The Purpose of this Blog

by Luke Muehlhauser on March 6, 2009 in General Atheism

In my last post, I attacked the perverse morals fostered by the evangelical community, including those evident in one of their spokesmen, William Lane Craig (whom I have praised elsewhere).

Reader “Darius” commented:

This could be interpreted as an ad homonym [sic] attack on Craig and evangelicals. Look, Craig and the evangelicals endorsed the stupid guy! So, does that make Craig and the evangelicals stupid too? Just not a good argument.

I did not at all imply that Craig’s arguments were wrong because he says ugly stuff. Rather, I simply pointed out that he says ugly stuff, and remarked at how badly Christianity can twist one’s morality – even to the point of condoning genocide, rape and torture!

Darius continues:

It’s also a little hard swallowing your point when you appeal to such “entertainers” as “comedian” “Jon” Stewart. Come on man. Do you want us to take you seriously or what?

I did not quote Jon Stewart as an expert, or even as giving an argument. I quoted a piece of rhetoric: “Stop, stop, stop, stop hurting America.” Am I not allowed to quote?

I’d expect more from a guy who claims that he’s going to show us all how to defeat William Lane Craig! If this is one of your examples then I’m not impressed, nor have that much hope in you.

My post had nothing to do with defeating Craig’s arguments.

These complaints reminds me of Dinesh D’Souza’s reaction to the recent atheist bus & billboard campaigns:

What is striking about these slogans is the philosophy behind them.  There is no claim here that God fails to satisfy some criterion of scientific validation.  We hear nothing about how evolution has undermined the traditional “argument from design.”  There’s not even a whisper about how science is based on reason while Christianity is based on faith.

Instead, we are given the simple assertion that there is probably no God, followed by the counsel to go ahead and have fun.

Are atheists expected to give rational argument and scientific evidence on billboards? That’s not the point of a billboard, and of course no developed argument could fit on a billboard. Moreover, Dinesh does not seem to have a problem with the (much more numerous) Christian billboards that also offer no evidence or argument.

The Purpose of this Blog

So, about this blog. Sometimes the purpose of this blog is to provide argument and evidence for my positions. Sometimes, it’s not. It makes no sense to criticize my non-argumentative posts as if they were giving an argument.

The purpose of this blog is to share my thoughts about atheism and religion. I provide argumentation, opinion, scathing criticism, praise, inspiration, funny videos, jokes, history, indexed resources, conversations, reviews, and more.

So, readers: I appreciate your criticism. Really, I do. I love criticism. It was criticism that freed me from the mental slavery of Christianity. It was criticism that debunked my political libertarianism. Criticism continually makes my life better. So keep it coming.

But, please try to make your criticism relevant. Don’t criticize non-argumentative posts for their lack of argumentative rigor and completeness. Don’t rebut my criticism as an ad hominem attack unless I actually say that a person’s faults are reason to reject their arguments (which, unless I go senile, I will never do.)

So, let me give some examples of good criticism from my commenters:

1. On my post about how Mormonism in the 20th century outpaced the growth of early Christianity, atheist “jeffrey” pointed out that the birth rate of the 20th century was faster than the birth rate of the 1st century, and that may have given Mormonism one advantage. I’m still looking to track down some actual numbers.

2. On one post, I wrote that many religions had fallen to atheism, but “Samuel Skinner” pointed out that other faiths have fallen to other faiths, like Christianity. This made me clarify what I meant: that atheism had survived while thousands of religions have died.

3. Reader “cartesian” posted a question on one post, which led me to write an entire post in response, which in turn led to several comments between us and perhaps another post in the future.

Readers: I do love criticism, but please keep it relevant and useful. Thanks.

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