Jump to content

Are Atheists On Youtube Too Harsh?


ContraBardus
 Share


Recommended Posts

I like Thunderf00t, Potholer54, Amazing Atheist, Zomgitscrisis [Not just because she's hot], and other Atheists who post on Youtube. They are entertaining and often informative.

 

However, I just don't see many of them winning any converts. It's not that they're wrong, but the fact that they tend to be rather condescending, insulting, and harsh in their language.

 

Yes, they often present the facts, show evidence, and provide explanation and evidence for their claims. However, most of them spend a considerable amount of time speaking down and debasing the character, making Ad Hominem arguments, and generally being a jerk towards those they question or debunk.

 

Some are worse about it than others, but it can't really help their case much in the eyes of those who believe in those things.

 

I know, most of them wouldn't listen anyway. However, the few who would, are more likely to become upset and not consider the valid points involved because of their rather derogatory and exasperated tones in reference to them.

 

At the end of the day, you end up with good entertainment for non-Christians, not that there's anything wrong with that, but most Christians are likely to shut them out, regardless to how open to the subject they might have been at the start.

 

I just don't see them winning any converts this way, and as far as I've seen, they're pretty much just for those already in the know, with no real use in 'educating' anyone who might consider their evidence as a result. I think it might be counterproductive and do more harm than good.

 

As an addition to the poll question. Do you know of any who are even handed and don't talk down to, use harsh or derogatory language, or insult Christians or their beliefs in their videos? If so, provide a link. I'm trying to find a good series that isn't so harsh about the beliefs they are debunking or refuting and intentionally make them seem like huge idiots?

 

Some of Potholer54's videos are pretty good about it, but then others seem to go right at the throat and come off as trying to make them all seem like total morons. Admittedly entertaining, but as I mentioned, probably counterproductive for use as a reference for theist and creationists.

 

I want something a little more evenhanded I can use to give as a reference to someone who might be too lazy to read, but is willing to watch a video.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

holysinecure comes to mind. She may be agnostic rather than atheist, I don't recall if she specifies, but she is an ex-christian who has a good series debunking the Bible in a calm, respectful tone. Definitely not condescending by any stretch of the imagination.

 

DeistPaladin (previously JohnLArmstrong), though a deist rather than atheist, has his Skeptic Bible Studies series debunking the Bible. He generally takes a straight-forward approach that usually isn't condescending. A lot of his older videos do have him throwing the Bible at the end, though, but that's only after the (usually) solid arguments are presented.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Oh yeah, another one that I just recently came across:

 

Lovingdoubt, an atheist ex-christian. I've only watched a few of her videos, but what I've seen so far hasn't had any condescending tone.

 

As a side note, I haven't watched enough different atheist YouTubers to feel qualified to cast a vote in the poll.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

holysinecure comes to mind. She may be agnostic rather than atheist, I don't recall if she specifies, but she is an ex-christian who has a good series debunking the Bible in a calm, respectful tone. Definitely not condescending by any stretch of the imagination.

 

I ran across her account during my deconversion and she helped immensely. I thought her videos almost had a loving tone, a pleading tone. It was very different from other YouTube atheists/agnostics.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

In my experience, it's extremely difficult coming up with something that all Christians will consider respectful guaranteed. Many Christians will be offended if one so much as questions the truthfulness of the Christian god or bible. The very state of being atheist offends them.

 

I think on YouTube you can find everything from immature rants to well-thought-out lectures by professors. A Brief History of Disbelief by Jonathan Miller comes to mind. It is a series of three videos, each one hour long, and covers several centuries of philosophical thought. They are listed below:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Sorry double posting.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I agree (and voted) that the majority of them are likely on the harsh side, but I would just add that I'm not really having a problem with that.

 

 

I don't expect a Christian to be swayed by some of these videos; I think stuff by Pat Condell (my fave) and others mentioned above are kind of cathartic for those of us still grinding the axe.

 

If an agnostic or soft Christian wants to view intelligent dialogue about atheism, they can watch Sam Harris and some of the other "intellectual" discussions that are out there.

 

 

Zomgitscrisis [Not just because she's hot]

 

 

I'm glad she's not promoting Xtianity....I might be in trouble. :grin:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I agree (and voted) that the majority of them are likely on the harsh side, but I would just add that I'm not really having a problem with that.

 

 

I don't expect a Christian to be swayed by some of these videos; I think stuff by Pat Condell (my fave) and others mentioned above are kind of cathartic for those of us still grinding the axe.

 

If an agnostic or soft Christian wants to view intelligent dialogue about atheism, they can watch Sam Harris and some of the other "intellectual" discussions that are out there.

 

 

Zomgitscrisis [Not just because she's hot]

 

 

I'm glad she's not promoting Xtianity....I might be in trouble. :grin:

 

I agree. I certainly don't have any problem with them. As I said, they are entertaining, and educational. A good way to learn a lot of information to refute many common Christian arguments. A nice place to go and let my claws be sharpened without the eye strain of reading something like The Blind Watchmaker or The God Delusion again.

