In a nutshell, Father Carr has decided to rant against the Blasphemy Challenge but obviously has not been guided by his invisible friend as he does so. As a result, he not only misses the point about the challenge, but seems to get a bit confused over the whole issue of belief and what the Christian church teaches (or at least did when I went to school). Friendly Atheist has done an excellent job of fisking the (ahem) article so I wont do that here, but there are a couple of points I want to pick up on. Continue reading
A few months ago, I opined about the problems of using public debate to determine the value / validity of science. I think, now, this is even more “true” than I did previously.
Over the internet there are a variety of blogs, both theist and atheist, which have looked at the recent Nightline debate between the Rational Response Squad and the trained monkeys (Comfort and Cameron). With a few exceptions from the more dogmatic, fundamentalist, Christian blogs, most commentators agree that the RRS had a more convincing argument and that the trained monkeys were drowning under their own poor logic.
Sadly, most of the blogs also agree that the poor RRS duo came across very badly. This is not a reflection of them as people and it certainly is not a reflection of the subject matter they were presenting. The fact of the matter is that public speaking is not second nature to most people. Doing so on TV is more daunting and being able to talk without demonstrating nervous habits is something which takes practice and training. Comfort and Cameron are not really hampered by this (one being an actor and the other a preacher), and during the debate, the “comfort” with which they spoke was apparent. Now, they were let down by their inane nonsense and condescending attitude, but it could have been a close call.
Imagine a similar debate, this time not between such highly polarised topics where people have pretty much all made up their own minds. If this were, say, a debate between the Ekpyrotic theory and the Big Crush theory would people be swayed more by the evidence or the skill of the presenters?
[tags]Atheism, Science, Theism, Physics, Ekpyrotic, Big Crush, Belief, Christianity, culture, debate, Faith, Kirk Cameron, Philosophy, Rational Response Squad, Ray Comfort, Religion, Society, Stupidity, woo[/tags]
Amazingly, it seems not everyone thinks Ray Comfort and Kirk Cameron made fools of themselves during the debate with the “Rational Response Squad.” It has been mentioned on this blog, Nullfidian’s Blog and Pharyngula if you want to read more / watch the footage.
I should point out, the footage is painful. Comfort / Cameron are broadly clueless and debate in the style of 10 year olds (as do the RRS, but at least they are young and enthusiastic). Comfort claims to be able to prove the existence of God without using the bible, but opens the book pretty much every time. The whole crux of the theist argument is an appeal to fear. They should be ashamed of themselves.
Ray Comfortâ€™s â€œdebateâ€ happened this afternoon (watch here). Iâ€™m at least very thankful for his presentation of the gospel message, although he said he would not open his Bible.
Amazing really. Theists are wonderful creatures, I just don’t think I can eat one whole.
[tags]Atheism, Belief, Theism, God, Religion, Debate, Rational Response Squad, Christians, Bible, Philosophy, Society, Culture, Logic, Arguments, Logical Fallacy, Kirk Cameron, Ray Comfort, Stupidity, Woo[/tags]
Quick one for people who haven’t checked out Pharyngula recently. PZ Myers has put up a link to some video footage of a debate between the “Rational Response Squad” and Ray Comfort / Kirk Cameron.
It is pretty entertaining footage, for very predictable reasons though. The theists are actually embarrassingly bad at putting their argument forward. After about five or six minutes it becomes painful watching them spout nonsense and revert to book thumping arguments.
If all theists were this inept, religion would have died out long ago. (This is especially true as the RRS are not really putting forward very strong arguments themselves… 🙂 They really did not need to read from scripts so much… )
[tags]Atheism, Belief, Christianity, culture, debate, Faith, Kirk Cameron, pharyngula, Philosophy, Rational Response Squad, Ray Comfort, Religion, Society, Stupidity, woo[/tags]