Hall of Shame: James D. Newman
Bible College Boy Pontificates
Twenty-one year old [at the time this was written] James D. Newman, a former McDonald’s management trainee and soldier of god, quoted me in an essay from his online resume and [making quote fingers] “academic” portfolio.
It should come as no surprise that young James is a graduate of that bastion of evangelical studies and zombie-eyed missionary mill, Liberty University in the city of Lynchburg in the throbbing red State of Virgina. Read their lovely Doctrinal Statement. It reads like recipe for mass brainwashing.
First, one has to acknowledge that no person with any sense of self-awareness or even marginal ability to detect sarcasm would ever reference in any scholarly work – unless the subjects of the endeavor are patently and intentionally over-the-top atheism websites whose sole purpose is to entertain atheists and rile Christians into inane pissing contests. Well, James is clearly oblivious to this. But what else would you expect from a likely home-schooled moron who’s pinnacle of academic achievement is a degree from a regionally accredited Christian college?
Note: Liberty is NOT nationally accredited, but check out the blogs and discussion board comments of its students and representatives whose pathetic attempts to spin the benefits of regional over national accreditation fail miserably. It’s quite entertaining. (You’re smart. Just Google it.)
How To Backward Engineer an Argument
In an untitled essay in an appropriately named web document (Christianity – a crutch for the weak), James wrote:
“[The author of www.godlessbastard.com] gets lost in his own argument when he writes, ‘I’m the first to concede that it’s perfectly human (and normal) to be weak…Atheists, like me, get their strength from within…It’s because people who cling to god (which is a willful act) have little or no inner strength, and that means they’re weak’. [He] has made the point that weakness is natural and human, however he also says atheists go against what’s natural and human.”
Ah, yes. Classic Christian delusion.
Straight up fact: I neither wrote nor even implied anywhere on this site at any time it ints history that “…atheists go against what’s natural and human.”
So what’s this idiot’s problem?
This is textbook confirmation bias. Quite simply, James is seeing only what he wants to see. He started with a conclusion and then pieced together a highly biased (and somewhat deluded) puzzle to carry him there. He, like most evangelical Christians, suffers from deep and latent religious insecurities, and contriving false atheist positions is how he soothes his insulted intellect.
James, unless you can show me the exact quote, or even a near approximation, anywhere on my site that states or even implies such a thing, you will remain either a liar, a self-deceiving zealot, or someone whose reading comprehension is sorely lacking (which you can fairly blame on that pseudo-college education you received). At any rate, I’ll let you choose which. (Ain’t I fair?)
Secondly, I can’t take seriously any philosophical opinion coming from someone who would place such a highly contrived photo of himself (left), in a hoodie no less, on his professional resume. Good god, man! You studied advertizing and public relations (which is ironically quite appropriate for a Christian missionary), but what the hell were you thinking? A hoodie and an earring? On your public resume? Really? This is what they teach you at Liberty? You’re barely old enough to be trusted with a can of beer, so I’ll write your carelessness off as youthful ignorance and inexperience.
Yes, that was an ad hominem attack. And no, it doesn’t prove that James is wrong – although that part is coming shortly. But it does demonstrate that he’s a contrived toolbag who’s too young to know what side of his playpen smells the worst.
Pointing Out the Obvious to the Oblivious
Yes Jimmy, it is perfectly human to be weak, but in no way does that mean that if you’re not weak that you’re going against what’s natural or human. Also know that my commentary was not just about strength (or the Christian lack thereof) but also about resilience – the kind of emotional resilience that atheists have to a far greater extent than their weak bended-knee theistic counterparts.
So let’s recap. This misguided child of god paraphrased me as having said that “…atheists go against what’s natural and human.”
Pay close attention, James. Again, I never said that. You did.
Most people, the vast majority of people, have no natural artistic abilities – but some do. Do artistic people “go against what’s natural and human?” Of course the answer is no. These are not mutually-inclusive attributes.
It is perfectly natural and human (as we are physically fragile) to suffer a broken bone or a cut if you took a nasty fall – but sometimes people walk away unscathed. If a person fell and didn’t break anything, would it mean they that went against what’s natural and human? Of course not. These are not mutually-inclusive actions. All it would mean is that their body is more resilient than others – or perhaps they were just lucky enough to land one way versus another thus preventing a break or a cut.
It is perfectly human to eat meat, but many completely normal people don’t. It is also perfectly human to not eat meat for matters of personal taste, compassion, and/or health. Are those folks going against what’s natural and human? No. Again, these are not mutually-inclusive positions.
Would you eat your dog? Would you eat anyone’s dog? Well, guess what? Some people do. They are doing what their culture-driven nature is compelling them to do even though it’s likely not consistent with yours.
I could give a thousand other perfectly consistent examples, but they’re all fundamentally the same in this respect.
What Crawled Up Jamie’s Ass and Died?
James took to heart my charge that theists (be they Christian, Jew, Muslim, Hindu, or whatever) are inherently weak. (They are.) He was insulted and offended in spite of his pitiable denials (should you ask). And I can’t blame him. If I were in his shoes I probably wouldn’t admit such insecurity either. It’s a sign of weakness.
He would have deflected the charge far more effectively if he had just ignored it. The fact that he chose to quote me at all only served to validate it.
Weakness is human, but that doesn’t mean that all humans are weak. Even a religiously deluded Christian like yourself must know and accept this universal truth – at least in those moments of unguarded intellectual honesty. And if that’s the case, then it certainly doesn’t mean that to not be weak is against human nature.
My dear James, me thinkst the only one lost in the argument is you, and I wouldn’t expect any less from a child your age. We can revisit this discussion when you’re all growed up. But until then, please stick with managing the burger flippers, mmm’k?
Mr. Newman’s article was initially published on his personal website which is no longer up, but I snagged a copy before he split. You can view it here in PDF format.
James would so love to hear from you.