As of Dec. 2008 it has been removed and my name "Matt Slick" is now redirected to 'Christian Countercult Movement
Wikipedia.com had an article on me, Matt Slick. For the most part the article is objective but when we look at the criticism section, there is some bias. Please understand that I have no problem with criticism as long as it is fair, but Wikipedia is supposed to be a nonbiased, free encyclopedia. In this case the bias is evident.
The original author of the article is an atheist. Its initial form was very biased and some Christians took it upon themselves to edit the article in order to make it more objective. However, the atheists continued to remodify the article in violation of the Wikapedia rules.
Below I have copied the information from the Wikipedia website that existed as of 9/1/05, numbered the paragraphs, and responded below. I have underlined statements that I want to address.
Quote from the Wikipedia Article
- Critics of Matt Slick generally hold worldviews other than conservative Protestant Christianity. Groups particularly critical of Slick include atheists, members of cults, liberal Christians, political liberals, Mormons, Universalists, Muslims, Catholics, Jehovah's Witnesses, and Deists and Pantheists. To a lesser extent, Slick's critics also include other Evangelical Christians who disagree with his methods and approach on CARM.
- While there are a few sites which give detailed counterarguments to Slick's articles on CARM's website, most complaints about Slick are voiced in connection with discussions with him on the moderated forums operated on CARM.
- On those forums, Slick has been accused of censorship by excluding forum users that he asserts have been in violation of CARM's rules, but who believe he is attempting to diminish opposition to Evangelical beliefs through moderation. These users also have issues with Slick's general conduct in discussions with non-Evangelicals.
- An especially heated debate over alleged censorship originated in 2001 when Slick closed down the Universalist board in his forums and banned all discussion of Universalism from his other boards, citing the need to end flame wars. Some of the excluded users have moved to other discussion boards to voice their views, including those regarding Slick; in 2004, one user, John W. Ratcliff created the alternative, unmoderated forum AARM to avoid perceived censorship.
- Some aspects of Slick's apologetic materials have been critically discussed by Douglas Cowan in his sociological survey of the Christian countercult movement.
- "Christian Apologetics and Research Ministry".
- "The Calvinist Corner". Welcome
- "Katholon". Slick's Sleight of Hand.
- "Tent Maker". CARM, C.A.R.M., Christian Apology & Research Ministry and Matt Slick, aka, The Cult of CARM.
- "AARM". Atheist Apologetics Research Ministry."
- External Links
- CARM - Matt Slick's Christian Apologetics and Research Ministry website.
- The Calvinist Corner - Slick's personal website.
- AARM -An unmoderated forum whose members are generally critical of Slick.
- CARM Response to AARM - Response from Matt Slick to quotes on AARM website discussion boards.
- Too Slick to Be Saved - a site critical of Slick's religious philosophy.
- Slick Lies - Debates with CARM's Matt Slick about morality, ethics, Christianity, and Islam.
- Response From Matt Slick to "Slick Lies"
- Pride of Preselectionism - Discussions about Calvinism with Slick.
End of Wikipedia Quote
Paragraph 1. "To a lesser extent, Slick's critics also include other Evangelical Christians who disagree with his methods and approach on CARM."
This is misleading. Who are these "other Evangelical Christians"? What methods and approach? The statement automatically casts doubt on my "method and approach" without stating what that is or who the critics are. Now, I know that many of the atheists from aarm do not like me and have contributed to the wikipedia article, so I expect this kind of slant. Why do they do it? Because I tackle atheism and enforce board rules on the discussion boards and they don't like criticism.
The atheists have complained about the application of those rules and claimed that CARM is unfair. Of course it is the atheists who complain the majority of the time even though they are a minority. Most everyone else is able to abide by the rules. It is only the atheists, as a group, who have the most trouble doing so. Their complaints accomplish nothing except to eventually get them banned from the boards -- probably so they can accuse CARM of censorship and validate their whining. Hence, they have been criticizing my "method and approach" as unfair. They whined, complained, and then when the rules were applied, they went elsewhere, opened up their own discussion board and proceeded to whine and complain there, too. In fact, some of them have back to CARM --against the rules -- and tried to recruit people for their discussion boards. It is from this group of atheists that the "objective" wikipedia article about me was written. Many of them behave more like children than adults.
