Re: Dialoging with others - Re: Marcus Ross Re: [asa]

From: George Murphy <>
Date: Thu Feb 15 2007 - 08:10:08 EST

----- Original Message -----
From: "Iain Strachan" <>
To: "George Murphy" <>
Cc: "James Mahaffy" <>; <>
Sent: Thursday, February 15, 2007 4:11 AM
Subject: Re: Dialoging with others - Re: Marcus Ross Re: [asa]

> On 2/15/07, George Murphy <> wrote:
>> ----- Original Message -----
>> From: "James Mahaffy" <>
>> To: <>
>> Sent: Wednesday, February 14, 2007 6:39 PM
>> Subject: Dialoging with others - Re: Marcus Ross Re: [asa]
>> Their views are at best self-contradictory and incoherent and at worst
>> Manichaean. If saying that is "uncharitable" then the word "charity" has
>> become meaningless.
>> It is akin to the ultra-PC idea that no one's views should ever be called
>> incorrect: "All have won and all shall have prizes." Yes, we can love
>> those who have blatantly false notions & recognize them as fellow
>> Christians
>> but that doesn't make their ideas any truer or less likely to midlead the
>> unwary.
> George,
> I don't think anyone is suggesting that it's uncharitable to say their
> views are wrong. But if that is done in the downright scornful way
> exhibited by numerous members on the list, then it IS uncharitable.
> Like sometime back when someone referred to YEC's as YEEUCKs. That's
> totally unacceptable and uncharitable, and as long as people continue
> to behave like that I shall protest strongly about it. If people on
> the list want to let off steam by making cheap cracks like that then
> the list will never be any use as a forum for dialogue with our YEC
> brothers and sisters. As I've said before, I have been trying to
> dialogue with a YEC friend and trying to argue that the science is all
> wrong. Some of the questions he's come up with are beyond my scope of
> knowledge to answer - it would be great if he could join a list such
> as ASA and get courteous and gentelmany responses to show exactly why
> his ideas are incorrect. But in the current form of the list and the,
> yes, downright uncharitable, behaviour of certain of the members, I
> would NEVER consider pointing him here. Better to point him at the
> Talk Origins website, where largely the arguments are presented
> objectively rather than resorting to sarcasm.
> Perhaps ASA should set up a separate list "TE lounge" for TE's only
> where people can slag off people who don't agree with them to their
> heart's content?

Iain et al -

I agree that name calling & snide remarks should be avoided. Sometimes,
however, the boundary between objective & pejorative language is murky.
E.g., "absurd," in the dictionary senses of "contrary to reason or
propriety" or "obviously and incomprehensibly inconsistent with manifest
truth" is a quite appropriate term to use for some YEC arguments but the
thin skinned may take it as a personal insult.

& let me add a point that I could have made in connection with James' post.
The problem with YEC arguments is not just that "the science is all wrong"
but sometimes that the theology is wrong. E.g., the claim that the
disruption of creation by sin is responsible for the apparent great age of
the world verges on the Manichean heresy that the physical world is the
creation of an evil power opposed to God. (It is, to use that nice Roman
phrase, "tantamount to heresy.") Of course not all YECs use that type of
argument but some do. (The "preacher" at an ASA meeting a few years ago
tossed off the phrase "the second law of thermodynamics stsrted in operation
when Eve bit into the apple.")

James' post suggested that non-YECs should be respectful of the fact that
some YECs may think that we are not "adhering enough to scripture." In the
1st place I _don't_ respect that attitude toward me if it is assumed without
taking the trouble to find out what I (& not just some generic "liberals")
believe about scripture. 2d, in turn, YECs should be respectful of the fact
that some Christians who have some theological sense may see their (the
YEC's) views as theologically deficient in various ways.


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Received on Thu Feb 15 08:11:04 2007

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