Monday, September 20, 2010

Doug Groothuis's "Six Enemies of Apologetic Engagement"

Over at the creationist "Leadership University" site, Doug Groothuis has a piece called "Six Enemies of Apologetic Engagement", where he lists some ways that evangelical Christians fail to carry out their mission effectively.

It's a real hoot. "Ignorance" is one of the enemies, but Groothuis also makes the bogus claim that "macro-evolution is false, and good arguments have been raised against it from both nature and Scripture". He actually cites the vastly-ignorant Phillip Johnson -- a lawyer with no training in biology -- as someone who has made good arguments with "intellectual integrity" against evolution. (Groothuis also misspells Johnson's first name.)

I remember the time that Phillip Johnson arrived at the Usenet newsgroup, back in 1993. He arrogantly rode in on his evangelical high horse to do battle with the godless evolutionists, confident that his rhetorical skills would hide his lack of biological knowledge. The result was not pretty at all. Johnson had to leave in a cowardly huff because he couldn't handle the criticism from people who actually knew something about the subject.

"Cowardice" and "arrogance", however, are two of Groothuis's problems with evangelicals. He says that evangelicals should "cultivate real dialogue with unbelievers". Is that the very same Doug Groothuis who routinely bans commenters at his blog who disagree with his claims? Why, I believe it is.

Doug -- you're a first-class hypocrite.


Takis Konstantopoulos said...

"Doug -- you're a first-class hypocrite."

Well, no surprise here, right? Anyone who attempts to justify religion (his particular version, especially) through "rational means" must, at some point, adopt deceitful methods.

Miranda said...

"He arrogantly rode in on his evangelical high horse... Johnson had to leave in a cowardly huff because he couldn't handle the criticism"

Sounds a little subjective, like you're trying to lead the witness.
Can you provide a link to the discussion so your readers can judge for themselves?

Jeffrey Shallit said...

Miranda -

Your google fu is better than mine, isn't it? Search google groups,, 1993, Phillip Johnson. You'll find everything there, I think.

Reginald Selkirk said...

"macro-evolution is false, and good arguments have been raised against it from ... Scripture"

Who gives a flying patootie? Scripture makes an argument against insects having six legs. A religious book is simply not a legitimate source of argument in a scientific debate.

Eamon Knight said...

Heh. I also recall Johnson's brief appearance on t.o -- he blathered a lot about Darwinist materialism, but not much about science. IIRC, Chris Colby (then a grad student in bio) read PJ's book, and offered to discuss a number of errors he found therein. PJ disappeared shortly thereafter.

Miranda said...

> "He says that evangelicals should "cultivate real dialogue with unbelievers"... Doug -- you're a first-class hypocrite."

Are you positive you didn't use invective against him like this before he banned you? It's kind of hard to have a real dialogue with someone who insults you.
I recommend starting over with Groothuis, but use a pseudonym, so that he'll be willing to listen to you. Of course, you'll have to avoid the insults.

AL said...

Miranda, calling someone a hypocrite who is demonstrably in fact a hypocrite, is no more "invective" than calling a spade a spade.

Gerry said...

What would a second-class hypocrite be? Would it be better or worse than a first-class hypocrite?

The Atheist Missionary said...

Groouthuis has now posted a link to this piece from his own site "The Constructive Curmudgeon". I left a comment last night and almost fell off my chair this morning to find that he approved it.

386sx said...

I have a feeling Johnson dropped a couple of copy and paste spams and then went on his merry way. You guys are making it sound like he dialogued with people.

Douglas Groothuis, Ph.D. said...

I ban people who I deem to be give more invective than argument, and you fit that category. However, I do not ban everyone or most people I disagree with. For example, I just posted something by "Atheist Missionary" that completely disagrees with me concerning the post you are responding to. I then responded to him and he responded back. Moreover, I prefer off-line interactions, since they tend to not be so impolite.

Jeffrey Shallit said...

I ban people who I deem to be give more invective than argument, and you fit that category.

Doug, that's not true, and you know it.

And you neatly sidestepped the other parts of my argument.

Anonymous said...

Doug is wrong. You can write perfectly decent posts and he will not publish them because they make him look like a fool or call him on facts.

He lives off the gullible by working at a religious institution. Anything that shows that his career is based on BS scares him to death.

He keeps on writing about the Discovery Institute as though they never wrote the Wedge document or the "Cdesignpropentisists" word never appeared in a US court.

A right wing judge ruled that intelligent design was religion and Doug will, for obvious reasons, not accept that.

He makes his living off this deception and doesn't want it to go away.

I can get my "invective" published in engineering trade magazines (two letters this week in the same magazine) but Doug cannot take it. God must not be on his side, of course.

Chris P

John Stockwell said...

Dear Jeffrey,

You have hit the nail on the head. Dr. Groothuis
has become a ban-maniac on his blog.

He reminds me of the character played by Bill
Mumy on an episode of the classic Twilight Zone
series. Mumy played a 10 year old boy, with
supernatural powers, who
terrorized a small midwestern farming community.

"The better be nice to me," said Mumy's character,
or they would end up in the cornfield.

In a recent post on his blog, Groothuis complained
that there was nobody who would engage in rational
discourse with him. Well, of course not. A would
be critic gets one or two posts, and then Groothuis
bans them, claiming that they were "uncivil".

bcstractor said...

You can comment on an interview point by the Dougster here:-

It took mine

Chris P

bcstractor said...

Doug Groothuis has a new post up where he thinks girls raped by their fathers should be required to have the baby as long as there physical life isn't threatened.

This is something like the guy in Austria!

Mind boggling.