The Instigator
bublez07
Pro (for)
Losing
7 Points
The Contender
TheSkeptic
Con (against)
Winning
42 Points

atheism.just because its fashionable does not mean it has any merit

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 4/24/2009 Category: Religion
Updated: 8 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 885 times Debate No: 7958
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (5)
Votes (7)

 

bublez07

Pro

Thanks to my opponent for the challenge.Atheism has become fashionable lately in the u.s and british media with Richard Dawkins and comedians like Ricky Gervais and Bill Maher.Im all for free speech but some things bother me about these commentators,specifically...
1When these people attack organised religion they assume that A;all christians believe in a corporeal god.B;all christians believe in the genesis story of the bible as literal truth.C;You cannot be a christian unless you do and you cannot be a scientist unless you are anti religious.
2They assume that Evolution Theory disproves the existance of God.It does no such thing.
3They,especially Dawkins,claim that Evolution explains human consciousness.It does not and cannot.At least religion,all religion attempts to do this.
4They routinely attack organised religion through its crazies,fundamentalists and past atrocities while ignoring its moderates and its good deeds.At the same time they ignore the crazy atheists of which we have seen plenty this last century.
5Dawkins is a jackass and looks like he has not been laid in 23 years!
Thanks again for the challenge.My last two opponents refused to debate me on my points.Hopefully you will.I dont expect you to convert me or vice versa but instead of attacking religion you should rebut my arguements which is chiefly about the underhand methods employed by todays Atheist posterboys.
TheSkeptic

Con

I thank my opponent for starting this debate, and I hope we get something fruitful out it!

To start out, however, I want to make an important observation. My opponent has worded his resolution/title quite awkwardly, and a quick read of his arguments represents a different idea he is focusing on. He says, in his last lines, that this debate "is chiefly about the underhand methods employed by todays Atheist posterboys." THIS, is what I will be arguing against. I will attempt to show that the methods my opponent describes are either 1. not methods they use or 2. perfectly adequate (thus not underhand).

I'm sure my opponent doesn't intend for me to argue that atheism has merit because it's "fashionable" - it's almost unanimous that something isn't true just because it's popular. So let's set aside semantics and petty restriction, and get a good debate on atheism going on!

As a final note, do realize that when I say "atheists", I am referring to the atheists known in popular media. My opponent has listed some, such as Richard Dawkins and Bill Maher.

====================
Method #1: Attacks on organized religion by atheists
====================

While not all Christians believe in the three points my opponent pointed out, MANY do. For those who, then obviously the criticisms stated by the atheists apply. For example, 1/5 of Britons don't believe in evolution while half are confused by Darwins theory[1], while 48% of Americans believe in YEC[2]!

And when did any of the atheists explicitly states that you can't be a scientist if you are anti-religious? And when did atheists ever say all Christians believe in a corporeal god? In fact, they say the OPPOSITE. Corporeal means physical -- not spiritual[3].

====================
Method #2: Assumption that evolution disproves the existence of God
====================

While not every atheist believes that evolution disproves God, many do - including Richard Dawkins. A common argument is to ask the Christian why they say Genesis is in metaphor, when other parts of the Bible are supposedly literal. With what arbirtrary ground can we say "this part is literal, while this part is metaphorical"? This is the line of reasoning used by some atheists.

Do realize that not all atheists have to agree on the same thing (except their disbelief in God).

====================
Method #3: Claim that evolution explains human consciousness
====================

Yes, they do claim this, and I agree with them. I argue for physicalism[4], which is the philosophical position that everything supervenes on the physical. Since everything is physical, then it must be so that our mind, better known as our brain, is purely physical. And because evolution is the best theory we have for the development of life, it's very likely that our brains -- thus our consciousness -- are a direct result of evolution. If my opponent claims otherwise, then it is his burden to show how evolution or physicalism, or the combination of both, are inadequate.

====================
Method #4: Attack religious extremists
====================

Of course atheists know that many religious extremists are not like moderate religious people. In fact, well over 90% of my friends are religious, and we get along fine. The point, however, of showing the discrepancies religious people can do in the name of a deity is to show the various poisonous versions of religion. They are telling us that religion CAN, and DOES, cause harm in the world.

