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New From Unbelievable: Richard Weikart vs. Hector Avalos

This week’s debate on Unbelievable (the radio show which regularly features exchanges and dialogues between Christians and non-Christians) features a debate between Richard Weikart and Hector Avalos.

From the podcast description:

Richard Weikart is a Christian and professor of History at California State University. He has drawn controversial conclusions regarding the role of Darwinism in providing a rationale for Hitler’s Nazi ideology. Hector Avalos is an atheist and Professor of Religious Studies at Iowa State University. He disagrees with Weikart, saying that Christian anti-semitism is the more likely explanation for Nazi ideology.

To listen to this week’s show, go here.

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13 Responses to New From Unbelievable: Richard Weikart vs. Hector Avalos

  1. For those who are unaware, Hector Avalos is the ‘atheist’ Religious Studies professor (explain that to me) who led the witch hunt against Guillermo Gonzalez at Iowa State University;

    Guillermo Gonzalez & Stephen Meyer on Coral Ridge – video (Part 1)
    http://www.coralridge.org/medi.....=CRH1118_F

    Guillermo Gonzalez & Stephen Meyer on Coral Ridge – video (Part 2)
    http://www.coralridge.org/medi.....=CRH1119_F

    =================

    further notes:

    Gonzalez’s work is simply without peer;

    Privileged Planet – Observability Correlation – Gonzalez and Richards – video
    http://www.metacafe.com/watch/5424431

    The very conditions that make Earth hospitable to intelligent life also make it well suited to viewing and analyzing the universe as a whole.
    – Jay Richards

    The Privileged Planet – video
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XV5zkifLSbc

    ==================

    From Darwin To Hitler – Richard Weikart – video
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w_5EwYpLD6A

    How Darwin’s Theory Changed the World

    Rejection of Judeo-Christian values
    Excerpt: Weikart explains how accepting Darwinist dogma shifted society’s thinking on human life: “Before Darwinism burst onto the scene in the mid-nineteenth century, the idea of the sanctity of human life was dominant in European thought and law (though, as with all ethical principles, not always followed in practice). Judeo-Christian ethics proscribed the killing of innocent human life, and the Christian churches explicitly forbade murder, infanticide, abortion, and even suicide.
    “The sanctity of human life became enshrined in classical liberal human rights ideology as ‘the right to life,’ which according to John Locke and the United States Declaration of Independence, was one of the supreme rights of every individual” (p. 75).
    Only in the late nineteenth and especially the early twentieth century did significant debate erupt over issues relating to the sanctity of human life, especially infanticide, euthanasia, abortion, and suicide. It was no mere coincidence that these contentious issues emerged at the same time that Darwinism was gaining in influence. Darwinism played an important role in this debate, for it altered many people’s conceptions of the importance and value of human life, as well as the significance of death” (ibid.).
    http://www.gnmagazine.org/issu.....-world.htm

  2. According to Hitler’s own words, he realized that traditional/religious anti-semitism would never accomplish what “scientific anti-semitism” could. He even claimed that sentimental anti-semitism was wrong. Here you have the ideological leader of a movement discouraging precisely the sentiment that Avalos attributes it to. Ironically, the great crime Hitler accuses the Jews is roughly “lying about nature” and flouting the “aristocratic principle of nature”, in teaching that God has reserved an inheritance for them, apart from the mechanics of struggle. It’s all in the very misquoted Chapter 2 of Mein Kampf. Here’s my method of parsing it.

    Now, keep in mind that the “true believing” Nazis had to hide hide “The Final Solution” from the traditional anti-semites.

  3. F/N: It’s more than that. Just about everything but the death camps and gassing in the camps was prefigured in the rape of Belgium in the previous war. Mass murder, willful despoliation, forced deportations and slavelike labour issuing in deaths etc etc etc.

    It’s all there, duly recorded.

    What do you think turned the former US Secretary of State and pacifist, 1913 – 15, into an anti-Darwinism crusader?

    And BTW, the concentration camp was invented by the British and used to lock up the Boers. More died in the camps than on the battlefield. In this lies a major root of the history of South Africa.

    Hitler served on that same front, and doubtless imbibed the propaganda, which was full of social Darwinist and Nietzschean thought.

    As Weikart highlighted as well, Hitler’s murderous policies were far broader than Jews: Poles, Russians, Gypsies and many more.

