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Beware the Holy Troller Trap
by Sam Harris
Recently, thousands of spectators across the country watched as a clash of ideologies took place. Bill Nye, beloved science guy of children’s television, debated Ken Ham, creationist and founder of Answers in Genesis. As I watched the debate, I analyzed both sides, trying to keep a fair mind despite my already firm belief in biblical creationism. After both men had been going back and forth for a while, it seemed to me that they both had flaws in their arguments; both had begun repeating themselves and even attacking each other at times. The way the argument went back and forth with neither man willing to concede reminded me of certain internet discussion boards, like Facebook, where heated discussions tend to take place. But before I point the finger at individual debaters or the faceless masses of the internet, I have to admit that it also reminded me of myself—once upon a time.
There was a time, earlier in my undergraduate years, when I spent far too many hours arguing with skeptics and atheists on the internet. Sometimes it was with old acquaintances from high school or people I’d encountered through mutual friends, many of whom I had never met in person. Whenever topics related to Christianity came up, I was convinced that it was my job to persuade these people to believe the truth of the Bible.
Armed with an introductory philosophy course and one on creation studies, I crowned myself captain of my own debate team...Dare Ya to Keep Reading
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