Apologists, The Problem Is You
The Role of the Apologist
Apologists are people who zealously defend their beliefs through systematic arguments and discourse. They discipline themselves with daily study to protect their beliefs as best they can, and they use their knowledge to tear apart any belief that contradicts their own.
Apologists are most common in religions, because it is in religion that many questions cannot be answered. It is then up to the apologist to twist logic and find holes in their opponent's argument all to simply create a cloud of doubt in the air.
Nowadays, apologists are not simply from religious circles either. We have seen an uprise of apologists for atheists, politicians and political beliefs, anti-vaccination, and even flat-earthers.
Apologists are called when a belief needs a champion, and apologists will take that champion's tunic and wear it until they are no longer needed. The problem with apologists is that they are not allowed to waver. They must stand strong in the belief until death separates them, and it is precisely in this point that apologists create a more toxic and divisive culture around them instead a united and understanding culture.
The Problem With Apologists
It is the unwavering nature of apologists that creates the biggest problem. Since they are essentially a hired gun for the belief, they will defend and defend and defend until they cannot defend any more.
This inability to shift their thinking prevents them from understanding their opponent. Empathy requires a person to truly understand another while also sharing in the emotion. Apologists are not allowed to empathize, which makes them seem so cold and callous in many of their responses. It is not about helping the other understand their belief. It is ultimately about discrediting their opponent and making them look stupid in the process.
Apologetics in Religion
In religion, apologists argue for the existence of God, the beginning of the world, the creation of mankind, the nature of sin, and the holiness of certain figures, to name a few.
Religious apologists have a very difficult task in front of them, which is why they rely heavily on gaslighting and manipulation. Apologists like Ravi Zacharias have lied about credentials their entire career to appear more intellectually superior to their critics. Zacharias, for example, used to pull numerous talking points out of his pocket when questioned by an atheist. He would then use his fake credentials as a means of raising his own status while simultaneously lowering the status of the questioner.
This technique is also common when the apologist has impressive credentials, too. The process of gaslighting is deep manipulation by psychological means. Religious apologists are experts at this, and they will speak in such a way that the opponent will begin to question their own sanity.
The process is not about helping the other to understand. It is about manipulating and tricking the person.
Apologetics in Politics
In politics, for example, apologists argue for leaders in a political party, government spending, social issues, defense in scandals, foreign relations, and so many more.
Political apologists are among the most dishonest. Since their job relies heavily on defending politicians through the good, the bad, and the ugly, they will pull every lie they possibly can find to quiet the masses. The lack of integrity makes this process even more disturbing.
People like Kellyanne Conway, one of President Trump's counselors, will say some of the most absurd lines you could ever hear from a political aide, but it is in these insane lies that she detracts attention away from the main subject. Often times, Conway will say a lie more ridiculous than the president so that the news will focus on her instead. She becomes a scapegoat, and that is precisely her role as an apologist for President Trump. Since she is able to defend herself so well, President Trump relies on her heavily to put out fires.
The feeding of dishonest and untrue information serves as a distraction from the subject at hand. Once the standards have been lowered to that level, all uprightness is thrown out the window, and the conversation can turn into a circus.
This process is not about building bridges. It is about burning bridges down and preventing any means of understanding at all.
Apologetics in Atheism
In atheism, apologists argue for the Big Bang Theory, the non-existence of God, the role of both micro and macroevolution, and the scientific theory among many others.
Atheistic apologists are an interesting breed. On the one hand, they are a necessary evil to combat the religious apologists, but on the other hand, they are apologists for science, basically. It is insane that the scientific community feels a need for apologists, but like the other areas, a champion is needed to fight.
The great criticism towards apologetic atheists is the aggressiveness of their delivery. This is not unique to atheists, but the use of ridicule to tear down their opponents is not only malicious, it actually degrades the value of science through the process.
People like Richard Dawkins regularly insult religious leaders for their practices and beliefs. Dawkins has compared Islam to cancer, said Christianity is evil, and referred to a creationist as an "idiot". Someone like Dawkins does not even consider the amount of religious people in his field and how quickly he alienates himself from some of these prominent scientists, some of which are even Nobel Prize winners.
This process is not about coming to terms with each other. It is about labeling atheists as intelligent and religious people as stupid.
The Influence of an Apologist
Apologists play a major role in society today. They fill up arenas, they sell popular books, and they appear regularly on major shows and news networks. There is a lot of money to be made as a successful apologist.
But there lies another problem. Why do we allow these apologists to represent us and our beliefs? Slowly, we lose our identity and adopt the views and beliefs of the apologist. Eventually, we find no wrong with that person and will believe, share, and teach anything they release. It is as if we are not confident enough in our own belief that we need to mimic someone who appears to be a superhero of the belief.
However, this is a very thin foundation. These apologists are only human, but more than that, they are paid heavily to say the things they say and believe the things they supposedly believe in.
Considering the uncouth tactics all of these apologists use to win arguments, would it not be wiser for us to take what they all say with a grain of salt? If these apologists are not going to represent your belief with integrity, maybe it is up to you to represent your belief in a way that brings honor and respect to it.
Do not depend on the ways of the apologists. Remember the old saying;
Better is a poor person who walks in their integrity than a rich person whose ways are perverse.
Let us together walk with integrity. There is truly no need for us to lie, ridicule, or manipulate. It is perverse, and we all should know better.
© 2019 Jason Reid Capp