Re: [M & B] A bad argument: "Atheists can't criticize false claims"
- In a message dated 7/14/2006 3:11:40 P.M. Pacific Standard Time,
My response was that this "argument that people who not possess a
belief in your particular God are thus incapable of recognizing
truth, or beauty, or integrity, or colors, or nutritious food, etc.
is a patently ridiculous argument."
Dear Todd and all,
Todd, you are giving my words too much weight by referring to my rant as an
argument. ;o) However, I also think you are ever so slightly misinterpreting
First of all, absolutes like truth and goodness cannot compare to color or
nutritious food. They are not like. Even as such, though, of course you can
recognize them. They are real and you may discern them and may even name
them. If you could not, they would not be real and would be subjective rather
than absolute truths.
However, you would need to seek them or at least comprehend their nature in
order to recognize them. My point was simply, why bother? Yes, men lie.
Yes, men are hypocrites. Yes, hypocritical men who pretend at goodness lie.
This surprises no-one. I simply do not understand why you keep fussing about
it. What if you succeed? What if all men everywhere become wise and honest?
What will you have achieved of worth? Nothing. Why would you want all men
everywhere to be wise and honest?
If you were pursuing truth for its own sake, if you were an astronomer or a
geologist whose discoveries drew fire from YEC and thus you felt compelled to
defend your findings, this I could understand. But that is not the case.
You appear honestly disturbed at the dishonesty and sneakiness and downright
dimwittedness of so many of these characters and their followers. That I do
not understand. Why do you care?
For all the drama and hype by the media, etc., real science is in no way
threatened by the YEC claims and neither are the aspirations of young
scientists. The only ones who are truly hurt are those whose faith is weakened or
crushed, either by the duplicity they discover among the YEC promoters or by the
dilemma in which they find themselves pitting God against his own creation,
as if either could be in contradiction of the other. You probably know this
has been my longstanding curiosity. You struggle with that which threatens
not you but a faith you have renounced. It is hard for me to accept that you
do not believe in truth when you want so badly to defend it.
As I said, my earlier comments were not an argument but a simple rant. This
is simply an elucidation of said rant. ;o) As is no secret, I think we
would all be happier and the world a better place if we all ranted less here and
DID more there. (And by DID I do not mean commenting, criticizing,
observing, and rambling on what others are doing - I mean actually DO ourselves.
[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
- You're right. "Why bother?" is not an argument. Why bother playing a
video game on the XBox 360? Why bother going to the theater to
see "The Lake House"? Why bother walking down to Dairy Queen to have a
half-and-half dipped in chocolate and nuts? Why bother buying and
taking the time to read that novel by Harlan Coben that you see on the
bookshelf in the store?
I agree. These are purely subjective choices, and thus don't
constitute an argument for or against anything. I could just as soon
spend some of my time reading a book, as writing critical comments
about creationism and creationists. (Of course, actually I do all of
the above things, and many others, at different times.)
Thus, also, it has no relevance to changing the fact that when
something falsely pretends that the vanilla ice cream is chocolate,
I'm right when I point out that (1) he's wrong, and (2) he's wrong for
diligently, obstinately pretending what is wrong.
- Todd Greene ;-)