(LifeSiteNews) — Richard Dawkins still is, in many ways, the God-hating atheist that he always was. He thinks religion is largely stupid; he believes in eugenics; he once told a woman who asked him what to do if she discovered her unborn child had Down syndrome to “abort it and try again.” All of which is to say that Dawkins is an enemy of the pro-life and pro-family movement and would be offended to be described otherwise.
But Dawkins is also a highly intelligent and literate man, and one gets the sense that he has been watching the censorious destruction of both the liberal and the Enlightenment projects by the fanatical progressives to his Left with growing nervousness. Despite once musing that children needed to be protected from their religious parents, he has since warned that what replaces Christianity might be worse.
In fact, he told The Times some years ago that ending religion — once his fervent goal — would be a terrible idea, because it would “give people a license to do really bad things.” Despite the fact that Dawkins has long argued that the very idea of the God of the Bible being necessary as a basis for morality is both ridiculous and offensive, he appears to be backtracking. “People may feel free to do bad things because they feel God is no longer watching them,” he said, citing the example of security cameras as a deterrent to shoplifting.
Dawkins is also coming to the realization that the dogmatists on his side of the fence are much fiercer heretic-hunters than the Christians he used to mock. Last April, for example, he sent out a thoughtful tweet on identity and reality: “In 2015, Rachel Dolezal, a white chapter president of NAACP, was vilified for identifying as Black. Some men choose to identify as women, and some women choose to identify as men. You will be vilified if you deny that they literally are what they identify as. Discuss.”
Dawkins may not have realized that trans activists are not interested in discussion, and despite his follow-up insistence that he hadn’t intended to “disparage trans people,” he was mobbed online and the American Humanist Association stripped him of their highest honor, the Humanist of the Year award, which it had given him in 1996.
But this week, Richard Dawkins has joined liberals such as J.K. Rowling and Germaine Greer in publicly stating his opposition to gender ideology, announcing November 29 that he had signed the Declaration on Women’s Sex-Based Rights. The declaration, with has 26,304 signatories from 153 countries, is summarized as follows:
On the re-affirmation of women’s sex-based rights, including women’s rights to physical and reproductive integrity, and the elimination of all forms of discrimination against women and girls that result from the replacement of the category of sex with that of ‘gender identity’, and from ‘surrogate’ motherhood and related practices.
The Declaration is a feminist salvo aimed directly at the transgender movement, stating in part that:
The confusion between sex and ‘gender’ has contributed to the increasing acceptability of the idea of innate ‘gender identities’, and has led to the promotion of a right to the protection of such ‘identities’, ultimately leading to the erosion of the gains made by women over decades. Women’s rights, which have been achieved on the basis of sex, are now being undermined by the incorporation into international documents of concepts such as ’gender identity’ and ‘Sexual Orientations and Gender Identities (SOGIES)’.
It is important to note that this Declaration is not socially conservative in any way, and goes out of its way to affirm gay rights. This is an attack on the progressive Left from the Left, but that is precisely what makes it so interesting.
Despite that, it is a good thing that Richard Dawkins has signed this declaration. Every move that weakens the power of the trans movement and the agents of radical wokeness is much-needed, and when those who have cheered the many changes of the past half-century finally wake up and realize that there really is such a thing as too far, perhaps the hairline cracks in the LGBT narrative are finally beginning to grow.