A Published Debate "Pinches" A Baptist Preacher -- No. 2
(This is the second of a series in answer to an article by L. S. Ballard, Baptist debater, which appeared in the December, 1953 issue of the Independent Baptist Voice.)
In paragraph three of his article, Mr. Ballard says:
"Another very unfair thing that Warren did was to put in the book all of his charts and marks that he made on the blackboard, but refused mine a place in the book. I had a large chart with several diagrams on it, but I have a letter from Mr. Warren in which he refused to let it go in the book."
This statement is not true. Mr. Ballard does NOT have a letter from me refusing him permission to put into the book the chart which he DID use. He has one from me refusing him permission to put in some he did NOT use. The following correspondence will show how untrue Mr. Ballard's statement is. In a letter to me, dated February 10, 1953, Mr. Ballard said, in paragraph two:
"I think if you are going to publish diagrams in the book that my diagram on Acts 2:38, and Mark 16:16 should also go into it. IT IS TRUE I DID NOT HAVE THOSE DIAGRAMS ON MY CHART (emphasis mine, TBW) but gave them from memory, giving a complete analysis of those two texts, together with others also."
On February 14, 1953, I wrote to Brother A. G. Hobbs, production manager of Telegram Book Company, as follows:
"Ballard has written to me requesting that he be allowed to put in diagrams of Acts 2:38 and Mark 16:16, even though, as he admits in his letter, that no such diagrams were used in the debate. I have not as yet answered him, but when I do I can do nothing else than refuse. He said this would be 'fair' because of my putting in diagrams and charts. But I am putting in only what was actually used in the debate, and he knows it. I was familiar with his diagrams of these passages, and I was ready with a refutation. However, he didn't use them so my answer to them was not used in the debate. If he were to be allowed to do this, I would have to put in an extra diagram on each passage. All of this would be material which did not appear in the debate. I am sure that you agree that such cannot be allowed."
In a letter date, February 16, 1952, Brother Hobbs replied to me as follows:
"You are correct in ruling that Ballard has no right to insert in the book diagrams that were not introduced and used in the debate."
Then on February 27, in a letter to Mr. Ballard, I wrote:
"I do not believe that your diagrams on Acts 2:38 and Mark 16:16 should go into the book, since they were not introduced into the debate. I had an answer for them, but they were not used. I have used no diagram in the book which did not appear in the debate. I believe that this is the fair thing to do. Your vocal analysis will appear in the book as you gave it. I have tried to take care of every other request you have made and believe they have all been carried out."
This correctly represented the situation. All of the above quotations show that the correspondence was about charts and diagrams which were not used. The truth seems to be that Mr. Ballard realized that the one chart which he did use did not help him one bit, so he did not even want it in the book. He did not send us a copy of it and did not even request that it go into the book. Mr. Ballard knows that NOT ONE TIME DID WE REFUSE HIM PERMISSION TO PUT INTO THE BOOK THE CHART WHICH HE USED IN THE DEBATE. I have produced the correspondence in which Mr. Ballard was refused permission to put into the book diagrams which HE DID NOT USE. Now, let him produce the letters which forbade him to put in the chart he DID use, or else let him be a man and publicly apologize for his misrepresentation.
Next, Mr. Ballard tries to make it appear that a good number of copies of the debate should have been given to him free and that the publishers were not anxious for the book to get before the reading public. It is not the custom of the Telegram Book Company to give books to either speaker and Mr. Ballard knows that there was no agreement for such to be done. The company does, however, follow the practice of supplying to an opposing speaker all which he wishes to handle at half the retail price. On July 1, 1953 Brother A. G. Hobbs, Jr., wrote to Mr. Ballard as follows:
"We have offered to let you have as many as you want as they come from the press at a special price; but so far we have no word from you. So we take it that you do not want any. However, if you do, please let me know at once, and how many."
This shows plainly that Mr. Ballard was informed as to the general procedure followed by this company. In the words of Mr. Ballard, I will "let you be the judge of the character of a man" who will write as Mr. Ballard did after being the recipient of the above quotation. That the publishers are anxious for the debate to get before the reading public is evidenced by the fact that it has been advertised in almost every one of the papers published by our brethren. Brother Hobbs has written and told Mr. Ballard that he will buy space to advertise the book in the Independent Baptist Voice if he will accept it. Will he? We shall see.
In paragraph three, Mr. Ballard said, and I quote it exactly:
"His idea to make his speeches very long and mine very short, but despite all of that there is enough in the book to nail Campbellism to the wall forever."
Mr. Ballard's reference to "Campbellism" is just another proof of how much he is hurting. I will "let you be the judge of the character of a man" who will resort to such tactics. Mr. Ballard IMPLIES without saying so in just so many words that I had made my speeches longer than his in the book when they were not longer in the actual debate. To one who attended the debate this is absurd. Mr. Ballard complained about the rapidity of my speaking. In fact, in his first negative, he spoke about rapid speaking in a very derogatory manner. In speaking of me he said:
"Usually he just puts his mouth to talking and goes off and leaves it, and forgets what it is saying. But tonight he took it deliberately and spoke slowly enough that you could catch everything that he said very easily."
Really, it wasn't so much the rapidity of my speaking that made the difference as it was the slowness of Mr. Ballard's speaking. He is a very slow speaker and the tapes of the debate show that I speak about one and one-half times as fast as does Mr. Ballard. Mr. Ballard knew this when he wrote his article. Also, he had access to the speeches and proofs before the book ever went to press. He did not object as to the length of the speeches of the respective speakers. Why? Because he knew that there was that much difference in what each speaker said. It is a strange thing for a man to ridicule rapid speaking while a debate is going on, and after it is printed to try to act as though the speeches of his opponent were lengthened. Of course, both of us spoke the same length of time. The difference of the length of the printed speeches comes with the difference in the rate of speaking. But this is just another proof of how much the debate is hurting Mr. Ballard. It is "pinching" to be sure!
(More to follow next week.)