Hitchens is dying

This is the one of the saddest things in a long time for me. I still keep my hopes high. The world without the hitch will not be as interesting.

This is maybe not be so much of a debate (feel free to move this question). What do you actually die from when you have esophageal cancer?

Long live Hitchens


Christopher, I’m guessing. Hadn’t heard about it.

Surprised you don’t know of him DT, him being quite the outspoken critic and atheist and all that.

I pay little attention to people just because they are atheists. Although I do recognize the name now that you’ve mentioned the whole thing.

Here’s a recent debate he had with Tony Blair about religion.

It well worth the watch.

I disagree with a lot of his opinions e.g. Iraq, but the man always earned my respect with the honesty and forthright way he puts his points across. His books are very good as well.

I didn’t mean to suggest that you’d know him simply because he happens to be an athiest, but he is be one of about 4 or 5 outspoken guys who are famous for their views (and books) in that particular arena - like Richard Dawkins, Sam Harris and Daniel Dennett etc…

He was on 60 Minutes (or some similar show) about a month ago. He looked terrible and said he had stage 4 cancer, adding that there is no stage 5. Not that I’m glad to see him die or anything, but he led a very, very unhealthy life. I agreed with some of his opinions and strongly disagreed with others.

He’s had cancer for a year or so. Has his health taken a further turn for the worse, occasioning the OP?

(also not sure what we’re supposed to debate. I doubt anyone thinks Hitchens is lying about having cancer)

He’ll be up in heaven with Mother Theresa soon.

Sorry, couldn’t resist. He was a smart man when it came to religion and while I didn’t agree with some of his right leaning opinions when it came to war, I respected them. He’ll be missed.

I’m not finding anything in a news search so I think it may be that the OP has only just found out.

Ive always enjoyed reading him. I didn’t find his religious stuff all that interesting, because most of what he said had already been said more persuasively by other people. I really enjoyed his literary essays and the wealth of historical and contextual knowledge he brought to the table. And his acerbic style was a joy to read. I’m sorry he is dying so young and I hope he passes in peace and dignity.

Hitchens may be a lightning rod for discussion, but this is not a debate.

Off to MPSIMS.

What does an unhealthy life have to do with this kind of cancer, though? I don’t know much about esophageal(sp) cancer, but it’s not like lung cancer that could be caused by smoking, or a heart attack that could be caused by shitty eating habits. My grandma died of esophageal cancer, because she had a lot of reflux issues and they eroded her esophagus. But her problems were not related to poor diet, at least not in recent years.

From the Wikipedia article, citing the New England Journal of Medicine:

HPV also:

While the connection between HPV and oral and throat cancer (aka Head and neck cancer) is well-established – I have a cousin with this type of cancer – it is a completely different disease from esophageal cancer. One primary difference is that head and neck cancer is completely curable when caught early, while esophageal cancer has an extremely poor prognosis and is not usually caught until very late.

I always thought he was a blow-hard attention seeker. However, sad to hear he’s in ill health.