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May 09 2013

Unity through shouting

I’ve watched the whole thing now.

In the last part he gets more and more shouty and angry about all these pesky interlopers trying to change his “movement” – he shouts angrily about how wonderful TAM is and how important it is that we all stick together - and he never says one word about the ongoing harassment of a few chosen women in the three overlapping “movements.” Not one word.

Unity? Stick together?

No.

32 comments

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  1. 1
    Illuminata, Genie in the Beer Bottle

    You know, crap like this ridiculous whiny white boy rant makes it very easy to cull one’s facebook friends list.

  2. 2
    Improbable Joe, bearer of the Official SpokesGuitar

    What an asshole. What he wants is “diversity” in name only… he wants the visible superficial benefits of a diverse movement, as long as us folks send our money and pose for the pictures and otherwise STFU and focus on the issues that upper-middle class straight white college-educated men are interested in pursuing.

  3. 3
    Anthony K

    Meh. I never cared much for magicians. Saw Doug Henning once when I was young. It was alright.

    Maybe those magician folks should go after fraudsters like Sylvia Browne.

  4. 4
    Josh, Official SpokesGay

    Notice this: “IMPOSING those beliefs!”

    This is bog standard anti-gay rhetorical tactics. “You’re forcing your view of marriage on the rest of us.”

    This should shock, shame, and appall anyone who claims to be rational.

  5. 5
    Ophelia Benson

    Anthony – well to be fair Randi at least does decidedly go after Sylvia Browne. I kept bumping into his name yesterday when going through my old posts on her. Also the day before in an article by someone else (I forget who – oh maybe the Jon Ronson one in the Guardian in 2009) saying Randi thinks she does not believe she is psychic, but is a cold callous fraud who does it for the money. Props to Randi.

  6. 6
    darwintyson

    @#1…”white boy rant”…
    Not just a ridiculous rant or an inappropriate rant or an out of bounds rant. Nope. A “white boy rant”. Well done on making your point.

  7. 7
    Anthony K

    I was being tongue-in-cheek. I know the magicians have worked successfully to put a stop to her which is why she’s sitting in a prison cell thanks to–wait, that’s not happened.

    Perhaps keeping the tent small is counter-productive to the goals of skepticism.

  8. 8
    darwintyson

    Ophelia, ongoing harassment by any definition is illegal. What legal recourse or other avenues to your knowledge have been pursued to stop this poor behavior and protect these women?

  9. 9
    Stephanie Zvan

    Ophelia, ongoing harassment by any definition is illegal.

    No, it’s not. No more than poking your sibling every five minutes on a long car ride is. It’s all counterproductive and anti-social, but much of it is not illegal. And those parts that are illegal are generally not a priority for law enforcement.

    Where are you getting this bad information?

  10. 10
    Ophelia Benson

    darwintyson, that’s wrong. Not all harassment, even ongoing harassment, is illegal, nor is everything that is “illegal” therefore prosecutable. Not everything that is not “illegal” is thefore perfectly fine. It’s not illegal for you to walk up to me in a public place and call me a fucking bitch. That doesn’t make it perfectly fine for you to do that.

  11. 11
    Ophelia Benson

    Dang, Stephanie scooped me, by a fraction of a minute. :D

  12. 12
    Anthony K

    For people that typically disagree with the state on all sorts of matters, some atheists and skeptics are certainly willing to run to the state’s definition of legally actionable as the gold standard for acceptable and non-acceptable behaviour. When it suits them, of course.

  13. 13
    SallyStrange

    Where are you getting this bad information?

    Well, it’s a recurring theme on the part of anti-feminists like Thunderf00t that the only appropriate response to harassment is calling the cops because anything that’s not illegal is perfectly OK.

    Where DID you get that bad information? Just curious. Obviously Tf00t isn’t the only one propagating that lie, but the other sources for it all tend to be similarly sexist. MRA blogs, for example.

  14. 14
    screechymonkey

    “ongoing harassment by any definition is illegal”

    No, it’s really not. Things are illegal if they’re defined by statute to be illegal. (Or, I suppose, by common law, but I’m not aware of any jurisdictions adopting a common law definition of harassment.) So harassment by a definition that doesn’t fit within a particular jurisdiction’s statutory definition isn’t illegal in that jurisdiction.

    And that doesn’t mean it isn’t harassment, or that the definition is “wrong” if it isn’t the same as the statutory one. State legislatures may have the power to define crimes and torts, but they don’t have power over the English language.

  15. 15
    screechymonkey

    That’ll teach me not to refresh before posting a comment….

  16. 16
    Ibis3, Let's burn some bridges

    @darwintyson

    And even when courts get involved, when the harassment is on the Internet, there’s often nothing authorities can do, even when the target is a poor* hetero white guy and the perp is a [insert your own gender and ethnic slurs here]. How much more difficult do you think it is for women, especially those of further marginalised groups to get an effective response?

    Shorter: darwintyson, you’re either an ignorant idiot, or a malicious asshole

    *in this case, an actually valid descriptor

  17. 17
    Illuminata, Genie in the Beer Bottle

    Not just a ridiculous rant or an inappropriate rant or an out of bounds rant. Nope. A “white boy rant”. Well done on making your point.

