If Dawkins, Dennett, Harris and Hitchens are the four horsemen, then Coyne is more like My Little Pony. An intellectual featherweight amongst intellectual, well, lightweights.
But, as I wrote to a friend recently, Darwin’s believers have more commonly styled themselves as dogs, not horses.
I offer no judgement in the matter.
National Center for Science Education’s retiring executive director Eugenie Scott, for example, calls herself “Darwin’s golden retriever,”, riffing off the fact (one presumes) that Darwin’s earliest popularizer, Thomas Henry Huxley (1825-1895) was called “Darwin’s bulldog.” Golden retriever she may be, but Darwin’s rottweiler (Richard Dawkins) follows hard behind. If the rottweiler privately despises the retriever’s behavior, well, … he would , of course.
The message we get from Darwin’s Christian supporters is “pet the retriever.”
It should be “Caution: Rottweiler at large.”
That said, If Jerry Coyne were a dog, what kind would he be? He spends an awful lot of time attacking traditional religion, which is odd in a country that doesn’t demand that he attend a church or synagogue or mosque whatever.
From News writer Denyse O’Leary: I can totally understand that in a country where religion is enforced, people might take to attacking it. I would myself.
Note: If news writer Denyse O’Leary were a dog, she would be proud to be a member of a Mounted Police canine rescue team.