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Thread: Christopher Hitchens Passes Away at Age 62

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    Unhappy Christopher Hitchens Passes Away at Age 62

    @VanityFair:
    Christopher Hitchens, 1949 — 2011
    http://www.vanityfair.com/online/dai...chens-19492011

    Christopher Hitchens—the incomparable critic, masterful rhetorician, fiery wit, and fearless bon vivant—died today at the age of 62. Hitchens was diagnosed with esophageal cancer in the spring of 2010, just after the publication of his memoir, Hitch-22, and began chemotherapy soon after. His matchless prose has appeared in Vanity Fair since 1992, when he was named contributing editor.

    “Cancer victimhood contains a permanent temptation to be self-centered and even solipsistic,” Hitchens wrote nearly a year ago in Vanity Fair, but his own final labors were anything but: in the last 12 months, he produced for this magazine a piece on U.S.-Pakistani relations in the wake of Osama bin Laden’s death, a portrait of Joan Didion, an essay on the Private Eye retrospective at the Victoria and Albert Museum, a prediction about the future of democracy in Egypt, a meditation on the legacy of progressivism in Wisconsin, and a series of frank, graceful, and exquisitely written essays in which he chronicled the physical and spiritual effects of his disease. At the end, Hitchens was more engaged, relentless, hilarious, observant, and intelligent than just about everyone else—just as he had been for the last four decades.

    “My chief consolation in this year of living dyingly has been the presence of friends,” he wrote in the June 2011 issue. He died in their presence, too, at the MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Texas. May his 62 years of living, well, so livingly console the many of us who will miss him dearly.
    --

    It was only a matter of time as Christopher has been very up front about just how terminal his cancer was, but I still can't help but feel like one of the brightest minds on this earth just went out.

    I realize he made little to no effort to be friendly about his beliefs (or lack there of), but one thing you can't deny this man was the sheer brilliance in his words and thoughts regardless of whether you agreed with them or not.

    For those of you who have no idea who this man was, I strongly suggest researching his work, especially if you have even a moderate interest in the seemingly eternal debate over the existence of god(s).

    Goodnight to the greatest literary critic of our generation and one of the most ferocious intellects I've ever come across. You'll be dearly missed.
    Last edited by Phil in Absentia; 12-16-2011 at 12:15 AM.
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    "Don't take refuge in the false security of consensus, and the feeling that whatever
    you think you'e bound to be okay, because you're in the safely moral majority."

    - Christopher Hitchens

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    For any of his readers who haven't yet, here's the last piece Chris wrote before passing:

    http://www.vanityfair.com/culture/20...itchens-201201
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    "Don't take refuge in the false security of consensus, and the feeling that whatever
    you think you'e bound to be okay, because you're in the safely moral majority."

    - Christopher Hitchens

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    Last edited by CreaseCrusader91; 12-16-2011 at 12:34 AM.
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    One of my favorite interviews Hitch ever did:



    "If you gave [Jerry] Falwell an enema, you could bury him in a matchbox."
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    "Don't take refuge in the false security of consensus, and the feeling that whatever
    you think you'e bound to be okay, because you're in the safely moral majority."

    - Christopher Hitchens

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rome 2.0 View Post
    One of my favorite interviews Hitch ever did:

    He hitchslapped the hell out of Hannity.
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    lol just watched that interview, thats a man whose firm in his beliefs. Falwell was exactly like he said he was though.
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    Probably the only time someone I heard who has passed for which I did not say or wish RIP.
    lol
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    Quote Originally Posted by Klions99 View Post
    Probably the only time someone I heard who has passed for which I did not say or wish RIP.
    lol
    Because you're glad one of the most brilliant minds of the last century passed away simply because you disagreed with what he said?
    Last edited by Phil in Absentia; 12-16-2011 at 05:31 PM.
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    "Don't take refuge in the false security of consensus, and the feeling that whatever
    you think you'e bound to be okay, because you're in the safely moral majority."

    - Christopher Hitchens

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    Seems petty to me.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rome 2.0 View Post
    Because you're glad one of the most brilliant minds of the last century passed away simply because you disagreed with what he said?
    I don't agree with Klions but you just made the exact same argument that the FOX News people were making against Hitchens, lol.
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    I believe in God and while I don't agree at all with what Hitchens said or how he went about spreading his message, God does not want us to wish ill on anyone, regardless of their beliefs. So regardless of our faith, we should all wish him to RIP.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rome 2.0 View Post
    Because you're glad one of the most brilliant minds of the last century passed away simply because you disagreed with what he said?
    I dont find him brilliant nor do I find him tasteful, pleasant or humanistic.

