So, why is Professor Gleiser so enthusiastic about Dexter? The main story line of a recent episode revolves around a religious cult whose members are supposed to commit murder in an effort to fulfill the Book of Revelations and hasten the Second Coming. By opposing them, Dexter is not just pursuing his own vision of rough justice in the usual way. He is striking a blow for the Forces of Light—read, Reason and Science—against the Forces of Darkness—you guessed it, Christianity.
Thing is, Dexter’s a poisonous type of fantasy. Real police socios don’t conveniently happen to victimize only Bad or Dangerous People. They victimize people. Full stop. From Barham:
This is all very peculiar, to say the least. One might have supposed that a public intellectual would think twice before enlisting a demented butcher for his cause, whatever that cause might be. When the cause in question happens to be science-backed atheism—which already has a little problem with explaining how we are supposed to distinguish right from wrong in a pointless and meaningless universe—that public intellectual has some explaining to do.
Now, to be fair, Professor Gleiser does allow as maybe what Dexter does is not entirely praiseworthy, though he does not explain on what scientific grounds he holds such an old-fashioned opinion:
Well, Steve Pinker says Darwinian evolution explains how the world is becoming a less violent place, and maybe Dexter murdering Christians for the police is somehow a part of that? It’s a logical enough development, is all we can say here.