The downfall of Richard Dawkins’ credibility

The atheist community, of which Richard Dawkins has been seen as a leader for many years, has been rocked by this latest controversy which has shown, once and for all, that just because you are atheist doesn’t mean you leave behind all your outdated attitudes and become consistently rational. If anything, Dawkins’ blatant sexism has only made him and his atheism look worse.

He wrote this in response to a complaint by Rebecca Watson about her and other women being mistreated and disrepected at atheist and freethought conferences.

http://scienceblogs.com/pharyngula/2011/07/always_name_names.php#comment-4295492

Dear Muslima

Stop whining, will you. Yes, yes, I know you had your genitals mutilated with a razor blade, and . . . yawn . . . don’t tell me yet again, I know you aren’t allowed to drive a car, and you can’t leave the house without a male relative, and your husband is allowed to beat you, and you’ll be stoned to death if you commit adultery. But stop whining, will you. Think of the suffering your poor American sisters have to put up with.

Only this week I heard of one, she calls herself Skep”chick”, and do you know what happened to her? A man in a hotel elevator invited her back to his room for coffee. I am not exaggerating. He really did. He invited her back to his room for coffee. Of course she said no, and of course he didn’t lay a finger on her, but even so . . .

And you, Muslima, think you have misogyny to complain about! For goodness sake grow up, or at least grow a thicker skin.

Richard

Talk about missing the point!

Others have denounced Dawkins and defended Rebecca on this, including Rebecca herself:

http://www.blaghag.com/2011/07/richard-dawkins-your-privilege-is.html

http://scienceblogs.com/pharyngula/2011/07/oh_no_not_againonce_more_unto.php

http://skepchick.org/2011/07/the-privilege-delusion/

Dawkins is dead wrong about this! Indeed, he couldn’t be more wrong if he were to suddenly endorse Young Earth Creationism. And since his position is so repulsive, the only honorable thing for him to do at this point is for him to state, in a public forum or even on his own website: “I’m sorry, I was being sexist and hypocritical and I will never make such foolish statements again.” And then shut the hell up afterwards for a long time.

Until he does that, I will never listen to him again.

An Open Letter to Lawrence Krauss

First, read this:

http://skepchick.org/2011/04/lawrence-krauss-defends-a-sex-offender-embarrasses-scientists-everywhere/

If you actually said what Rebecca Watson quoted of you, then you are one contemptible hypocrite. Not a true skeptic anymore, and certainly not an Honorable Skeptic like I try to be. Close friendship is no excuse for selling out!

Rebecca wrote:

Jeffrey Epstein is the infamous media mogul who was jailed in 2008 for paying underage prostitutes who said they were recruited by his aides. Some girls were allegedly flown in from Eastern Europe, their visas arranged by his bookkeeper.

Then she quotes you as saying:

Based on my direct experience with Jeffrey, which is all I can base my assessment on, he is a thoughtful, kind, considerate man who is generous to his friends, and all of the women I have known who have been associated with Jeffrey speak glowingly in the same words……jeffrey apparently paid for massages with sex… I believe him when he told me he had no idea the girls were underage, and I doubt that people normally are asked for or present a driver’s license under such circumstances… Moreover, I also believe that Jeffrey is an easy target for those who want to take advantage of him…

You sound like an IDIOT there! WTF is wrong with you?! I wonder if you are a sex offender yourself, to rationalize away the actions of Epstein and claim that he isn’t so bad because he has so many other “good” qualities. NO! A MURDERER is a MURDERER, and child rapist is a child rapist, period! And a skeptic is a skeptic also, and you are NOT one anymore!

http://dalehusband.wordpress.com/an-honorable-skeptic/

Another thing I am adamant about is my sense of honor, which I hold more dear to me than my life. It allows for no exceptions whatsoever. So if I have lost friends or even made enemies for standing up for my honor, so be it. If I see someone who comes across to me as a liar, a bully, or just plain rude and stupid, then I usually try to fight back. If I see someone doing or saying things that damage the credibility of the causes I happen to believe in, I deeply take offense at that because I want those causes to be protected, even at the expense of picking fights with those who are unworthy to support those causes. I believe in absolute standards of right and wrong and so I see no point in ever excusing something that is wrong because the wrongdoer is otherwise a friendly or nice guy. That’s how corruption sets in.

No matter how great the pressure, I feel that one must never “sell out”. It is being able to stand up to the urge to conform to the shallow desires and priorites of others who have a limited vision that makes one truly heroic. I choose my friends according to my ideals; I never bend my ideals for the sake of keeping friends.

