Please Sign Adam Lee’s Petition

Adam Lee of Daylight Atheism has started a petition at Change.org, to be sent to the leaders of the top atheist/secular organizations, that responds to Thunderfoot’s latest video attack on those who are trying to bring more gender diversity to our communities and supports those who have been the target of terrible harassment, including many people on this network. I have signed it, with the following message:

I support this petition because the entire atheist/secular community needs to stand up and condemn these vile attacks on those trying to bring attention to a real problem. There is a serious conversation to be had on how to best increase diversity in our communities, but that conversation cannot take place with those who scream “witch hunt” and “atheist cult” and “you all just hate men” and other hyperbolic nonsense at those who are trying to affect change. Still less can it be had with those who deride those women who have rightly spoken out on this issue as “bitches” or “professional victims.” And it certainly can’t be had with those who think the right response is to publish the addresses of those women, or who send rape and death threats to them. It’s time that we all took a strong stand against such behavior in our communities.

There are legitimate issues to be hashed out here. What is the best way to increase diversity in our community? How do we go about making sure that people feel comfortable at our events regardless of their gender or race? How should anti-harassment policies be worded and how should they be enforced? What steps can be taken to make the speaker lineup at our events more accurately reflect the diversity of the community? These are important questions and it’s a discussion we need to have. But these attempts to shout down, bully and intimidate those who raise those questions not only don’t further that conversation, they distract from it and make it far more difficult, if not impossible, to have. If you agree, please sign the petition.

126 comments on this post.
  1. shouldbeworking:

    Signed.

  2. Tony the Queer Shoop (proud supporter of Radical Feminism):

    Enthusiastically signed.

  3. Dr X:

    This could become a loooooooong thread.

  4. Natasha:

    I signed, this is the statement I gave them;

    I’m signing mostly to piss of the haters. Let’s face it these petitions are essentially useless

  5. Ed Brayton:

    I’m not in the mood to deal with the assholes. I may just delete any comments that piss me off, just to watch them scream “OMG! Free speech!” This is my house and you don’t have any right to come into my house and say anything you want. This has absolutely nothing to do with free speech.

  6. poxyhowzes:

    The language in the petition is facially vile and dismissive. If we cannot have a discussion with those who scream “witch hunt and “you just hate men,” then with whom can we have the discussion — Ourselves alone in the green room?

    No, Ed, I will not sign this petition. It is as wrong on “our” side as we ever accused folks of being on “their side.”

    Propose a petition likely to advance a common cause with whomever you see as [the enemy], and I’ll sign it.

    pH

  7. Ed Brayton:

    No, I do not think it’s possible to discuss how to increase diversity with people who claim that those who are trying to do so are “whiners” or “professional victims” or “bitches” on a “witch hunt.” You can’t talk about how to solve a problem with those who deny that there is a problem and attack those who do. We can hold discussions with those who agree that there is a problem and have different ideas on how to solve it. That’s the discussion that needs to take place. And those who are trying to bully and intimidate those who are trying to have that discussion are only making it far more difficult to have.

  8. baal:

    I don’t listen to thunderf00t for his misrepresentations and general odiousness. I won’t sign the petition despite being in general agreement due to it being drafted by Adam Lee. Adam Lee is an extremist and apparently feels that bullying is the best way to get your points across. I’ve asked on point and he’s confirmed. He couldn’t give a shit who he’s yelling at so long as someone is yelling. I cannot stand by abusive people regardless of their preferred cause.

  9. hamstur:

    I signed it.

    “You can’t talk about how to solve a problem with those who deny that there is a problem and attack those who do.” – Ed

    Pretty much this.

  10. poxyhowzes:

    I’m going to (continue to) sound like oolong and others of zir ilk, but if you assert dogmatically that you cannot discuss a problem with those who disagree with you, then in what sense do you think a “petition” is going to be effective or productive, or constructive?

    Either find a way to PRODUCTIVELY engage folks like thunderf00tinmouth (which didn’t happen on FtB) or else stop engaging them.

