Saturday, April 28, 2018
Prager U continues to get everything wrong
The pretentiously titled "Prager U" channel- which is, again, not a University but rather a forum for right-wing radio hack Dennis Prager's narrow-minded viewpoints and those of his friends- is at it again, this time trying to explain to us that even if we aren't sure if there is a god we should just believe anyway because beliefs have benefits that non-belief does not.
Today's guest choad starts by asserting that "if god exists, then the universe didn't just evolve by chance, but by deliberate design." There are at LEAST two fallacies in that one sentence. First, even if there IS a god, you need to prove that it "deliberately designed" the universe. Proof that a god exists wouldn't prove anything about it's works or it's intentions. Second- and related- is that buzzword "evolve." I'm guessing this idiot is about to be Clueless Idiot #234897 on the internet to confuse Evolution with Abiogenesis. Let's see.
"There's an artist behind this incredible work of art, this big and beautiful world." Oh, I'm not sure I can do this after all, not if you're going to jump right from a binary argument to the Argument from Analogy. This planet is a "work of art," and all art must have an artist, therefore god? This world is "big and beautiful?" Big compared to what? Beautiful compared to what? This guy is going to use the phrase "fine-tuned" to describe a universe in which life as we know it can exist almost nowhere, isn't he?
Never mind, this guy goes completely off the rails in the very next paragraph and it's clear that his actual argument is the Argument from Emotion. We're "living in a story" and the story must "have a happy ending, eventually...maybe not in our lifetime, but it must, for as surely as god exists.." which you haven't proven, "Professor," but to be fair you made it very clear early on that you had not intention of even attempting to prove it, just to convince us that belief was beneficial without proof.
He then goes into the Argument of Evil problem- evil exists because god allows it to exist, because of Free Will, which is a gift to all of us except Adam and Eve of course who were punished along with all of their decendents, forever, for exercising it never mind that they did not have knowledge of good and evil before making that "choice." "God will reconcile all injustices in the end"- that would be the god you haven't proven exists, let alone gives a damn what's going on, and as we're only a minute in to this four minute video I'm sure you're going to be explaining very soon why god doesn't stop child rapists, cancer, hurricanes, etc BEFORE they happen rather than allowing all of this suffering and then "setting things right" in some distant future?
I'm a minute in. One. Minute. In. And this guy has already buried his audience with baseless assertions and empty promises. My original plan was to tackle this one in four or five parts, but I just can't see myself going back to it just to get to the inevitable "if god doesn't exist there is no ultimate justice and that would be unfair therefore you should believe god exists so you don't get the sads about injustice" claptrap. So I'm just going to leave it here. You got ten minutes of my time, Prager U. Can you sign my drop sheet please?