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Debating an idiot on Facebook...

Posted: 2013-05-11 12:09pm
by DieselJester
It started with a post that my friend, who's now a Catholic Priest/Chaplain in the US Army posted a link:
Daniel R. Goulet shared a link. Thursday at 3:20pm ·
Same Sex Marriage and the Natural Law: ... E.facebook
So since we like to debate on the subject, I read the article and started my argument:
Jeremy A. Reynolds
Alright Goulet, Round 2! *ding!* Thursday at 6:27pm ·

Jeremy A. Reynolds
Part 1: Let us first look at some of the points that were made on Natural Law:
No one has written more clearly or concisely about the natural law than St. Thomas Aquinas, that peerless 13th century philosopher-theologian. In his master work, Summa Theologiae (I-II, q. 94), he offers us the following points concerning the natural law:
1. The natural law is that part of the divine, eternal law which applies to human beings and which can be understood by them.

Assumption Accepted as humans can understand laws as they are written down.

2. The human intellect operates on two distinct levels, on a speculative level and on a practical level. It is on the speculative level that the mind pursues the positive sciences: mathematics, physics, chemistry, biology, psychology, etc. It is on the practical level that the mind discovers the natural law, and judges the morality of human acts in the light of it.

Assumption Accepted as humanity has progressed in all of these fields.

3. The first, self-evident, indemonstrable principle of the natural law which is “known naturally” by every sane, mature mind is: “good is to be done and evil is to be avoided.” Then, St. Thomas adds “all other precepts of the natural law are based upon this.”

Assumption Accepted and I’ll be coming back to this point.

4. The natural law is the same for all human beings, and it is unchangeable.

Assumption Accepted and I’ll come back to this one as well. This is a good example of what is moral and what is immoral.

5. The natural law is “written in the hearts of men which iniquity itself cannot efface” (from the “Confessions of St. Augustine,” ii). After quoting St. Augustine, St. Thomas comments: “But the law, which is written in men’s hearts, is the natural law. Therefore, the natural law cannot be blotted out.”

Circular Logic and False Cause Fallacies. Humans change laws all the time as more knowledge is gained. If we were to follow St. Thomas’ logic here, then the first laws ever laid down would therefore be ironclad and not be able to be changed ever. If that were the case then we would still be living in the dark ages and points one through four that were made above would be meaningless. Some laws that are created, that have been written in men’s hearts, were inherently evil (I’ll use slavery as an example) and eventually repealed. If we were to keep with point five, then we’d still have evil laws which would then be a direct contradiction of St. Augustine’s third point in which “Evil is to be avoided”. (Part 2 to follow)

Thursday at 6:48pm ·

Jeremy A. Reynolds Ok, Part 2 will take some time. I'll get back to you on this. Thursday at 6:56pm ·
I was going to get back to him when one of his friends jumped me.

Re: Debating an idiot on Facebook...

Posted: 2013-05-11 12:15pm
by DieselJester
His friend then jumps in with this:
Hans Weidig
"Part 1" > 2500 chars? Father Dan, I think we need a petition 2 ask FB 2 introduce the idea of blogging 2 sum posters... lol Yesterday at 4:13am
Jeremy A. Reynolds
And that's all that you have for the first part of my argument is a complaint about the length of my comment and that I should blog it? Seriously? 10 hours ago ·
Hans Weidig
yes; if NO ONE reads it, did it make a sound? (i'm mixing metaphors). posts are paragraphs, if u want ppl 2 actually read them!
I looked at this guy's FB page. He's actually older than I am and he's using shorthand/idiotspeak in his responses!? But I digress...
Jeremy A. Reynolds
typical red herring fallacy that I've come to expect from people. But alright, if you want to go down that road. See the problem with blogging my viewpoints on my own page is that people like you probably wouldn't even bother reading it. Case in point above. You looking at merely the length of my argument precludes the fact that you didn't even bother to read it. So rather than engage me in debate you whine about my length and suggest that I take up blogging. To use metaphors like you do: you're missing the woods for the trees. 32 minutes ago ·
Hans Weidig
but c, it does not matter who u were, or what ur POV is. If u were my brother & posting a conservative view, I still would not have read it, due 2 the length! I have too many posts 2 spend a half-hr reading this unless i'm seeking out that particular author or POV. I could cover 100 OTHER posts in the time it takes 2 read urs, & frankly I won't waste my time w/ a single 1 that hardly any1 else will read either. 27 minutes ago ·

Hans Weidig
But despite your frustration, I do seek out alternative views on topics like this. I find the blogs 2b better written, more informative, & overall a better representation of "the other side" than most FB posts. 25 minutes ago ·
Jeremy A. Reynolds
Who's frustrated? I'm just stating a fact. Another fact is that this entire time you've been debating me on blogging rather than engaging me on my viewpoint on your Church's standpoint. Your view that blogs are better written as opposed to Facebook posts is a Strawman Fallacy. What makes blogs better written than posts? What makes the substance that I say on Facebook any different than what I'd say on a blog? 11 minutes ago ·
:banghead: Why is it that people would rather make strawman attacks than actually debate the substance of the matter? -sigh- Truth is I've actually been kicking around the idea of making a blog, but I'm not about to let this guy know that and claim victory. Granted, I probably shouldn't have gone down this argument path with Mr. Weidig here, but I really couldn't resist for some odd reason. Ah well...

Re: Debating an idiot on Facebook...

Posted: 2013-05-13 12:11am
by Torben
Here's the problem: You can't successfully debate morons. All that happens is they drag you down to their level and beat you with experience.

Oh, and since they cannot fathom polysyllabic language, most times they simply stare at the screen, drool a little, and then post something unrelated and/or nonsensical.

Given the nature of most people to not really care what others have to say, only to spout the tiny bits of "wisdom" they have collected in their time, attempting to change the attitudes of the majority is simply a waste of time. They truly seem to not be able to fathom that they might, in fact, be wrong, and really do not want to listen to anyone explaining to them how their opinion could possibly not be fact. In a lot of cases God told them they were right, so they have that hurdle to contend with - how could God be wrong? I mean, he spoke to them, out of all of the people on the planet, and imparted them with the "truth." In other cases, they have fastened on to this idea and built it up inside themselves to the point that they HAVE to be right and anyone who doesn't listen to them must be wrong, for whatever reason they might have.

That said, I think it is still important to attempt to impart knowledge upon people willing to listen. I think this is not one of those people. You might do better to simply ignore this person and move on with your life.

Re: Debating an idiot on Facebook...

Posted: 2013-05-13 12:50pm
by willyvereb
"Don't argue with idiots. They will drag you down to that level and beat you with their experience."
A slightly modified version of Mark Twain's famous quote.
And seriously, it stands.
If you don't enjoy a debate, don't participate in it.
Unless something which is important to you depends on it.
Which I figure shouldn't be happening on Facebook.
It really doesn't matter what one or a hundred idiots say.
The best is to just ignore them.

Re: Debating an idiot on Facebook...

Posted: 2013-05-23 03:46pm
by Sea Skimmer
Debating someone on facebook is on par with debating someone in youtube comments. The format is not designed to provoke anything rational.