    This petition might, IMHO, be addressed to GOD, for all the good it will do.

    pH

  11. Jasper of Maine:

    but if you assert dogmatically that you cannot discuss a problem with those who disagree with you

    Two possibilities here:

    1) You’re talking about non-existent people.
    2) You don’t know what “dogma” is.

    But, if you mean:

    3) An observation about reality about the futility of a situation…

    Then this qualifies as “dogma” too:

    This petition might, IMHO, be addressed to GOD, for all the good it will do.

  12. regexp:

    ages, genders and ethnic backgrounds to speak at our conventions

    nothing about sexual orientation, eh?

    Honestly – this problem exists in many spheres including my own industry (InfoSec). We are heavily white straight male dominated and I’ve worked to reach out to other gay men/women and to women in general to get them in the field and to point out stupidity when I can. But we haven’t really found something that works yet.

    However I know what doesn’t work. Signing an online petition.

  13. rakatosh:

    If you can’t discuss a problem with people who won’t discuss the problem, then WHO may I ask, can you discuss the problem with!?!?!?!

    Face, meey palm.

  14. rakatosh:

    *meet (damnable thumbs!)

  15. poxyhowzes:

    Rakatosh (@12 and 13)

    My point exactly. Apparently if you can’t engage someone in discussion, you get up a petition addressed to Pi in the Skye, or something(s).

    pH

  16. WMDKitty (Always growing and learning):

    Signed. Whether or not it actually does anything, we’ll see.

  17. Rieux:

    If you won’t accept misogynist trolling (the nerve of spurning that), how about word-choice trolling?

    [T]hat conversation cannot take place with those who scream … hyperbolic nonsense at those who are trying to affect change.

    “Affect”? How dare you?!?

    (I’ve signed the petition as well.)

  18. Who Knows?:

    I’ve signed the petition.

  19. Rieux:

    baal:

    Adam Lee is an extremist and apparently feels that bullying is the best way to get your points across.

    Utter ba(a)loney.

  20. Who Knows?:

    If you can’t discuss a problem with people who won’t discuss the problem, then WHO may I ask, can you discuss the problem with!?!?!?!

    With rational people who are willing to listen.

    Thunderfoot and those like him are beyond discussion. The point is to let them know they are irrelevant and their sexism is not appreciated or wanted.

  21. Rodney Nelson:

    It’s hard to have a discussion about sexism with someone who says “harassment policies limit my free speech and besides there’s no problems except those raised by professional victims who want to castrate me.” And no, I am not being hyperbolic.

  22. rakatosh:

    Regarding my earlier comment, I know sarcasm doesn’t come accross well in text, but I keep trying anyway.

    Also, signed.

  23. Pieter B, FCD:

    Signing statement:

    I just have this quaint idea that women are people, and as such entitled to be treated equally. I am the stereotypical Old White Guy, but I want the makeup of our community to to reflect reality. If that makes me a minority within it, that’s cool.

    My apologies for not mentioning all the other folks that I hope “reflect reality” will be understood to include.

  24. satanaugustine:

    rakatosh – I didn’t know if you were joking or not, though I guessed you might be. You got poxy, though. He or she thinks you’re in agreement.

    Speaking of which, for those who don’t think signing online petitions do anything, Adam Lee is not completely convinced that they do either, but figured this petition would at least – if nothing else – show solidarity with those targeted by t-foot. Here’s Adam:

    Although I don’t expect that anything will come of this effort, I think it’s important that ignorant and destructive statements like this not go unanswered. Therefore, I thought it would be worthwhile to demonstrate the depth of support within the secular community for measures to increase diversity among our representatives, institute anti-harassment policies at our gatherings, and other moderate and reasonable policies for making everyone feel welcome and broadening our appeal.

  25. Rodney Nelson:

    Oh yeah, add to my post #21: Signed.

  26. frankb:

    I signed. Whenever T-foot speaks garbage someone should answer.

  27. Daniel Kolle:

    Please stop asking me to sign these petitions. They do nothing but give you the illusion that you are actually doing something about a problem.

  28. magistramarla:

    Another one signed.

