I’d like to take the occasion to set the record straight where Dave Armstrong is concerned.
I don’t think I’ve ever accused him of being a traitor or apostate or infidel.
Everyone is entitled to his own usage. I won’t judge someone else’s usage. They have their reasons.
But those are not the adjectives I’d reach for in the case of Armstrong.
Those are words I reserve for extreme cases, not borderline cases.
To judge by his conversion story, he had a rather brief and superficial experience with Evangelicalism—reading popularizers and attending emotive, anti-intellectual churches.
A transition from a shallow brand of Evangelicalism to devout Catholicism is not the same thing as apostasy—much less infidelity. Not by my definition, at least.
And, unless he’s sheltering his wealth from the Feds, I don’t think one can accuse him of changing sides for fast cars, fast women, and a vintage pint of sherry.
So it’s not as if he’s another Kim Philby or Guy Burgess with a Rosary.
I have nothing to say, one way or the other, regarding his state of grace. But his sincerity is unquestionable.
I also don’t dislike him. And this is not a pro forma disclaimer to prove what a charitable guy I am, for there are some bloggers whom I do dislike. (Sorry, no names!)
I don’t think there’s anything malicious about Armstrong—unlike some people who come to mind.
In addition, I don’t think I’ve ever said he was unintelligent.
For the record, it’s obvious that Armstrong has a quick, nimble mind.
As to the fact that I don’t link to his apologetic stuff on Islam, &c., there are several reasons for this:
1.I’ve only read a fraction of Armstrong’s prolific output. And only the fraction concerning the conflict with Rome.
2.I’m quite prepared to quote Catholic scholars when they have something worthwhile to say. Indeed, I do so from time to time in my review of The Empty Tomb.
3.Linking to his blog or website would be a way of promoting his agenda. Even if the material is on something other than Catholicism, it is on a Catholic blog or website, and there’s no reason why I should steer my readers in that direction.
It’s not as if Armstrong is plugging for Triablogue.
4.There’s no dearth of apologetic material on atheism, Islam, the cults, &c. There are many online sources of information, often by experts in the field.
And if it comes to a popular treatment, we can do that ourselves.