Misunderstood Arguments


I’m thoroughly enjoying the tennis match with my friend Captain Cassidy ūüėÄ I really do¬†hope the feeling is mutual¬†— she seems to be pretty sporting about it all so far, so I think I’m not overstepping my bounds to hope that¬†she’s also getting something out of our exchange. ¬†Thanks also to others who have weighed in on the matter — I’ve gotten to meet several new people so far, which is always a good thing! ¬†Y’all are very welcome, make yourselves at home ūüôā

This time, I must thank the good Captain for introducing me to a new term: PRATT, which stands for “Point Refuted A Thousand Times.” ¬†In her recent article, she establishes the groundwork for this term and then outlines a list of examples of such that I am supposed to have employed against her. ¬†(The points she made therein seemed very similar to those she made in her first response.) ¬†Some are fair points, others I’m pretty¬†sure are not so fair — and some are more addressed at my tactics than my points themselves. ¬†(If you’re interested in my answer to some of these points, feel welcome to check out my response article and my direct response to her comment.) ¬†All, however, seem to come with a hefty dose of caricature, to the point where even I can’t find much about them to take seriously (even though I¬†am supposed to have¬†said them myself).

However,¬†the¬†article the Captain cited¬†on RationalWiki that dealt with PRATTs had a few examples of its own — and, since they seem to be the authority on the matter, I figure I’ll go right to the source. (more…)

Misunderstood Arguments: Early church martyrs

Often when I’m discussing a topic with skeptics and critics of Christianity, they will¬†cite one of the common arguments that the more popular apologists use — which is great, because it means that people are doing their homework engaging with the best points from the “other side,” and I always admire that. ¬†I try to do that myself, as much as possible — hence this blog, where I invite people of opposing views to come together and discuss these issues in a common forum. ¬†Hooray for community! ūüėÄ

Anyway… in such a context, usually the argument is brought up so that the individual can refute it — which is also great. ¬†However, most of the time, the way they refute the argument shows that they didn’t really understand the argument to begin with. ¬†They are refuting (whether intentionally or not) a straw man version of the argument, one that I would dismiss just as readily. ¬†This sort of thing happens often, and I end up repeating myself to a lot of individuals, helping them to see the argument in its intended light rather than in the easily-dismantled pseudo-argument they believe is being presented.

Thus, I’ve decided to start an ongoing “Misunderstood Arguments” series, mostly so that I can have a repository from which to draw in such discussions — hopefully it will save me a lot of typing in the future, when such misunderstandings surface again ūüėČ

Today, I would like to elucidate the oft-misunderstood argument of the faith of the early church in the resurrection of Christ. ¬†I’ve heard apologists such as Craig and Habermas use this argument, and I’m sure many others have as well. ¬†Here’s the basic¬†version of the argument: (more…)