  29. ph041985:

    Thank you for posting this link, Ed. I’m not the most eloquent, but here is how I signed:

    I think leaders in the atheist/humanist movement should stand up and not only support diversity and equality, but vigorously denounce those who try to hide behind the label of atheist to support their bigoted views. Much like the Catholic Church has been castigated for its silence over the Holocaust, the atheist movement’s reputation is being seriously undermined by people like thunderfoot.

  30. jazzmac251:

    I don’t often comment, but I thought I’d share an experience that was fresh in my mind as it happened to me earlier today and is pertinent to the discussion here.

    First off, Ed, I hope you don’t mean to imply that Thunderf00t has been anything but reasonable in his criticism, regardless of how you feel about his point of view. That is to say, he’s certainly not out there calling anyone anything vile.

    This brings me to my anecdote. Until earlier today, I had been a follower of PZ Myers’s blog for several years. I tuned in today to read a post he wrote regarding the issue of harassment policies at conferences and “booth babes”. On this issue, I disagreed with his position quite passionately, so I decided to leave a comment saying as much. The most pointed sentence in my comment stated that I believed he was just “concern trolling” the issue. Not particularly insulting, I think.

    However, this was enough to reap the most vile, hateful, rabid responses from his followers that I’ve ever personally experienced. I suppose I’m just more used to Facebook debates than forum debates. Within 1 or two comments I was enduring all manner of personal insults right out of the gate – fuckwit, idiot, troll, bigot, one person even went so far as to imply “pedophile” because I mentioned booth vendors hiring “pretty girls” instead of “pretty women”. Sorry, guys, I’m 27. “Women” just isn’t part of the vernacular among my peers. I was labeled “bigot” because I dared to say that I believe PZ is riding in to battle to gallantly defend damsels that aren’t really in distress, which is apparently something feminists call “white-knighting” and it puts the offender on par with people that hate Jews, gays, and any other type of minority! I really just wanted to talk about the issue, but apparently the vast majority of arguments had to begin with some disgusting personal attack. I was told that many of the people leaving comments are regulars, so that has ended my relationship with the Pharyngula blog.

    I’ve left dissenting opinions on this blog a handful of times and never experienced a fraction of the vitriolic backlash I just described. Thanks to Ed for that, for I suspect that a blogger’s writing-style and online personality has a lot to do with the type of people they attract in their comment sections.

    But, yeah, I think anyone trying to put a leash on the insane rhetoric surrounding this issue is on the right track!

  31. Sassafras:

    Jazzmac, I’m not a big fan of Pharyngula’s comment style myself, but if you really had been a follower of PZ’s blog as you say, you wouldn’t have been the least bit surprised by the reception you got. Even if you had somehow followed PZ for years without reading the comments, you would still know what they are like because PZ has mentioned it in blog posts on many occassions. Either you’re full of it, or you were A-OK with it when it was creationists being ripped to shreds rather than sexists, which would make you a giant hypocrite.

  32. Wes:

    32
    mrbongo

    January 11, 2013 at 7:45 pm (UTC -5) Link to this comment

    I believe all men should be incredibly weak through morbid obesity. This way, there is absolutely no way a woman can see them as a threat in the elevator (assuming said hyper obese men can manage to waddle into an elevator and not take up all the room).

    Men who can’t manage see their own penis without a mirror often compensate with lame opinions that almost no one who disagree with. Racism is bad, WND is crazy… omg what a brave warrior!

    Go fuck yourself. Hard. With something sharp.

    I don’t see Thunderf00t’s dumbshit babblings as being worth a “petition”, and while I read FtB I don’t feel any loyal inclinations to attack its perceived enemies, so I won’t be signing anything. But I’m utterly sick of misogynists who always feel the need to imply that there’s something wrong with the penises of male feminists, and I’m even more sick of immature motherfuckers who think calling Ed fat somehow constitutes a response to a position he’s taken on an issue.

    If you’ve got a substantive, rational counterargument to Ed’s post, then make it. But if all you have is “Male feminists have tiny dicks” and “Hurrr hurrr you’re fat,” then fuck off and die.

  33. Gretchen:

    mrbongo’s just sad because he’s the only one who sees his penis.

