Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Who Speaks For Atheism?

My how I love to debate with theists. I cannot deny the pleasure that I get seeing how they try to justify their irrational and contradictory beliefs. Debating with theists allows me two pleasures. First, it allows me to understand how the religious mind works, and second, it forces me to sharpen my principles so that I make sure I have a damn good argument to back them up.

It is very important that our beliefs are challenged from time to time. If they aren't, we can become irrational, and close ourselves off into our little bubbles. Being challenged forces you to be knowledgeable, logical and not contradict yourself. I openly welcome challenges to just about every belief I have and I pride myself on having a very "bring it on" attitude.

I wish I could one day become a professional debater. After watching many debates on religion, I have to admit that I am very dissatisfied with many of the atheist debaters. Many of them are figity, nervous wrecks when they are up there making the case for atheism, and quite frankly it is embarrassing. Theists on the other hand, have many talented debaters who speak smoothly with humor and deliver their message often better than their atheist counterparts. And this annoys me.

I often wonder, "Who speaks for atheism?" Most atheist debaters are either heads of secular or atheist groups, scientists, biologists or authors. Most of them do not have the persuasive charisma that many of the theologians do who argue for theism. I would like to change that.

When we lost Hitchens we lost one of our best advocates. He will never be replaced. Sam Harris is good and entertaining, but he's no Hitchens. Dawkins meanwhile is aging. I'm sure the field will grow with new voices in the years to come but I just hope they are as witty and articulate and charming as the best that religion can produce.

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