It’s kind of ironic that so much sympathy is being expressed for Christopher Hitchen’s passing. You’ll see a lot of this on the Daily Dish with Andrew Sullivan, one of Hitchen’s friends.
It’s ironic because you’ll find that Hitchens detested, along with religion, the outpouring of some sometimes dishonest sympathy for any well know person in their passing. Watch some of the videos on the Daily Dish to see this. I especially recall how he was unwilling to say much nice about President Reagan when he passed. Hitchens didn’t seem to see death as a such a uniquely horrible event that entitled loved ones to universal sympathy.
In a way, I think this would have been consistent with his passionate atheism. If you truly are comfortable with the idea of having an end in time as well a beginning, then you take away a reason to believe: faith may give you hope for your end. It might make me sympathetic with Hitchens.
I found him to be honest, but sometimes gratuitously cruel to other’s in death. A lot of sympathy for people in death seems dishonest, sometimes in the extreme, but I’m not sure I see the point in telling someone their dead father or brother was a demon, even if he was. Perhaps just leaving the grieving alone with their grief rather than lying or being cruel would be appropriate.