That is MY standard, and I am saddened that it is not yours. Grow up!

With disgust,

Dale Husband

UUs need to stop being anti-Christian

For the record, I am very critical of the Christian religion. But my slamming it ends when I am dealing with a Christian who is open-minded enough to befriend and respect me in spite of my hostility towards his religion. Such a person, in turn, earns my respect. I only do battle with bigots among the Christians, not Christians in general. If I hated all Christians, I wouldn’t be a Unitarian Universalist (UU). UUs, even those that reject Christianity, are still Protestants. If not for the Protestant movement in Christianity, UUs as a denomination wouldn’t exist.

I spent one Sunday talking  with a young member of my UU church. She told me about how she visited a Baptist church while wearing a necklace with a rainbow on it, the rainbow being a symbol of gay rights. She was then confronted by the church’s pastor who demanded why she wore such a necklace. The girl then said that she liked other girls, which caused the pastor to give her a lengthy diatribe about how she was headed for hell for being gay.

Later, the UU girl brought to her church a Christian girl who was wearing a cross around her neck. The Christian was confronted by an old UU man who was quite hostile to her and an argument erupted. The UU girl was very embarrassed.

I think that old man should have faced some sort of punishment for his rude behavior. While many people, including myself, regard UU churches as a refuge from Christian fundamentalism, that does not mean we can lable all non-UU Christians as members of the “enemy”. Such an attitude never fails to disgust me. And when a UU teenager is smart enough to recognize the hypocrisy of one of her own elders, that actually gives me hope that the next generation of UUs will be more enlightened and pull UUs in general away from any form of fanaticism, including that of atheists and other anti-Christians. That simply has no place among the UUs!

Tribute to Nick Josh Karean

Strictly speaking, as an Honorable Skeptic, I do not expect to have followers of my ethical philosophy. Nor am I a blind follower of anyone (because then I wouldn’t be a skeptic). No, not even Carl Sagan, though he was a idol of mine in childhood and he was one of my direct influences in the creation of my standard of ethics. But there is one person whose vision so closely mirrors my own, and even exceeds it in many ways, that I must pay tribute to him as a brother in arms against ignorance, superstition, and self-serving bigotry: Nick Josh Karean.

http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=711717978

http://www.care2.com/c2c/people/profile.html?pid=957884325

http://www.youtube.com/user/NickJoshKarean

He lives in a nation split between Buddhists, Muslims, Christians and Hindus, among other religious communities, yet he was a fundamentalist Christian early in his life, just as I was. Eventually, however, he learned to get away from that and developed critical thinking. He is one of the strongest advocates for reason, science and objective truth I’ve ever known and is a vegan and animal rights advocate. He currently works in film making and visual effects.

I invite all who know me to also join with him.

P Z Myers screws up a critique of a religious writer

Myers said the following here:

http://scienceblogs.com/pharyngula/2010/08/julian_would_not_appreciate_th.php

I think I’m beginning to figure David B. Hart out. I’ve been totally mystified about why anyone would consider him a credible or interesting thinker since reading his essay belittling the New Atheists, which was dreary and wearying — I compared his prose style to that of Eeyore. But note: one of his central points in that essay was that these New Atheists aren’t as smart and brave as the Old Atheists, an idea that comes up again in a new essay.

Hart has now written a column praising Julian the Apostate, of all people. Julian was a very interesting person in history, a 4th century Roman emperor who resisted the Christianization of the empire begun by Constantine by openly rejecting Christianity and endorsing a revitalization of paganism. He’s something of a mixed bag for atheists: he’s a hero for opposing the dour old monotheism that was spreading through the culture, but also a bit of a flake for encouraging the old classical religions — he was not an atheist by any means. The novel by Gore Vidal, Julian, is an excellent introduction to the doomed rebellion against Christianity.

One thing Julian also was not is a friend to Catholicism, so it’s odd to see a Catholic writer heaping praise on him. But then you discover that Hart doesn’t admire him for his views or his intelligence or his cause (although he acknowledges them), it’s because Hart has the conservative disease of believing everything was better in the past, that there was a Golden Age, and that we’re living in an era of decline and defeat right now. To these cranky old farts of stodginess, we’re always living in perpetual decline. Julian is to be admired because he also thought the generations before him were better than the one he was living in.

As a scientist, one would think he would value accuracy over merely bashing religion for the fun of it. But he made a mistake and got busted for it!

