Well, my debate with a theist has come to an end, and predictably it ended because the exchanges became too frustrating. If the debate were with a perfect stranger I believe we would still be debating, but because it was with a family member, I feared the relationship might deteriorate and hurt the family.
So, what did we accomplish? For me, I was able to get a lot off of my chest. For far too long I had to hear about the miracles and perfection of god and I had to keep my mouth shut. So to finally show someone in my family that their way isn't the only way, and that their way was far from perfect, was a lot of fun. Plus I was able to show just how well-prepared I was for this.
I was surprised to find my opponent was as indoctrinated as the stereotypes indicate. While I knew she came off as judgmental and arrogant when it came to religion, I never thought she would slip into creationist mode. One interesting story: Somehow we got on evolution, I believe it was when she started trashing science as a biased industry, and she told me I believe in evolution but she believes in Intelligent Design. She proceeded to pepper me with the ignorant questions about why there are still apes and I nearly fell over in my chair. That's when I became indignant and said if she can't even understand evolution, or at the very least do some research on it before firing off such ignorant tripe, then how can we go on? I had to show her in black and white that even her own CCC and pope endorse evolution as fact.
Here's the fun part: The very next email she says she believes in evolution. So, which is it? That she was lying before just to get a rise out of me, or does she so blindly follow her CCC that when I pointed it out to her that the CCC believes in evolution that she was forced to believe in it? Can you imagine what it's like to have absolutely zero backbone when it comes to your beliefs? To not be able to think at all for yourself and to be forced to change your beliefs on a dime?
So maybe I had a hand in making her believe in evolution, who knows? I will miss the debates if only because I got to take a righteous person down a peg and make her think about my side for a change.