Not new and improved, just new. For this week's online essay, go read Mohler's The New Atheism?, posted a couple of months ago when everyone was talking about the new books by Dawkins, Dennett, and Harris. He is responding to a Wired article entitled The New Atheism: The Church of the Non-Believers, in which each of the Big Three are interviewed.
Here's a quote from the Wired article:
Dawkins looks forward to the day when the first US politician is honest about being an atheist. "Highly intelligent people are mostly atheists," he says. "Not a single member of either house of Congress admits to being an atheist. It just doesn't add up. Either they're stupid, or they're lying. And have they got a motive for lying? Of course they've got a motive! Everybody knows that an atheist can't get elected."
Well, Jefferson and Taft both got elected president, and they were both accused of being atheists. So is it really harder today than in the 19th or 20th century for an atheist to get elected? Maybe atheists are just too grumpy to attract enough votes. Maybe atheists just don't find any moral basis for making the sacrifices inherent in public service. It seems odd to blame the electorate. And it seems odd to liken atheists to a persecuted minority in a secular 21st-century culture that is friendlier to godlessness than any prior era.
Here's a quote from the Mohler article, commenting on Harris:
Harris' self-proclaimed religion of reason bears uncanny resemblances to the features of New Age thought--something that offends many of his fellow New Atheists. Still, Harris' books have sold by the thousands and he has transformed himself into a poster child for militant atheism. Like Dawkins, Harris sees time on his side. "At some point, there's going to be enough pressure that it is just going to be too embarrassing to believe in God."
I'm sure anyone who has read anything by one of these three authors will find both articles quite interesting.