Edward Tarte Tries to Extend Dialogue with Father TJ

You can see Edward’s YouTube profile page here!

[Link to video]

About Edward Tarte

I am age 78, once a Catholic priest for five years (in the 1960's), then a math teacher for 44 years up to the present day. I became an atheist a few years ago. My hobbies are music and chess.

  • TrinainUS

    You’ve got Edward’s bio wrong! He became an atheist many years ago. Please fix this? Thanks!

  • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

    Edward left the priesthood many years ago, but only fully identified as an atheist a few years ago. At least according to his own bio e.g. http://www.weareatheism.com/edward-tarte/

  • TrinainUS

    Thanks for the info, Rich. I’ve seen many of his videos, but was obviously confused about that fact.

  • Jasper

    Criticism is not persecution. He dishonors actual real persecution that Christians actually went through.

  • Fernando Cezar Bernardelli

    I’m afraid I’ll have to agree with Father TJ on this one. Saying such things on his own site can do no good to anyone: Catholics do not rethink their beliefs, and atheists are seem as internet trolls.

    Father TJ’s site, it seems, is not a place for open discussion, but it’s not a place for censorship either. He was polite enough not to censor comments like Edward’s, but in return it’s our place to know that is not an appropriate site to write about atheism.

    Just my opinion, but I think father TJ has a point here.

  • http://boldquestions.wordpress.com/ Ubi Dubium

    I agree that TJ’s website is is own space, and that he is free to allow or remove comments as he sees fit. On my own blog, I set my own rules, and I can’t demand that others run their blogs any differently.

    But I do appreciate Edward’s asking TJ to consider the role of disagreement when he is deciding what comments to allow, and I hope that is helpful to TJ in deciding what the purpose of the website actually is. A priest, who is not supposed to be questioned on their authority by his parishoners, can do with a good prodding from the outside now and then, to try to get them to think instead of just “believe and obey”

    If his entire purpose is just to “bolster faith” then I can see him disallowing anyone who disagrees with him. But in that case, what’s the point in even allowing commenting at all? What good is a discussion when the only view allowed is “I completely agree with you”?

    If his goal is to have thoughtful conversations on the topics of his sermons, then he needs to allow dissenting opinions, although I can legitimately see restricting comments to only those actually discussing his sermon topic.

  • Edward Tarte

    A commenter elsewhere said, “Rather than your comments being like someone shouting out during a service, they’re like discussion afterward. If folks were invited to join Fr. TJ after a service to share their thoughts, how would he treat someone bringing up the points you do? Would he allow them to speak, tell them to be quiet, or escort them to the door? I don’t mean nastiness, but the quiet, gentle, pointed commentary you offer. When discussion is invited, varying opinions, questions, and perspectives should be expected.”

  • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

    The difference is that it’s unlikely that a discussion after service would turn into a shouting match. I think he fears that having opened the door, he’ll have to draw the line somewhere between Edward Tarte and Cecelia Baines and he just doesn’t want to deal with it.

    And I think I’d have to agree as well. If running a blog (or youtube channel) and opening dialog and discussion is your focus, then you’re willing to deal with the range of opinions. But if you’re mostly interested in presenting your saving messages, and your blog is just an extension of that, then you’re probably less willing to spend the energy to escort the really loud ones to the door.

    I know helping RCs is particularly close to your heart Edward, but respectfully, I don’t think this is a fruitful path.

  • Fernando Cezar Bernardelli

    I think Rich Wilson got it right, and that is the true point: how fruitful is this path? It is very unlikely that someone in Fr. TJ’s site will start to question their beliefs once they read such comment.

    And no matter how logical and non-offensive is your comment, it will hardly be seem with good eyes in that place.

  • allein

    Considering that the bio is written in the first person, I assumed that Edward wrote it himself and meant to write it like that.

  • Edward Tarte

    Yes, you are correct.

  • The Other Weirdo

    China, Russia, Soviet Union, North Korea, Cuba. Only the praising voices are allowed to be heard, and preferably only when specifically authorized by the government. That’s how you maintain control over people’s thoughts.

  • http://boldquestions.wordpress.com/ Ubi Dubium

    Agreed, but if China, Russia, etc want to set up their own private blogs, they can moderate them as they see fit. It’s only a problem if they are controlling other people’s websites. I might not like TJ’s comment policy, but it’s his personal space, so he’s entitled to set his own rules.

  • http://www.flickr.com/photos/chidy/ chicago dyke

    this is one of my Internet Rules. the right wing, religious, the people representing for tyrannic governments… what do they do? NO COMMENTS. or “moderated” comments. or “comments we like, but not the ones we don’t that point out facts.”

    it happens so often it’s not even funny.

    can’t take the heat? stay out of Hell. it’s the interwebs, bitches. where comments and information are FREE. you bring your stuff, i’ll bring mine. we’ll see how readers of both react, and think, and believe.

    this is called FEAR and it’s what catlicks specialize in. ooooh, you’re calling me mean names, my jeebus muscle is hurt!


    thank you so much for posting your videos at this blog.

  • colourmegone

    Funny thing about Father TJ’s reply where he says that it would be inappropriate for anyone to go into a place of worship of any faith and say, “Your god is immoral, etc.” Christians have been doing that for over a thousand years. They destroyed the religious places and practices of the ancient world with gusto and élan as well as those of the New World and Africa. They attempted to do the same to the Muslim world but were foiled by superior force. And they certainly had no problems despoiling those cultures once they had destroyed their beliefs.