Amaze


Hemant Mehta, the “friendly” atheist, is promoting a video by the “amazing” atheist now, the one who has such an “amazing” attitude toward women.

Not all that friendly to women, is he.

Comments

  1. Matt Penfold says

    I long ago realised that anyone in the atheist community who calls themslf the something atheist is almost certainly anything but.

  2. Bells says

    Yeah, I saw that earlier today as well. I struggle with how necessary it was to promote that video. I watched it, and started thinking to myself: I could have made a better one. If it would have been awesome and hilarious, then, maybe it would have been more understandable that Hemant promoted it…

  3. AndyS says

    The Amazing Atheist is a sexist scumbag, no doubts about it – but is it fair to judge Hemant along the line of:
    “Hemant endores a video from The Amazing Atheist that is not sexist in any way, which means that Hemant endorses everything that The Amazing Atheist has ever said, even the stuff that he might not have even seen before, which in turn means that Hemant is also a sexist scumbag.”
    ?

  4. says

    … or ‘The Singularly Repellent In Every Way Atheist’?

    (/… or ‘The Latest Attention-Seeking Guy Millions Of Other Atheists Dearly Wish Wouldn’t Publicly Say He’s An Atheist’?)

  5. brucegorton says

    So, just so you all know I have dibs on the Not-at-all-secretly-God atheist.

  6. dshetty says

    @Andys
    which means that Hemant endorses everything that The Amazing Atheist has ever said
    Nah – No one said that .
    Its Hemant does not have a problem promoting a non-sexist video from a sexist scumbag.
    And that is sufficient for me to drop his blog.

    I dont wish to associate with libertarian scumbag atheists, or homophobic scumbag atheists or racist scumbag atheists or sexist scumbag atheists. Possibly Hemant also agrees when it comes to homphobic or racists atheists. But sexist? Thats fine.

    I also find it ironic that some Atheists who get outraged at every small church/state infraction (That school there had a photo of Jesus – omg the entire church/state separation wall is torn down!!!) somehow have no outrage on any women related matter. Our priorities are surely in the right place.

  7. Uncle Ebeneezer says

    @Dshetty-

    “I also find it ironic that some Atheists who get outraged at every small church/state infraction (That school there had a photo of Jesus – omg the entire church/state separation wall is torn down!!!) somehow have no outrage on any women related matter. Our priorities are surely in the right place.”

    THIS!! I mean I do get upset about the Jesus picture too and think it worthy of fighting but I don’t get how can someone can see that as a danger of religion but not Hobby Lobby, the buffer zone ruling etc., which bring far greater real-world oppression.

  8. Pieter B, FCD says

    From an article on forbes.com about RFKjr’s relentless insistence that vaccines cause autism, by Steven Salzberg. I’m sure y’all can see the parallel.

    When I’ve heard Kennedy talk about environmental topics, where I agree with him almost completely, I’ve been impressed by his passion and his seeming command of the issues. But having heard him speak about thimerosal and vaccines, I now realize that he’s a dangerous idealogue, willing to distort the truth so thoroughly I can’t believe a word he says.

  9. says

    Hemant has done this over and over, being friendly with & promoting vile people. He himself seems to be nice enough, but he seems to think that being friendly and accomodating to everyone is a good thing. It is NOT. People see those you associate with and they are correct in drawing conclusions about what kind of person you are if your associations are people like the AA.

  10. dshetty says

    @Uncle Ebeneezer
    I mean I do get upset about the Jesus picture too and think it worthy of fighting
    Sure. I didnt mean to imply that the causes are not worthy or that we shouldnt fight those.

    Just that some causes are deemed to be no compromises, no exceptions (even if the level of harm is low) – but people fall over their feet to excuse bad behavior towards women.

  11. Beth says

    Ophelia,

    Let me see if I understand you correctly please.

    Amazing Atheist is the kind of guy who openly makes rape threats when a woman disagrees with him.

    Friendly Atheist, aware of his on-line behavior, posts link to a video of his that mocks – i.e. sarcastic humor – a particular creationist, making fun of how stupid the creationist appears to more scientifically literate folks. No sexism or any other bigoted unacceptable remarks.

    This seems factual enough. But I’m not sure how this news is supposed to affect how I think of him.

    Are you saying that Hermant’s blog should not be read because Hermant is the sort of guy who’s willing to publically associate people like the Amazing Atheist?

    Are you saying Hermant is not actually a friendly guy because now his blog is not safe for women? That doesn’t seem quite factual, so that’s probably not it. I’m just thinking aloud.

    Is there some other idea that I’m missing in assessing these facts? I feel like I’m missing some aspect of this story from your point of view.

