Because I recently discussed a blog post from March 2013, I was wondering what *I* was writing around the time. So here’s a blog post from that period. Please note that my opinions from six years ago do not necessarily reflect my current opinions.
One of the more tedious arguments concerning gods is the argument over who has the burden of proof. Whereas many atheists argue that the theist must first make the argument for the existence of gods, their opponents argue that this is a cop out. For example, on NY Times:
Contemporary atheists often assert that there is no need for them to provide arguments showing that religious claims are false. Rather, they say, the very lack of good arguments for religious claims provides a solid basis for rejecting them. The case against God is, as they frequently put it, the same as the case against Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny or the Tooth Fairy. This is what we might call the “no-arguments” argument for atheism.
I take the side of atheists; I think theists have the burden of proof. This is not about giving atheists an unfair advantage in the debate, nor is it about making a “no-arguments” argument. In fact, I do not believe it is an advantage, fair or otherwise, at all. It’s simply about who takes which role.