  34. kacyray:

    Jazzmac @30

    The most pointed sentence in my comment stated that I believed he was just “concern trolling” the issue. Not particularly insulting, I think.

    However, this was enough to reap the most vile, hateful, rabid responses from his followers that I’ve ever personally experienced. I suppose I’m just more used to Facebook debates than forum debates. Within 1 or two comments I was enduring all manner of personal insults right out of the gate – fuckwit, idiot, troll, bigot, one person even went so far as to imply “pedophile” because I mentioned booth vendors hiring “pretty girls” instead of “pretty women”.

    You hear that? Listen…

    Are you listening?

    It’s the sound of NO ONE repudiating the way you were treated on PZ’s blog, or speaking up in defense of your right to express a diverging point of view.

    Welcome to the reality of FTB. And feminism.

  35. Minestuck:

    jazzmac251 got the horde treatment because he was an asshole. He jumped the shark by accusing PZ and others of being “knights in shining armor” and rescuing the poor booth babes from the misogyny that they didn’t know they were being subjected to and then he threw in his chips with Thunderfoot. He didn’t merely present a dissenting opinion- which some commenters did which spawned real discussion- he made the mistake of not even understanding the conversation before weighing in with his own ill-formed opinion.
    However, I did sign this petition. I think it’s a good cause. I’m not sure if online petitions really work but I don’t think there’s any harm in trying.

  36. d.c.wilson:

    mrbongo’s just sad because he’s the only one who sees his penis.

    Or wants to.

  37. kacyray:

    Minestuck @37

    “jazzmac251 got the horde treatment because he was an asshole.”

    Serious question – Do you talk to people this way in their presence?

    Please try to ignore the imminent chorus of people screaming about “tone trolling”… I’m deliberately asking an off-topic question because more and more I am beginning realize how the impersonal nature of this type of forum lends itself to creating real-world contention among people who would otherwise be very likely to have productive, adult conversation. And maybe even help shape each other’s worldview for the better.

    So I am genuinely curious… do you talk to people this way in real life? And if you do, what are the results?

    And if not… why do you do so here? And what do you hope to gain by it? Do you honestly believe that it can produce results of any possible value?

  38. Azkyroth, Former Growing Toaster Oven:

    Adam Lee is an extremist

    BAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

    and apparently feels that bullying is the best way to get your points across.

    HAHAHAHAHA *breath* HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

    I’ve asked on point and he’s confirmed. He couldn’t give a shit who he’s yelling at so long as someone is yelling.

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

    I cannot stand by abusive people regardless of their preferred cause.

    Has it ever occurred to you that your passive aggressive, gaslighting, concern-trolling campaign is itself abusive?

  39. Azkyroth, Former Growing Toaster Oven:

    First off, Ed, I hope you don’t mean to imply that Thunderf00t has been anything but reasonable in his criticism, regardless of how you feel about his point of view. That is to say, he’s certainly not out there calling anyone anything vile.

    That’s not actually true, but…

    Are you really so stupid and shallow that the only standard you have for “reasonable” is “not using [certain kinds of] harsh language?”

    And you, like, parade this in public?

    Really?

  40. Azkyroth, Former Growing Toaster Oven:

    . Sorry, guys, I’m 27. “Women” just isn’t part of the vernacular among my peers.

    I’m 27, and you’re a lying, misogynistic sack of shit.

    I was labeled “bigot” because I dared to say that I believe PZ is riding in to battle to gallantly defend damsels that aren’t really in distress

    You were probably called a bigot because you symbolically shouted down WOMEN and people who LISTEN TO WOMEN once in a while discussing things they have actual experience with and data on to announce “yeah, that’s nice, see, here’s how it ACTUALLY is because I’m a big manly man and I’m always right even on subjects I don’t know a fucking thing about because, as noted above, I can’t even envision WOMEN as fellow adults.”

  41. michaellatiolais:

    kacyray @39
    “Serious question – Do you talk to people this way in their presence?”

    Speaking for myself, yes, when I perceive that they are acting like assholes.

