An Open Letter to the South

AN OPEN LETTER TO THE SOUTH

by The Bo$$

I’d like to do a Peter Fredson-style article on how I feel about the South…

I think the Southern States (Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, & Texas) need to realise a few things:

  • ‘Most’ is not a synonym for ‘all’, as in ‘most people believe in God’ != ‘all people believe in God’
  • Scientific theory != Cockamamie theory
  • Just because you think something is the right thing to do does not give you the power to blow past authority and do it anyway, as with the Terry Schaivo case and the Iraq War
  • Muslims != Terrorists
  • The Bible is not meant to be taken as fact

Also, stop the whole forcing religious beliefs down everyone’s throats via Intelligent Design. ‘But I don’t need no edumacation; I get it from the Bible’, you say. That’s why you lost the civil war.

In conclusion, get with the 21st century. It’s nice here. You’ll be happier.

79 thoughts on “An Open Letter to the South

  1. Oy.

    Jesus is how the South lost the civil war?  Here all this time I thought it was brilliant military tactics by the Union, coupled with a solid leadership, and a healthy dose of “Mo’ money.”  [among other things… never once did I see religion come into play]

    But the rest of the post is beautiful.  Make sure Southerners aren’t making base assumptions, while professing one of your own.

    What is it the guinness guys say?  Oh, ya… BRILLIANT!

  2. Yeah, but Mexico would kick them out after getting tired of them misdispronunciatin‘ all the spanish words wrong, and with that horrible drawl… Then they would become a 4th world country isloated until some ambassodor tries to de-isolate the country but gets kicked out on account of he mentioned evolution in a casual conversation once, causing all the townfolk to gather in the Townsquare, taking a break from their usual cross-burning and inter-family relations to drive the city slicker out of town back to meximico or North USA or wherever the hell he came from, only to kill each other after someone says ‘maybe he’s right…’

    …you get the picture

  3. True, true, true, and true, but the bible was meant to be taken as a fact, whether it’s true or not, or whether you believe it or not.

    I always thought evolution was more of a “Cockamamie theory” than Intelligent Design.

    Those religious folk you speak of would have more of a right to complain of secularism being shoved down their throats than the other way around.

  4. Actually, the Bible as literal document is a relatively new viewpoint. There was a time when pretty much every Christian considered it to be more allegory in nature than literal truth. Even today strict literalism is a minority viewpoint held by certain Christian sects.

    If you think Evolution is more cockamamie than Intelligent Design then I’d hazard to guess that you’ve probably not bothered to read up much about either topic.

  5. Actually, the Bible as literal document is a relatively new viewpoint.

    There’s a fascinating discussion about the evolution of the literal interpretation of the Bible in “The Battle for God” by Karen Armstrong, a tour de force history of fundamentalism in Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.  She points out that fundamentalism of all flavors arises as a kind of digging-in-of-heels as standards of education rise, and to serve political purposes.

    …but the bible was meant to be taken as a fact, whether it’s true or not, or whether you believe it or not.

    TexasMarine, there I agree with you.  But it was written at a time when people thought the earth was flat, and for most of them, was a worldview that offered them more dignity than what went before.

    Nowadays, we know better, and can put our Bibles down, reverently to be sure, and move on.

  6. As a lifelong resident of the deep south, I can safely state that secularism has NEVER been shoved down my throat.  Was I forced to pray twice a day in my sixth grade public school classroom long after this was declared unconstitutional?  Yup.  Have I been approached at gas stations, various store parking lots, concerts and businesses by freaks handing out religious tracts and asking if I’ve been saved?  Yup.  Do they actually show up at the door to my residence on a regular basis?  Yup.  Have I been verbally accosted by coworkers regarding issues such as my chances of rotting in hell and prayer in public schools?  Yup.  Has my OWN SISTER visciously attacked me for responding to the religious garbage she cloggs my inbox with?  Uh huh.

    No Secular Humanist has ever approached me in the parking lot of Target.  No athiests come to my door and ask me to renounce all faith.  And yet, somehow even surrounded by this crap, I maintain my disbelief in fairies, the easter bunny and God.