    He even started with the crippled vets from the previous war and other undesirable Germans. If you were a bedwetting child, your life was in danger.

    He explicitly adopted a social darwinist, racist scheme of thought [fully, brutally documented in Mein Kampf and predicted in Wells' War of the Worlds by way of warning], which was a dominant mode of thought in European culture at that time.

    Frankly, I find its traces in Churchill, not just Hitler!

    Bottomline: Avalas et al are trying to find any distractive and irresponsible excuse to deflect responsibility, instead of facing the serious challenge of addressing the moral hazard in the heart of Darwinism and in broader evolutionary materialism.

    That they are busily compounding it with trying to sow a poisonous attitude to the Christian heritage in our culture is simply making the problem worse.

  4. KF, what’s F/N mean?
    attempts to find it in google led to a def in urban dictionary, that I doubt is your intention

  5. Footnote.

  6. jjcassidy, interesting blog post you wrote,,, especially to find that Hitler was kneeling, fully prostrate, at the altar of Naturalism when he said that quote in Mein Kampf,,,

    i.e. ‘acting in accordance with the will of the Almighty Creator’

  7. F/N: From the devil’s own mouth, MK, Vol 1 Ch 11 (how I hate having to give an actual reference to such . . . ):

    _________

    >> Any crossing of two beings not at exactly the same level produces a medium between the level of the two parents. This means: the offspring will probably stand higher than the racially lower parent, but not as high as the higher one. Consequently, it will later succumb in the struggle against the higher level. Such mating is contrary to the will of Nature for a higher breeding of all life. The precondition for this does not lie in associating superior and inferior, but in the total victory of the former. The stronger must dominate and not blend with the weaker, thus sacrificing his own greatness. Only the born weakling can view this as cruel, but he after all is only a weak and limited man; for if this law did not prevail, any conceivable higher development of organic living beings [--> i.e. evolution viewed as progress] would be unthinkable.

    The consequence of this racial purity, universally valid in Nature, is not only the sharp outward delimitation of the various races, but their uniform character in themselves. The fox is always a fox, the goose a goose, the tiger a tiger, etc., and the difference can lie at most in the varying measure of force, strength, intelligence, dexterity, endurance,etc., of the individual specimens. [ --> survival of the fittest, with a focus on the predators] But you will never find a fox who in his inner attitude might, for example, show humanitarian tendencies toward geese, as similarly there is no cat with a friendly inclination toward mice.

    Therefore, here, too, the struggle among themselves arises less from inner aversion than from hunger and love. In both cases, Nature looks on calmly, with satisfaction, in fact. In the struggle for daily bread all those who are weak and sickly or less determined succumb, while the struggle of the males for the female [--> i.e. effectively sexual selection] grants the right or opportunity to propagate only to the healthiest. And struggle is always a means for improving a species’ health and power of resistance and, therefore, a cause of its higher development. [--> i.e. of evolution]

    If the process were different, all further and higher development would cease and the opposite would occur. [--> devolution] For, since the inferior always predominates numerically over the best, if both had the same possibility of preserving life and propagating, the inferior would multiply so much more rapidly that in the end the best would inevitably be driven into the background, unless a correction of this state of affairs were undertaken. [ --> A problem raised in Darwin's Descent of Man, chs 5 - 7] Nature does just this by subjecting the weaker part to such severe living conditions that by them alone the number is limited, and by not permitting the remainder to increase promiscuously, but making a new and ruthless choice according to strength and health. [--> Social Darwinist solution to the problem, paralleled by Darwin's discussion of the Celts [= Irish] Scots and Saxons [ = English]]

    No more than Nature desires the mating of weaker with stronger individuals, even less does she desire the blending of a higher with a lower race [ --> Focus on race, note the subtitle of the earlier edns of Origin: preservation of favoured races in the struggle for existence], since, if she did, her whole work of higher breeding, over perhaps hundreds of thousands of years, might be ruined with one blow. [--> then accepted evolutionary timescale for man]

    Historical experience offers countless proofs of this. It shows with terrifying clarity that in every mingling of Aryan blood with that of lower peoples the result was the end of the cultured people. North America, whose population consists in by far the largest part of Germanic elements who mixed but little with the lower colored peoples, shows a different humanity and culture from Central and South America, where the predominantly Latin immigrants often mixed with the aborigines on a large scale. By this one example, we can clearly and distinctly recognize the effect of racial mixture. The Germanic inhabitant of the American continent, who has remained racially pure and unmixed, rose to be master of the continent; he will remain the master as long as he does not fall a victim to defilement of the blood.

