I’ve decided to disrupt my totally erratic and inconsistent posting “schedule” to write a special response to this amazing work of art blog post on “Godless Mom‘s” blog: “Christians are Mentally Ill“, by @virtuarat.
I’m not entirely sure what inspired Godless Mom to allow this kind of nonsense on her blog, but after interacting with @virtuarat a little bit on twitter, he assured me that he was using “the word ‘retarded’ in its truest sense“, it is not meant to be insulting, and he does stand by the use of “the word retarded“. And by “retarded”, he means “delay the development or progress of; hinder or impede“.
So, in his post, @Virtuarat attempted to lay out his case as to why Christians are delayed, hindered or impeded in their development.
Go ahead and read it.
– He mentions something about contradictions
– Something confused regarding the Council of Nicea
– Has a meme that says the Bible is “a good book of children’s stories”
– He grabbed 3 verses in an attempt to show something about Biblical morality
– Compares Christians to a child having a tantrum
– Asserts that the “purpose of organized religion” is “power, money and control” by using “the threat of eternal damnation” over the people’s heads
– Essentially says that religious people have been indoctrinated since they were children
– and concludes with “What’s the difference between a Christian and an Atheist? The Atheist grew up!”
Well, there you have it folks. A rock solid argument showing exactly how Christians are retarded. Oh wait. Nevermind.
This post doesn’t show that at all.
This is nothing more than a short rant about Christianity that concludes with “The Atheist grew up”, and the Christian did not.
– He doesn’t show that Christianity is false.
– He doesn’t address any of the evidence for Christian theism (more on this later)
– He doesn’t make any sort of case against theism.
– His conclusion doesn’t even follow the shallow criticisms.
– He doesn’t even repeat the “there is no evidence for gawwd” mantra.
From what I can tell, the argument is as such:
1. I think Christianity is false.
4. Therefore, Christians are retarded.
To be honest, I don’t care if this random person thinks that when we Christians “grow up”, we’ll embrace atheism. But there’s a larger problem here; and that is this attempt by many ‘[totally unreasonable] atheists‘ to simply label religious people as “brainwashed”, “retarded”, “mentally challenged” or in one way or another, simple minded and intellectually inferior to the all-wise and grown-up atheists.
You aren’t doing anybody any favors by defining them as intellectually inferior, and placing yourself on a pedestal. Even when you try to justify your position by calling your opponent “retarded”, “mentally challenged”, “brainwashed”, or “pretending to know things you don’t know”, you are defining your opponent into irrationality.
Is your goal to actually move the discussion forward?
Or is your goal to halt the discussion by calling your opponent names and accusing him of being able to think properly?
If you fall into the latter category, you really need to rethink your priorities. It seems quite pretentious to say that you are intellectually superior to *all christians*, simply because you are an atheist.
It may turn out that Christianity is false.
“You must show that a man is wrong before you start explaining why he is wrong. The modern method is to assume without discussion that he is wrong and then distract his attention from this (the only real issue) by busily explaining how he became so silly.”