{quote}At the same time they ignore the crazy atheists of which we have seen plenty this last century.{endquote}

----> My opponent may refer to atheists such as Hitler (arguably) and Stalin as evidence of the "evils of atheism", but he is completely wrong here. To equate atheism with mass-murder is to equate apples and oranges. Stalin and Hitler had mustaches - so did they kill millions in the name of mustaches? Stalin didn't kill people IN THE NAME of atheism, instead he used religion to control the people. Not only that, but it was part of the Communist belief that religion gave solace for the working class - popularly known as the "opiate of the masses"[5], because of the hardships in life. And in it's doctrine, religion should be removed since it's a drug that does not do away with the problems (thus reference to opiate).

====================
Method(?) #5: Dawkins is a jackass who doesn't get laid
====================

I'm not even sure how I'm supposed to respond to this. To start off, it isn't even a "method", so really nothing needs to be said further on this subject. However, let's refute his two-pronged point anyway:

1. Whether or not Dawkins is a jackass is purely subjective. That said, there is no way to objectively find the truth of his "jack-assness". Therefore, my opponent's claim that Dawkins is a jackass can't be held as a valid argument. Even if it was true, who cares? Definitely has nothing to do with the merit of his arguments and claims.

2. In fact, I suspect Dawkins has had sex a couple time in the past 23 years. In 1992, Dawkins married the actress Lalla Ward[6]. Do the math - that's only 17 years at best. So the claim that Dawkins hasn't had sex in the past 23 years is very unlikely, unless Lalla or Dawkins has some weird superstition against sex. Knowing Dawkin's beliefs, I highly doubt that.

====================
Conclusion
====================

I have refuted all of my opponent's points quite successfully, I think. The atheists in popular media aren't using underhand methods, but showing the large flaws in religion these days. Not only so, but not all of their beliefs have to be shared by other atheists, so they aren't forced to follow a certain way of thinking as religion would have them. Some atheists believe evolution isn't compatible with religion, others believe it is. In the end, it doesn't matter which one they believe in, as long as they fulfill one requirement - lack of a belief in deities.

---References---
1. http://www.guardian.co.uk...
2. http://hubpages.com...
3. http://www.merriam-webster.com...
4. http://atheism.about.com...
5. http://plato.stanford.edu...
6. http://www.guardian.co.uk...
Debate Round No. 1
bublez07

Pro

bublez07 forfeited this round.
TheSkeptic

Con

*twitch twitch*

Welll, vote CON obviously.
Debate Round No. 2
bublez07

Pro

bublez07 forfeited this round.
TheSkeptic

Con

A forfeit. The winner is obvious. Here's some good music though:
Debate Round No. 3
bublez07

Pro

bublez07 forfeited this round.
TheSkeptic

Con

La da de dum! Arguments extended (obviously) to this round.
Debate Round No. 4
bublez07

Pro

bublez07 forfeited this round.
TheSkeptic

Con

I wonder who won...
Debate Round No. 5
5 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 5 records.
Posted by alto2osu 8 years ago
alto2osu
I think this guy's M.O. is to show up, post a round or 2, and then bail for no reason whatsoever...vote to Con :)
Posted by TheSkeptic 8 years ago
TheSkeptic
"When I was living in Australia, it was very rare to hear somebody claim a young earth or deny evolution. It just doesn't happen there."

If I remember correctly, I heard you have to have some educational merit to even immigrate to Australia? You need a degree, doctorate, or something? I don't know, it may be wishful thinking on my part. But it would definitely explain why Australians don't believe in so many crazy things as Americans.

"It's both a birth control method and a disease control method. ^_^"

Haha!
Posted by Ragnar_Rahl 8 years ago
Ragnar_Rahl
"
====================
Method(?) #5: Dawkins is a jackass who doesn't get laid
====================

I'm not even sure how I'm supposed to respond to this. To start off, it isn't even a "method", "
It's both a birth control method and a disease control method. ^_^
Posted by leet4A1 8 years ago
leet4A1
"while 48% of Americans believe in YEC"

That probably explains why I despise at least half of my countrymen. Ignorance incarnate. When I was living in Australia, it was very rare to hear somebody claim a young earth or deny evolution. It just doesn't happen there.
Posted by Xie-Xijivuli 8 years ago
Xie-Xijivuli
Stolettos?
7 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 7 records.
Vote Placed by Xie-Xijivuli 7 years ago
Xie-Xijivuli
bublez07TheSkepticTied
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Vote Placed by numa 8 years ago
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Vote Placed by fresnoinvasion 8 years ago
fresnoinvasion
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Vote Placed by alto2osu 8 years ago
alto2osu
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Vote Placed by MTGandP 8 years ago
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Vote Placed by FemaleGamer 8 years ago
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bublez07TheSkepticTied
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Vote Placed by TheSkeptic 8 years ago
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