Paragraph 2. most complaints about Slick are voiced in connection with discussions with him on the moderated forums operated on CARM
I've addressed this above. I do receive complaints from all sorts of people with all sorts of theological or non-theological positions. That is to be expected. But for the article to say that "most complaints" deal with the forums is wrong. I certainly receive a lot more complaints about me and CARM as a website, rather than the discussion boards, and the majority of them are about CARM's theological position; after all, CARM gets upwards of 35,000 visits a week with about 50 e-mails a day.
As a side note, on the discussion boards we have an alert system. Anybody is free to alert a moderator or an admin to a questionable post. When the atheists had free reign, we were receiving many alerts every day. But, when most of the atheists got banned due to blatant rule violations, we noticed that the alerts plummeted. We concluded that many of the atheists were very adept at causing problems and then trying to alert the administration about anything that they thought was wrong. As a matter of fact, some of the atheists who visit a certain atheist discussion board (aarm) have been openly declaring that they reregister against the CARM rules and purposely try and cause problems on the discussion boards. So, since they have openly admitted to being deceptive and disruptive, why should we trust what they say?
Paragraph 3. On those forums, Slick has been accused of censorship by excluding forum users that he asserts have been in violation of CARM's rules, but who believe he is attempting to diminish opposition to Evangelical beliefs through moderation. These users also have issues with Slick's general conduct in discussions with non-Evangelicals.
Most anybody can be accused of anything. It does not mean it is true. The fact is that the CARM discussion board rules declare that there is a certain conduct of behavior to which everyone is supposed to abide.
There are plenty of people who oppose orthodox Christianity who post on the boards for long periods of time, months and years. They do so within the board rules, plain and simple. So the complaint is invalid. Nevertheless, those who violate the rules are removed and then they cry foul and claim we are censoring them because we can't refute their arguments. That is not so and is nothing more than empty chatter. The article does not accurate reflect the facts. I have repeatedly welcomed the critics to call in to my radio show and discuss issues with me live. So far, if I remember correctly, only two people have done in the discussions were fruitful.
Paragraph 4. An especially heated debate over alleged censorship originated in 2001 when Slick closed down the Universalist board in his forums and banned all discussion of Universalism from his other boards, citing the need to end flame wars.
This is not an accurate representation of what happened with the Universalists. The truth is that the Universalists were becoming extremely vulgar and insulting and I was repeatedly asked by many many Christians to get rid of the Universalists. I have said this before and I will say it again that the only group of people who have treated me worse than the Universalists, are the Satanists. I mean that with the utmost seriousness. The Universalists were undermining the gospel presentation of many Christians, were becoming extremely demanding, and were very very insulting. I was very patient with them for a long time but the continued to become vile and abusive. For proof of this all you need to do is read a list of the comments that they have made documented here: Samples of universalist callous posts. You will immediately see how extremely hate filled so many of them were.
The wikipedia article fails to mention this fact and in so doing, misrepresents the issue.
Paragraph 4. in 2004, one user, John W. Ratcliff created the alternative, unmoderated forum AARM to avoid perceived censorship.
I do not know the true motivation of Mr. Ratcliff and his desire to develop an anti-CARM discussion board, but the complaint of censorship is mainly raised by the atheists. Why is it that about 9 out of 10 complaints of censorship come from one group of people, the atheists, who are a minority on CARM? Could it be that because they have a subjective ethical standard and they want to be able to speak without restraint, against the board rules of CARM -- which they agree to abide by when they signed up? There are over 11,000 registered members on the CARM discussion boards. We definitely have our hands full but the truth is, by far most of the complaints about censorship come from the atheists. It seems that most everyone else is able to abide by the rules. So, the "perceived censorship" argument is invalid. Besides, they can go somewhere else to post if they want to whine because they don't get their way. The rules state that if you don't agree to the rules, then don't register. Finally, the atheists are the single most complaining people on the boards.
Paragraph 5. Some aspects of Slick's apologetic materials have been critically discussed by Douglas Cowan in his sociological survey of the Christian countercult movement
Yes, it is true. Mr. Douglas Cowan has addressed me and my site. It is also true that I long ago responded to his criticism pointing out some problems with what he said and showed the lack of objectivity and scholarship in his article. Please see my paper here: http://www.carm.org/features/counter_cult.htm. Furthermore, I also called on Mr. Cowan on the phone and left a voicemail thanking him for the article and, if I remember correctly, I offered to meet him in person to discuss his view. I never heard back.
