Question: How many Christian apologists are on the nexus posing as atheists?

I think it's pretty clear that we have some of that going on here, but how much? When you see “atheists” on this site demanding to know why Dawkins and Hitchens aren't speaking out about Nazism; or scolding atheists about their “tendency” to pick and choose the facts that fit their agenda; or questioning just how far atheists are willing to go to eliminate religion, then I think it's clear that we have a Christian provocateur on the site. Now, on any other site I wouldn't mind, and once you located the apologists they're easy enough to ignore; however, this site is intended to be a haven from such behavior...so it does bother me. I don't know...I'm not sure what can be done about it, and maybe I'm just bitching.

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Comment by Edward Teach on November 22, 2009 at 4:42pm
When I first joined A/N, acouple of folks thought I might be a troll. I had absolutely no idea what that meant at the time. After being a member for a while, I kind of get it. You start keeping an eye out for fakes. Also, I can't speak for everyone else, but I totally feel my minority status in my community.
Comment by Mel on November 22, 2009 at 4:26pm
You have a good point Aces, and I know whenever I feel like a good laugh I'll wander over to Fundamentalists say the darnedest things or similar. But I think Brother Richard and Co wanted A|N to be a place without that kind of stuff happening. Some people are really bored by it, some people just don't want to be around it, because they have to deal with it daily out there in RL. The argument is there are PLENTY of places on the internet for the big God vs Evolution non-debate, but very few places for atheists to just hang out and chat.

The problem is, a great many of them come here thinking we're stupid. Thinking that they have a new argument (chances are, they DON'T), or that they can hide the fact that they're proselytizing or trying to start an argument. Or they lie through their teeth for the purposes of starting a conversation and then tell US we're immoral. Thats why they piss some people off.
Comment by Johnny on November 21, 2009 at 11:28am
agreed with Aces
Comment by AcesLucky on November 21, 2009 at 11:17am
I used to join Christian groups and do the same thing. But then, I don't make the claim of being something I'm not. My arguments are generally very direct, and direct arguments don't specify a point of view, and they usually can't find justification to be mad at me until I force them to stay on topic. (Much of apologetics is simply changing the subject.) Then they start to get "offended" as their response to an argument and that's when you and they know they've been had.

They stop responding to the argument (because they can't) and start responding to you!

So I don't mind the occasional voyeur trying to engage on "enemy" turf, it's how we learn things. When I was a believer and wanted to test my latest theory on god, I didn't take it to some Christian group, I took it directly to an atheist forum. That's how we learn.

So I don't mind the apologist airing out her views or testing her arguments under guise of atheist; but that's different than proselytizing or damning everyone to hell according to her particular brand of dogma.

Religionists can learn here what they never could in their own group... a different point of view.
Comment by Johnny on November 21, 2009 at 1:09am
Wow... who is this person we're talking about? I don't think I've suspected anyone yet...
Comment by Marshall on November 20, 2009 at 9:02pm
Skepticcat- excellent advice. thank you.
Comment by Marshall on November 20, 2009 at 8:40pm
Skepticcat- this indivdual's responses in the 'Do you believe jesus...' discussion really demonstatrated to me that he was almost going out of his way to lecture and argue over some really (REALLY) silly points. I made the mistake of assuming he was the theist because of this; aparently it turns out that he's just hyper-argumentative.
Comment by Marshall on November 20, 2009 at 8:35pm
Nate-good point.
Comment by Nate on November 20, 2009 at 7:58pm
Well, he's had a whole lifetime to figure out how to stop doing that; eventually a person needs to learn to give up and become a hermit somewhere in Montana.

As the comments on this discussion point out, moving past theism will not automatically cure us of all of our dysfunctions.
Comment by Marshall on November 20, 2009 at 7:43pm
Nate: It may be that he comes across that way but means well.
Well, he's had a whole lifetime to figure out how to stop doing that; eventually a person needs to learn to give up and become a hermit somewhere in Montana.

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