Kristjan Wager has a good post on the Deep Rifts. He’d rather have the rifts than no rifts at the price of entrenched sexism.
So, to sum it up, there are deep rifts in the movement, and I think it is fine. Not only that, I feel more comfortable being in a smaller community within the movement, which doesn’t include people whose opinions and behavior I find repugnant. I can still appreciate the good work done by those people (like I did with e.g. Hitchens) without wanting to be part of the same community.
Fewer but better Russians. (I kid, I kid.)
Massimo Pigliucci also has a good post, although he does do the “both sides” thing, which given what a big chunk of the other side is like, really isn’t as reasonable as it might sound to a novice.
Oh wait, no he doesn’t, or at least he clarifies in a comment that that’s not what he meant. I’ll leave the above paragraph because there are people who think that is what he meant, so this will perhaps help.
Here’s his clarification:
there may be a misunderstanding here about what my call for moderation concerns. Of course there is no moderate position to be held about sexism (or racism, for that matter): it’s bad, period.
But there is moderation to be called for in how we talk and act about it. The example in question here, discussed by Russell Blackford in the post I linked to above, is AA’s overly reaching “no-hugs” policy, which – it can be argued – doesn’t really address the actual issue and potentially undermines a sense of community by attempting to over-regulate normal human interactions.
Sure. Specifics can be discussed, calmly and reasonably. (I’ve been staying out of those discussions, because honestly I don’t know enough about the subject to have a useful opinion. I was invited to participate in the conference call with American Atheists to discuss their policy, but I wasn’t available at the right time – which is just as well.) Specifics can be discussed, calmly and reasonably – which includes not calling people Talibanesque or Femistasi.