  7. Loris- have you accepted Darwin as your personal saviour? I did, and it changed my life.  No more pangs of guilt when I rob banks and rudely shove aside old ladies at the checkout.
    True, I don’t have Pie in the Sky when I Die.  But I can sleep as late as I want Sundays.

  8. “Loris- have you accepted Darwin as your personal saviour? “

    Um no.  I actually have no need for a personal saviour.  Which is kind of the point.  I don’t rob banks or shove aside old ladies either, as hard as that may be for a “Christian” to believe.

  9. Loris- I don’t mean to put words in Zilch’s mouth, but I’m pretty sure he was being facetious there.

    As long-time (former) resident of the south, I TOTALLY agree with you- the idea that anyone down there is getting secularism shoved down their throat is a joke. Most of the people making that complaint are freakishly unaware of just how throat-shovy they are. One of my first memories of Texas is pulling off of the highway towards our new neighborhood only to see a giant billboard with The Jesus glaring down at us under the words “Jesus is alive, and coming soon!” Once we got over our initial distate, we found it amusing to read aloud from the billboard whenever we saw it, providing the logical conclusion ourselves: “Jesus is alive, and coming soon…to a theater near you!” This was a little funnier before the whole “Passion” debacle.
     
    Of course, now that I understand the mentality of the local moralizers better than I did as a 13-year-old kid, I realize that a lot of them probably considered the billboard as a counterbalance to the “secular” ones advertising cigarrettes and booze. It’s easy to think the secular is being shoved down your throat when you get to define anything not overtly religious as an insidious attempt to secularize, and I’ve witnessed people do just that on countless occasions.

    PS You’d think there would been an equally evocative yet less suggestive phrase than “shoved down the throat” to describe the same phenomenon, but damned if I can think of one.

  10. You’d think there would been an equally evocative yet less suggestive phrase than “shoved down the throat

  11. but the bible was meant to be taken as a fact, whether it’s true or not, or whether you believe it or not.

    Was it really meant to be taken as fact? Both the old and new testament abound in allegory, parable and metaphor—all used illustrate some point about human nature or the relationship between god and humans. Seems odd that the actors of the old and new testament used abundant symbolic language and yet the books of the bible are thought (by some) to be written as literal fact.

    Eisegesis abounds within the literalist tradition—just try ot get a coherent interpretation of predestination (or anything else) out of a group of fundies.

    But then, I digress. . .

  12. If you guys ever find yourself on I-65 somewhere around the Alabama-Tennessee line, be sure to look out for the gigantic sign with a cutout devil sillouette and verbiage that reads “GO TO CHURCH…OR THE DEVIL WILL GET YOU!” It’s on some farmer’s land. He’s got a couple of other silly displays up too, but that one is by far the best. Oh, and “SEE ROCK CITY” while you’re around. wink

    I can’t believe they didn’t spell it “git chu”.

    On of the days I’m going to remember to take a picture so I can post it.

  13. Shelly wrote-

    Eisegesis abounds within the literalist tradition—just try ot get a coherent interpretation of predestination (or anything else) out of a group of fundies.

    Isn’t it ironic that fundies now commit eisegesis, when originally it was the Roman soldiers who wanted to “ice a Jesus”?

  14. Was it really meant to be taken as fact? Both the old and new testament abound in allegory, parable and metaphor

    True enough, Shelly. There are many levels of storytelling in the Bible, and I suspect that it’s meaningless to try to specify exactly how it was meant to be taken.

    One must remember that the Bible is a hodgepodge by many different authors, much of it passed down in oral tradition, and thus molded by many minds with many different worldviews and different axes to grind, long before being written down in the canonical versions we have today.

    Unless we believe that it was all inspired by God, we must ask “whose meaning?”

    If you ask me, though, I would guess that straightforward narratives such as Genesis were meant to be taken as fact, and that the parables were meant to be taken as, well, parables.  But we’ll never know for sure, unless God tells us.  I’m still waiting for Him to weigh in on this, but so far all I get are people who claim to know Him.  And since most of them also voted for Bush and say that the Earth is 6000 years old, I’ve sort of lost interest…

  15. Oh please, complaining secularism is getting shoved down your throat is like complaining that air is getting shoved down your throat. Look at the definition of secular. Technically any non-religious conversation or any non-religious thing someone says to you can be considered secularism. A conversation about computers, or cars, or whatever non-religious thing can be considered secularism. But what do I know…?