    The result of all racial crossing is therefore in brief always the following:

    * Lowering of the level of the higher race;

    * Physical and intellectual regression and hence the beginning of a slowly but surely progressing sickness.

    To bring about such a development is, then, nothing else but to sin against the will of the eternal creator. [--> recall, the dominant view of the time was an eternal nature, the Big Bang type cosmology only triumphed in the 1960's, indeed in 1925/6 when MK was written it was not yet proposed] And as a sin this act is rewarded. [--> uses the TERM sin, but in a most antichristian context, similar to antichristian usage of the term "eternal creator" to denote nature, perhaps nature personified in some sort of vaguely deistical or pantheistical sense]

    When man attempts to rebel against the iron logic of Nature [--> Notice the immediate elaboration on his "eternal creator", Nature capitalised] , he comes into struggle with the principles to which he himself owes his existence as a man. And this attack must lead to his own doom. [--> thus we see what the sin against the eternal creator, Nature, is.]

    Here, of course, we encounter the objection of the modern pacifist, as truly Jewish in its effrontery as it is stupid! ‘Man’s role is to overcome Nature!’ [--> Notice, not creation, Nature, capitalised, and we need hardly underscore the label, sneer and dismiss racism]

    Millions thoughtlessly parrot this Jewish nonsense and end up by really imagining that they themselves represent a kind of conqueror of Nature; though in this they dispose of no other weapon than an idea, and at that such a miserable one, that if it were true no world at all would be conceivable. >>
    __________

    Avalos is a senior scholar.

    He is responsible to do the sort of digging that would easily turn up this pivotal passage and its ideational context.

    This failure to do due diligence under basic duties of care, is sadly revealing.

    GEM of TKI

  8. 8

    Destroy Christianity. That was the plan.

    From the declassified Nuremberg trials:

    “The Persecution of the Christian Churches…the Nazi plan to subvert and destroy German Christianity, which it calls it, was an integral part of the National Socialist scheme of world conquest. [ny times]

    But wait, there is still hope for a Hitler Christian connection:

    “On one level, the Nazis saw an advantage. In tumultuous post-World War I Germany, the Christian churches ”had long been associated with conservative ways of thought, which meant that they tended to agree with the National Socialists in their authoritarianism, their attacks on Socialism and Communism”

    Except that…

    “But there was a dilemma for Hitler. While conservatives, the Christian churches ”could not be reconciled with the principle of racism, with a foreign policy of unlimited aggressive warfare, or with a domestic policy involving the complete subservience of Church to State.” Given that these were the fundamental underpinnings of the Nazi regime, ”conflict was inevitable,”

    Not fans of Jesus:
    http://www.nytimes.com/2002/01.....tml?src=pm

    Destroy the Christians!

    “In the political relations with the churches in Germany however, Hitler readily adopted a strategy “that suited his immediate political purposes”.[322] Hitler had a general plan, even before the rise of the Nazis to power, to destroy Christianity within the Reich.[325][326][327] The leader of the Hitler Youth stated “the destruction of Christianity was explicitly recognized as a purpose of the National Socialist movement”
    from the start,
    but “considerations of expedience made it impossible” publicly to express this extreme position.[325] His intention was to wait until the war was over to destroy the influence of Christianity.[320]

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adolf_Hitler

  9. Please cf my for the record, here: http://www.uncommondescent.com.....he-dragon/

  10. For me, without even getting into the details of Mein Kampf, it is shocking that anyone would even think to claim that Hitler was operating under Judeo-Christian ethics. I know in my own walk, trying to live a ‘Christian’ life, My Struggle, or My Battle, which is what Mein Kampf means in English, has been against my own sinful nature. I firmly believe that anyone who tries to live a ‘perfect’ life, after becoming a Christian, as in not telling any lies whatsoever, loving others as much as yourself, i.e. no hateful thoughts, and the biggie, no lustful thoughts,,, anyone trying to do as such will soon come face to face with this brute fact about human nature,,, WE ARE FAR FROM PERFECTION!!! Thanks be to the grace of God that carries each of us!! Thus, because of such lofty, and noble, perfection that is unreachable for man in his own endeavor to maintain, that is why I find it shocking for anyone to even suggest Hitler was operating out of a Judeo-Christian ethic.,,, Avalos, who is adamantly stating as such, claims that he was once a Christian, but I really find that hard to believe. He very well may have called himself a Christian, and did ‘Christian’ things, such as go to church, but I really doubt he has ever honestly faced the sheer ‘wretchedness’ of his own human nature and truly realized the necessity that each of us has for ‘the strength’ of Christ in our lives to overcome that ‘wretchedness’;

    Heather Williams – Hallelujah – Lyrics
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OX2uM0L3Y1A

  11. 11

    Hector Avalos’s ideological lust and intellectual rape should be illuminated for all to see.

