Thursday, September 01, 2011

Craig, Dawkins, Loftus, and sometimes White

John Loftus wants to debate William Lane Craig, but Craig won't debate Loftus for what seem to Loftus to be lame reasons. William Lane Craig wants to debate Richard Dawkins, but Dawkins won't debate Craig for what probably seem to Craig to be lame reasons. So here's my solution. I think Loftus should approach Dawkins and say, "Hey, I want to debate Craig, but he won't debate me, and Craig wants to debate you, but you won't debate him. So let's go talk to Craig and say, 'Bill, we have a proposal for you. Dawkins will agree to debate you if you will agree to debate Loftus. That's fair, isn't it?'"

Maybe we can find some way to work James White into it as well, because White would like to debate Craig on Molinism. Craig doesn't debate his fellow Christians, though. He debated Marcus Borg and John Dominic Crossan who both consider themselves to be Christians, but I guess Craig doesn't consider them to be real Christians. I wonder if Craig would ever debate a Mormon. Considering the fact that he contributed a chapter to The New Mormon Challenge, which was subsequently responded to by Blake Ostler, he ought to be willing to debate a Mormon. And considering how many times Craig has attacked Calvinism, it seems like he ought to be willing to debate the issue.

White would also like to debate Norman Geisler. Why aren't deals being made? Surely we just need to find the right incentive to make these debates happen. I don't think Geisler will debate anybody, though. I saw his debate with Ferrell Till a long time ago, and it did not go well for Geisler. I don't think Geisler is cut out for debating.

Personally, I would love to debate Bill Craig. Even though I'd probably get stomped, Craig is a nice fellow, and it would probably be really interesting and fun. Plus, Craig is always crystal clear, which I think would make him an ideal debating partner. I hate having to struggle to understand what somebody is saying. I'd hate to debate James White, though. James White would probably just want to make me look stupid. And since he has such an unpleasant and abrasive personality, I don't think I'd enjoy debating him even if I was the winner. I'm not sure I'd want to debate Dawkins for the same reason. Dawkins is rude and condescending, and I can't stand people like that. Just reading his anti-Christian diatribes is like fingernails down a chalkboard to me. It seems like if he really wants to rescue Christians from their ignorance, he wouldn't write that way. It makes people lose interest in his arguments and not even want to read them.


At 9/01/2011 1:19 PM , Blogger Kyle Hendricks said...

Why won't Craig debate Loftus?

At 9/01/2011 1:20 PM , Blogger Sam said...

Because Loftus is a former student, and for some reason, Craig won't debate former students.

At 9/01/2011 1:25 PM , Blogger Kyle Hendricks said...

Wow. Didn't know he was a former student.

At 9/01/2011 9:10 PM , Blogger Boz said...

the article is very jovial, like a conversation. Fun to read.

At 9/08/2011 6:46 AM , Blogger Cory said...

FYI: Craig won't debate anyone who doesn't hold a doctorate in a relevant field. He's had bad experiences with debate partners who were deeply unserious and unsophisticated in their arguments.

Just spend a few minutes on Loftus's blog and you'll conclude Craig's reasons for refusal to debate are warranted.

At 9/12/2011 12:38 AM , Blogger Chris Andrade said...

I wonder what good would come out of having a intra-faith debate on Calvinism, or doctrines concerning predestination and freewill. At worst, considering the subject matter and format, debates can stoke emotions that could cause disunity and tension. That's why I enjoy many of the "four views on..." books. They allow me to hear (and struggle with) affirmatives and negatives of each point in an environment free from the public and presentation aspects of a debate.

At 9/13/2011 9:19 AM , Blogger Seth said...

I'll second why Cory said. Reading through Loftus' blog brought clarity to me on why Craig won't debate him. Good wouldn't come from it. One, like you said Loftus is a former student and two, the debate wouldn't be so great. I know Craig hasn't always had good debates, e.g. Harris and Hitchens, so debating Loftus wouldn't do anything good for atheism or theism. Confusion would probably be about all that would come from it.

I'm looking forward to Craig's UK debates with the two philosophers. In the latest RF podcast, Craig said the debates will be challenging.

Also, public debates on predestination and free will are counter-productive I think. Like Chris said, those debates, "stoke emotions that could cause disunity and tension." The four views books are better for working ambiguous things out like God's sovereignty and man's will I think.

At 9/13/2011 9:21 AM , Blogger Seth said...

Oh, about cult debates like, Christian vs Mormon public debates I'm on the fence about. Can they beneficial? Yeah, but I'm still on the fence on whether they are productive or not as opposed to a book format.

At 9/13/2011 3:24 PM , Blogger Sam said...

Seth, I don't think we should under estimate the entertainment value of a good debate. It doesn't have to be purely educational. Like you, I get more out of a book than a speech, but I like a good debate, especially when there's a cross examination involved.

At 1/29/2013 12:35 AM , Anonymous Jeff said...

Despite some of these other comments, I think Loftus is an intelligent atheist once you push through the emotional stuff. Norman Geisler gave his book a good review, as did some other notable philosophers.

I can agree though that White comes off as condescending and needlessly harsh.

Kenneth Keathley came out with a good book on Molinism. I wouldn't mind seeing him debate White.

At 1/29/2013 12:37 AM , Anonymous Jeff said...

I think once you push past the emotional parts of Loftus he is actually an intelligent atheist. Norman Geisler gave his book a good reivew and I agree.

As far as White goes, I wouldn't mind seeing Kenneth Keathley debate him. I think that'd be really entertaining.

At 1/29/2013 12:38 AM , Anonymous Jeff said...

(Whoops! I thought my first comment didn't go through so I typed up a second one....)


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