    When I was a Catholic, I never took the Bible as fact or knew any catholic that did. Even in Catholic High School Scripture classes they make no big deal out of saying that the Bible is not 100% fact, and that the RCC has accepted evolution.

  16. I thought it kinda odd that I was approached by missionaries in the parking lot of a WalMart in Meridian, Miss.  Looking to sell jesus where most people already have one.  Might as well sell sand to someone living on the beach.

    Not a JC sign, but on Hwy 105 in SE Texas, somebody has a homemade “Get U.S. out of the UN” sign up.

    Having lived in Mississippi, Louisiana, and currently Texas, Mississippi was the biggest Jesus sell, and south La was the least.  Sometimes I wonder if it has anything to do with the mix of Catholics and Protestants.  I do wonder about how much pressure my daughter’ll get from the jesus crowd here in DFW, since there seems to be more of the youth oriented jesus sell.

  17. If you guys ever find yourself on I-65 somewhere around the Alabama-Tennessee line, be sure to look out for the gigantic sign with a cutout devil sillouette and verbiage that reads “GO TO CHURCH…OR THE DEVIL WILL GET YOU!

  18. Actually, that’s JUST north of the Montgomery/Prattville area.  It’s hilarious, too.  I fully expect the Great Satan holding the scythe to actually move in a back-and-forth motion; alas, it is not to be.

    OMG, you’re right! I have my Nashville trips on 65 confused with my Auburn trips on 65. Whoops, sorry for the misinformation. (I’m not a stupid hick, I swear, I’ve just got a bad sense of direction)

    He’s got a John 3:16 billboard up, too, and a water wheel with some religious slogan.

    Yes! It’s kinda small and set off the road, I’ve never been able to make much out of it at 75mph, but the devil sign can’t be missed.

    I’m glad someone can corroborate this sighting, it’s almost stupid enough to sound made-up.

  19. Yes, sir, secularism in the denotative meaning of the word is broad and abounds with no objection from myself, but it’s the radicals that tick me off. Most people (at least those that I know) that don’t like religion, or aren’t in any way religious, couldn’t care less about a monument to the 10 commandments at a courthouse, but there are a select few that have been so tortured by the site of anything holding religious signifigance they feel a need to tear it down.

    Having a witness come to your door (and I’m not a big fan of them either) or being approached by an evangelist is not so burdensome as to make one want to do away with them all.

  20. I always thought evolution was more of a “Cockamamie theory

  21. TexasMarine- while there are radicals on both sides who want to do away with anyone who disagrees with them, I think you’ll find that most people here, believers and atheists, recognize that we’re all in the same boat, and want to coexist peacefully.  This means respecting boundaries.  And that is the rub.

    My father always told me “your right to swing your arm around ends at my nose”.  Unfortunately, in real life, our noses are in everyone else’s business, and there’s no obvious place to draw lines- no matter how you swing, someone’s going to get a bloody nose.  But it’s incumbent on all of us to not swing about so wildly that we capsize the boat.

    I’m with you about door-to-door proselytizing.  Sometimes it’s fun to debate them, and if I don’t feel like it, I just say “no thanks” and there’s no problem.

    Displaying the ten commandments in a courthouse, however, crosses my line, because a courthouse is an arm of the State, and the State has no business advocating religion in any way, shape, or form.

    The same thing goes for ID in public schools- it has no place in science classes.  Here in Austria, the public schools have science classes and religion classes (which are elective after 4th grade, with a choice of Catholic, Protestant, and Islam at our school).  Unlike many of my atheist friends, I think it’s not bad for kids to take classes in religion, taught by believers, as long as there’s a clear separation between religion and science.

