Never Argue With An Atheist

Warning! Contains “mature” language!

Introduction

I hate to generalize, but if you’ve ever read writings or dialogs involving atheists, I’m sure that you would have noticed the utter contempt for those who don’t see the world as they do, and a lack of civility and tolerance. Last week, I thought I would attempt a reasonable conversation with an Atheist, but was quickly reminded that that is not possible.

Being the Christian that I am, I struggled with whether I should post this writing. I kept thinking about how I’m supposed to respond to those with questions regarding Christianity with humility and understanding. But, I’m also a realist. It is also written in Scripture that Jesus wasn’t always the loving guy that’s so popular these days. After all, you can’t overturn the tables in a den of thieves without making some enemies, and telling someone to stop worrying about the splinter in their neighbor’s eye until the 2X4 is removed from their own is rather sarcastic. I’m sure there were a number of individuals offended. Trying to take a balanced view of things, I decided that this post would allow me to engage in being all things to all people.

Although it should be easy for anyone to figure out who johnny is, it’s actually irrelevant. I believe that most people could insert an atheist’s name, and reminisce about a similar encounter. Besides, I don’t hold it against him. While I was certainly angry at first, I’m actually thankful now for the inspiration for this post.

A Monopoly of Reason

As most Christians should be well aware, Atheists have a monopoly on reason. Atheists are always right, and Science–notice the capital S–is infallible. And while I’m aware of these truths, I forgot my place when speaking to this member of higher intelligence. I’ll call him johnny for simplicity (and you know Christians need simplicity).

This short conversation took place on Twitter. And while it should be common knowledge by now that clarity in email can be easily lost, it can be much more difficult to transmit clarity in 140 characters. While there were a couple of subjects, there were two threads pertinent to this post which I will detail here. After tweeting a statement that “Illogical statements and questions do not worry Christians,” johnny issued a series of replies containing assorted subjects.

Genocide Thread

jalandoak: Illogical statements and questions do not worry Christians

johnny: “why do you worship a thug who demands praise and threatens torture.”

jalandoak: poor exegesis: thug who demands praise and threatens torture

jalandoak: good exegesis: loving God who want to save us from “torture”, while allowing free will

johnny: “Nice try except for 3 things 1) god created hell 2) providing concrete evidence doesn’t cancel freewill 3) he commits genocides.”

jalandoak: God did not create hell for man.

jalandoak: I’ll concede that the genocide is tough, but it’s not a proof of a “thug.” http://bit.ly/h87je1

johnny: Genocide = thug, if you disagree you’re a sick piece of shit who deserves to have no opinion.

To put this in perspective, I sent my tweet at 10:37, and johnny replied at 10:38. I can only deduce from this that his higher IQ (he’s a reasonable atheist after all) read the article I sent AND concluded I was a “sick piece of shit” in roughly sixty seconds.

random tweeter: Genocide = thug, if you disagree you’re a sick piece of shit who deserves to have no opinion.”

Another atheist who was following this conversation apparently felt this was a significant point, so responded by retweeting to his/her followers.

jalandoak: Well, I had hoped this would B a civil discourse, but it has devolved quickly. Thanks anyway. I’ll look for someone else.

Obviously, I was not an intellectual match, so I thought the prudent thing to do was quit. Maybe I should find a beginner atheist, who didn’t understand the ins and outs of discourse.

johnny: There is nothing civil about justifying genocide, you are twisted.

Although my intent was not to justify genocide, but have a civil discussion, somehow these two were melded into one and the same goal. Unfortunately, what I never had a chance to say was that genocide <> thug, especially if genocide <> genocide. That was the point of the article. Maybe, what we are calling genocide in the Old Testament is not really genocide, especially by today’s standards. I wonder if johnny ever read the article. It’s not long, but sixty seconds doesn’t seem like enough time to read all four sections, even for smart people.

Apparently, I’m also “twisted,” in addition to being a “sick piece of shit.”

jalandoak: Have you read the article I sent?

Is it bad etiquette to question an atheist’s integrity?

johnny: “Ridicule is the only weapon which can be used against unintelligible propositions.” Thomas Jefferson

This is an interesting quote. I’ll talk more about it later, but I can’t help but think, is he calling my propositions unintelligible? That’s interesting because I really don’t think the couple of propositions I made qualify as unintelligible. But being a mere Christian, I’m somewhat delighted by the fact that I may have been able to stump him!

johnny: @XXXXXXXX another shithead making excuses for genocide -> @jalandoak

Oh, back to the names as I’m described as a “shithead” while sharing his feelings with whom I’m guessing is another reasonably superior intellect (atheist).

Bible Thread

jalandoak: Illogical statements and questions do not worry Christians

johnny: Neither do logical ones like why do you believe a proven false fairy tale book.

johnny: Nearly all of the National Academy of Sciences is atheist, you do the math.

jalandoak: proven false fairy tale book {} proven false by whom?

jalandoak: Nearly all of the National Academy of Sciences is atheist… {} meaningless: ad populum

johnny: Science has proved the claims of every cult and superstition false repeatedly, they are all fairy tales.

I think this is where things went bad in the second portion of the thread. I didn’t catch the fact that he was referring to Science instead of science, since it appeared at the beginning of the sentence. Upon review, however, I’ve caught it. I’m smart like that.

Normally, appeal to a higher authority would be considered a fallacy, but this isn’t just any higher authority. This is Science! The Supreme Authority! Infallible in all ways!