Paragraph 6. "Katholon". Slick's Sleight of Hand. "Tent Maker". CARM, C.A.R.M., Christian Apology & Research Ministry and Matt Slick, aka, The Cult of CARM. "AARM". Atheist Apologetics Research Ministry."
I don't have the time or energy to deal with each and every critic that tackles what I write. In summation, Katholon's material is not written objectively. All you need to do is read it yourself and you can see repeated condescending remarks. He forfeits objectivity for an agenda. Tent Maker is one of the Universalists who uttered some of the most vial and accusatory statements. He is hardly an authority on Christian doctrine since he is considered, by orthodox Christians, to be a false teacher since he supports Universalism. AARM is generally the source of the the anti-CARM atheist movement, from which atheists have provided the authorship of the article about me on wikipedia. AARM has demonstrated, in my opinion and an opinion of many others, an obsession with myself and the CARM Ministry. I do consider, however, that obsession to be complementary. You'd think they'd just go away instead of constantly talking about how I am mentally ill, unstable, a power monger, etc. They are full of personal attacks on me and others. Finally, you'd think that those who purport to be "truthful" would actually attempt it. See my article on AARM.
Paragraph 7. AARM - An unmoderated forum whose members are generally critical of Slick. CARM Response to AARM - Response from Matt Slick to quotes on AARM website discussion boards. Too Slick to Be Saved - a site critical of Slick's religious philosophy. Slick Lies - Debates with CARM's Matt Slick about morality, ethics, Christianity, and Islam. Response From Matt Slick to "Slick Lies" Pride of Preselectionism - Discussions about Calvinism with Slick.
Of course, we have the anti-CARM atheists listed here and they are critical of most everything I do and say. Not matter what it is I say, they twist it and mock it. I've read many of the atheist posts that are extremely inaccurate in describing events and situations on the CARM discussion boards. They are very often insulting, mocking, and sarcastic. And, as I said earlier, it is from that anti-CARM influence on AARM that the author of the wikipedia article was written.
The individual who wrote "Too Slick to be saved" and "Preselectionism" is hardly an authority on the Reformed Theology which he criticizes. On paltalk.com he is repeatedly bounced from rooms because he spams the rooms with links to his web site, makes grandiose proclamations that are entirely in error about Reformed Theology, pronounces judgment upon all sorts of Christians, and then tells people that they need to repent and listen to what he tells them. Many Christians think he is mentally unstable since he does not take criticism, refuses to listen, and seems to be the only person with his views. I believe he is very ignorant and unteachable. I had a verbal encounter with him on paltlak.com and it was very evident that he demonstrated a profound lack of rational thought. This is not my opinion only. This is the unanimous opinion of everyone I have spoken to who has encountered this individual. Furthermore, this person has a discussion board and the last time I checked it had four members signed up on it, four! No one takes this guy seriously. Yet, the critics who continue to modify the wikipedia article about me also persist in keeping this individual's criticism linked in the article. Well, if this is what they had to resort to, they're scraping the bottom of the barrel in order to "objectively" make me look bad.
Finally, the person who wrote "Slick Lies" is a Muslim who I have debated several times. He has been caught in blatant misrepresentation and misquotes about what I have said and done. I have written responses to his attacks (here and another one here) yet he continues to accuse me of being a liar. He is not a very good Muslim apologist and he's been known to commit all sorts of logical errors such as begging the question, attempted mind reading, self-contradiction, misquotes, etc. He pursues most every Christian he can get to and tries to debate them. The problem is that he doesn't learn. When he has been shown to be in error in a Christian position (i.e., lack of correctly understanding a doctrine), he does not adjust by adapting to the facts. In other words, if he has an incorrect understanding of the Trinity or the two natures of Jesus, and is corrected, he doesn't adapt to the new information. Instead, he continues on with the same erring argument, misrepresenting what is said, and then claiming victory whenever anyone refuses to continue with his idiocy. This guy is not considered by Christians to be a worthy opponent for discussion. Yet, this is another one of the "critics" cited by the atheists.