I’m having trouble figuring out what would cause apologists to act the way they do. As far as I can figure out, most of them are either: insane; incredibly stupid; or convinced that everyone else is incredibly stupid. I’m leaning towards the second. Any other opinions?
And for those of you who want an example of what I’m talking about, here is a quote from FriendofGod from the Something to consider thread:
A recap of the context:
-FriendofGod points to problems alledgedly caused by humanism, claiming that this shows that the country should be run by Christians instead.
-someone points out evidence that it is actually the Christians that are causing these problems
-FriendofGod says that the conduct of Christians should not be used as a standard by which to decide whether or not to follow Christian principles.
Now, if someone wants to put forth a claim, such as that we should give control of the country to whatever worldview produces the best results, then okay. This doesn’t seem like a completely solid basis for a government, but that’s what a debate is for; to discuss disagreements. But when someone puts forth a claim, uses it to support their argument, and then says something completely contradictory when that supports their argument, that’s not a debate. That’s just trying to confuse people until they agree with you. What I can’t figure out is whether FriendofGod intentionally is usually dishonest tactits to support a religion which claims to disapprove of dishonesty, simply doesn’t have enough intelligence to figure out that the two positions contradict each other, or just is unconcerned with rationality.
Well, after debating with FoG in several threads, I think he is genuinely well-intentioned, but hopelessly illogical. He seems utterly incapable of recognizing contradictions in his propositions when he puts them forth. When backed far enough into a corner he usually just says something like “I’ll get back to you,” and drops that line of argument, or he says “Gee, I really don’t know.” It’s fine to admit you don’t know something or cannot fathom a particular theological stance. But FoG will turn around and use the same arguments and bring up the same points in other threads that he has already admitted he cannot support. He refuses to even entertain the idea that his world view might be wrong, even for the sake of engaging in an honest debate, and he seems to lack the basic ability of being able to see arguments from an opponent’s viewpoint. I have at times thought him dull-witted, and at times thought him willfully ignorant, practicing a style of debate where he simply refuses to understand an opponent’s direct argument/question no matter how it’s phrased. When asked direct questions, he often gives a complete non-sequitur for a response, or ignores it and answers someone else’s question that allows more wiggle room.
I am not completely convinced that FoG does all this unintentionally. I’m 70% convinced that he is hopelessly deluded and has invested everything into a logically untenable viewpoint that he cannot stand to challenge. The other 30%… Well, lets say that I occasionally feel that he knows exactly what he is doing, and that he would tell any lie, use any argument no matter how shaky, and allow any distortion of his opponents’ viewpoint if it might convince someone that his brand of Fundamentalism is the One True Way. Either way, I grew tired of debating someone who is either incapable or unwilling to honestly engage in debate. I may respond to him if he makes an assertion in a thread that I am already interested in, but if he and his propositions become the focus of the thread I generally just blow him off completely as being a giant time-sucking, reason-proof vortex that drains all the enjoyment from my time here.
I guess my time at LBMB numbed me to these things. But I am no longer bothered by Christian proselytizers. Unless they’re on my plane…
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I think you need to work on expressing yourself, aenea.
I find “mind-melded fundie zealots” (thanks, Brian) to be extremely frustrating simply because of the all-too-common attitude that their was is the only way. When it comes to religion, I don’t know I’m right–ever. It bugs me when other people do.
Otherwise, I’m sure FoG, jenkinsfan, et al. are just lovely people.
FoG’s debating style often boils down to “I’m right, you’re wrong, why don’t you admit it?” Which isn’t debate at all but good ole Bible-thumping. sigh
I honestly try to assume the best of such people, but his persistence in the face of lack of progress shows his frontal lobes are numb or he really enjoys beating his head against a brick wall.
What I find the scariest aspect of all of this is the possibility that his close, personal relationship with god has rendered him like this; immune to logic and mouthing off his standard lines of “I’ve got to save you heathens from yourself” without no real thought to what he’s actually doing. Given the number of other Fundies who end up in a similar state, shrug you draw your own conclusions.
And in the meantime, they claim that anyone who engages in any major “sin” is “not a real Christian.” OK, so we should find the Xians that act like perfect angels and watch them to judge the whole of the Xian faith? Sorry, but this tactic works for every religion or belief system.
Some people would say that the so-called Christians are not really Christians as Jesus intended, if the so-called Christians insist on lowering their standards of grace and adopt an attitude of ‘do as I say, not as I do’.