Not to be confused with science, or quite simply, systematic knowledge. An idea that can make no decisions whether on its own, or with the help of infallible scientists.

johnny: Creationism, flat Earth, geocentrism, demons/sin causing disease, faith healing, prayer all proved false.

johnny: Not meaningless, reality is determined by consensus of those who have actually examined and verified it.

jalandoak: You claimed that the Bible is a fairy tale book proven false, but didn’t answer my question. Proven false by whom?

johnny: Ever heard of science? You know that thing that came up with that techie thingie you’re typing on right now?

jalandoak: Science hasn’t proven God wasn’t involved in the creation of the universe, or that Jesus was not resurrected. This is false.

Blasphemy!

johnny: Nice try Sparky, no Jesus, ask a historian, or better yet let a nobel laureate PhD theologian tell you…

Sparky? I’m not quite sure what to make of this, but I feel it was somehow supposed to be a put down. I feel so stupid.

I caught this one proof right away, when he appealed to the higher authority of one of the icons of Science: the nobel laureate PhD!

johnny: “The Jesus of Nazareth who came forward publicly as the Messiah, who preached the ethic of the kingdom of God, who founded the kingdom of heaven upon earth and died to give his work its final consecration never existed.”

Albert Schweitzer(1875–1965, Nobel Prize 1952), Ph.D, Christian theologian and Dean of Theological College of Saint Thomas at the University of Strasburg

The Quest of the Historical Jesus: First Complete Edition, trans. W. Montgomery, et al., ed. John Bowden (Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 2001), page 478

Albert Schweitzer, holder of the PhD icon AND the Nobel Prize. What a fool I am to question this man’s conclusions. I’m just glad he didn’t quote Saints Darwin or Dawkins.

johnny: You’re just full of bullshit excuses for your fantasy land magic death cult aren’t you?

He’s right. I have nothing to offer, but “bullshit excuses” for my loyalty to the “fantasy land magic death cult” when compared to icons like PhDs and the Almighty Science.

jalandoak: These 400 year old claims, and faith healing and prayer have not been proven false.

jalandoak: If the consensus is wrong, it’s still wrong which is why mob rules is ad populum.

jalandoak: The thing I’m typing on is acomputer. It is not science.

Darn it! Darn it! Darn it! I wish I would have realized sooner the consequences of my errors. He gave me the clue as to what he was talking about here. I mistakenly thought he was telling me that systematic knowledge had come up with the computer, that’s just ridiculous! It’s obvious he was referring to the entity Science, and I failed to keep up with him.

johnny: No science = no computer, no cars, no cell phones, no satellites, no modern medicine, etc.

Apparently I’m slow. I’m seem to be having some difficulty following his line of reasoning. It seems that he’s telling me that the Bible is false because Science has created computers, cars, and such.

How could I have ever thought scientists, using systematic knowledge could have ever come up these things on their own. If it weren’t for Science, we would have been stuck in the 1600s! I only hope that atheists have thanked Science for the gift of reason He has bestowed upon them. Science’s giving to them has been so abundant as to render the rest of the world unreasonable and unintelligible!

Ridicule Is the Only Weapon

“Ridicule is the only weapon which can be used against unintelligible propositions.” Thomas Jefferson

I said that I would speak about this again, so here it is. This is the third time I’ve seen this quoted by an atheist. Once was in a comments section following an article (I don’t remember which one), and the second was by a fairly well known, but rude and abrasive atheist that applied this quote to his writings regarding Christians.

Based on my experiences, I’m thinking that this must have worked its way into the Cult of Science’s Ten Commandments. It is a common tactic among atheists to ridicule Christians, instead of talking about the claims. “You want me to clarify my terms? Who do you think you are questioning my intellectual superiority?! Science is my side!” Yeah, you’re right. It’s easier to get your point across by using confusion, for example, science, evolution, and natural selection can be interchangeable, and, Christian can be synonymous with anti-science (as well as anti-Science!).

If you’re wondering what the Number One commandment of the Church of Science is, my first thought is: “Thou shall not accept as reasonable any claim that contradicts your Lord Science!”

So, should I contact johnny and tell him how he’s inspired me? Should I courtesy copy him? Should I give him the chance to respond before posting this?

Nah. ‘Cuz I’m a “piece of shit.”

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3 Replies to “Never Argue With An Atheist”

    1. I’m not sure I’d go so far as to say don’t trust anyone. There are obviously people who abuse it, such as the example in my post, and even Christians, although I’ve never met a Christian who took it to the level of the example in my post.

      I think it has to do with context. People say things without thinking: hitting your thumb with a hammer, the power goes out before you’ve hit save after writing three pages of your best post ever, responding to the stupidest you’ve ever heard on the news for the fifth time this week, etc. Compare that with calling people names, with the intention of hurting or degrading someone; or the person who casually drops F-bombs or GD as if they’re adding a little salt to their vocabulary, and don’t even realize it.

      I’m not saying either is right. I’m saying that I wouldn’t be ready to write someone off, because if I wrote off everyone that did things wrong, I wouldn’t have any friends.

  1. Well we certainly aren’t all perfect. I being for one. There were times when a Christian friend always reminded me not to use profanity whenever I slipped. Later a Muslim friend reminded me in like manner. I appreciated them both. I think it’s fair to say that everyone intuitively knows there is a creator they have to answer to. However, not everyone want to have to answer to one. So they make-up a belief in order to live comfortably in and not have to be bothered with it all. Some folks put all their trusts in Evolution. But what is Evolution after all? Something without a conscious intelligent mind. Every design has to have a designer. At least a design in the form of animals, birds and people. The human brain is more sophisticated and greater than the smartest computer in existence. How can that come into being without a conscious intelligent designer? We’re always hearing about the (Big Bang). Any big bang results from an explosion. Explosions destroy life not create it. The Big Bang sounds like an absurd and silly idea that a teacher would present to early kindergarten or early grade school children. But adults use this term.

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