Skeptic events

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Brian (October 18, 2010, 09:40:57 AM):
I suspect he's a high school teacher...possibly in RE
Andysor (October 18, 2010, 11:12:22 AM):
I have also visited the Sakkie Spangenberg/William Lane Craig debate at Tuks, but it was organized by a religious organization called antwoord.org.za and they made sure that their marketing and support was overwhelming enough to bring their own point across. I think we should try a more liberal university like Wits to host a skeptical debate. If Wits has a philosophy department, one of the lecturers there could be approached with a proposal.

I don't know if it was discussed in these forums before, but what was your impression of the debate? Although I don't agree with his views he is a legitimate great philosopher and master debater; a polar opposite to people like Gish and Hovind. Even if it was skewed, exposure to this type of rational, intelligent debate can only enlighten Christians and make them more tolerant.
daviff (October 18, 2010, 21:31:46 PM):
It would be wonderful if we could host a skeptic event but which particular sucker field would top the agenda?

How about the SA skeptic forum launching a monthly/annual award for the biggest sucker or group of suckers reported in the news?

The certificate should have a big picture of a sucker fish and the logo "one born every minute" - P.T. Barnum. The person or the groups name and why they are the suckers of the month or year.

For the religious award I nominate the Rhema congregation for paying for Ray's mansion and plane.

For the dying of stupidity I nominate the ANC voters with AIDs who got Manto Tshabala Msimang put in as Minister of Death. It would have to be a posthumous award to the 360 000 dead.

I agree with the ancient Greek who said that against stupidity even the God's fight in vain.
Du Preez (October 19, 2010, 19:23:25 PM):
I don't know if it was discussed in these forums before, but what was your impression of the debate? Although I don't agree with his views he is a legitimate great philosopher and master debater; a polar opposite to people like Gish and Hovind. Even if it was skewed, exposure to this type of rational, intelligent debate can only enlighten Christians and make them more tolerant.

William Lane Craig is an absolute brilliant debater, I wish we could convert him... I actually visited the session in the philosophy department the previous night and they told us that we had to visit the debate the next night. I was so frustrated because:

1. Sakkie Spangenberg and Hansie Wolmerans's (The new roformed movement) English is worse than mine and they struggled to bring their point across.
2. Sakkie and Hansie didn't answer the direct questions from William and the other wise ass that partnered with him which gave them the opportunity to make fun of Sakkie and Hansie.
3. William and kie is trained and professional, while Sakkie and Hansie are just not there.
4. 80% of the support was in favour of William and kie.
5. I met more than 10 individuals there who are seriously religious and far right who was good acquaintances before I converted. It led to a couple of awkward and uncomfortable moments for me.
Andysor (October 20, 2010, 10:25:57 AM):
I agree that it was a tragically one-sided affair. But this is so often the case as the ability to debate is independent of one's factual knowledge. Someone like Craig has the advantage of being at the top of his field (religious philosophy) as well as having decades of debating experience. Not many people would be able to challenge him.

I do have to question who chose Sakkie and Hansie though, as I'm sure there must have been other, more competent people available. Not that debating skills are high on the priority list of most academics, but couldn't they at least prepare a bit and learn the basic rules of debate?

I wonder if Harris, Dennet or other high profile atheists came to our country (very unlikely) it would be easy to find theist debating opponents.

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