Sunday, February 12, 2012

Hitchens' Last Essay

by Edd Doerr

Christopher Hitchens' last piece of writing appears in the March issue of The Atlantic. A long essay titled "The Reactionary", it is an incisive review of a biography of and a book of selections from the writings of G.K. Chesterton, the conservative Catholic British writer who wore his religion conspicuously on his sleeve.

At the heart of Hitch's eloquent essay is a spirited defense of "the Jefferson/Madison signpost, with its clearly made pointer to Danbury, Connecticut, that is so graspable by the minds of the simplest as well as the most superior persons" (except today's Republicans). Hitch's defense of church-state separation's clearcut notion that freedom of and from religion are the same thing is outstanding. In passing, Hitch makes a cute swat at "camp and sinister formations like Opus Dei", the secretive ultrafundamentalist Catholic organization that scares most Catholics and to which GOP presidential wannbe Rick Santorum reportedly belongs.

Read it here.

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