From: Brian Holtz []
Sent: Monday, June 30, 2003 8:21 AM
To: Gary Amirault
Subject: RE: email privacy
GA: Brian, I've read some of your work. Surely you can't see your biases anymore than the Fundamentalist can, nor can you see your arroagance [sic]. The Pharisees of old and the Pharisees of today, both Christian apologists and Atheist apologists are blind to their non-objectivity. I speak from experience being a Fundamentalist Atheist and a Fundamentalist Christian.
On what basis do you assert that you can "see" my alleged "biases" and "non-objectivity" better than I can? I of course do not claim to be completely unbiased and objective, and in fact assert that complete objectivity about values is impossible.
GA: I've been where you are and I know that until you've had your full years of "eating grass" you won't become humble enough to know what I'm talking about.
It's simply fatuous for you to strike a pose of diagnosing me as being on the same track as you only not as far along. This is the fallacy of been-there-done-that: to identify some similarity between your opponent's belief and a former belief of yours, and then to argue from personal authority that your opponent will (or at least should) grow/develop/mature/evolve from his position to yours. This fallacy is a convenient substitute for actually answering an opposing position on its merits.

(Are you "blind" to the possibility that being a former "Fundamentalist Atheist" has given you a "bias" against atheism?  "Surely you can see" the "arrogance" of dismissing my position as merely a less-evolved version of your position?)

GA: You say I decline to substantiate my claim that you are arrogant. Friend, your articles wreak [sic] of the stuff, but you relish it so how can I convince you of it. A person who like a rotten smell can't be convinced it is rotten. And I'm certainly not oing [sic] to try.
I never asked you to "convince" me I'm arrogant.  I'm merely asking you to quote back to me a single "arrogant" thing I've written and explain how I could rephrase it in a way that you couldn't (arbitrarily) call "arrogant".  You've now made against me in six separate emails this defamatory charge of "arrogance/pride". Each time I've asked you to substantiate this attack on my character, and each time you've refused. How am I to defend my character from this kind of denigration? What kind of "Christian" would repeatedly defame a man's character while denying his every request to show him the error of his ways?  Is this what Jesus would do?

Here's a possibility that I wonder whether you're non-arrogant enough to ponder for even a moment. If by some chance I were actually right and you were in fact wrong, would you really instantly recognize a more-valid worldview when you finally saw it well defended?  Or is it just possible that this trauma would cause you to mistake open-minded confidence in that more-valid worldview for arrogance? (I asked you these questions once before, and you ignored them. Will you again not answer them, Mr. "Prepare to Face the Truth"?)