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ESSAY - Do Atheists Need Trolls?

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#1
FlatEarth1024

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***DISCLAIMER*** - This essay contains absolutely no research.  It is based solely upon my own experiences, and the comments of others with whom I have discussed this subject.  No atheists were harmed during the production of this piece.


Do Atheists Need Trolls?
by FlatEarth





#2
Ungodly

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Indeed, who is the one calling the tune and who is the one dancing to it? 


That really is the core issue.  I can confirm your observations from the time I spent at a two letter both vowels Atheist forum. Indeed, toward the end of my time there it began to seem that between troll invasions some users turned against other regular users.

Part of this may be a manifestation of the fact that people become much more assertive sometimes when they know they can log off and be safe no matter how much turmoil they have created. It's a very immature attitude, but such folks do exist.

People also like to be among the good guys fighting against the bad guys. When we take an intolerant view toward those afflicted with religious beliefs, we can be the heroes by doing battle with them.

I sure don't miss the troll wars I used to be a part of. It was a complete and utter waste of time. I prefer other ways of wasting my time :-)

An excellent post, my friend, thanks for taking the time to share your observations. And thanks for the kind words about this site.

#3
TopHat

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An excellent point, and although I hate to bring it up, it does remind me of EA.

Anyways, I think that without the first troll(s), an Atheist forum will not start throwing mud at each other, but once the troll leaves, they have full ammunition and go after other flaws, and stuff that can be completely off task, and hurtful.

#4
Frozenwolf150

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Fundy atheists, yes.  When you allow your label or affiliation to do the thinking for you, you cease to be a critical thinker, regardless of what that affiliation may be.  I didn't start out by calling myself an atheist; I reexamined my views and chose the name that came the closest to them.  I actually prefer the lapses in between heated arguments, because sometimes it's just fun to kick back and joke around when there aren't any more debates going on.  Sadly though, some people are so determined to be right, that they have no mental setting between "off" and "high".
[quote author=FlatEarth link=topic=315.msg1994#msg1994 date=1165194112]I was given several justifications for continuing the discussion, including those below:
- We need to point out the flaws in the Xian argument.
- We must present the scientific data to illustrate our position.
- We must educate the Xian and bring him to an intelligent realization.
- These noble goals cost us only a few minutes and provide valuable information for not only him, but for others to follow.

These were all fine responses except for one small problem...they are full of malarky for the following reasons:
- The original poster went by the name of Blind Christian.  By his very name, this implied that his eyes (and presumably his ears) were closed to any and all arguments, however rational, that contradict his views.
- As if to reinforce the above, the tone and wording of the original post was not one of inquiry, it was one of challenge (

#5
The White Coyote

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I too became disillusioned and just plain tired of the continual tit for tat, repetitive arguing between trolls and rationals. I am as guilty as anyone but for myself I found that the simple act of arguing all the time, futily I might add, was making me angrier and angrier. That's the main reason I left EA. Too much fighting and too many troll attacks and when the trolls got thrown out, it seemed the more radical types turned on me. I don't need that crap. I am firm in my beliefs and have no desire to press them on anyone, anymore than I want to hear theirs. When Steve made me moderator here I said right from the get go that I wouldn't stand for that shit. Any Christian or fundy of any type for that matter, shows up on this doorstep and they will get ONE warning shot before they are banned. We have a nice little spot here and I want it to stay that way. Anyone wants to argue can go to EA or another site. I don't mind rational open discussion but just saying "You are wrong cuz I am right" aint gonna fly. We may not have the biggest forum but it's quality that counts and that we have.

#6
Ungodly

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We may not have the biggest forum but it's quality that counts and that we have.


Yes, thank to the quality people that come here  :Wink:  :Smiley:  :Happy:

#7
The White Coyote

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I read this post over again before bed last night FlatEarth and thought about it at length. It is a great post and I appreciate your insight and ability to put into words those things many of us wonder about.

I think all of us have an ingrained sense to win. In some it's very strong, athletes, professional soldiers etc. where in others it may not be so strong. But if we are to win, there must be some competition of some sort. If it isn't a football game, then perhaps it's becoming the best chess player, mastering the mysteries of the computer or simply baking a great cake. I thought about this and put it in context of Atheism and faith. Perhaps the reason some people seem so adamant and hardcore about atheism and feel the need to create and win conflict is that is their genre of competition? Perhaps there are others like many of us here at ANG that don't feel the need to argue fanatically about it. I have never seen a person convinced to leave their beliefs solely on an argument. Those I've seen convert, either way, have always done so over a slow series of questions and answers without all the brow beating and shoving that goes on.

I can't speak for anyone else but for me my beliefs are mine and mine alone. If others believe in something else or disbelieve altogether I do not take it as an afront or conflict. Frankly, I don't give a shit what anyone believes be they heathen or christian or jew or whatever. I think we are like water and must seek our own level of belief or disbelief as it were. The only time I sense conflict is when someone tries to tell me I am wrong and they are right. That has nothing to do with religion though as I would feel that way about politics or social issues or any number of points. We, as a people don't like being told we are wrong.

Thank you Flat Earth for rousing up that part of my chick-pea sized brain and making me think about these things.


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