  22. Phoenician in a time of Romans:
    “Where did the Big Sky Fairy come from?”

    Where did the tiny egg shaped ball of mass that resulted in the “big bang” come from? Or the supposed electrical impulses that spread the matter in the universe out like it is (plasmatology theory), or the big empty space that we call the universe? It takes a lot of faith to believe either theory, and that’s what they all are, theories. To mention ID in school as a theory I’d have no problem with, though even I wouldn’t advocate teaching it as fact because it’s a matter of faith.  I think the same of evolution.

  23. A reminder of the definition of evolutionary theory might be helpful as well, since, as has been stated ad nauseum here and elsewhere, THE THEORY OF EVOLUTION HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH THE BIG BANG THEORY. The theory of evolution doesn’t even address abiogenesis. All the theory of evolution does is explain how life on this planet developed AFTER it first appeared. Why don’t people get this? Why? Why?

    When will the lambs stop screaming?

  24. I apologize, Ulfrekr, I meant to use that in relation to the creation part of ID, not as an integral part of evolutionary theory.  Perhaps they are thought to be one in the same because of the way the subjects are taught in schools, that is, together as a unit or one immediately after the other.

    Using your own source, Boss:
    Theory –
    “A set of statements or principles devised to explain a group of facts or phenomena, especially one that has been repeatedly tested or is widely accepted and can be used to make predictions about natural phenomena.”  – I guess we can’t use that definition for either ID or evolution.

    “An assumption based on limited information or knowledge; a conjecture.” – seems fitting.

  25. Theory –
    “A set of statements or principles devised to explain a group of facts or phenomena, especially one that has been repeatedly tested or is widely accepted and can be used to make predictions about natural phenomena.

  26. With every comment TexasMarine leaves it becomes more and more obvious he hasn’t studied up on Evolution to any degree at all. Only someone ignorant of the mounds of evidence in support of it would try to claim that there isn’t any.

  27. Stop forcing bible info down your throat via inteligent design?  I’de like to comment on that, Bible information is like anything else in todays secular world, its there if you want to listen, just like TV, radio or whatever else.

    When you see a TV show on TV that you don’t like, what happens? You don’t watch correct?

    When you hear a song on the radio you don’t like, what happens? you change the station, correct? They aren’t being forced down your throat, they are option, just as listening to Gods word is, if you hear someone speaking of Christ and you don’t like it, don’t listen, thats your God givin’ right. To choose Christ or hell, we all have free will.

    And as far as people who believe in inteligent design not having an education, there are countless Ph.D scientists who are creationists and believe in the creation account in Genesis.

    The bible is indeed a literal history book on our origin, False religions such as evolution have deceived many, but the truth of creation is on the rise and more and more are learning of it.

    For more information on this subject goto google.com and type in Ken Ham.

    thanX for reading <><

  28. http://www.arn.org

    Access research network, I’de love to see you debating in this forum.lol

    Just click on forum at the top of the page, don’t be suprised of you get clowned so hard, with scientific fact you run from the board and never return.

    God bless <><

  29. They aren’t being forced down your throat, they are option, just as listening to Gods word is, if you hear someone speaking of Christ and you don’t like it, don’t listen, thats your God givin’ right. To choose Christ or hell, we all have free will.

    Perhaps not our throats, but what of those of public school students in the South and elsewhere?

    And as far as people who believe in inteligent design not having an education, there are countless Ph.D scientists who are creationists and believe in the creation account in Genesis.

    I hate to burst your bubble, but such scientists are in the minority.

    The bible is indeed a literal history book on our origin, False religions such as evolution have deceived many, but the truth of creation is on the rise and more and more are learning of it.

    If you wish to take the Bible literally, especially the Book of Genesis, that is your prerogative.  But as you have established before, it’s the “God givin’ right” of others to not do so.

    religion

    n 1: a strong belief in a supernatural power or powers that control human destiny; “he lost his faith but not his morality” [syn: faith, religious belief] 2: institution to express belief in a divine power; “he was raised in the Baptist religion”; “a member of his own faith contradicted him” [syn: faith]

    Source: WordNet ® 2.0, © 2003 Princeton University

    I fail to see how evolutionary theory qualifies as a religion, even a false one.  Clarify, if you will.