 

They're also no good to point Christians or Creationists towards. They would be turned off by the harsh nature and language of the ones I mentioned pretty much immediately. I did like some of the others mentioned so far. I've only watched a few though.

 

I am really enjoying the BBC production R.S.Martin posted, but it's very long. Works out to about three hours of video.

 

I do enjoy a good ripping of Creationism and Christianity. Sometimes it's nice to have something a bit softer in tone that doesn't immediately piss them off, make them wash out their eyes and ears with holy water and tell me how disgusted they were with all the hate speech and how it verifies how evil, hateful, angry, and immoral Atheists are.

 

Thunderf00t, Amazing Atheist, and ZOMGitscrisis, tend to have that effect on them. Plotholer54 less so, but still usually ends up just upsetting them so they don't finish watching.

 

Lovingdoubt, seems promising so far, but her videos seem more geared towards personal experience than facts or evidence. That can be very effective and useful.

 

Holysinecure, and DeistPaladin are also pretty cool so far. Using Scripture to make points.

 

I'd also like something a bit more evidence and fact based that explains the science similar to Thunderf00t and Potholer54 without making the theists and IDers look like clowns, with less in the way of insults, harsh language, and descriptions of the 'believers' of a less than flattering nature.

 

It's hard to start a convincing argument that someone will listen to with 'you're an idiot and anyone who believes this crap is a total moron'. Even if I don't expect them to be convinced, it still only makes things more difficult.

 

For me, it's a guilty pleasure and entertainment, for them it's just validation for their assertions of hatred, anger, and hostility of Atheists.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This is a fun one I came across while clicking on links in some of the other videos.

 

Animated Atheism by 43alley.

 

A trailer...

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Illustrated Hitchens Why Christianity Fails...

 

 

 

43alley's channel page

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I haven't seen many atheist videos on youtube, but I don't care for the condescending, insulting videos. It simply doesn't do us any good. It just adds fuel to the fire for Christians who think we're all a bunch of mouth assholes and it makes them less likely to consider our view. If they feel their egos are being attacked, they will shut down if they otherwise would consider our views. I have written a number of videos for youtube, including one condemning these types of atheists. I have tried to almost completely avoid all foul language and have stayed away from personal insults.........If only I could find the flash drive with all of these transcripts so I could actually record them. :(

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Illustrated Hitchens Why Christianity Fails...

 

 

 

Hitchens is, of course, intelligent, but I find his stuff to be incredibly dry. He sounds like he's simply reading passages straight from one of his books for the audio version. I want someone with a little attitude and personality, but not straight up insulting and rabid.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My first post!

 

I've found Finally Free From Faith's videos to be calm, rational, and reasonable. He uses more of a "think for yourself" approach rather than a condescending rant.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

When I was a Christian I hated atheists. It wasn't because there arguments were hitting home. Hell, I even read Nietzsche and enjoyed it. It was because I thought they were the biggest arrogant condescending dicks in the entire United States.

 

Even after deconverting it took the better part of a year to let go of my residual hatred for them. It was the mocking condescension, and the bemused contempt they seemed to exercise as a rule.

 

I mean, in the last six months of me being a Christian, I would read Sam Harris and shit would hit home and it helped sow the seeds. But while his arguments made a shocking amount of sense to me as things began to unravel, all I could think the whole time was "what a fucking dick!"

 

Now I'm an asshole about it myself, and have no qualms about making the most tasteless jokes possible about Christians and Christianity. Although I'm respectful whenever actual Christians are around, and even sympathize with them a little bit. (Hey, it's Las Vegas. Rough shit here if you're a Jesus person.) But if the old me read all the shit that "Vomit Comet" posts on this site, the old me would be asking God to forgive him for wanting to put a fucking sledgehammer through VC's skull.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On the other hand, sometimes a little "shock value" is justified with some of these rougher critiques.

 

If we have to abide these "fire and brimstone" preachers, screaming about hell-fire and stuff as well as our worthless sinful hides, then I think a little bit of sarcastic red-hot pokers to the face are an entertaining return fire.

 

Sometimes conflict is a good thing. It sharpens the subject matter and defines more of the elements. But I agree, for the most part, we should meet thoughtful and polite debate from believers with the same courtesy.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I don't think Thunderf00t is harsh... but then I agree with him so it might come off that way to others. He just seems to explain things calmly and I find his voice to be kind. The dude he argues with is much more condescending and obnoxious so I figure he has the right to retaliate. I don't think atheists need to be any nicer. I have never seen a christian video/ creation video where the speaker attempted civility, not to mention intellectual honesty. Even nice people won't sway anyone who isn't already looking for answers, the best we could hope for is educating people who are curious and open minded, and hopefully mature enough to not get offended by an internet video. Its not about "converting" true christians.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I also want to add that I think there's a difference between "harsh" by personally attacking people and simply attacking the religion. People often think I'm an asshole because I have absolutely no respect for Christianity and am incredibly blunt in discussions. People take personal offense even though it's not a personal attack. I don't believe in pulling punches in that way.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I agree with Thunderf00t too, but he is a bit harsh at times. Not always, but I could say the same of Plotholer54 as well. He's usually pretty straightforward, but he does rip on the people he's countering a bit as well.

