Random Asides

Richard Dawkins Suffers Stroke

According to the Sydney Opera House, where he was scheduled to speak soon, Richard Dawkins suffered a small stroke last Saturday. The statement they attribute to Dawkins’ management reads in full:

On Saturday night Richard suffered a minor stroke, however he is expected in time to make a full or near full recovery. He is already at home recuperating. This unfortunately means Richard will be unable to make his planned Australian and New Zealand tour. He is very disappointed that he is unable to do so but looks forward to renewing his plans in the not too distant future.

While we here at Skepchick have been very critical of Dawkins’ recent spate of bigoted comments, we hope that he recovers quickly.

Rebecca Watson

Rebecca Watson

Rebecca leads a team of skeptical female activists at Skepchick.org. She travels around the world delivering entertaining talks on science, atheism, feminism, and skepticism. There is currently an asteroid orbiting the sun with her name on it. You can follow her every fascinating move on Twitter or on Google+.

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  1. February 11, 2016 at 8:59 pm —

    I wouldn’t be surprised to learn that he’d had several unnoticed ones already. The quality of his public statements has gotten so bizarre, so careless, that I’ve suspected some neurological component.

  2. February 12, 2016 at 12:06 am —

    Let’s not blame mental health for his behavior, please.

    Also, hope for a speedy and comfortable recovery for him and his family.

    • February 12, 2016 at 12:40 pm —

      Yeah, not everybody who suffers a stroke is like that.

      We can still hope for his speedy recovery, though.

  3. February 12, 2016 at 6:56 am —

    I hope he fully recovers quickly.

  4. February 12, 2016 at 3:24 pm —

    Something has changed in him. And if we don’t accept notions of ‘mind’ existing in the ozone separate from ‘brain’ the question does come up.

    It doesn’t make the bully-posse interwebs stuff excusable. The cringe-worthy pronouncements speak for themselves, and neither Thought Leader Authority, or neurological trouble makes the enraged rationalizations acceptable.

    • February 12, 2016 at 6:26 pm —

      John, it’s demeaning to take what you do like about someone as “them,” but file the things you don’t like as being just a the result of a medical issue. It’s also kind of illogical unless you apply it consistently to all his positions.
      When you do have, for instance, a mental disorder it is obnoxious as all hell when people only take you seriously where you agree and attribute everything else to mental issues rather than engaging you.

    • February 12, 2016 at 10:32 pm —

      His recent spate of unthinking opinions and such can just as easily be attributed to his being an insulated demagogue who started to believe his own good press while attributing his bad press to the bad motives of those criticising him. He certainly has enough fans telling him he is always right.

      That paired with a lack of an immediate filter and an unwillingness to admit incorrectness and Occum’s razor points to his being a Oxford professor, an internet celebrity, and him being set in his ways as being far more likely a cause then any mental problems.

  5. February 13, 2016 at 12:41 pm —

    Thank you for saying this, Rebecca.

  6. February 14, 2016 at 10:49 am —

    Dawkins says that NECSS organizers graciously apologized and reinvited him. Too bad that the women Dawkins’ incited harassment against will never receive an apology from him, let alone a gracious one. I am glad that he sounds reasonably well and hope his recovery continues.
    NECSS discussion starts at about the 5-minute mark.

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