    Regarding your last comment, I assume you’re trying to defend the veracity of Creationism with the idea that it is becoming more widely accepted.  That’s a logical fallacy known as the appeal to popularity fallacy.

    Also, more people know of Creationism in all its myriad forms than evolution.  Nearly every civilization has or has had its own ideas as to how living things and their surroundings came about.  Yet, between Creationism and evolutionary theory, which one has reasoning and empirical evidence behind it?

  30. Creation and evolution can’t be physically proven, because you can’t correctly test the past, because its already happened.

    But people can look at the evidence, and make their own interpritation based on the current evidence.

    No one was there when God created the Universe,Earth etc.. however the Bible does say how it happened, and according to the bible it happened in 6 literal days, no more than 6 to 10K years ago.

    Evolution is nothing but a huge guess, imagined and unsubstantiated in every aspect.
    Where the bible’s accounts of history can be accounted for in some facts we see today, such as the global flood account in Genesis, scientists today find marine fossils atop of MT. Everest, A breed of fish thought by evolutionary scientists to be extinct for millions of years has been found to be alive today.

    http://www.answersingenesis.org/docs2005/0325Dino_tissue.asp

    Is a great article that refutes the idea of millions of years in my opinion.

    Commen sense says that for any functioning mechanism of nature etc…cloud formation and its purpose etc.. can’t happen by chance, it had to be designed inteligently. A watch implies a watch-maker.

    The fact the sun has been proven to be losing mass at even a slow rate, is enough for scientists to determine that the Earth could not be millions of years old, or the sun would have destroyed it, by its immense size and heat.

    Just because the scientific community is mostly made up of evolutionary scientists, does not mean that the creationist scientists are a minority, can you sunstantiate that statement?

    http://www.answersingenesis.org  http://www.apologeticspress.org are some fine web sites that have staff that are Ph.D scientists.
    I can provide a number of other sites that have staff that are Christian/creationist Ph.D scientists.

    I call evolution a religion because thats what it is, its believed without supporting scientific evidence, if you disagree with this, please present some evidence to evolution that proves evolution.

    Please don’t come at me, with I saw it on discovery channel, or parrot some statements off a false web site like talkorigins.

    Present some real evidence if you can.
    Evolution claims that our genetic structures DNA mutates and causes life to evolve to adapt to enviromental changes etc…
    However, mutations are nothing more than mistakes in our genetic structure, and all these mutations do is cause our bodies to decay and deteriorate, which supports the Genesis account of the fall of man.

    Need more clarification? reply and I’ll return.

    ThanX

  31. It’s clear that you’ve spent plenty of time studying the creationist websites because you’re throwing the same tired old links at us as the last guy who tried to argue against Evolution did.

    What you need to do now is go study up on Evolution for a bit because it’s obvious you’re a clueless moron on that topic. It’s not even worth wasting my time on you at this point. At the very least you should read through the archives here before you toss yet another link we’ve seen a hundred times before at us.

    Yet another perfect example of the poor quality of science education in this country.

  32. Double dipping for a moment because I wanted to mention how much I laughed out loud at this bit:

    Please don’t come at me, with I saw it on discovery channel, or parrot some statements off a false web site like talkorigins.

    Two words: Fuck you. Don’t try and tell us what sources we’re allowed to use if you’re going to use the same dumbass sources as the last idiot who tried your argument. The Discovery Channel and Talk.Origins at least have actual scientists behind them as opposed to idiots like Ken Ham. You repeatedly point out how so many people at Answers In Genesis have PhDs as if it supposed to make them an authority and then want us to reject our own PhDs as being “false.” Most of those morons you’re listening to have PhDs in THEOLOGY, not BIOLOGY.

  33. No one was there when God created the Universe,Earth etc.. however the Bible does say how it happened, and according to the bible it happened in 6 literal days, no more than 6 to 10K years ago.

