15 comments posted · 4 followers · following 0

9 years ago @ Atheist Revolution - Upset by a Skeptic T-s... · 0 replies · +1 points

Who was hit with the misogynist label, and by whom? It doesn't seem to have happened in the thread you linked to.

9 years ago @ Atheist Revolution - Why Its Tough to Discu... · 0 replies · +2 points

Much obliged! I will continue to disagree respectfully.

9 years ago @ Atheist Revolution - Why Its Tough to Discu... · 2 replies · +3 points

Without meaning to become a single-issue commenter (though it'd been about a year since my last, i'm sure), the delicacy you accurately describe — whether or not the purported bullying is partly to blame — behooves all of us conscious of it to be as honest as possible about those with whom we disagree. Re-read the paragraph from which you excerpted Ophelia's quote. She does not accuse you of being among a small, dedicated, and obsessed group intent upon sullying the reputation of FtB. Rather, she claims, as i suspect as well, that you have bought into the concocted "impression that Everybody Thinks FTB is terrible". You should of course continue to disagree with her assessment of the situation if you interpret it differently, but please avoid misrepresentation.

9 years ago @ Atheist Revolution - Freethought Bullying · 0 replies · +8 points

So, this is a bit exemplary of the strange accusations i mentioned. Watson didn't rant about EG; she mentioned the episode as an aside toward the end of a video about several other topics. I'm not sure what's so important about keeping one's mouth shut on hookup advice.

She also didn't mention sexism or feminism. These were brought into the discussion by Burke, St. Clair, and McGraw in their responses.

I agree that it was overblown, but i disagree that it was by Watson.

9 years ago @ Atheist Revolution - Freethought Bullying · 2 replies · +2 points

Well, it seems that your post got some attention anyway. I'm still digging up resources as i go, but i thought i'd share a couple of overviews. Freethought Kampala wrote up a somewhat selective timeline of Elevatorgate, before taking a second post to criticize Watson; and Suirauqa has just put together xir own timeline, with a bias in favor of Watson that xe tries to confine to parenthetical remarks. I share these because (a) you said that you wish you'd brought this topic up long ago and (b) the accusations of bullying trace at least this far back — one of the reasons i remain skeptical of present accusations, given, frankly, the banality of those from the past year. If you don't feel fully informed about the issue (since there are a lot of uncited accusations going around) these may be good places to start.

9 years ago @ Atheist Revolution - Freethought Bullying · 0 replies · +3 points

Fair enough. (Pardon, also, for the poor specificity of my request, it having been late.) You'll have to pardon some of us, then, if, after our own scrutiny of the debacle, we simply do not heed your warning.

Edit: (Hope the *shrug*, rather than *spite*, tone came across correctly.) If you have a handy collection of links, and trust me not to cite you (asking a lot), i invite you (or anyone here) to send them by email.

9 years ago @ Atheist Revolution - Freethought Bullying · 2 replies · +4 points

OK. As someone i read for a daily insight into goings on i have limited time to attend to, you have my attention. I've been paying what attention i can to the debacle, and your stated position here is one i just don't get. The several responses to Kirby's letter you transitively linked to each strike me as critiques no less cogent and no more intimidating than Kirby's. They use no more mockery and ridicule and speculation about motives, by my estimation somewhat less, and Kirby goes into quite darker territory than her detractors when making comparisons. Regarding the overall trend you describe, i'll be up front that it strikes me as dubious. (Looking through the examples proffered at your "gang bullying" link, the only one of substance is the #FTBullies rush, and i haven't really come across anything nearly as substantial elsewhere.)

So, i hope you'll get specific. I can't watch everything; none of us can. Where are the FtB posts that demonize other individuals in the movement — rather than their arguments? What have they been agitating for that's far beyond reasonable expectations? What is different in how these ideas, versus religious or pseudoscientific ideas, are being mocked and ridiculed? Or just share some examples of the absolute worst of whatever it is. I am not talking about comment threads, in which the unaffiliated may, within limits, go off however they like, but about posts — what i hope you'll agree are a more representative window into the FtB team. I'll definitely read what you have to say, and go where you point to read more. Thanks.

10 years ago @ Atheist Revolution - Separation of Church a... · 0 replies · +1 points

James Croft has written critically of the framing of this value, and i wonder what your take on his would be. Certainly a blogger should write to their audience, so this is more of a commentary on the very public figures in the atheist community. Do you think "mutual protection" is more accurate or honest than "separation", or does it strike you just as rhetoric?

10 years ago @ Atheist Revolution - The Atheist Movement N... · 0 replies · +3 points

Dren Asselmeier at the CFI on Campus blog wrote about this last year (and i kinda went nuts on it 'cause i like categories and collections):

It should be no problem for someone with enough time to find something highly relevant for each day (provided we expand from atheism to include skepticism, humanism, and freethought), and a "grand PDF" would be great to have available online somewhere. Keep us posted.

10 years ago @ Atheist Revolution - Atheist or Agnostic? I... · 0 replies · +2 points

Well, i've become a bit fed up with the notion of agnostic atheism (which a lot of people spell "agnosticism"), so i'd be glad for some reasonable perspective. Perhaps you've written about this elsewhere; in that case a link would suffice.

Are there any claims about which you are certain, i.e. identify as gnostic?

No: Unless you reject the use of "knowledge" in everyday language, which itself i just find silly but am disinclined to argue, i don't see what point there is in calling oneself agnostic. If we can can declare ourselves certain about anything (heavy things fall when released?) then we should be able to declare ourselves certain that a phenomenon (belief in gods) adequately explained by psychological, sociological, historical, and other factors carries no evidence at all for the correctness of its claims — rather like the assertion that sometimes, in some places, bowling balls hover unsupported. (This would run counter to a wealth of evidence that bowling balls cannot hover unsupported, somewhat like the correspondence of human belief in gods to facts about gods would run counter to a wealth of evidence that human beliefs are artifacts of experience, culture, etc.)

Yes: What, then? For what claims is there enough evidence for a person to be certain who also cannot admit that the nonexistence of gods is certain?

(I've avoided the notion of logically incoherent gods, but even intervening gods like Zeus are logically possible if we're not certain that they haven't intervened in the past and aren't just taking a break for now.)

Short version: If the certainty required for "gnosticism" is so selective that we can't be gnostic about gods (and spaghetti monsters), then i don't see what purpose the word and the identity serve — especially in the religious discourse, where it's more often used (by theists and atheists alike) to absolve theists of the responsibility of doubt.