Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
May 16, 1963

More Grider-Totty Debates??

A. C. Grider

Last week we concluded a six night debate here in Meridian with W. L. Totty. It is not likely that Totty and I shall ever meet again in debate. Totty was definitely not his old self during the discussion. He repeatedly appealed for sympathy from the audience on the grounds that I was "vilifying" him and his brethren. Can you imagine W. L. Totty trying to win a debate by crying persecution? Anyway, it was clearly demonstrated that Totty had had enough. The way he "got out of" having other debates with me was amusing and many times ridiculous. For instance:

On our proposed debate in Monroe County, Kentucky, Totty says he has an endorsement from a congregation in the county. My brethren have demanded a copy of the endorsement before they will go ahead with the debate. While talking like I won't debate him in Monroe County, Totty steadfastly refuses to present a copy of his endorsement that we may get on with the debate. During the course of our debate here I pleaded with him to furnish me with a copy of his endorsement. He refused. I offered to BUY a copy of the endorsement. I first offered him ten dollars for a copy of the endorsement and then I raised my offer to fifteen dollars. He wouldn't even SELL me a copy. The debate hinges upon his giving us a copy of his endorsement. He won't give us a copy. He won't even SELL us a copy. Yet he says we are the ones who don't want to debate.

When it became apparent that Totty was going to squirm out of the Monroe County, Kentucky debate, brethren in Jasper, Alabama and in Memphis, Tennessee offered to endorse me in a debate in those places with Totty, not requiring an endorsement for him from his brethren. Totty ran from those suggestions so fast that he forgot to make any reply whatsoever to them. Yet he says we don't want to debate him again.

Smarting under my exposure of his cowardice in refusing to meet me again, Totty had to have an "out" and one was forthcoming. I told Brother Driskill, of Clearwater, Florida, that the brethren there were not going to endorse me to debate Totty in Clearwater. Shortly after I told him that, I saw him whispering to Totty. Totty got up and, with a flourish, challenged me to meet him in Clearwater, Florida in debate. I asked him if they would take me without an endorsement and he refused. So, both Driskill and Totty were exposed as hypocritical in the matter as they extended an invitation which they KNEW I couldn't accept.

Having been exposed on the Clearwater deal, Totty had one more "out" up his sleeve. He wrote out an "outlandish" proposition about how it was a sin and people would go to hell if they took money out of the church treasury to feed a starving child. With gusto he handed me the propositions and said if I would sign them I could come to Garfield Heights without an endorsement and debate with him. I quickly signed them and returned his copy to him before he completed his speech. Being caught upon that too, he immediately hinted that he had no intention of letting me come to debate the questions but that he just wanted my signature on the propositions for propaganda purposes.

So, Totty refuses to present his endorsement in Monroe County, Kentucky. Thus he squirms out of that debate. He won't even talk about debating me in Jasper and Memphis, even without an endorsement for him. Thus he squirms out of those two debates. He won't agree to meet me in Clearwater, without an endorsement for me. So he squirms out of that debate. And now it doesn't look like he will fulfill his promise to let me come to Indianapolis to debate. So he will squirm out of that one too.

There is the possibility that several Grider-Totty debates may be "discussed." You see, when the liberals thought nobody would meet the mighty one, they prominently put him forward in various places as "their man." I don't know what they will do if our brethren accept the challenges and call me. One thing I do know. Where ever and when ever I am called to meet W. L. Totty I am ready and I will be there. I would urge the brethren throughout the country to accept the challenge and call me. Totty can be taken and I took him.

Meridian, Mississippi