We've had a few questions lately that present an argument from a vague or ill defined set of "Christians" and ask for reasons why said group believes what they do:
- Why do some Christians believe it is moral to be a homosexual?
- Atheism is the default position. Isn't the burden of proof on the Christian to assert that God exists?
- Is Christianity an experiential practice?
- What are the common arguments against theistic evolution?
- What popular arguments are there against Young Earth Creationism?
- Is masturbation a sin?
- What is the Christian definition of "God"?
- Why do some Christians think it's not a sin to charge interest?
- What is the source of hatred often perceived by Christians in western society?
- Should biblical laws apply to non-Christians?
This is a disconcerting trend for a few reasons:
- These questions don't ask for any context, and there won't be any correct or most useful answer: what answer do you vote for? The one that you agree with the most? If all possible answers are equally valid (there is no "correct" Christianity, after all), what's the point in asking?
- By saying it's "Christians" (as opposed to Roman Catholics, or Lutherans, or LDSers, etc.) who believe X, they assume that Christianity is a monolithic belief structure (i.e. all Christians believe the same things) which it isn't.
They open the door for straw man questions, where any claim can be attached to Christianity in the form of a question:
- "Now, not all Christians believe this, but some Christians believe that kicking puppies is good. What's the basis for Christians believing this?"
- "Why do some Christians hate others?"
- "Can Christians be trusted?"
Which is something like the old interview trick to attach a trait to someone or something without actually saying it, "Some people say you're evil. What do you say to that charge?"
Our FAQ says questions need to be about problems we actually face: is "some Christians say" without any information about who those particular Christians are an actual problem?
Or should we require all questions to meet some basic notability baseline? That is, should all questions define who the Christians they're talking about are, and describe or cite the source for the claim that said Christian group believes what the asker purports the group to believe?