Craig Stephen Hicks turned himself in after shooting three young Muslims near the campus of the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill. Hicks is a rabid atheist who is known for his hatred of Christianity and Islam. Indeed, he saw the two religions as similar. He recently asked on his Facebook page “why radical Christians and radical Muslims are so opposed to each others’ influence when they agree about so many ideological issues.”
Hicks is a big fan of British atheist Richard Dawkins. Dawkins condemned the killings but he said nothing about Hicks’ atheism or his influence on him. Dawkins needs to open up about this issue. Hicks supports Atheists for Equality and other gay activist associations. Similarly, we need to know more about this linkage.
Facebook Likes listed by Hicks include the Southern Poverty Law Center and Freedom from Religion Foundation.
The Southern Poverty Law Center specializes in naming individuals and groups that allegedly promote hate speech. It listed Dr. Ben Carson, a respectable conservative activist, and currently lists the Family Research Council, a respectable conservative organization, as haters. It would be instructive to know why it thinks that Hicks, a true hater, was drawn to its work.
Freedom from Religion Foundation has a moral obligation to speak up. After all, it spends most of its time demonizing religion. What might Hicks have learned from them?
We also need to know why the Associated Press and the New York Times, unlike all other media outlets, refused to mention the killer’s atheism. Had Hicks been a Catholic activist, they would have highlighted the connection.