    Judging from your mad dash desperation to be offended, you didn’t understand my point. He’s speaking from a position of comfy privilege, telling everyone who isn’t to STFU and sit down. So, yes, it’s a whiny white boy rant. Which is a shorthand way of saying insufferable, clueless, self-obsessed, bigot assholery from a comfy privileged white dude.

    Don’t particularly care if the truth hurts privileged fee fees.

  18. 18
    Kevin

    Clueless gobshite, line one. Gobshite, line one.

  19. 19
    leftwingfox

    Saw Doug Henning once when I was young. It was alright.

    Yeah, me too.

    Didn’t vote for him though.

    I have to say he was an important part of my move away from woo. Watching the Natural Law party demonstrating “Yogic Flying” in my High School was essentially the moment where I went “Yeah, magic is fake.”

  20. 20
    Jafafa Hots

    If they don’t want to be marginalized they should stop marginalizing themselves.

    From my perspective the skeptical movement is growing, but that growth doesn’t seem to be coming from their immovable tent.

    This guy might want to stop and listen for the sound of history passing him by.

  21. 21
    Nomit

    ” It’s not illegal for you to walk up to me in a public place and call me a fucking bitch. ”

    Are you sure? It is in the UK, that would be deemed an assault and US law is usually based on British precedent.

  22. 22
    Anthony K

    It is in the UK, that would be deemed an assault and US law is usually based on British precedent.

    I wouldn’t decide to fly over and take a cross-America road trip armed with only that general historical tidbit.

    Things have changed a bit since the colonies stopped being colonies. Did you know we drive on the right-hand side of the road? It’s outrageous, I know, but true!

  23. 23
    Argle Bargle

    Things have changed a bit since the colonies stopped being colonies.

    For instance in America it’s almost impossible to get a decent cup of tea. Also some of the natives forget to put “u” in words like “labour” and “harbour”. And the idea of the old school tie has completely gone by the wayside.

  24. 24
    Anthony K

    For instance in America it’s almost impossible to get a decent cup of tea.

    Reason #3,453,998 I decided to get born Canadian. And then took up coffee.

    Also some of the natives forget to put “u” in words like “labour” and “harbour”.

    It’s our neighbours to the South who do that. (Between you and me, I don’t think they were brought up right.)

    And the idea of the old school tie has completely gone by the wayside.

    It’s a tragedy, it is. Why, my office dress code barely specifies trousers. So I don’t wear any.

  25. 25
    SallyStrange

    Well naturally your dress code doesn’t mention trousers because what’s that? Pants are what you’re supposed to wear.

  26. 26
    Anthony K

    Pants are what you’re supposed to wear.

    Uh, yeah…I knew that.

    [Calls cab, goes home to put on pants.]

  27. 27
    hotshoe, now with more boltcutters
    And the idea of the old school tie has completely gone by the wayside.

    It’s a tragedy, it is. Why, my office dress code barely specifies trousers. So I don’t wear any.

    Well naturally your dress code doesn’t mention trousers because what’s that? Pants are what you’re supposed to wear.

    Uh, yeah…I knew that.

    [Calls cab, goes home to put on pants.]

    This … this is why I love all y’all so much!

  28. 28
    Audra

    Jamy Ian Swiss 52:27 – “Honestly, I didn’t come here to argue with atheists and humanists even though I have little doubt that some will be insisting on that, probably tomorrow in the blogs”.

    I was at the conference and sitting near Swiss. I left after dinner and before this talk. Now that I’ve watched parts of this, I find the above quote a bit disingenuous given what I heard him say after Matt Dilahunty’s talk. A person asked him: “Do we like Matt Dilahunty?”. His response was that Matt was OK but that the biggest asshole there was PZ Myers and he was planning to “call him out” in his talk. He also stated that Greta Christina is a “fucking asshole” too as she’s involved with Atheism +.

    So, forgive me if I don’t quite view this talk as a genuine call for unity but as a call for some atheists and humanists to shut the fuck up.

  29. 29
    Stephanie Zvan

    Audra, I wish that surprised me, but it doesn’t. Not someone asking Swiss what “we” think. Not the blatant hostility toward PZ. Not the “anyone involved in Atheism+ is an asshole”. Not even that he felt perfectly comfortable saying all that out loud then saying something else for the public, though part of me feels that bit should surprise me.

  30. 30
    Ophelia Benson

    Wo. I have to admit that kind of surprises me.

  31. 31
    Audra

    I was suprised but I didn’t know who he was until I read his name tag. My boyfriend, who doesn’t follow blogs or any social media, commented that he’s not sure what that was about but that guy is really pissed off about something.

  32. 32
    Stacy

    Honestly, I didn’t come here to argue with atheists and humanists even though I have little doubt that some will be insisting on that, probably tomorrow in the blogs”.

    Exquisite passive-aggression. “I’m not trying to pick a fight with you, honest, but I’m sure you’ll take it that way. But there’s no reason for you to take it that way, so if you do, which you will, hey–your bad.”

  1. 33
    Then the community can embrace » Butterflies and Wheels

    [...] who heard Jamy Ian Swiss say this before his talk at Orange County Freethinkers. One source is a comment on Unity through [...]

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