    But also Phil, you out of anyone if you are the avid follower of him, will know he himself did not believe in any after life. He believed he died in a box and that was the end. So I dont think I am doing him a disfavor by not wishing him well in the afterlife if he has his way. In fact he probably would be insulted you wished him peace now.
    Last edited by Klions99; 12-16-2011 at 06:41 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Renegade View Post
    I don't agree with Klions but you just made the exact same argument that the FOX News people were making against Hitchens, lol.
    Huh? Jerry Falwell was not a brilliant mind. I have no issue with not wishing "evil" men eternal peace of respecting their honor after their passing. Falwell was a fraud and a bigot. He made a living as a parasite, leeching off weak-minded religious folk who were easily duped.

    Quote Originally Posted by Klions99 View Post
    I dont find him brilliant nor do I find him tasteful, pleasant or humanistic.

    But also Phil, you out of anyone if you are the avid follower of him, will know he himself did not believe in any after life. He believed he died in a box and that was the end. So I dont think I am doing him a disfavor by not wishing him well in the afterlife if he has his way. In fact he probably would be insulted you wished him peace now.
    I'd love to know what you define brilliance as if you don't think a published author with four decades worth of material who was educated at Cambridge/Oxford isn't brilliant. His peers and even his critics sure seem to disagree with you.

    His being "tasteful, pleasant or humanistic" has no bearing on his intelligence.

    No one is asking you to "wish him well", because obviously as a hardened and unapologetic atheist he was rather vehement about there not being an afterlife, but "Rest in peace" (though it has obvious Catholic/religious historical reference) for the majority of people is simply an idiomatic expression to honor someone who's passed. The only people who tend not to receive it are "evil" men — typically murderers, rapists, etc.
    Last edited by Phil in Absentia; 12-16-2011 at 07:22 PM.
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    "Don't take refuge in the false security of consensus, and the feeling that whatever
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    - Christopher Hitchens

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rome 2.0 View Post
    Huh? Jerry Falwell was not a brilliant mind. I have no issue with not wishing "evil" men eternal peace of respecting their honor after their passing. Falwell was a fraud and a bigot. He made a living as a parasite, leeching off weak-minded religious folk who were easily duped.
    I feel like the word "brilliance" is entirely subjective though. To you Hitchens is brilliant, and to others, he is just an asshole. It goes the same way for Falwell.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Renegade View Post
    I feel like the word "brilliance" is entirely subjective though. To you Hitchens is brilliant, and to others, he is just an asshole. It goes the same way for Falwell.
    So use the word educated or intelligence because they are all practically the same. Just because he acted like an "asshole" doesn't mean he wasn't a well educated intelligent thinker. I mean as a thinker, I can't agree with Nietzche but he made a good argument.

    I do agree it is all perception but nonetheless it's not worth fighting over.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Renegade View Post
    I feel like the word "brilliance" is entirely subjective though. To you Hitchens is brilliant, and to others, he is just an asshole. It goes the same way for Falwell.
    How many books has Falwell written? How many copies have they sold? How many times has he been published in Vanity Fair, Slate, The Atlantic, etc?

    It's not the subject matter that matters here, it's how well the man conveys his opinion and argument on it.

    In a battle of intellectual superiority, Falwell couldn't even pony up the cash to sit at the table with Christopher Hitchens.

    Honestly, have you ever actually read Hitchens' work at all? Even the stuff he wrote not that wasn't based on the god debate? He wrote at length about Thomas Jefferson and Thomas Paine as well as a myriad of current events like the Iraq war.
    Last edited by Phil in Absentia; 12-17-2011 at 12:00 AM.
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    "Don't take refuge in the false security of consensus, and the feeling that whatever
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    - Christopher Hitchens

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    lol Renegade

    the only cool thing about Hitchens was the fact he was pro-life. I am surprised to learn that actually.
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    "Don't take refuge in the false security of consensus, and the feeling that whatever
    you think you'e bound to be okay, because you're in the safely moral majority."

    - Christopher Hitchens

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