    I have a book here that tells me that two gods stirred the ocean with a spear to create the Japanese islands and people, and that the first emperor of Japan was a direct descendant of a god.  I have another book that says an angel named Moroni brought tablets containing the word of God to a man named Joseph Smith.  One tells how an ice giant was slaughtered by the gods and that his body was used to create the earth.  And still another book tells me the world was created when the mountain Mandara was churned in the great Milk Ocean, and that the world will end in 428899AD.  A man in Waco Texas claimed the end of the world was near, citing the book of Revelations, and advocated polygamy.  There’s a book that said God created the world in six days and the first people were named Adam and Eve.  And another book, made not too long ago into a movie, tells me that an infant came to earth and had amazing powers far beyond the abilities of man, and that this baby was named Kal-El.  A man claimed to be the Messiah told of miracles he had performed, and asked his followers to go with him to Guyana.

    Which one should I believe?  And what reason do I have to believe one over the others?

    —Joe

  34. Whoa now, Les, I didn’t see lionheart throwing names and cursing.  Let posters post what they believe and then try to negate it with facts, not insults.  Most of the board here believes that evolutionary theory is correct, some believe in ID, and others like myself and lionheart believe in a literal translation of the 6 day creation.  Lionheart was not trying to be insulting, but WAS trying to support his/her point with what I thought was a decent argument.

    I haven’t gotten upset with all the talk about creation being wrong, and that IS part of my religion, so trying to debunker something that is, according to you, not in any way a religion or religious in nature should not get you so upset.

    I came to this blog a few nights ago because I wanted to get the perspectives of those outside the conservative circle I’m used to, and I have been mighty impressed by many of the posters here (most of which I disagree with), but your vulgarity is not helping your credibility.

  35. I just wrote a very scathing reply and I decided I’d just delete it, not because I give a shit if my cursing destroys my credibility, but because you’re not worth the effort TM.

    Seriously, if you think lionheart had a decent argument then you’re as full of shit as he is. How dare you two come here and try to dictate to me what’s right and what’s not and what I can use for sources for my argument or, for that matter, what the fuck I should get upset about. You have no clue how many times we’ve been over that stupid argument here.

    And it won’t matter anyway. You folks who buy into this Intelligent Design bullshit have this amazing ability to just ignore the evidence provided by competent scientist actually working in the field in preference for the word of a FAILED HIGH SCHOOL SCIENCE TEACHER TURNED EVANGELIST. It’s pathetic. It’s just as bad as all the morons who think a FAIL BALLROOM DANCE INSTRUCTOR (John Edward) CAN TALK TO THEIR DEAD RELATIVES. It doesn’t matter whether we can conclusively prove Evolution to you or not because even if we could you’d just stick your fingers in your ears and start singing, “LALALALALA! I CAN’T HEAR YOU!”

    So, please, explain to me why I should even bother wasting my time? Why should I even begin to hope that there might be the tiniest chance of educating you on something you refuse to be educated on? You can lead an idiot to the mounds of evidence, but you can’t make him accept it.

  36. I get the feeling this ain’t Lion-O’s first foray onto SEB.  Maybe it’s just the same cut ‘n paste proselytizing. 

    You’re a parrot, Lion-O.  You’ll get through your questions quicker if you just read the Kent Hovind thread.

  37. Just for the record, I think the idea of Intelligent Design is a cop-out and a concession, and like I said I believe in a literal 6 day creation.

    You shouldn’t hope to “educate” me, as if I were just some ignorant sheep (though you may think that I am), you should hope to be able to debate me and prove me wrong.  Your goal should be to first intrigue me and get me to want to learn before you try and “educate” me.

  38. TexasMarine,
    I can’t speak for Les, but if you take Ragman’s suggestion and read through the archives here at SEB, for instance the thread on Kent Hovind, you might get some idea why he responded as he did to lionheart and you.  He’s spent lots of time and energy addressing this issue, and after hearing the same tired arguments that have already been dealt with over and over again, I can understand being a mite pissed.

    I disagree with you, but I appreciate anyone who wants to be exposed to ideas they disagree with.  I also find it refreshing that you find ID to be a cop-out.  If I were a Christian, I would also believe in the Bible literally- it’s either the God-given truth, or it isn’t.