Continue reading

Sinead O’Connor was both wrong and right.

In 1992, this Irish singer took a stand against the Roman Catholic Church for abusing children, yet when she did so, she failed to make a connection to her audience. Instead of  just telling people what the problem was, she tried to shock people as a way of getting their attention. That only damaged her career.

Soon afterwards, she made an public appearance where she was booed by the audience. They simply did not understand or  appreciate what she’d been trying to warn them about.

Nearly two decades and many more abused children later, O’Connor corrected herself with an appearance on CNN. By now, most people were ready to listen to her and she spoke about the issue with grace and understanding, as she should have done in the first place.

Let this be an object lesson for activists of all types: You CANNOT force people to listen to what they are simply not ready to hear, and both timing and method are crucial to make your case. Ripping up a picture of the Pope did no good. Ripping up the Pope in writing or speech detailing what he may have done wrong does and always will do good.

Bill O vs Keith O, Part 2

This is the direct sequel to this earlier blog entry:

http://dalehusband.wordpress.com/2009/08/11/the-feud-between-keith-olbermann-and-bill-oreilly/

The feud between these TV news titans came to a head on June 1, 2009. The previous day, Dr. George Tiller, who O’Reilly had stigmatized for years as “Tiller the baby killer” because he was one of the few doctors who provided late-term abortions, was shot to death at his Lutheran church by an anti-abortion fanatic.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Assassination_of_George_Tiller

That prompted Bill O’Reilly to attempt some damage control:

At the same time, Keith Olbermann was dealing with the situation in his own way. He made his most bitter attack against O’Reilly and FOX News yet, accusing them of responsibility for Tiller’s death, and declared that FOX News needed to be subjected to a “quarantine”.

Thus, he made the decision to retire his mocking of O’Reilly, merely being content to quote his words. Frankly, I would have done the same. The whole situation was just too disgusting to make fun of. 

And that’s where it stood until July 31, when this article was published in the New York Times:

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/08/01/business/media/01feud.html?_r=1

Voices From Above Silence a Cable TV Feud

Virginia Sherwood/NBC, left; Steve Fenn/ABC

Keith Olbermann of MSNBC Bill O’Reilly of the Fox News Channel regularly trade swipes at each other on their cable news shows.

Published: July 31, 2009
It was a media cage fight, televised every weeknight at 8 p.m. But the match was halted when the blood started to spray executives in the high-priced seats.

For years Keith Olbermann of MSNBC had savaged his prime-time nemesis Bill O’Reilly of the Fox News Channel and accused Fox of journalistic malpractice almost nightly. Mr. O’Reilly in turn criticized Mr. Olbermann’s bosses and led an exceptional campaign against General Electric, the parent company of MSNBC.

It was perhaps the fiercest media feud of the decade and by this year, their bosses had had enough. But it took a fellow television personality with a neutral perspective to help bring it to at least a temporary end.

At an off-the-record summit meeting for chief executives sponsored by Microsoft in mid-May, the PBS interviewer Charlie Rose asked Jeffrey Immelt, chairman of G.E., and his counterpart at the News Corporation, Rupert Murdoch, about the feud.

Both moguls expressed regret over the venomous culture between the networks and the increasingly personal nature of the barbs. Days later, even though the feud had increased the audience of both programs, their lieutenants arranged a cease-fire, according to four people who work at the companies and have direct knowledge of the deal.

In early June, the combat stopped, and MSNBC and Fox, for the most part, found other targets for their verbal missiles (Hello, CNN).

“It was time to grow up,” a senior employee of one of the companies said.

The reconciliation — not acknowledged by the parties until now — showcased how a personal and commercial battle between two men could create real consequences for their parent corporations. A G.E. shareholders’ meeting, for instance, was overrun by critics of MSNBC (and one of Mr. O’Reilly’s producers) last April.

“We all recognize that a certain level of civility needed to be introduced into the public discussion,” Gary Sheffer, a spokesman for G.E., said this week. “We’re happy that has happened.”

The parent companies declined to comment directly on the details of the cease-fire, which was orchestrated in part by Jeff Zucker, the chief executive of NBC Universal, and Gary Ginsberg, an executive vice president who oversees corporate affairs at the News Corporation.

Mr. Olbermann, who is on vacation, said by e-mail message, “I am party to no deal,” adding that he would not have been included in any conversations between G.E. and the News Corporation. Fox News said it would not comment.