  12. anat says

    Beth, Hemant does nothing to distance himself from Mr Amazing Atheists. Moreover, recently Hemant posted a blog-post of a ‘pro-life’ atheist in its entirety, without stating clearly, in the post itself, his disagreement with the opinion posted. When Hemant posts views of other groups such as people holding homophobic views he makes it very clear these are not his views. My impression is that Hemant is willing to at least entertain the thought that women’s rights are more ‘up to debate’ than the rights of other groups.

  13. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    Are you saying Hermant is not actually a friendly guy because now his blog is not safe for women? That doesn’t seem quite factual, so that’s probably not it. I’m just thinking aloud.

    Um…”friendly” is not an objective fact about a person; it’s subjective opinion others have of them. If Hemant Mehta thinks it’s totally cool to promote a person as reprehensible as TJ Kincaid, that makes him seem markedly less friendly to a lot of people.

    The video Kincaid fisked has been fisked 1000 times over by people who aren’t raging fucking misogynists. The arguments advanced in the video have been rebutted countless times by people who aren’t raging fucking misogynists. But the video by the raging fucking misogynist is the one Hemant Mehta chose to promote. Therefor, fuck Hemant Mehta.

  14. dshetty says

    @Beth
    But I’m not sure how this news is supposed to affect how I think of him.
    That is totally up to you of course.
    Amazing Atheist is the kind of guy who openly makes rape threats when a woman disagrees with him.
    Replace with your favorite minority group for e.g.
    Amazing Atheist is the kind of guy who openly makes rape threats to gay people
    Do you see the friendly atheist promoting an unrelated video?

    Perhaps the question you should answer is would you, Beth, promote a video from the Amazing Atheist?

  15. says

    Here’s my problem. We deal with religious extremists and wackaloons all the time, and I’m often told that they are unrepresentative, and that most religious people are not that hateful. And I agree completely, the majority aren’t. But then I point out that if I don’t mock them and complain about them, who will? Because that great kind Christian majority sure won’t — they are deferential to religious authority, too.

    Obviously, it’s not just a flaw of the religious — atheists do this all the time, too. It’s a problem with people. So when I see atheism’s version of Glenn Beck or Alex Jones, it’s important to point out that most atheists aren’t like that (I hope, I could be wrong) and that he is unrepresentative…and that we criticize our own without reservation, even if they have “atheist” in their nickname.

  16. Jackie says

    Promotes a man who makes rape threats toward rape victims in the hopes of triggering her and mocks a teen girl who was bullied to death.

    Promotes forced birth advocates.

    Calls himself “friendly”.

    *spits*

  17. Beth says

    Ophelia and PZ: Thanks for your response, but I’m still feeling like I’m missing an important idea about this post. You want to criticize atheists like the Amazing Atheist and establish they are not the norm among atheists. I have no problem understanding that.

    What I’m not sure about is what conclusion you want me to draw from your criticism of the Friendly Atheist for promoting a video produced by the Amazing Atheist when the video being promoted is not sexist or otherwise degrading/offensive to marginalized groups (except creationists).

    I can understanding not wanting to see any of his work (AA) due to his repulsive actions in the past. I feel that way about Woody Allen movies myself and have for many years. But I don’t generally feel it appropriate to criticize people who praise his work because they don’t feel similarly. It seems more like a personal flaw in me that I can’t get past my knowledge of Mr. Allen’s personal failings and appreciate his work despite that knowledge.

    Why do you consider it worthwhile to criticize the Friendly Atheist for promoting the video because of who produced it when the video itself was not considered objectionable? Do you want the Amazing Atheist to be boycotted or blacklisted because of his views on feminism and treatment of women on the Internet?

  18. says

    Beth, I wasn’t responding to you. I’m not responding to you. It’s too frustrating trying to make allowances for your extremely literal approach.

  19. Forbidden Snowflake says

    Do you want the Amazing Atheist to be boycotted or blacklisted because of his views on feminism and treatment of women on the Internet?

    Why not?
    Really, would that be so terrible to boycott or blacklist a man who likes to threaten women with rape? To have some moral standards? With deciding that the potential presence of the woman he threatened is maybe not worth less by default than his presence?

  20. Beth says

    @Ophelia – I’m sorry. I can understand your frustration.

    @ Snowflake – No, it wouldn’t be terrible to boycott or blacklist someone like that. I essentially do that myself with people and/or businesses for various reasons. For example, I’m no longer shopping at Hobby Lobby.

    My question relates to what is the purpose of criticizing others who do not participate in such a boycott, particularly when it isn’t an organized boycott, but simply based on personal feeling of revulsion with respect to a third party.