    Hitler knew worldwide the Christians would never bow. He knew full well that if his plan were to succeed, the Church had to be destroyed.

    ”The Catholic Church need not imagine that we are going to create martyrs,” Robert Wagner, the Nazi Gauleiter of Baden, said in a speech, according to the O.S.S. study. ”We shall not give the church that satisfaction. She shall have not martyrs, but criminals.”

    But once they had total power and set off to launch a world war, the Nazis made no secret of what lay in store for Christian clergymen who expressed dissent.

    In Munich, Nazi street gangs and a Gestapo squad attacked the residence of the Roman Catholic cardinal. ”A hail of stones was directed against the windows, while the men shouted, ‘Take the rotten traitor to Dachau!’ ” the outline says, adding: ”After 1937, German Catholic bishops gave up all attempts to print” their pastoral letters publicly and instead ”had them merely read from the pulpits.”

    Then the letters themselves were confiscated.

    ”In many churches, the confiscation took place during Mass by the police snatching the letter out of the hands of the priests as they were in the act of reading it.”

    Later the same year, dissident Protestant churches joined in a manifesto protesting Nazi tactics. In response, the Nazis arrested 700 Protestant pastors.

    Objectionable statements made by the clergy would no longer be prosecuted in the courts, the Nazis said. Statements ”injurious to the State would be ruthlessly punished by ‘protective custody,’ that is, the concentration camp,” the outline says.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2002/01.....038;src=pm

    Summary of fact from the Nuremberg trials. [transcripts declassified in 2002]

  12. Folks:

    Let’s connect some dots.

    Mr Avalos is by his admission a former Christian, turned atheist and professor of religion.

    (Given the issues exposed here; that is actually not very surprising, if he came into College or Seminary with effectively a sunday school level naive faith, and was pushed into the meat-grinder of skepticism in the name of “scientific” theology since C18 or so, note esp the clip from Eta Linnemann. Observe the role of atheistical a prioris in the process, just as with Lewontin et al.)

    Next, enter, Gonzalez, a man whose publication record exceeded by a factor of several times, those who evaluated him, and who had obviously adequate sponsorship for what he did, noting that in fact the “raises enough money” objection was ex post facto, i.e a likely plausible excuse. In addition, we have on the record facts that it was prejudice that drove his expulsion, just he was not willing to make a court fight out of it, unlike say Gaskell.

    Now, who leads the charge against Gonzalez, once he had produced supportive materials for cosmological ID on his own time, while continuing to produce papers and even a textbook by a major publisher: Avalos.

    Now, we see Weikart — another DI fellow — being subjected to a slander attack, one with all sorts of inferences against the Christian church and faith, and in defiance of easily accessible but not commonly known facts (cf 7 above and following) about Herr Schicklegruber and co that make the matter blatantly clear.

    By the same Avalos.

    In short the issue is plain, this is an example of the same sort of ruthlessly amoral manipulative evolutionary materialist factionism driven by benumbed consciences that Plato warned against 2350 years ago.

    So, the challenge is to decent materialists, atheists, agnostics and fellow travellers: police your own.

    Make it clear that there are fairly clear limits of respect for truth, fairness and civility — we leave the debate over grounding those limits to another day — and that they must not be exceeded.

    Or else we will begin to draw t5he only prudent conclusion, we are seeing a willful good cop bad cop routine, and we will not be taken in by it.

    If you harbour, travel with, refuse to disown and correct those on your side who are doing the sort of inexcusable things Avalos and others have been doing, we will have to hold you to be the good cop side of a strategy like that.

    And, we will have to act accordingly, in protection of ourselves. (And remember this comes from a man whose family has been subjected to internet thuggery from unhinged people initially harboured and not strongly corrected in good time by more “moderate” voices.)

    GEM of TKI

  13. perfect storm, anyone?

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