Well, philosopher William Lane Craig is planning a trip to England this summer and has said he would like to debate Dawkins, but the mighty hero apparently wants no part of such a contest.
Here are some details from a report by Tim Ross in The Telegraph:
Richard Dawkins has made his name as the scourge of organised religion who branded the Roman Catholic Church “evil” and once called the Pope “a leering old villain in a frock”.There's more at the link. I suspect that Mr. Dawkins has seen Craig's debates with other atheists and knows that his own position on the non-existence of God is indefensible against a debater of Craig's caliber. He also knows the whole world would be watching, he knows he'd get clobbered, and he knows his inevitable defeat at the hands of an evangelical Christian would have a seismic impact on the popularity of modern atheism, not to mention his book sales.
But he now stands accused of “cowardice” after refusing four invitations to debate the existence of God with a renowned Christian philosopher. A war of words has broken out between the best selling author of The God Delusion, and his critics, who see his refusal to take on the American academic, William Lane Craig, as a “glaring” failure and a sign that he may be losing his nerve.
Prof Dawkins maintains that Prof Craig is not a figure worthy of his attention and has reportedly said that such a contest would “look good” on his opponent’s CV but not on his own.
Four invitations to take part in public debates were sent to Prof Dawkins from The British Humanist Association, The Cambridge Debating Union, the Oxford Christian Union and Premier Radio. Prof Dawkins declined them all.
“I have no intention of assisting Craig in his relentless drive for self-promotion,” he said.
Some of Prof Dawkins’s contemporaries are not impressed. Dr Daniel Came, a philosophy lecturer and fellow atheist, from Worcester College, Oxford, wrote to him urging him to reconsider his refusal to debate the existence of God with Prof Craig.
In a letter to Prof Dawkins, Dr Came said: “The absence of a debate with the foremost apologist for Christian theism is a glaring omission on your CV and is of course apt to be interpreted as cowardice on your part.
“I notice that, by contrast, you are happy to discuss theological matters with television and radio presenters and other intellectual heavyweights like Pastor Ted Haggard of the National Association of Evangelicals and Pastor Keenan Roberts of the Colorado Hell House.”
Thus he contents himself, like a man who has no confidence in the strength of his position, by hurling insults at his opponent from afar while evading the challenge to come out and fight like a man.
Anyone who writes a best-selling book on the foolishness of theism ought to be willing to defend his thesis against the most able antagonists. To write the book and then avoid serious challngers is like being declared the heavyweight boxing champion and then refusing to defend the title against any but lightweight challengers and also-rans. It's not the sort of behavior that anyone would think particularly noble, confident or courageous.