As mentioned, nobody likes it - not them, not us - and yes, it probably is insincere because it's forced upon.
Having said that, I feel it does serve a purpose in at least giving everyone a chance to meet each other. At the very least, it will give them a "human face" if you will, for who is on the other side of the locked door. We say "call us anytime you see anything unusual" and we try to set the tone of open communication - but without a face-to-face meet and greet beforehand I think it will actually hinder communication and put a even larger gap between us and them.
Perhaps just a introduction in the briefing room, or near the couches would be better than the awkward and insincere handshaking ritual. But before we eliminate the handshake, we need SOMETHING to replace it. Everybody already goes about doing their own thing as soon as we get to the aircraft, and in some cases we don't see them again for the rest of the flight/duty - the handshake at least gives them a chance to see who is flying them and for us to "set the tone", and maybe even a sense of unity/team (rare, but I've seen some captains work miracles)
Not crazy about shaking hands myself, but I think I might try another approach Give the girls a kiss and hug hello . The guys maybe not so much ,but once the word spread that you like to kiss and hug I can bet you that the girls would all be on the bus before you get to immigration
chill guys - trying to talk sense into a religiously deluded man is like trying to play chess with a pigeon. No matter how good your game is, the pigeon will will only knock the pieces over, crap on the board and strut around like it is victorious.
I know, I know. Long ago, and far away, millions and billions of years ago..(cue the fairy tale music)
Nothing started spinning really fast (where the inertial laws came from to act upon this speck of dirt, we don't know) exploded and made everything.
Living matter came from non living matter (haven't yet been able to replicate that in a controlled environment yet, but hey..), the first and second Laws of thermo dynamics were violated, Law of angular momentum violated, and here you are, along with strawberries, giraffes, blue whales..really?
You have made the statistically impossible-now possible, as long as you sprinkle in a few more billion years as needed. (Season to taste, of course)
Those silly Christians actually believe that a design has a designer, a painting has a painter, a building has a builder, and creation has a creator. Ha! Simpletons.
Nope. Can't be. Some guy named Richard Dawkins told me so. It's the British accent, get's me every time!
Forgive the sarcasm, take the point.
We have an answer for "In the Beginning" you have a best guess, with astronomical odds that can't even be mathematically quantified, they are so small. Why again are we on the defensive??
I do give the Atheist credit though for the incredible faith they are able to exhibit in their mathematically unquantfiable event. So much faith in fact, that the rest of us are simpleton fools.
The vastness of space must be an illusion, it cannot go on infinitely, whatever exists at the boundaries of space lies the answer. At that point, whoever or whatever is there if asked would probably say the insincere Cathay hand shake policy needs to be ditched pronto because it's just daft.