: And do you think religion, in itself, is fundamentally harmful?

Dawkins: Well I don’t want to stress that too much. I mean in your introduction you rather implied that that was the main point of The God Delusion. The main point of The God Delusion is that God doesn’t exist – it’s a matter of scientific truth. However after having established that in the first half of the book, the second half of the book does then go on and point out some of the bad things that do flow, from widespread faith.