Before you get preemptively annoyed, I warned readers of this blog quite some time ago that there would be a series of “Evil Religion” blog posts, and that it wouldn't be what you think it is.
Guess what, it's still not going to be what you think it is.
I am sick and tired of the ignorant Bill Maher's of the world automatically blaming religion for everything wrong in the world. Guess what, Bill, people will still be stupid, with or without religion. I'd even make a case that people are dumber without religion, unless they replace it with philosophy – and there are fewer philosophy scholars than there are theologians.
The atheists I know personally are better people than I am, but then again, they tend to think; which is more than I can say for Richard Dawkins, Sam Harris, or Bill Maher. I'll see if I can slap those three around at some point—since, let's face it, atheism is a religion too, and they want to be the high priests when they grow up.
I would include Christopher Hitchens in here, if I could take the man seriously. Most of his arguments are anecdotal, personal rants that are more about him than about theology or religion. It's less about atheism, and more about him being an obnoxious Brit ... which is redundant to me (I'm mostly Irish by background, I have to make fun of the British. I think it's in my contract somewhere.)
By the way, for the record, the only atheists I intend to drag into this mess are professional atheists, like Dawkins, Harris, or Maher. Because they make a living off of it. Because, in some parts of their philosophy, they really should know better, and because they're jerks.
Thus endeth the preface. The war starts soon.