Before we get into details, I think I better first introduce you to the claimant. This comes from a chap called David Klinghoffer. He works for the Discovery Institute as a … well, that does not really matter, because knowing that it is the Discovery Institute tells you all you really need to know; its basically kook central for the Intelligent Design movement.
Since it is indeed “them” you know in your heart of hearts this is going to be truly silly (it is), so here we go. He starts out with …
You can say you’re an atheist if you want, but the rest of us have no warrant to call you that until you can show some evidence that you know something about the God you claim to reject. Perhaps there should be some sort of qualifying exam.
Quite obviously the concept of “Burden of Proof” appears to have completely bypassed this loon. In fact, what he is suggesting is quite frankly insane. We are supposed to disprove his silly claim about supernatural entities before we are permitted to call ourselves an “atheist”!!! … bollocks to that, it is his silly claim, so it is his responsibility to provide evidence for that claim.
What comes next? If you thought that perhaps this might get even sillier, then you would be spot on. Apparently we all reject “a cartoon of God, distilled to an absurd cliché from long-ago Sunday School, or Hebrew School, lessons.“. and yet in polls, its the Atheists who know more about what the Christians are supposed to know.
So there you have it then, all you naughty folks who dare to call yourselves an atheist are no longer permitted to do so because you first need a deep understanding of the silly superstitious nonsense you have rejected. In fact, since there is a huge diversity of belief, that would then imply you can only reject the beliefs you understand, and you are then forced to continue to embrace all the illogical lunacy you are unable to comprehend (which to be frank is most of it anyway).
Well, I did warn you it was going to get truly silly, but be honest, you knew that anyway. This, after all, is the same mind set that gave us cutting edge science such as Intelligent design and has so far successfully resulted in exactly zero credible papers in real peer-reviewed science journals.
How should you respond to such lunacy? Basically you have two choices, the first involves the deployment of a string of well-known Anglo Saxon phrases, the second involves mocking it all – I vote for the second.
Ridicule is the only weapon which can be used against unintelligible propositions. –Thomas Jefferson