Friday, December 16, 2011

Christopher Hitchens Dies

Christopher Hitchens died today. He was 62 years old, the same age as I am. He died of esophageal cancer, the disease his father died of.

Hitchens was a brilliant writer, and a vocal atheist in his attacks on theism. I credit him for engaging theists and debating them, on their own turf, even when at times (as with William Lane Craig) he was a fish out of the deep waters of academic philosophy.

I feel a sadness and loss on hearing of his death this morning.

Here are some tributes from Mail Online.

Graydon Carter, editor of Vanity Fair: 'He was a gift from, dare I say it, God.'

Salman Rushdie: 'Goodbye my beloved friend. A great voice falls silent. A great heart stops.'

Science writer Richard Dawkins said: 'Christopher Hitchens, finest orator of our time, fellow horseman, valiant fighter against all tyrants including God.'

American pastor Rick Warren, who delivered the invocation at President Barack Obama's inauguration: 'My friend Christopher Hitchens has died. I loved and prayed for him constantly and grieve his loss. He knows the Truth now.'

Michael Shermer, the founding publisher of Skeptic magazine: 'We shall miss you, your voice, your pen, and most of all your mind Christopher. 'The world is better because of you.'

Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg said: 'I worked as an intern for him years ago. My job was to fact check his articles. Since he had a photographic memory and an encyclopaedic mind it was the easiest job I've ever done. 'He will be massively missed by everyone who values strong opinions and great writing.'

See Vanity Fair's "In Memoriam."

Also see Christianity Today's tribute to Hitchens here.