Derision

floatingegg
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Derision

Sam Harris promotes conversational intolerance, but he is a civil speaker, even when addressing his most offensive critics. I support the use of reductio ad absurdum when addressing arguments, but I think we should avoid inflammatory ad hominems.

Agree? Disagree? Violent responses?


Sapient
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Re: Derision

floatingegg wrote:
I think we should avoid inflammatory ad hominems.

I agree. Ad hom is unnecessary. Generally if a person makes a rational person feel the need to ad hom, the truth is often much more insulting. For example all theists are either ignorant, dishonest, or both. Not ad hom... just fact. And I bet they're fuckin insulted, but more importantly thinking for a change. Eye-wink

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shorty
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Re: Derision

Sapient wrote:
floatingegg wrote:
I think we should avoid inflammatory ad hominems.

I agree. Ad hom is unnecessary. Generally if a person makes a rational person feel the need to ad hom, the truth is often much more insulting. For example all theists are either ignorant, dishonest, or both. Not ad hom... just fact. And I bet they're fuckin insulted, but more importantly thinking for a change. Eye-wink

id also like to add that almost all of them are sucky debaters

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GrimJesta
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Derision

Most people in general are sucky debaters. The ratio is the same no matter which side of the fence you're on. This is why everyone needs to vote for me when I become Emperor. By "vote" I really mean "kneel before..."

Laughing out loud

-=Grim=-

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shorty
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yeah but at age ten i was already better at debating than half of all the theists

now im better than all of them lol

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applesforadam
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Derision

Part of the problem is many atheists see the issue as black and white and approach theists that way. It is unquestionably benefitial for people like Sam Harris to do what he does, but we must also remember that he is doing this on a HUGE scale. The average atheist does not go on network news shows and debate theists on national TV in front of hundreds of thousands of people. Ideas such as his are crucial as a means of forcing the debate into the public realm, but when dealing with theists on a more personal level, we can't simply attack their beliefs and expect to make any progress. What Mr. Harris (Dr. Harris?) and others publishing views like his are doing is providing the rest of us with an open door to openly discuss these issues. He may be protrayed as the devil by theists, but to us he is planting the seeds of disbelief. It is up to the rest of us to nurture these seeds in order to let these ideas blossom in the realm of public opinion and conversation. As hard as it is sometimes to not tell a theist he is worshipping a folktale and/or patronize him with comments like "god is dead" or berate him for having no concept of what the rules of forming a logical argument are, we must sometimes swallow our pride and take smaller steps when needed. After all, the World Trade Center buildings weren't built in a day, but it only took a group of assholes a few hours to destroy them.

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