 

It's not the content, and it doesn't bother me at all. I thoroughly enjoy their videos.

 

I'm just looking for something of a slightly different tone so to speak. I don't really expect to convert anyone, nor am I that interested in it.

 

I'm looking for something I can use to make a point that won't get a reply about the character of the one who made the video and how hateful and angry they were at God, or how much they hated Christians and how they couldn't listen to it because of it.

 

I'm essentially looking for an 'excuse free' kind of video even if it's a bit dry. I enjoy their wit and find their rips to be entertaining. A Christian will just use those things as an excuse to either not watch, or divert attention away from the factual content involved. I want something where there's really nothing else but the factual evidence for them to argue about. Something that makes it harder for them to divert from the actual issue rather than something that gives them a valid excuse to not watch or bring up issues that aren't really related to the subject.

 

Some of the videos posted so far are great and pretty much what I was looking for in relation to Biblical arguments. Though, I would like something that deals with the Scientific principals of Evolution and the Origin of the Universe and such as well. Anti ID and Creationist arguments kind of stuff that doesn't degrade or insult them directly while still refuting their arguments.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Regarding the OP, who cares? Xians try and win people over with friendly smiles and donuts. What they are winning people over to is an emotional experience. Is that what atheists are supposed to be doing? Bearing good fruits?

 

I don't watch any of these guys except for the cute Romanian girl and personally I don't see anything wrong with her approach. If people want to be idiots then telling them they are idiots in an intelligent way is funny. If someone stays an xian because some atheist embarrassed them then I can only conclude that they are an idiot incapable of thinking for their self.

 

IOW, xianity doesn't become more true because it is sugar coated and atheism doesn't become a wrong conclusion because it is defended by smart asses.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Harsh? Truth hurts.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I voted 50/50. IMO we see about the same sort of stuff from the other side too. Of course, we see more stupidity from the other side, but other than the stupidity, it is 50/50 in harshness and both sides can be pretty bad, not to mention the other side tries to layer on guilt and fear. So, if Thunderfoot, Zomgitscris, and other atheists get a little harsh, who cares. Let them go for it. Sometimes a little harshness isn't a bad thing, esp with the stupid fear and guilt Fundies love to layer on with their stuff.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Different people respond to different things. Some believers may tune out anything that's not respectable. Others may listen to a Pat Condell rant thinking they can take it, but having heard the rational dissent a seed is planted.

 

Also, these videos are not just for converting Christians. They can be for angry atheists who need help getting these feelings off their chest. Then maybe they themselves can communicate in a softer tone.

 

I don't like to say that someone honestly communicating their thoughts and feelings is 'harsh'. We can not promote censorship and be honest with ourselves.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Different people respond to different things. Some believers may tune out anything that's not respectable. Others may listen to a Pat Condell rant thinking they can take it, but having heard the rational dissent a seed is planted.

 

Also, these videos are not just for converting Christians. They can be for angry atheists who need help getting these feelings off their chest. Then maybe they themselves can communicate in a softer tone.

 

I don't like to say that someone honestly communicating their thoughts and feelings is 'harsh'. We can not promote censorship and be honest with ourselves.

 

 

/b/ is bad for you. It will rot your brain.

 

Anyway, the point of the post is not to promote censoring anyone. It's just a question of tone. As the first post states, I'm all for those 'harsh' videos.

 

It's just that the tone used often gives an excuse for any Christian that sees them to claim that Atheists are 'angry at God' or 'mean and hateful'. While I personally thoroughly enjoy them, and I am aware that they aren't necessarily for conversion or Christian consumption. In most cases, from what I've seen, they aren't fit for Christian consumption and will put off believers and prevent them from listening at all. They probably wouldn't anyway, but they give them an excuse and pretty much verbally slap them in the face most often.

 

The thread is as much a request for videos of a lighter, even if a bit drier, tone as much as the poll for how people see the videos. There just aren't that many of them that aren't a bit harsh in terms of how they often relate Christianity and Creationists. There's very little in the way of even handedness either way. Both ends of the discussion tend to use a lot of Ad Hominem arguments and call each other morons and idiots.

 

Something more 'fit' for Christian consumption, that doesn't give them excuses because of insulting language relating to the believers amongst the facts.

 

There are a couple of good examples of what I mean already in the thread, but they all involve scripture, and while I'd like more like that as well, I'm also looking for something of a more Scientific nature that deals with Creationist arguments without calling them idiots in the process.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Guidelines.