    I read the exchange that jazzmac251 is referring to. Frankly, I would have just ignored him, as he made no interesting points worthy of discussion IMO. I personally didn’t consider him inflammatory enough to even bother with. But if he’s expecting to parrot thunderf00t talking points on pharyngula, it should be not be surprising to him when he gets mauled.

  42. dingojack:

    jazzmac251 – “Sorry, guys, I’m 27. “Women” just isn’t part of the vernacular among my peers.”

    Mistakes were made (but not by me).

    Nice to see another brave warrior standing up and taking personal responsibility.

    Dingo

  43. joachim:

    I love the smell of atheists bashing each other in the morning!!!

  44. blondeintokyo:

    What video is this petition referring to? I’ve kept up with the Thunderfoot saga, so I think I can imagine what it’s about, but I have to actually watch it before I can feel right about signing the petition. Can someone post the name or give me a link?

    I didn’t follow the comment thread on the post jazzmac251 is referring to, but I can assure him that PZ’s writing on the matter of booth babes is not classified as “white knighting”. White Knighting is when a guy swoops in to “save” a woman without first giving her the chance to defend herself. The assumption on the man’s part is that women cannot speak up for themselves, and shows a condescending or patronizing attitude towards women. PZ’s writing is quite the opposite of that. PZ is a feminist; and a feminist man writing about feminist issues that concern him is perfectly legitimate. Sexism effects men just as much as it effects women. It would be sexist to say that men cannot write about feminist issues just because they are men.

    I also have to agree that it’s a bit silly to expect white glove treatment from Pharyngula’s posters. :) If you post shite, they are going to tear you apart. If you don’t want to be treated that way, either don’t post there or don’t post shite. It really is up to you.

  45. kacyray:

    “If you post shite, they are going to tear you apart. If you don’t want to be treated that way, either don’t post there or don’t post shite. It really is up to you.”

    Where “shite” is defined as “anything that defies the PZ orthodoxy”.

  46. Gretchen:

    “Girls” isn’t inherently offensive, but it could be, depending on usage. However, not having seen the exchange jazzmac251 is referring to, I sure don’t feel in a position to evaluate it. I do note, however, that despite his obvious (and possibly warranted) unhappiness with how he was treated in the comments on Pharyngula, he doesn’t extend judgment of that to FtB in general, or feminism in general.

    Unlike dishonest, sad, hypocritical “How dare you smear individuals because of their substantiated behavior, and don’t tell me not to smear entire groups for behavior I can’t even show is representative” Kacyray.

    You don’t have to be stupid to claim that Thunderfoot has only been “reasonable in his criticism,” just ignorant of much of what he has actually said. You do have to be stupid, I think, to assume that the commentary on Pharyngula is somehow representative of….well, anything beyond the commentary on Pharyngula. Which, again, I note jazzmac251 was careful not to do. And into which Kacyray toppled like an 8-year-old playing Pitfall, only completely without the cute factor.

  47. Gretchen:

    And mrbongo, as usual, has nothing.

  48. dingojack:

    ” A hit! A palpable hit!”

    (That’s from Shakespeare, mrbongo. BTW I’m sorry that you never managed to get out of the 3rd grade).

    Gretchen – “You have put him down lady, you have put him down.” :)

    Dingo

  49. Rodney Nelson:

    Someone who writes six posts in a row, all of them consisting of insults tossed at various people, is either compulsive or a troll. Note these two choices are not mutually exclusive.

  50. leni:

    Wow. It’s almost like the ghost of Matlock is chewing a hotdog somewhere uncomfortably close to my ear.

  51. dingojack:

    Mrbongo – your mommy coming downstairs to do your daily diaper changes, ain’t ‘a life’.
    (‘Mocking’? Is that what it’s supposed to be? I would of gone with ‘idiocy’ *shug*.)
    Dingo

  52. kacyray:

    Unlike dishonest, sad, hypocritical “How dare you smear individuals because of their substantiated behavior, and don’t tell me not to smear entire groups for behavior I can’t even show is representative” Kacyray.

