New Atheism is socially divisive in a way that Old Atheism is not.
A lot of Christians on this site respond differently to New Atheists
than they do to other atheists, I think there is a reason for this. New
Atheism is socially divisive in a way that Old Atheism is not. Even in
discussions with some passionate atheists, I always had the feeling that
there was a common purpose underlying the exchange, a desire to
understand our differences better. I think that common purpose is lost
with New Atheism.
Even strongly atheistic philosophy professors would tell me that the
presence of Christians like Plantinga, Swinburne, and Robert and Marilyn
Adams were good for philosophy.
I think that New Atheists have contributed nothing of substance to
argumentation for and against the existence of God. So, in one sense, a
successful critique of New Atheist arguments shouldn't be confused with a
successful critique of atheist arguments in general. But New Atheism
has to be recognized for what it is as a social phenomenon, and I find
very harmful. --Victor Reppert