bookmark_borderA Nasty Christian Apologist Defends the Indefensible

There are many nice Christian apologists out there. To cite just four of several examples, (1) Glenn Miller; (2) Randal Rauser; (3) Trent Horn; and (4) Sean McDowell have both been extremely gracious as dialogue partner (1 & 2) or host (3&4). But there are also some nasty ones who apparently didn’t get the memo about 1 Peter 3:15. About a month ago, I had a run-in on Twitter with one of the nasty ones: Anna Maria Perez (@A_M_Perez). She has roughly 100,000 followers and won’t hesitate to use that fact to put down critics who don’t command an equally large following. Perez describes herself as a “constitutional conservative” who is “Pro 2nd Amendment.” She runs a website devoted to the defense of the (U.S.) Second Amendment right to bear arms, but she also posts on a variety of other topics of interest to conservatives. Her modus operandi is verbal abuse (e.g., name calling, insults, put downs, chronic forgetting, blaming, etc.) and, like any narcissist, she does not handle criticism well–at all. Accordingly, she has zero interest in genuine dialogue with anyone who disagrees with her. People who have the audacity to challenge her statements–the horror!–will find themselves on the receiving end of a spew of insults before being blocked.
I learned all of this the hard way, when I dared to respond to a tweet promoting her October 12, 2015 post, “I Don’t Have Enough Faith to be an Atheist!” Having already written a comprehensive rebuttal to Geisler’s and Turek’s book by the same name, I was already very familiar with the kinds of arguments Geisler and Turek use in their book. So I was disappointed (but not surprised) to find Perez using the same, refuted arguments. When I pointed out the various fallacies in their (and her) arguments, I was called:

  • idiot
  • loon
  • retarded
  • moron
  • stupid
  • ill
  • buffoon

I’m surprised she left out “Village Atheist.”
Each of the tweets containing these insults were “liked” by many of her followers, some of whom piled on with insults of their own. My personal favorite was when one of her followers asked me, “Are you deliberately stupid, or can I sell you a bridge?”
The insults were so over-the-top that I actually found the entire experience rather funny. They were also validating, but not in the way Perez intended. In my experience, when an opponent relies so heavily on personal insults, it is often done to mask some deep feeling of inadequacy, such as not having the evidence or arguments to back up their claims. So when I find myself in the debate equivalent of a “street fight,” I just smile and think to myself, “I just won the debate.” But enough about her insults. Let’s move onto her fallacious arguments, which I will refute over the course of multiple posts.

 

Refutation of Anna Marie Perez

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bookmark_borderTheism, Atheism, and Dismissive Attitudes

Here are two hypotheses about theism, atheism, and dismissive attitudes.
H1: for (some / many / most) theists, how dismissive a theist is to atheism is inversely proportional to how familiar said theist is to the best, most robust arguments for atheism*
H2: for (some / many / most) atheists, how dismissive an atheist is to theism is inversely proportional to how familiar said atheist is to best, most robust arguments arguments for theism
* For purposes of this post, replace “atheism” with “the positive belief that God does not exist”

bookmark_borderFurther Evidence of the Lack of Civil Discourse: This Time a Theistic Example

Apparently there’s a new anti-atheist book out called The God Haters: Angry Atheists, Shallow Scholars, Silly Scientists, Pagan Preachers, and Embattled Evolutionists Declare War on Christians by Don Boys. To say that this book is an example of “unfriendly theism” appears to be a massive understatement.

I always chuckle when a complete stranger tells me that I hate God, as if I could hate something I don’t think exists. (A related idea is that atheists are “threatened by God” — see here.) But I’m not Boys’ target; the “New Atheists” are. Here are some excerpts from a blurb for his book:

Every atheist states his motives clearly: It must be illegal for any teacher, preacher, or parent to teach any child an exclusive salvation based on the death and resurrection of Christ and a literal Hell. It should be treated as child abuse. Boys asserts that the prohibition will be expanded to apply to adults and sees a major confrontation where real Christians will refuse to obey that obtrusive, offensive, and obviously unconstitutional law. ….

Dr. Boys characterizes these New Atheists as being tyrants and totalitarians in the pursuit of their desire to remake America in the old Soviet image, and suggests that blood will flow through the streets if children are taken from homes and Sunday schools and parents are charged with child abuse. ….

All atheists appear to be arrogant, angry, and asinine. Their ignorance is only exceeded by their arrogance. And evolution is a farce, a fraud, a fake, believed only by fools, fanatics, and fakers. …

It seems atheists confuse their opinions with facts and such a problem indicates mental instability.

I think I have proved that the “brights” are not very bright and have repeatedly taken a knife to a gun fight. No, not very bright. They are losers. Nor are they honest. They have decided to win this war against God in the public forum using any weapon at hand and lying is the closest weapon they have. They are unabashed, unashamed, and unrepentant blind—boasting—babbling—bombastic–buffoons.

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