Robert Spencer, the notorious anti-Muslim hate blogger, issued an open challenge to a debate:
The list of the Leftist and Muslim academics and apologists who have refused my challenge to debate is very long; they know they can’t refute what I say on the basis of evidence, so they resort to broad-based smears and personal attacks — and haughty refusals to debate.
He has issued similar challenges on numerous occasions, steadfastly claiming that he would be willing to defend his ideas in debate. I had accepted Spencer’s challenge to a debate, saying:
I accept your challenge, Spencer. I agree to a radio debate with you on the topic of jihad and “dhimmitude”, namely chapters 1-4 of your book, The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades). It will then be seen if you can defend your own writing, which I argue is a load of sensationalist crock.
Will you accept my challenge to debate or cower in fear? My guess is that you “know [you] can’t refute what I say” and will “resort to…haughty refusals to debate.”
It’s been 129 days since I accepted Spencer’s challenge, yet he continues to dodge taking me on. That’s no surprise to most of our readers, since I have written several articles refuting his book and ideas, which he has failed to respond to. It is well-known that my articles have stopped Spencer in his tracks, and finally he has been effectively silenced on those issues. For the first time ever, someone managed to spend the time necessary to respond in a thorough fashion. That’s why Spencer is avoiding a debate with me at all costs, even if it means going back on his open challenge to “leftists and Muslims.”
Even so, this doesn’t stop Spencer from claiming that other leftist or Muslim spokesmen are scared of debating him and can’t refute him. Spencer claimed that Muslim-American spokesman Ahmed Rehab “ran from debate with me [Spencer].” Rehab responded, saying:
Spencer, I never agreed to debate you in the first place, and it is highly unlikely that I ever will.
Rehab then mentions Spencer’s hypocrisy, pointing out that Spencer has been dodging yours truly (Danios of LoonWatch) for quite some time:
And now for some irony. Spencer, you are claiming you are ready to debate anyone but that alas no one wants to debate you because no one can. But, is this actually true? Does the name Danios of Loonwatchring a bell Spencer? You may be burying your head in the sand hoping no one will notice, but a simple Google search on “Robert Spencer debate” reveals your hypocrisy. How come you are ignoring an invitation from another blogger who has challenged you numerous times and whose articles shredding your arguments to pieces are all over the web without a peep of a rebuttal from you? Are you conceding defeat? Are you “running away?”
Of course, this got Robert Spencer worked up in quite the tizzy, and he blogged a furious response. In it, the sociopath Robert Spencer starts ranting about the Soviet Union and Stalin, something all delusional right-wing nut jobs are prone to do some time or the other.
The irony of Spencer’s response cannot be understated. His post is entitled “CAIR’s Ahmed Rehab and the use of ridicule,” and he complains of how Rehab supposedly resorts to “adolescent ridicule and abuse rather than substance.” It is truly special that Spencer can say this with a straight face while at the same time lampooning the very same opponent by posting a photograph of Ahmed Rehab with a caption accusing him of wearing lipstick and eye shadow. His sociopath readers take great delight in this picture, gleefully snickering at this “adolescent ridicule and abuse.” The photograph is likely photoshopped, but even if it is not, what relevance does it have to do with the debate at hand? Here, Spencer has lowered himself to the lowest possible schoolyard tactic: accuse your opponent of being gay. To an extremist Catholic apologist like Robert Spencer being called “gay” is a very bad insult. Of course, to a proud “leftist” progressive like myself, I don’t find it a slur to be labeled “homosexual”, which is clearly what Spencer is hinting at. Even if Ahmed Rehab really did wear make up like gay popstar Adam Lambert, so what? What’s your point? Other than expose your underlying homophobia?
Let me be clear though: we here at LoonWatch don’t mind adolescent ridicule. To wit: Robert Spencer is a fat slob. His belly is so protuberant that that he can’t see his feet.
Have you noticed how Spencer has a thing against what he calls “meterosexual guys” like Ahmed Rehab and Reza Aslan? Do I sense jealousy? Both Rehab and Aslan are fairly good-looking guys. In fact, Rehab was involved with the current Miss USA and Aslan with Jessica Jackley. Maybe Spencer’s antipathy towards these chic Muslim spokesmen is that they are too damn good-looking. Compare Spencer’s frumpy body with Rehab’s toned body. That could also explain Spencer’s burning hatred of Dr. Tariq Ramadan, as one user on his site complains about “his handsome lying face.” I wouldn’t be surprised if Spencer’s burning hatred is a reflection of his own inferiority complex…He certainly wouldn’t be the first loser to embrace a hate-filled ideology to boost his own inner lack of self-worth.
