Uncommon Descent Serving The Intelligent Design Community

Taking the high road and maintaining the high ground at UD

Share
Facebook
Twitter
LinkedIn
Flipboard
Print
Email

This just in from a trusted colleague:

Your “uncommondescent.com” blog is such an important source of useful and thought-provoking information and is so widely read, that it hurts me to see it deteriorate into ad homonem attacks and name-calling, as it has lately. I am quite aware that the other side uses such tactics almost to the exclusion of logic, but I’m convinced that responding in kind is not effective (I certainly understand the temptation, and do it myself frequently), staying on the high road and sticking to the issues, even showing respect for opponents who don’t disserve it, really gets people’s attention, because it is such a rare tactic in today’s world. I have more than once told friends that one reason Michael Behe is so effective is he treats all questions with respect, no matter how ill-intentioned.

I know it feels good to administer a spanking to the other side (certainly they deserve it and sometimes it needs to be done publicly), but as much as possible let’s focus on the issues of intellectual merit — this is where ID wins hands down.

Comments
Don't lose the humour though, as it's a kind of reductio ad absurdam.BK
July 5, 2006
July
07
Jul
5
05
2006
12:49 PM
12
12
49
PM
PST
Speaking of Michael Behe, who really is an extraordinary gentleman who always takes the high road, check out his superb lecture here: http://webcast.ucsd.edu:8080/ramgen/UCSD_TV/6441IrrComBioCha.rm It is located on the page below, along with a bunch of other excellent ID-related lectures and interviews: http://www.uctv.tv/library-human.asp?seriesnumber=28 GilDodgen
July 4, 2006
July
07
Jul
4
04
2006
02:54 PM
2
02
54
PM
PST
Name-calling is one thing, but stinging rebukes are quite another. I don't think argument-by-ridicule needs to bank on the juvenile. What it needs is subtlety, tailoring to the particular opponent, and intelligently designed rhetoric. Infusion of intelligence into argumentation, some humour (or subtle ridicule), is, perhaps, the best approach for those whose minds bulge with _a priori_ conclusions and other wish lists. Nobody should be bragging about the academic prowess of those who support them. Just look at the credentials of the opponents, and what they can produce. On the other hand, nobody should underestimate the excellence of many who would debunk Darwinism. Not only can humour be used as a weapon; it also lifts the spirits. Just looking over relatvely recent intelligent designs to prove the ultimate intelligent-design flaw, to me, is quite hilarious. Reminds me, somehow, of those arguments about Scriptures-Alone, or faith-alone but we won't go _there_, will we. You know, some of us really do believe the stars declare God's glory. Fewer, I think, would suggest that their twinkling reveals some mirth in God's "character". Our opponents are not the only ones who "mess-up". Someone once said that wars are won by those who commit fewer bungles.eebrom
July 4, 2006
July
07
Jul
4
04
2006
02:26 PM
2
02
26
PM
PST
Something we should remember-- and I am not without guilt -- is that name-calling is bad strategy for us and good startegy for them because we have the evidence on our side, which means the name calling takes away from a reasonable argument which is why I'm pretty sure they start it.tribune7
July 4, 2006
July
07
Jul
4
04
2006
12:10 PM
12
12
10
PM
PST
Let’s stick to the high road, and not lower ourselves to the level of the mudslingers.
I'm just an ape. I reserve the right to sling mud. And poopie. And other things.Mung
July 4, 2006
July
07
Jul
4
04
2006
11:44 AM
11
11
44
AM
PST
By name.glennj
July 4, 2006
July
07
Jul
4
04
2006
10:48 AM
10
10
48
AM
PST
Let's give them the attention they REALLY deserve--let's pray for them.glennj
July 4, 2006
July
07
Jul
4
04
2006
10:45 AM
10
10
45
AM
PST
oh, and yes, Mike Behe is a riot. Not only he is polite but he has a sharp sense of humor, which is always a plus.Mats
July 4, 2006
July
07
Jul
4
04
2006
09:31 AM
9
09
31
AM
PST
This is something I have noticed months ago. It doesn't help the ID position name calling Darwinists, even, as it was said, they "deserve it". They are the ones who use such terminology and such tactics, because there is no other way they can "defend" their philosophy. However, ID, being a scientific enterprise easily sustained by empirical evidence, doesn't need advocates who engage in name calling and other useless tactics. God blessMats
July 4, 2006
July
07
Jul
4
04
2006
09:26 AM
9
09
26
AM
PST
I agree completely. I'm also of the opinion that we should ignore the Thumbsters and focus on the science (unless, of course, they do bring up a point worth looking into).Patrick
July 4, 2006
July
07
Jul
4
04
2006
08:23 AM
8
08
23
AM
PST
Hear Hear, Dr. Dembski. As a matter of fact, I recently made a similar comment on my blog. I admit it can be somewhat amusing to poke fun, but I would really rather see more posts on the science and the issues related to ID than just slinging mud across the digital divide. Let's stick to the high road, and not lower ourselves to the level of the mudslingers. (This is my first attempt at posting links here, so bear with me if they don't turn out right.) JanieBellejaniebelle
July 4, 2006
July
07
Jul
4
04
2006
08:15 AM
8
08
15
AM
PST
Well, given that we're getting so much unexpected attention, I suppose we'll have to try to be more diplomatic rather than being the pranksters, trouble makers, and irreverent comedians that many of us (myself foremost) are at heart. Salvadorscordova
July 4, 2006
July
07
Jul
4
04
2006
08:04 AM
8
08
04
AM
PST
I recently read an essay about Robert Boyle in Reading God's World: The Scientific Vocation . An example for us all.Mung
July 4, 2006
July
07
Jul
4
04
2006
07:51 AM
7
07
51
AM
PST
A very important observation, in my opinion.Charlie
July 4, 2006
July
07
Jul
4
04
2006
07:14 AM
7
07
14
AM
PST

Leave a Reply