    Why are Ophelia and others criticizing Hermant for sharing this particular video by the Amazing Atheist? Is he supposed to also boycott all of AA’s work? If he chooses not to, am I supposed to think less of Hermant for not doing so?

  21. Forbidden Snowflake says

    My question relates to what is the purpose of criticizing others who do not participate in such a boycott, particularly when it isn’t an organized boycott, but simply based on personal feeling of revulsion with respect to a third party.

    I don’t think a moral objection to AA’s choice to spew rape threats at strangers can be categorized as “personal feeling of revulsion”. The decision to condemn him is a logical consequence of believing that rape is wrong and making threats is wrong.

    Why are Ophelia and others criticizing Hermant for sharing this particular video by the Amazing Atheist? Is he supposed to also boycott all of AA’s work? If he chooses not to, am I supposed to think less of Hermant for not doing so?

    What do you mean by “supposed to”? If someone thinks boycotting AA is the moral thing to do, they might think less about people who choose not to. Or, as in your case, they might not.
    I don’t see the sense in pretending that we can view each individual video on its own merits, without tying it to AA’s personality. That is not how things work: not human psychology, not celebrity, not even YouTube channels. An influential blogger linking to him increases his influence and exposure, including that of distasteful aspects of his public persona. Publicly patting a shitty human being on the back is not a morally neutral action. Choosing to do so when the shitty human being isn’t an old friend or relative (someone whom you can’t easily cut out of your life), but a stranger whose video you choose to amplify over 100 others on the same topic, can get you judged by others.

  22. Beth says

    @snowflake

    Thanks for the response. I didn’t mean the decision to condemn his actions. I meant the decision to boycott was based on personal revulsion. However, your point that it might not be the reason for Ophelia do so is well taken. It’s my personal reaction and why I boycott particular people or businesses.

    As far as “what I meant by supposed to”, I asking what reaction Ophelia was hoping to induce in her readers. You say someone might or might not think less of someone who did not share their boycott.

    I agree with you regarding viewing the work without tying it to the producer. I certainly can’t manage that myself. It’s the judgment regarding people who are not equally repulsed that I don’t understand. Why should people think less of Hermant for sharing a video that would not be objectionable if not for who produced it.

  23. screechymonkey says

    Beth, with comments like “personal revulsion,” “personal reaction,” and “why should people think less of Hermant for sharing a video that would not be objectionable if not for who produced it,” you make it sound like this is just some personal peccadillo. As if the “Amazing” Atheist is cilantro, and while person X can’t stand cilantro in their guacamole, it’s totally ok for person Y to include it, and X shouldn’t judge Y.

    But that’s not what’s going on here. It’s more like X is saying, “I would never invite Infamous Asshole A to dinner, because he’s a notorious [racist/seixst/homophobe/whatever],” and Y is saying “oh, yeah, I know, but he’s really funny, and he doesn’t say those things around me, so I’m having him over this Saturday again.” That exchange tells me a lot about what kind of people X and Y are, and what things they consider important.

    You sound almost wistful that you can’t “manage” to support the work of morally reprehensible people, as if that’s the ideal to which you aspire. Your personal boycott of Hobby Lobby is, presumably, not based on some arbitrary matter of taste, but rather of principles and ethics. Our opinion of TAA is also based on principles and ethics. By promoting TAA, Hemant is signalling loud and clear to us that he does not share that aspect of our principles and ethics.

    We can each do with that information what we please.

  24. Morgan says

    “Why should people think less of Hermant for sharing a video that would not be objectionable if not for who produced it.”

    Because it is objectionable for who produced it. dshetty made this point at #11 above, and many others did so since. Hemant is apparently willing to overlook the things that make TAA objectionable. I find it unlikely that he’d do the same for, say, overt racism. Considering overt misogyny less worthy of condemnation is a pretty solid reason for people to think less of Hemant.

  25. anat says

    IMO it is also significant that this is not the first time Hemant shows lack of solidarity with women’s issues. Both times he mentioned in the comments that he disagreed with the person/group whose video/blogpost he promoted, but did nothing to indicate that in the body of the post, he just appeared to play the role of a neutral party.

  26. Beth says

    @screechymonkey: Yes, I am wistful that I can’t “manage” to support the work of morally reprehensible people, not because it’s an ideal I aspire to but because I miss being able to enjoy Woody Allen movies. I can’t even watch the old ones I liked before his public scandals. I used to laugh at his movies. Now the image of him on screen turns my stomach and I change the channel.

    @Morgon: I appreciate your sharing that you feel the video is objectionable because of who produced it. I can understand that. But I can also understand Hermant sharing it because he did not find the actual video objectionable.

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