    If you want us to give our best shot at convincing you that the Bible is not literally true, though, you must be willing to do some work yourself.  As I said before, one problem is that science is more complicated than religion and thus harder to grasp. The scientific viewpoint is also often less convincing than the religious, because it has no pretension to being able to explain everything.  There’s no shortcut to belief in evolution- it requires study.

    Lionheart- if you want to engage us intelligently, go read the archives here and come back when you’ve got something that hasn’t been hashed through ad nauseum.  If that’s too much work, go suck eggs.

  39. I came to this blog a few nights ago because I wanted to get the perspectives of those outside the conservative circle I’m used to, and I have been mighty impressed by many of the posters here (most of which I disagree with), but your vulgarity is not helping your credibility

    If you really want to broaden your horizons, there’s a whole forum devoted to the evolution/creationism debate over at internet infidels forums.  As well as forums devoted to biblical history, science and skepticism, etc. etc.

    internet infidels forums

    And it’s moderated, as well, so you won’t have to read any nasty words, and people won’t be allowed to openly insult you, or lionheart.

    Don’t be surprised, however, if they demand that you support any assertions you may make with evidence.  Many of the people on that board are working scientists.  They like evidence, and they are pretty skilled at evaluating it.

    As for me, I’ve been reading these debates for years, and I’ve detected a pretty consistent pattern.  Creationists throw out bold assertions, which demand extensive amounts of research if one wishes to refute them and, when their arguments have been reduced to rubble, they jam their fingers in their ears and throw out some more bold assertions.

    As a couple of posters over on internet infidels pointed out, debating a creationist is like playing chess with a pigeon—he knocks over all the pieces, shits on the board, and then flies back to his flock, squawking of victory.

    Or, in a comparison that I think is actually more accurate, debating an IDer is like following around the victim of explosive diahrrea.  It takes them mere seconds to spray shit all over everything, while it takes scientists hours to clean up the mess.

    It’s easy to point at the flagellar motor and say “gee, that looks really complicated.  It must have been designed.”  It takes all of four seconds to do that.

    Actually coming up with evidence that demonstrates possible evolutionary explanations for the flagellar motor requires real research, time and money.  And of course, once it’s been mapped out (it has) the IDer just has to fall back on their default position “Ok, so that evolved, but have you seen this.”  *sigh*  Back to work.

    If you really want alternative perspectives, internet infidels is the place for you.  These guys -never- tire of dancing with creationists and IDers.  They play it like a blood-sport, though, so you might want to put on your pads before you go over there.

    ARN is a decent board, I suppose, if you feel overwhelmed at internet infidels.  As far as I know, ARN don’t make a habit of censoring dissenters, or banning them, which is pretty common at other sites that promote ID or literal creationism.  As a result, ARN you’ll hear mainly things that you can comfortably agree with, but you’ll also be exposed to a few posts from the minority posters there, which will disassemble most of what you’ve read. 

    If you read those particular posts with your eyes squinched up into little slits, though, you can make them pretty blurry, and that may help.

    ARN! We’ve got all the god of all the gaps you’ll ever need

    I’d warn you, though, that although ARN focuses primarily on Intelligent Design, they do try fairly diligently to divorce it from literal Biblical creationism, so you might not feel completely comfortable over there.

    either way, if you insist on spraying shit, don’t be surprised if noone’s in a great hurry to come along with a mop and bucket.  We’ve all done it before, and it gets tiresome.

    Oh, and the aig spew about the soft dinosaur tissue is already being disassembled over in the E/C forum at internet infidels.

  40. As a couple of posters over on internet infidels pointed out, debating a creationist is like playing chess with a pigeon—he knocks over all the pieces, shits on the board, and then flies back to his flock, squawking of victory.

    Or, in a comparison that I think is actually more accurate, debating an IDer is like following around the victim of explosive diahrrea.  It takes them mere seconds to spray shit all over everything, while it takes scientists hours to clean up the mess.

    *dies laughing*

    Will be back with a rebuttal to lionheart.

    Les: I’m sorry to hear about your situation.  I can’t put myself in your shoes, but I hope the stress doesn’t get to you too badly and that things start to change for the better soon.

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