Civility was not always the aim of Mr. Olbermann and Mr. O’Reilly, men who, in an industry of thin skins, are both famous for reacting to verbal pinpricks. Both host 8 p.m. programs on cable news in studios a few blocks apart in Midtown Manhattan.

The conservative-leaning Mr. O’Reilly has turned “The O’Reilly Factor” into a profit center for the News Corporation by blitzing his opponents and espousing his opinions unapologetically. He found his bête noire in the liberal-leaning Mr. Olbermann, the host of MSNBC’s “Countdown,” who saw in Mr. O’Reilly a regenerating target he nicknamed the “Bill-o the Clown.”

The 6-foot-4 Mr. Olbermann started sniping regularly at the also 6-foot-4 Mr. O’Reilly in late 2005, sometimes making him the subject of the “Countdown” segment, the “Worst Person in the World.” Mr. O’Reilly was also a stand-in for the perceived offenses of the top-rated Fox News.

By punching up at his higher-rated prey, Mr. Olbermann helped his own third-place cable news show. “Honestly, I should send him a check each week,” he remarked to a reporter three years ago. Fox noticed. Mr. Murdoch remarked to Esquire last year that “Keith Olbermann is trying to make a business out of destroying Bill O’Reilly.” Mr. O’Reilly refused to mention his critic by name on the “Factor,” deeming him a “vicious smear merchant,” but he regularly blamed Mr. Zucker for “ruining a once-great brand,” NBC.

In late 2007, Mr. O’Reilly had a young producer, Jesse Watters, ambush Mr. Immelt and ask about G.E.’s business in Iran, which is legal, and which includes sales of energy and medical technology. G.E. says it no longer does business in Iran.

Mr. O’Reilly continued to pour pressure on its corporate leaders, even saying on one program last year that “If my child were killed in Iraq, I would blame the likes of Jeffrey Immelt.” The resulting e-mail to G.E. from Mr. O’Reilly’s viewers was scathing.

The messages hit nerves on both sides. Mr. Immelt remarked to MSNBC staff members last summer that he would “never forgive Rupert Murdoch” for Fox’s behavior, according to two people who were present. In private phone calls, the Fox News chairman, Roger Ailes, told NBC officials to end the attacks.

In February, Mr. Zucker told Newsweek what he had told Mr. Olbermann privately: “I wish it weren’t so personal.” The previous year, Mr. Murdoch said that Mr. O’Reilly “shouldn’t be so sensitive” to the attacks lobbed by MSNBC.

Over time, G.E. and the News Corporation concluded that the fighting “wasn’t good for either parent,” said an NBC employee with direct knowledge of the situation. But the session hosted by Mr. Rose provided an opportunity for a reconciliation, sealed with a handshake between Mr. Immelt and Mr. Murdoch.

But like any title fight, the final round could not end without an attempted knockout. On June 1, the day after the abortion provider George Tiller was killed in Kansas, Mr. Olbermann took to the air to cite Mr. O’Reilly’s numerous references to “Tiller, the baby killer” and to announce that he would retire his caricature of Mr. O’Reilly.

“The goal here is to get this blindly irresponsible man and his ilk off the air,” he said.

The next day, Mr. O’Reilly made the extraordinary claim that “federal authorities have developed information about General Electric doing business with Iran, deadly business” and published Mr. Immelt’s e-mail address and mailing address, repeating it slowly for emphasis.

Then the attacks mostly stopped.

Shortly after, Phil Griffin, the MSNBC president, told producers that he wanted the channel’s other programs to follow Mr. Olbermann’s lead and restrain from criticizing Fox directly, according to two employees. At Fox News, some staff members were told to “be fair” to G.E.

The executives at both companies, it appears, were relieved. “For this war to stop, it meant fewer headaches on the corporate side,” one employee said.

Tensions still simmer between the two networks, however, and staff members have been unwilling or unable to stop the strife altogether. This week, for instance, the Fox host Glenn Beck called Mr. Obama a racist, prompting rebukes on a number of MSNBC shows. But for now, the daily back and forth has quieted.

“They’ve won their respective constituencies,” said a former member of MSNBC’s senior staff. “They don’t need to do this anymore, really.”

Olbermann was returning from a two week vacation. When he resumed hosting his show on August 3, he addressed that article directly:

He must have been furious! Had he kept his word and never made fun of Bill O’Reilly again, it would have made him look like a corporate shill, not a legitimate newsman. So in this case, he had to break his word in order to preserve his credibility!

