"As to the essence of my argument, though, there was no credible counter-argument whatsoever, no claim that right and wrong can somehow have inherent meaning without recourse to Something Higher than ourselves." (Avi Shafran, here )
It is truly a shame that such spurious arguments are conjured up for the sake of defending religious faith, as they provide more fodder for those who are disbelievers. I often joke with my wife that I should attend some kiruv seminars to help argue the side of the skeptics. I think religious faith is fully reasonable (though perhaps neither empirically provable or demonstrable in the way a math equation is, as discussed in the past), but I cannot bear a sloppily reasoned thesis even in defense of a proper cause.
The notion that a theory of ethics presupposes religious faith is belied by opening any basic philosophy textbook. History is filled with theories of ethics that seek to define good vs. evil (and even those terms need to be made more precise - do we mean good character or good actions?) without resorting to religion. As early as Aristotle there was a concept of "virtue" in the sense of perfection of character, which has nothing to do with carrying out the moral imperatives of a deity. More modern thinkers argue in favor of consequentialist ethics, where good and evil is a matter of anticipating what will produce the best outcome for the individual or group. The man of faith may argue that this is not the same as "inherent" goodness, but that simply begs the question of how we know there is such a thing as inherent goodness in the first place. Even if one claims that ethics must resort to Something Higher, who says that Something must be a capitalized deity? If one defines ethics as that which helps mankind realize the greatest Freedom, the greatest degree of Rational Behavior, or some other grand higher Something, doesn't that also fit the bill?
To declare that atheism leads to "a place where the very concepts of morality and ethics are rendered meaningless, a worldview in which a thieving, philandering, serial murdering cannibal is no less commendable a member of the species than a selfless, hard-working philanthropist," is both wrong and poorly reasoned.
The Ishbitza in Mei haShiloach teaches that the keshes(bow) hidden in the clouds shown to Noach represents the strength to defend the convictions behind a person's hidden innermost beliefs (yirah). Arrows shot blindly from that keshes in defense of faith not only miss their intended mark, but rebound and cause even greater harm to that which lies close to our hearts.