Multiple sources (including Richard Dawkin's own web-site) quote the following from an article by Michael Ruse, which he supposedly wrote for the Playboy magazine.

We who love science must realize that the enemy of our enemies is our friend. Too often evolutionists spend time insulting would-be allies. This is especially true of secular evolutionists. Atheists spend more time running down sympathetic Christians than they do countering creationists. When John Paul II wrote a letter endorsing Darwinism, Richard Dawkins's response was simply that the pope was a hypocrite, that he could not be genuine about science and that Dawkins himself simply preferred an honest fundamentalist.

(Bold text not original.)

Did Dawkins made this remark?

  • When I searched for an example of someone making the claim to show this was notable, the first useful link was... Richard Dawkin's own web-site, quoting the article quoting him, which is a bit ouroboros.
    – Oddthinking
    Sep 1, 2023 at 1:14
  • These unbelievers sure have a penchant for condemnation. I wonder what Richard has ever done in his life that makes him think he is the morally superior being able to condemn those he deems morally inferior.
    – Neil Meyer
    Sep 4, 2023 at 16:19

1 Answer 1


This has to be the same quote mentioned by Doug Linder:

Dawkins makes no secret of his distain for the distinction so critical to the Pope John Paul’s 1996 speech on evolution:

I suppose it is gratifying to have the pope as an ally in the struggle against fundamentalist creationism. It is certainly amusing to see the rug pulled out from under the feet of Catholic creationists such as Michael Behe. Even so, given a choice between honest-to-goodness fundamentalism on the one hand, and the obscurantist, disingenuous doublethink of the Roman Catholic Church on the other, I know which I prefer.

This is attributed to Science and Religion: Are They Compatible? (which can be previewed on Google Books) but the original publication seems to be "Obscurantism to the Rescue," Quarterly Review of Biology 72 (December 1997): p. 399 (cited in yet another book).

  • 1
    Yes, the original source is the one you have mentioned.
    – blackened
    Aug 31, 2023 at 16:00

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .