Give it up, McIntosh

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Re: Re:

Postby Brian Jordan » Tue Aug 27, 2013 9:58 pm

Brian Jordan wrote:
a_haworthroberts wrote:Very polarised reviews here: http://www.amazon.co.uk/product-reviews ... ewpoints=1
Ah ah ah! And the star favourable review is by David Tyler who says the three scientists collectively have the authority to critique current theories of evolution. Well, he would say that, wouldn't he, being a creationist physicist who claims similar authority. Oh, I see I've commented on the review there already! :lol:
Oh, I see Tyler replied to my comment, last year. I only just noticed - I got a note from Amazon to say that Dr Stephen Moreton had added a comment. One that Tyler won't like any more than he did mine!
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Re: Give it up, McIntosh

Postby Peter Henderson » Tue Aug 27, 2013 9:59 pm

and what is your primary aim when debating YECs colmo ? Do you want them to become Christians who accept science, or are you trying to convince them of Atheism ? Which is more important ? I sometimes wonder.

YECs are no different in this respect. They often say their primary purpose is to covert people to Christianity but what if someone rejects YECism but is willing to accept the rest ?
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Re: Re:

Postby Peter Henderson » Tue Aug 27, 2013 10:04 pm

Brian Jordan wrote:
Brian Jordan wrote:
a_haworthroberts wrote:Very polarised reviews here: http://www.amazon.co.uk/product-reviews ... ewpoints=1
Ah ah ah! And the star favourable review is by David Tyler who says the three scientists collectively have the authority to critique current theories of evolution. Well, he would say that, wouldn't he, being a creationist physicist who claims similar authority. Oh, I see I've commented on the review there already! :lol:
Oh, I see Tyler replied to my comment, last year. I only just noticed - I got a note from Amazon to say that Dr Stephen Moreton had added a comment. One that Tyler won't like any more than he did mine!


Interesting he should mention his son Brian. I wonder where Luke disappeared to ?
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Re: Give it up, McIntosh

Postby colmo » Wed Aug 28, 2013 7:21 am

I'll answer in more detail this evening, but a few quick points:

- Peter was not 'attacked'; he made derogatory statements about the group he couldn't back up and was rightly excoriated for them. He was the one slinging mud first.
- The group does not promote 'Atheism' - Peter doesn't appear to understand it isn't a competing religion, it is a conclusion. We promote empiricism and rationalism, and we're happy to point out were religions transgress on these points.
- My own stance is against anti-science. That religion happens to be anti-scientific on some points I've repeatedly made, in a reasonable manner without answer by Peter or Michael, is not my fault.

I'll start a fresh thread to avoid disrupting existing ones.
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Re: Give it up, McIntosh

Postby cathy » Wed Aug 28, 2013 7:52 am

Some Atheists are just as bad Cathy.

The problem is not atheism or Christianity or Islam or whatever! The problem is extremists because extremists cling desperately to narrow ancient ideas that someone had at a certain point in time when the world was a very different place. More ignorant, more scary.

They ignore the fact that the world is ever changing and ideas (and knowledge and society) are fluid and more like rungs on a ladder to new thinking than fixed points in space and time.They ignore the fact that what held true and was possibly even forward looking and relevant at a certain point in time is now archaic and plain wrong - often not just scientifically but morally and logically. And extremism is not limited to religion, tho it has its fair share, it is also politics, feminism, any other ism including atheism. The vast majority of people from all groups are not extremists! And the vast majority of us from all groups find them ALL bizarre and embarrasing.

The issue at the Giants Causeway is one of science and fact versus creationist extremism. The fact that some people who go there will believe, as you and Michael do, that God had some grand design as of yet not understood hand in it and some will believe the opposite is taken as read by most people. Whatever anyone believes however, the facts remain the same. How the Giants Causeway came to be is driven by geology that holds true and is the same whatever someones other beliefs may be. It is the same for feminists as it is for misogynists, for right wing as for left wing and believer or atheist. Therefore that is all that should be there. Facts. Likewise evolution. We evolved the same way whether we are devout or atheist. All else is irrelevant to those facts.

The vast majority of people from all groups are NOT extremists and therefore are quite happy with that fact. They do not need to cling to a single idea to function, and can happily realise the world moves on.

Creationists are extremists and therefore I guess the way to tackle their not yet fully indoctrinated or non extremist members is to be aware that they are just pushing an ancient idea that somebody had 50 years ago cos they were scared of the world and of losing whatever influence they had in it. An idea that no longer has credibility if it ever did. I suppose It's to realise you're not fighting a religion or Gods word - just tackling a silly idea that a person once had. Just an ordinary rather scared person. And therefore to stop according it any sort of respect or inclusion at all and point that out - its just a persons idea and the world has moved on from that idea big time!!.

Religion needs to tackle that archaic idea in the churches. But outside it is a fight to prevent them getting their sticky, nasty, extremist ideas that they have some kind of validity backed by some kind of science onto education. Because childrens' minds are not like adults (all extremists recognise that fact, infiltrating education is their holy grail) and they need a grounding first in what we really know before they can see thru the stupid ideas of extremists. And that holds true whether it is science or politics or RE. And that means their stupid ideas about science have NO place anywhere at all - they have NO relevance.

All that was so I could point out I would never ever conflate Christianity with creationism - Dawkins would. I never say some Christians when referring to creationists even tho some Christians are creationists. I'm far more suspicious of unknown Christians initially now than before I came across creationism, just in case they've been lobotomised by creationists, but I don't think the two are linked in any way shape or form. They can't be cos I used to be a Christian and was NEVER a creationist. Just as I don't tar all the Muslims I know with the anti women Muslim brotherhood, al queda bomb planting brush or all Tories as racists. I wait and see.

So I do get a bit fed up of all us atheists being tarred with the Richard Dawkins 'anti theist' brush. Most of us are far closer to Brian Cox's statement 'I'm not anti religion I'm anti maniac'!!! Richard Dawkins and his band of merry misogynists do not represent me - not least cos I'm female and like all extremists he doesn't like us to have opinions that disagree with his ideas of our roles! Therefore I would prefer Christians (and atheists) to make the same distinction I do and move to the term anti theist rather than atheist. Because in most things most of us are far closer to each other than we are to our extremist peers and it seems that atheists are trying to distance themselves from him and his hide bound fans.

Like most people I can distinguish between a simple hijab on an well paid accountant or doctor or science student with pushy middle class 'muslim' parents who have moved with the times to 2013 and a genitally mutilated, burkha wearing woman terrified to leave the house due to some idiot male still living in 1167. I can distinguish between an abortion accepting catholic on the pill with 2 kids and some sophisticated take on transubstantiation and a downtrodden, contraceptive fearing mother of 10 starving ones in South America pouring holy water into an open wound to magically heal it. Richard Dawkins can't! Like most people I have no problem with the formers at all and huge issues with the latters. He can't stand any of them because he thinks all should bow to his ideas.

He clings to his ideas from his past, which may well have had some relevance in his past, that religion drives all and culture, education and politics play no part! Which is why he has moved to the side of extremists and does NOT represent me. And which is why, just as creationists can no longer understand or deal with science, he (and his followers) are rapidly losing the plot when it comes to understanding things like terrorism. Whilst the world now recognises there are far more anti US politics in terrorist recruitment than pages from the koran he can't move away from his 'idea' and therefore will never be able to deal with the Dzhokar Tsanievs of the world.

So please stop judging all atheists by Dawkins and his followers and realise he is an anti theist rather than simple atheist. If his ilk do show up on sites like the Causeway one - the argument is still creationism is bullshit and shouldn't be there. And you should still be allied with the non extremist atheists there because they really don't care what you believe about as long as you live in the real evidence based world and want to protect peoples rights to learn about it without being confused by propaganda. Otherwise all the extremists have won.
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Re: Give it up, McIntosh

Postby cathy » Wed Aug 28, 2013 8:34 am

The group does not promote 'Atheism' - Peter doesn't appear to understand it isn't a competing religion, it is a conclusion. We promote empiricism and rationalism, and we're happy to point out were religions transgress on these points.
- My own stance is against anti-science. That religion happens to be anti-scientific on some points I've repeatedly made, in a reasonable manner without answer by Peter or Michael, is not my fault.

I'll start a fresh thread to avoid disrupting existing ones.
]
Hmm some atheists and some Christians promote empiricism and rationalism. Others don't. Atheism does not have exclusive rights on it really and if we're honest the rational position for everyone is agnosticism.

And some atheists are just as anti facts when it doesn't suit - which is not a sign of rationality. Maybe not purely scientific facts like the age of the Earth (tho some are unhappy when science doesn't suit their view of the world either) maybe more political or sociological statistical findings. They aren't happy that Ken Miller isn't an atheist for example, yet smashed the ID stuff to pieces. I've heard them trying to disparage him for his religious beliefs and accuse him of some kind of secret creationist views and ask how he can be a 'real' scientist. Yet none of his beliefs have mades the slightest difference to the bacterial flagellum or the fact his is a very good 'real' scientist or his actual science or the fact a believer demystified the BF and ruined its irreducible complex position in the ID bibles. And fights the creationists as fiercely as any atheists. Yet some are very reluctant to accept his belief in a God hasn't somehow tainted the evolution of the BF.

I've heard atheists get very upset that the best known and most influential force for womens education in Muslim backwaters is Mlalala - herself a Muslim. I've heard them screeching that she either cannot really be the force she isor cannot truly be a real muslim. But she is both! I've heard a thousand other irrational beliefs that anti theists rather than normal atheists hold - and views of women just as backward and old fashioned as their religious peers. They are not a rational, forward looking views either and that absence of rationality from ALL areas of our lives is a trait we all share as humans.

Religion at its most sophisticated is way beyond scientific proof/disproof - and I'm happy for my kids to hear and even accept those arguments from people far more intelligent than me. It is way beyond things like astrology which are easily debunked. At its least sophisticated (creationism) I agree it is anti science nonsense peddled by idiots. Even way behind astrology which at least, in a population of 7 billion, has a tiny statistical chance of coincidentally getting it right occassionally. whereas creationism is specularly always wrong having even written itself out of the coincidence race. And I do not really want my children anywhere near creationists until they know enough to see how utterly stupid it is.

There are very clever, forward thinking believers who have done a hell of a lot to debunk creationism and move society forward in terms of many things - stepping in to coordinate food banks in this recession, promoting education in the third world for all, speaking out against their members grooming young vulnerable girls. And very thick, backward looking atheists who are just as stuck in a particular area as their fundamentalist religious opposites - the women are just for getting their tits oot for the lads atheism of the Dawkins followers (whose sexism is well known for example) or the anti hijab wearing ones regardless of what the person has achieved scientifically, politically or whatever.

It isn't a atheism v religion debate in the real world anymore, its a rational, forward looking, humanist view regardless of beliefs or lack of V a backward, primitive, idiotic anti human one regardless of beliefs or lack of. As I said extremists of all persuasions hold back ideas and progress - and there are atheist extremists as well as religious ones living in a past and refusing to move on when the world no longer fits their comfort blanket.

Thats why I'm on a single issue site dealing with an issue I feel strongly about. Protecting education and the real world from creationist idiots. I'm an atheist but not a superior one. Just superior to creationists but intellectually so is a garden slug.
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Re: Give it up, McIntosh

Postby Peter Henderson » Wed Aug 28, 2013 1:16 pm

Atheists having a go at Christians and Christianity in general makes the job of tackling YECism in churches all the harder.

Sometimes this is simply a thankless task.
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Re: Give it up, McIntosh

Postby Peter Henderson » Wed Aug 28, 2013 1:35 pm

Indeed Cathy, there's been a lot of mud slinging between P.Z Myers and Michael Shermer of late. All is not well in the new Atheist community, and some of the Christian fundies haven't been slow to pick up on this:

http://freethoughtblogs.com/pharyngula/ ... a-grenade/

Those are pretty serious allegations and I'll not be surprised if this goes to court.

But I know what you mean about Miller.

Jerry Coyne had a go at the NCSE, who've been part and parcel in fighting YECism in the US simply because they employed a spiritual director, Peter Hess (who used to post here). Even the BCSE came in for some unwarranted criticism because they accommodated people of faith.

However, what has Coyne , Myers or Dawkins ever done to fight YECism in the grand scheme of things ? Ken Miller and Barbara Forrest went to painstaking lengths to prepare a case for the plaintiffs in the Dover trial, not least finding the source of the book "of pandas and people" and it's young Earth creationist origins. Coyne, Myers, and Dawkins are basically one man shows with their own agendas. None of them seem to be prepared to work with anyone, not least those Christians (or people of other faiths) who accept science.

I've never had a problem with any of the science I've learned and my Christian faith. Sure, there are difficult questions but there are also issues science can't or maybe never can answer.

I've always been perfectly happy to work with Atheists and Humanists when it comes to creationism in science classes. Ultimately, it's the teaching of good and sound science to our children that matters in the end.
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Re: Give it up, McIntosh

Postby cathy » Wed Aug 28, 2013 5:30 pm

As I said it isn't atheist science v Christian and never has been. It's extremism v rational. The creationists are the extremists on your side and some of the Dawkins mob the extremists on mine. Tho I've never heard of Shermer, sadly that article does not surprise me at all. There are some very antidiluvian attitudes to women in the Dawkins camp and he shares them as far as I can ascertain, tho I've always found Myers pretty ok in that respect.

But that still leaves it as a debate of evolution v crazy loonies not atheism v Christians. And most atheists couldn't give a stuff beyond that, neither can most Christians. Brian Cox is a far more famous person who happens to be an anti creationist atheist and his take is
I was sent to Sunday school for a few weeks but I didn’t like getting up on Sunday mornings. But some of my friends are religious. I don’t have a strong view on religion, other than illogical religion. Young earth creationism, for example: bollocks.
(Observer interview, March 2010)


And that is most atheists. I'm not sure what went on on the Facebook page as I'm not a member and can't access it but it should be a fight to keep creationist loony tunes from any mention at any museum at all, and from being given any credibilty at all. In short it should be a fight to exclude their loony ideas totally from public place.
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Re: Give it up, McIntosh

Postby Brian Jordan » Wed Aug 28, 2013 6:20 pm

cathy wrote:As I said it isn't atheist science v Christian and never has been. It's extremism v rational. The creationists are the extremists on your side and some of the Dawkins mob the extremists on mine. Tho I've never heard of Shermer, sadly that article does not surprise me at all. There are some very antidiluvian attitudes to women in the Dawkins camp and he shares them as far as I can ascertain, tho I've always found Myers pretty ok in that respect.
Shermer's very well known, although I know nothing about him. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_Shermer
Olivia Benson has had some things to say about rampantly sexist attitudes - to put it mildly - and women delegates being molested (?) in lifts at conferences, IIRC. I doubt, though, that these problems are characteristic of the atheist/secular/skeptic world. More likely to be characteristic of the USA. (Where's that smiley for hiding under the table?)
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Re: Give it up, McIntosh

Postby Michael » Wed Aug 28, 2013 8:00 pm

Brian Jordan wrote:
cathy wrote:As I said it isn't atheist science v Christian and never has been. It's extremism v rational. The creationists are the extremists on your side and some of the Dawkins mob the extremists on mine. Tho I've never heard of Shermer, sadly that article does not surprise me at all. There are some very antidiluvian attitudes to women in the Dawkins camp and he shares them as far as I can ascertain, tho I've always found Myers pretty ok in that respect.
Shermer's very well known, although I know nothing about him. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_Shermer
Olivia Benson has had some things to say about rampantly sexist attitudes - to put it mildly - and women delegates being molested (?) in lifts at conferences, IIRC. I doubt, though, that these problems are characteristic of the atheist/secular/skeptic world. More likely to be characteristic of the USA. (Where's that smiley for hiding under the table?)


