Just an opinion on the more proper object of criticism
When I was an atheist, rather militant actually, what I hated was religious dogmatism, and I just happened to not think a God exists. I don't think I would've been disappointed had God made an appearance. When I began to study philosophy I heard substantial formulations of the arguments that folks like Dawkins set up only to be easily defeated, and found that they had some force, even if they were not solid proofs. I read Mackie, for example, fervently. I hoped to find complete refutation for all arguments for God, because at that time my hero was Chris Hitchens. I loved Hitchens long before he became associated with the New Atheism. I thought the religious were all fools. My conclusion, after a fierce struggle to believe otherwise (because I thought it would make me no different from the idiots I'd been calling delusional for so long), was that there are reasons, or rather, I want to say, I came to the conclusion that it is not utterly unreasonable to suspect that there is an intelligence of some sort at work in creation.
So I admitted that belief in a Creator God is reasonable given the experience of life. I did not admit that religious belief was reasonable nor did I begin to believe in God. I merely admitted it's not so ridiculous as the popular authors would have it.
What's surprised me, and I mean really surprised me, shocked me, stupefied me, is that in the last few weeks on this forum I went from being completely agnostic to leaning toward the theistic side. I just can't believe it, but I have to admit it.
Why? For example, the insane evasion people have tried to make from arguments like the fine-tuning argument. From denying what physics and leading scientists tell us, to coming up with the most absurd analogies, to invoking the anthropic principle and clinging to it for dear life when it answers nothing, to saying that they will believe any theory (from an infinity of universe to the all possible worlds interpretations of quantum) before admitting the possibility of an intelligent mind. I've encountered such shocking closed-mindedness before, and it was something I condemned then, and still do.
I've mentioned in a few posts that I studied sociology in school, and my interest in the new atheism is partly from a view on it as a social phenomena. So many people who haven't read, say Kuhn, or Popper, or Lakotos, or Thaggard, or Smart, or Hartshorne, or Swinburne, or Mackie, or any positivist even, are convinced so strongly that they are vastly more intelligent than your average believer (not even saying lunatic fundamentalist). It's bewildering. William James would've called it a religion like any other, and it's a fundamentalist one, at that.
I'd like to know, whose reasoning do they rely on? For example, a certain poster in this forum who knows who he is. He's read one book at most, I swear, on any topic. But he has such conviction and arrogance. I have to wonder if he thinks he would be able to stand his ground against a proper philosopher of religion. I'd bet he'd have his butt handed to him, and I'd bet he knows that's true. I wonder if he would have the arrogance to tell, for example, Shrodinger or Einstein that they're silly idiots for believing. The dynamic of belief for people like that is precisely faith: they don't know the serious arguments from one side, nor do they know the responses to them from the other. They choose based on insufficient knowledge and no investigation, and just have faith that their side ultimately has the better argument. Currently, it so seems that the atheist side is the side of the smart folks and religion is the side of the midwestern dimwits. I do understand why people want to be on the winning side. There are social motives and ego motives. I wanted to be on Hitchens side, for example. I did NOT want to be on the side of the Westboro Baptists who would have me burn in hell.
What I want to suggest is that belief in God is not what so many of the new atheists need to be worried about. It is not going away. It is not even so irrational as they think. What atheists, and believers in God as well, should be against is dogma, religions which claim to know what God wants because it says so in a book, religions which claim to know who's burning in hell, and who should live and who should die. As Hitchens always pointed out, religion can make an otherwise sane man fly a plane into a building. I strongly feel that should be the focus of critique if the goal is a more enlightened free and equal society. Belief in God is not going anywhere, and I don't think we should want it to. Humans will always, and should always, wonder and think about God. It'll be a sad day when we all decide it's settled. What we need is to stop letting men tell us that they and they alone know the truth.
Sorry for the total lack of eloquence. Anyway, just an opinion.