The Loser Letters

“This book is a gem. Through letters of advice from A.F. Christian, an enthusiastic convert to the cause of the new atheists, Mary Eberstadt deftly exposes the flaws in their views. Using the lingo of pop culture to hilarious effect, she offers a scathing satire of their question-begging arguments and shows with great wit that they are not just wrongheaded but downright laughable. Yet this spirited defense of Christian faith is also a poignant commentary on what it means to be human.”

– Fr. Peter Ryan, SJ, Professor of Moral Theology, Mt. St. Mary’s Seminary

From the foreword:

An open letter to those spokesmen for the new Atheism who have labored mightily these last few years to sweep aside religion’s paralytic webs of superstition and prejudice, and to liberate the rest of our Species via Science and Enlightenment:

Dear Sirs,

Speaking just for this Atheist convert, congratulations, guys — You really did it! Thanks to all Your hard work, the rest of us know once and for all that the so-called “God”, that Loser, is everything You say he is: the biggest fraud of all time, cosmic zero, ultimate no-show — and after all those centuries and promises too. It’s like throwing the biggest rave ever, only to cancel at the last minute after everyone’d already bought tickets and drugs for it. What kind of deity does that, anyway? If this were Facebook, no one would be friending him now.

But You have to admit: that same Loser sure has been great for the book business — including and especially all those books on the new Atheism, I’m happy to say. Almost a million volumes sold in twelve months’ time; covers in every major newspaper and magazine; publicity on all the best talk shows and Web sites and campuses; national and international book awards up the wazoo — talk about knowing how to make “something” ($$$) out of “nothing” (Loser)!

It really is marvelous — sorry; I almost said “miraculous” there (I’m new to the Atheist party and hope You’ll pardon any slips) — how Your ideas have taken so much of the Western media by storm. You’d almost think Atheism had friends in some pretty high places! Whatever, You probably think we Atheists have earned the right to sit back and chill. I mean, it’s pretty clear we’ve won by now — isn’t it?

Except, well, maybe not — and that’s why I’m writing You this letter. Because there’s one thing that’s still missing from Atheism’s final victory, and it’s something that just can’t be sugarcoated. Ahem: apart from me, where is the testimony of anyone Your writings have actually convinced? After all, as one of You said somewhere and all of us want to believe, “If this book works as I intend, religious readers will be Atheists when they put it down.” So where are the rest of them, I’m starting to wonder — these other converts (like me!) to the new godlessness?…”

Here’s another snippet…

“Please understand that I’m not criticizing here! Cheering for pornography and omnivorous sex and, by extension, broken homes and abused and screwed-up kids and all the rest of the Sexual Revolution’s fallout may not be everyone’s thing; but most of You new Atheist guys have definitely made it Yours. I respect all that! I’m just saying for now that we shouldn’t fool ourselves into thinking that the believers’ sexual codes are an unmitigated bad on them and a plus for us, when most evidence suggests it’s quite the other way around.”

The Loser Letters website here.

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