Shermer enjoys riding bicycles.
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Re: Give it up, McIntosh

Postby colmo » Wed Aug 28, 2013 9:14 pm

I've made my decision regarding the argument on the Remove group:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/Causewa ... 009981974/

I have no time to discuss it here thanks to the time taken to review it.
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Re: Give it up, McIntosh

Postby Peter Henderson » Wed Aug 28, 2013 11:50 pm

"Steve McDonagh ah 'mon Shane one of the joys of life is poking fundies with a stick an activity which I have found to be really constructive .. although it is very likely they don't share that opinion"

"PJ Floyd I'm all for engaging Shane but when they point blank refuse to engage on any point that threatens their beliefs it's no longer constructive"


You see Colin, this is exactly what I'm talking about. Now I'm being labelled as a fundie. Floyd's comments show no respect whatsoever to Christians who accept science. Why does he use the term "their" as if it's a them and us situation ?

This is definitely not the way to fight young Earth creationionism. This kind of behaviour does science's cause no favours.
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Re: Give it up, McIntosh

Postby a_haworthroberts » Thu Aug 29, 2013 12:22 am

Peter Henderson wrote:
"Steve McDonagh ah 'mon Shane one of the joys of life is poking fundies with a stick an activity which I have found to be really constructive .. although it is very likely they don't share that opinion"

"PJ Floyd I'm all for engaging Shane but when they point blank refuse to engage on any point that threatens their beliefs it's no longer constructive"


You see Colin, this is exactly what I'm talking about. Now I'm being labelled as a fundie. Floyd's comments show no respect whatsoever to Christians who accept science. Why does he use the term "their" as if it's a them and us situation ?

This is definitely not the way to fight young Earth creationionism. This kind of behaviour does science's cause no favours.



Are a majority of Christians in NI fundamentalists? Even that seems doubtful given that most RCs as well as some protestants probably aren't. And NI is not typical of the UK or most of western Europe, perhaps Steve forgets that. (I speak as someone who has never visited Ireland, merely observed parts of it through binoculars from N Wales.)
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Re: Give it up, McIntosh

Postby Peter Henderson » Thu Aug 29, 2013 1:00 am

a_haworthroberts wrote:
Peter Henderson wrote:
"Steve McDonagh ah 'mon Shane one of the joys of life is poking fundies with a stick an activity which I have found to be really constructive .. although it is very likely they don't share that opinion"

"PJ Floyd I'm all for engaging Shane but when they point blank refuse to engage on any point that threatens their beliefs it's no longer constructive"


You see Colin, this is exactly what I'm talking about. Now I'm being labelled as a fundie. Floyd's comments show no respect whatsoever to Christians who accept science. Why does he use the term "their" as if it's a them and us situation ?

This is definitely not the way to fight young Earth creationionism. This kind of behaviour does science's cause no favours.



Are a majority of Christians in NI fundamentalists? Even that seems doubtful given that most RCs as well as some protestants probably aren't. And NI is not typical of the UK or most of western Europe, perhaps Steve forgets that. (I speak as someone who has never visited Ireland, merely observed parts of it through binoculars from N Wales.)


No Ashley, definitely not.

I'm certainly not one. Many in what I would describe as evangelical circles aren't either.

The unfortunate thing is YECism is being pushed in all of the evangelical denominations (as it is in the rest of of the UK) along with some mainstream ones.

Although there are more YECs in Northern Ireland than in the rest of the UK, I'd say if you took the figure as a percentage of Christians then it wouldn't be too different from the mainland.

Anyway, I've had enough. Sadly, I've decided to leave the group.

Pity.
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