Whenever I feel like slagging off the Enlightenment, I remember that people who do so usually end up defending the indefensible in the process. A couple of days ago, in the Guardian, while making some quite sensible points about the need for Islamic protest to focus on real grievance, Tariq Ali delivered side swipes at the Enlightenment by pointing out that both Voltaire and Hume said deeply racist things in their time. ( As, though Tariq did not mention this, did Karl Marx.) The point is, though, that anti-racism had its origins in the Enlightenment - the struggle against slavery was started by classic Enlightenment figures like the Lunaticks - and it is Enlightenment values that made it possible to demolish unthinking racism, and ultimately the more intelligent racism that is also - it is true - a bastard heir of Enlightenment. Voltaire did and said some very stupid things, but also did what he could to overthrow the bloodlust of the Church and the French state; Doctor Johnson was a far nicer man, and as it happens was quite passionately anti-racist for his time, but he was a reactionary, who opposed American Independence.
Sometimes, however reluctantly, you have to make choices about whose side you are on.