(Text: “Debating an Atheist — Round Three“, Soli Deo Gloria, July 8, 2012)
At the end of last week’s post, I speculated that the reason for Pastor Feinstein’s repeated promises of “I’m going to argue this,” and “I’m going to demolish your arguments,” might be that he doesn’t actually have a stand-alone argument, but instead only has a collection of snappy comebacks for certain stereotypical “atheist sayings.” Russell, however, hasn’t been following the script. Instead, he’s been trying to grapple with the real issues, leaving Pastor Feinstein without the straight lines he needs in order to set up his zingers. Hence the repeated promises of “I’m going to mop the floor with you [—just as soon as you give me the right cues, dammit!].”
I’m not a mind-reader, of course, so I can’t know that this is what Pastor Feinstein was really thinking. The way he introduces post #3, however, makes me think that I might be right.
As a side note, whenever I quote Russell in a regular paragraph, I italicize the quotation. If I place a statement in quotation marks but it is NOT italicized, it is NOT a quote from Russell, but instead is a hypothetical quote that I am inserting into the argument. Such quotes come from past experiences debating unbelievers and reading much literature on the subject.
Looks to me like he’s tired of waiting for Russell to say the lines he’s supposed to say (according to the script), and so he [Pastor Feinstein] is just going to introduce them into the dialog himself, as “hypothetical quotes.” That should make things interesting, because that means Russell is going to be trying to continue the actual, original discussion, while Pastor Feinstein is going to respond to an entirely separate, hypothetical discussion that follows his script better.