And his action proved to be justified on August 11, when O’Reilly attacked General Electric the parent company of MSNBC:

Thus it appears there was no deal on the side of O’Reilly and FOX News as well. Olbermann shot back the next evening:

So now, I have just one question: Has Brian Stelter been fired from the New York Times yet?

Oh and by the way, Keith Olbermann would not need to do damage control if someone was insane enough to kill Bill O’Reilly. He already denounced one such threat made against his rival on August 19, 2008. That’s right, ONE YEAR AGO!

And that’s why Olbermann is the better man.

The feud between Keith Olbermann and Bill O’Reilly

I first took notice of Keith Olbermann when I happened to see a video on YouTube of him condemning President Bush for his conduct during the Iraq War.

I thought that was quite amazing, but then I saw these special reports on Bill O’Reilly, which totally blew me away!

You can’t get more damning than that! There are only two possibilities: Either Olbermann slandered Bill O’Reilly (in which case Bill O and FOX News should have sued Keith O and MSNBC as a matter of honor), or he told the truth (in which case FOX News should have fired Bill O). There is no third option. The fact that no slander lawsuit was ever filed and that O’Reilly works at FOX News to this day shows beyond all reasonable doubt that FOX News is a channel with no integrity whatsoever.

Here’s another example of Olbermann busting  O’Reilly for falsehoods relating to World War II:

And unlike Bill O, who never makes an apology for his mistaken statements, Keith O does! One evening, he slammed New York Times managing editor Bill Keller for not firing a reporter who had not only printed a false story, but had committed plagerism to boot!

But the very next night, Keith O apologized for his condemnation of Keller. Appearantly, Olbermann had never worked at that newspaper before and knew nothing beforehand about how it was run. So he practiced what he preached!

There is no question that MSNBC is slanted towards the Liberal perspective. I suspect that was done because of FOX News appealing so much to right-wingers, so MSNBC had to balance it out. FOX News certainly has no business calling itself “fair and balanced”, nor does Bill O’Reilly have any business calling his show a “no spin zone”. Look at how arrogantly he dealt with Richard Dawkins:

….and then with Kirk Cameron, treating him with kid gloves while continuing to bash Dawkins:

And he even got into a shouting match with Geraldo Rivera over illegal immigration and drunk driving! How unprofessional!

Meanwhile, Olbermann took on Wal-Mart for several days to expose its terrible wrongdoing towards a disabled former employee:

Until Wal-Mart was forced to back down:

Now, those blind and moronic FOX News fans who call Olbermann a liar, without specifying what he lied about, are YOU going to file a slander lawsuit against him? Is anyone? If not, SHUT UP! In matters of credibility and honor, Keith Olbermann beats anyone at FOX News hands down! The only reason you distrust Olbermann is political prejudice, the irrational assumption that somehow Conservatives have a monopoly on truth and virtues and therefore anyone non-Conservative must be misguided, dishonest, even evil. WRONG! Grow up and deal with real life and not the nationalistic crap you’ve been spoon fed since you were babies!

When I was a child, I had absolute faith in God, in my parents and my country, like most children tend to have. In 1979, I would watch the news and see reports about American hostages being taken in Iran, about the Shah being deposed, and about Iranians chanting “Death to America!”, and I couldn’t understand why. What had we Americans ever done to Iran? I got the impression that the Iranians were evil people who hated us just because we were different.

But years later, I attended college and it wasn’t until then that I finally learned the truth: that in 1953, we Americans, through the CIA, had helped overthrow a democratically elected Prime Minister of Iran and allowed the Shah to take absolute power there. Why? Because that Prime Minister had attempted to nationalize the oil fields owned and operated by British and American oil companies, in HIS OWN COUNTRY! WHAT ARROGANCE AND HYPOCRISY WE DISPLAYED BACK THEN! NO WONDER THE IRANIANS WERE SO ANGRY! But in 1979, these disgraceful facts were never revealed by the mainstream media. The implication was that the Islamic Revolution of Iran had occured for no logical reason. But that was a lie of omission.

If someone like Keith Olbermann had been around in 1979 reporting the political news and slamming reporters of other networks for screwing with the truth, perhaps we would have learned the truth about the Iranian situation much sooner and we the people would not have been stupid enough to elect Ronald Reagan as the next President of the United States.

In any case, it was me learning the truth about Iran and what we did to it that made me reject forever the Conservative Republican politics of my parents and most of my other relatives. I wised up, and it’s about time millions of Americans did also and stopped acting like SHEEP being led to their slaughter by the pied pipers of FOX News and the Republican leaders.

