Thursday, March 22, 2007

The Real Face of Censorship

In advance of my upcoming May appearance on the podcast of the atheist Rational Response Squad, I've been having an ongoing e-mail conversation with "Darth Josh," my contact at the RRS and the coordinator of their podcast. This is a challenging exchange...I think particularly because it's desperately difficult for a materialist to grasp what is at the heart of faith. One way or t'other, it's been jolly good fun crossing swords with him.

Today, I heard from him that the Rational Responders website has been recently hit by a coordinated attack designed to shut down their web forums. It appears to have been a Distributed Denial of Service attack, in which a hacker or hackers take over hundreds of computers and use them to bombard a server until access is impossible. Unlike atheist Nick Gisburne's and my own difficulties with YouTube, which are easily circumvented and more likely the result of YouTube's benighted policies, this type of assault is a real threat to free speech and association on the Internet.

I know that tempers often run high around discussions of..or arguments over...faith, but under no circumstances...ever...is such a tactic justified. My hope and prayer is that this is not something being perpetrated by a misguided "Christian" hacker or group. Christians need to make it absolutely clear that such behavior is antithetical to all that we proclaim. It violates the essential principles of American constitutional democracy, and it doesn't fare well against Christ's Golden Rule, either.

I would also hope that Christian bloggers who understand the importance of the free exchange of ideas would express their support for the RRS. If they weren't there to needle us with their mechanistic naturalism and silly stuntsmanship, the blogosphere would be a much less entertaining place.

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