The issue is not Spencer’s “use of ridicule”, but his hypocrisy: he cries that leftist and Muslim spokesmen–Ahmed Rehab specifically here–resort to “adolescent ridicule and abuse”, which is what Spencer himself engages in on his hate site, against Rehab no less! He cries about “adolescent ridicule” and in the same post say that Rehab and Aslan “richly deserve lampooning.” So you can’t use adolescent ridicule, but lampooning is OK. Does pointing out how fat and ugly Spencer is fall into the former or the latter?
Anyways, back to the point: I had long ago accepted Robert Spencer’s open challenge, agreeing to a radio debate. So why does Spencer dodge me?
Spencer needs to generate excuses and a way out from debating me. His first attempt was to minimize my importance, which somehow does not fall under “haughty refusal to debate.” He can no longer rely on this excuse, since Ahmed Rehab himself, the Executive Director of CAIR-Chicago, messaged me: “You are amongst the top writers on this topic, far more effective and relevant than 99% of the countless Muslim writers out there.” That’s high praise from the man whom Spencer considers an adequate spokesman for Muslims. Will Spencer refuse to debate someone considered in the top 1%? I suspect so. Spencer says of me:
Debating such a compromised and dishonest individual would be a waste of time
Isn’t that the exact same reasoning that Rehab gave for refusing to debate you, Spencer? The same reasoning you were so opposed to and called cowardice?
Spencer needs another excuse to weasel out of a debate with me. What will it be? Aha! It will be my anonymity! As many of you know, I write anonymously under a pseudonym. Spencer and his fellow fans desperately want to know who I am. Some of them are convinced I am XYZ, and others that I am ABCD. Some have even engaged in textual analysis, trying extremely hard to find out who this cursed Danios is. My question is: who cares? Deal with my arguments, not who I am. Spencer says:
…Since Rehab invokes [Danios] and others have referred to his site [LoonWatch] recently, I am willing: if “Danios of Loonwatch” reveals his real name…
Spencer places this condition on me, knowing full well that I will refuse to reveal my name, since he knows that I like writing anonymously. Spencer asks:
What is “Danios of Loonwatch” afraid of?
Do I have to be “afraid” of something? I enjoy writing anonymously. Having said that, I do plan on eventually “coming out of the closet” (will Spencer now accuse me of being gay too [although for the record I am not]?), but not just yet…When the time is right and of my own choosing. And when I do come out, I am sure that Spencer will attack my “meterosexual looks”. Ah, why o why was I cursed with such handsome looks?
More importantly, I am currently a post-doctoral fellow at an Ivy League university and instructor at a state university. Coming out of the closet at the present time would pose some logistical problems for me, which is why I have chosen to do it at a later date. Does this answer your question, Spencer?
Then Spencer places his second condition:
I am willing: if “Danios of Loonwatch” reveals his real name, finds a university willing to host the debate and contracts an impartial moderator, I’m ready when he is.
So (1) I have to reveal my real name, and (2) the debate can only be at a university. The second condition is odd, considering that it is Spencer who has no affiliation to any university. In fact, Spencer failed to respond to this point by Rehab:
Spencer claims to be a scholar of Islam, Islamic Law, and Theology but holds no degrees in any of those subjects and has never even published a single peer-reviewed paper.
Why, in your epic rant, did you not respond to this argument against you? How is it, my portly friend, that you consider yourself a “scholar of Islam”–which your site so claims–when you do not even have a single degree in any subject of Islam, let along a single peer-reviewed paper? Exactly what type of scholar are you, then?
Anyways, Spencer’s second condition is tied to the first: a university debate can only be arranged if I reveal my true identity and university affiliation, which he knows that I am not willing to do just yet. Spencer concludes:
But I won’t be holding my breath.
I’m sure Spencer was actually holding his breath, for fear that I might accept his two pre-conditions, and then how to avoid the challenge!?
Of course, Spencer’s two conditions–both of which involve revealing my identity–are completely bogus. I have offered to debate Spencer on the radio. Does Spencer not do radio interviews? In fact, Spencer has appeared on the radio countless times, doing interviews for Jawa radio, Spirit Catholic Radio, Western World Radio, etc. To completely negate Spencer’s generated excuse, here we have Spencer himself saying how he engaged in a radio debate with a CAIR spokesman:
In April 2007, I participated in a heated hour-long radio debate with CAIR’s Hussam Ayloush…
So why does Spencer agree to a radio debate with Hussam Ayloush but now he doesn’t agree to the same with yours truly? What’s that sound? Oh, it’s the sound of a chicken.