Keep up the good work, Keith Olbermann. This Honorable Skeptic salutes you and hopes to see you on the air for many years to come!

VenomFangX, the biggest liar on YouTube!

VenomFangX, aka Shawn, is a teenager (or at least appears to be one) and self-styled Christian evangelist who has made a total @$$ of himself on YouTube for at least a couple of years. He has gained quite a following among his fellow Christians there, as well as redicule and scorn from skeptics who have had the misfortune of dealing with him. And in a battle with one user in particular named ThunderfOOt, he got totally clobbered for engaging in violations of the YouTube terms of service and for legal reasons was forced to admit his wrongdoings on a video for all to see.

 

Now, if this “Christian” had any sense of honor or humility whatsoever, you would expect him to never bother with Thunderf00t again. But instead, he has just pulled this stunt:

Shawn, Shawn, SHAWN! Ray Comfort is no match for Thunderfoot, and that’s obvious. For you to call Thunderfoot wrong when YOU are the one who engaged in dishonorable behavior against him is totally bogus!

You are a FRAUD and so is your religion, period! If you cannot learn from your mistakes and just GROW UP and live like a man and not like a little boy, you can GO FUCK YOURSELF!

In the description of his video, VenomFangX says:

“Thunderf00t displayed all the weaknesses in the naturalistic philosophy. It robs people of a basic appreciation and value of human life over that of animals, and ultimately all life is seen as nothing more than complex machinery with our consciousness being little else than a spark of electricity. When morality and ethics are brought up, it is impossible for Thunderf00t to articulate a coherent answer, after all, speaking of right and wrong according to an electrical current is pretty silly, don’t you think, Thunderf00t?”

No, what is silly is you engaging in such a lame strawman. The notion that life is merely glorified chemistry is exactly what modern science has revealed over the past few centuries, and if you are too much of a coward to deal honesty with that, that’s your problem. It need not be anyone else’s.

Who are you to assume that because we are an assembly of extremely complex molecules, we have been robbed of anything? That is entirely an unfounded assumption on your part. If you need your delusional religion to feel that you have some dignity in your life, then YOU are the one that is robbed……of rational thinking! People are valuable because we as a species are unique, just as every species is unique and adapted to their environments and lifestyles. You don’t need religion at all to live in harmony with your fellow men or with other species. You just don’t! And how can you imply that putting man on the same level of value with animals somehow makes man worthless? Do you need us all to be as arrogant as you to feel better about yourself? What a terrible weakness!

No wonder your religion is dying, hypocrite!

UPDATE (Jan 7, 2010): After another round of dishonorable behavior, VenomfangX has been called out by another YouTube user, dprjones:

Think he will listen this time? I think not.

Why debates are often unethical in nature

Today, I saw this statement in Care2:

http://www.care2.com/c2c/groups/disc.html?gpp=7939&pst=1030979

there are some discussions pre-loaded with so much faulty premises and inaccuracies and false assumptions, that you just don’t know where to begin. these are the ones that i find are normally too exhausting to get involved in, and the chances of anything constructive coming out of it is extremely small, given that the biased starting premise indicates little to no desire to entertain understanding rather than confrontation. one cannot have a fruitful discussion about another worldview by being firmly anchored in another. so people who do that can’t provide any kind of useful exchange. take it from someone who actually knows at least two worldviews, and can see the one from the other interchangeably.

i’ve always disliked debates in school, you know. even though my teachers are forever nominating me on debate teams. the silliness of picking whatever side of whatever topic with the pre-intention of ensuring your side prevails whatever the truth is, is too philosophically pointless for me to overlook.

It’s not only “philosophically pointless”, it’s downright dishonest, yet most people debate in just that way.

Usually, I don’t. When I debate, I am open to being proven wrong because I ALWAYS rely on FACTS for my positions, not dogma.

http://dalehusband.wordpress.com/2007/07/21/an-honorable-skeptic/

(((Because I am honorable, I sometimes willingly concede points made by my opponents in debates with them. This should never be seen as a sign of weakness. When I know I am right about something, I will fight like a pit bull to prove my case and defeat my opponent because in some cases I do see my battles here as a struggle between light and darkness, good and evil, ignorance and knowledge. But I am also willing at times to listen to my opponent and consider his point of view, especially if that person is known by me to be honorable. If we do not listen to others, how can we ever grow in knowledge?)))