    Jesus Christ… to ban me from your comments section and then start accusing me of dishonesty here… how cowardly can you get Gretchen? Well, let’s find out…

    I invite you to dialogue one-on-one. Just you and me. Two adults, discussing differences in how we both think the movement of skepticism should advance. I’ll start off with some of the problems I see with how the movement is going, and you can make counterpoints. Except you don’t get your adoring fans to watch, and you don’t get to mute me from speaking.

    Oh, and the conversation gets saved, so that there can be no dispute over who was calm, cool, cordial, and collected, and who was viscous, disrespectful, and vile.

    What do you say?

  53. dingojack:

    Kacy – speak! (Gretchen can’t and Ed is disinclined. to censor you).
    Show us all those ‘killer’ arguments you’ve got hidden away there.
    Dingo

  54. kacyray:

    I just realized I was confusing Gretchen with Greta. Pretty understandable, all things considered.

    Still… same offer applies. To either of them.

    Now Dingo… who would Ed censor me? I mean… other than the fact that I am not towing the feminist party line? I have not been insulting. I have stood my ground, but I have not done so at the expense of treating people like people. And considering the way I get treated, I should be held up as an example of restraint.

    You want to have a talk Dingo? Are you being honest right now? I’ve already made the offer – you know how you can find out what you’re asking.

    When I made the offer a week or so ago for anyone and everyone to contact me directly to discuss all these ideas that everyone was daring me to discuss here in comments, I received exactly three responses. ALL of them were supportive. All three of them were from guys who had been lurking but didn’t want to chime in because they saw what was waiting for them if they did. One of them is a regular here on the board.

    Not a single person who challenged me here wrote to me to find out what I have to say outside the security of the tribe.

    Again, I make the offer. If you really want to know, and if you really want to have the conversation outside of the echo chamber… I am but a click away.

    But be warned… approaching me as a human being and not as a blip on the screen that you can p[lay with while your tribe grins approvingly might be hazardous to your cognitive biases. After all… you wouldn’t actually want to have a serious conversation on a level playing field, would ya?

    Yeah, I didn’t think so.

  55. dingojack:

    For such a (supposedly) infrequent poster you seem to spend a inordinate amount of time on my posting habits.
    Sorry dude, a ‘bromance’ ain’t ever gunna happen, no matter how obsessive you are, I don’t swing that way. Try getting out of mommy’s basement and going to a gay bar, or a website, I’m sure some others could direct you to one suitable for ‘Friends of Narnia’.
    :) Dingo

  56. dingojack:

    For everyone amusement (just a quick search).

    kacy – speak!

    Dingo

  57. Anthony K:

    Kacyray’s level playing field is dropping shit like “I hear men are going to be phased out. Some privilege.” and insist you can’t argue against it because you don’t rebut opening arguments in a court of law.

    And when he doesn’t get what he wants, he trolls.

    He’s no innocent browbeaten by meany Pharyngulites. He’s an idiot.

  58. Wes:

    When I made the offer a week or so ago for anyone and everyone to contact me directly to discuss all these ideas that everyone was daring me to discuss here in comments, I received exactly three responses. ALL of them were supportive. All three of them were from guys who had been lurking but didn’t want to chime in because they saw what was waiting for them if they did. One of them is a regular here on the board.

    I’d gladly debate any issue with you, but it would have to be in a public place where others could witness it. I’m sure other commenters here feel the same way.

    But be warned… approaching me as a human being and not as a blip on the screen that you can p[lay with while your tribe grins approvingly might be hazardous to your cognitive biases. After all… you wouldn’t actually want to have a serious conversation on a level playing field, would ya?

    You clearly have a very high opinion of yourself relative to those you view as your opponents. And yet you seem to think that a “level playing field” involves private correspondence which you can report to others however you want. You think that receiving a grand total of three emails from dudes who agree with you after you issued your empty challenge means something.

    It doesn’t mean shit. If you wanna have a debate, then have a debate in a public place. Secret emails from imaginary pharyngulites don’t mean anything. I’m sure I’m not the only person here who would have the debate with you if you asked and were willing to make it public. But no sane person would agree to a “level playing field” which involves nothing but private correspondence with you that you get to spin however you want afterwards.

  59. Anthony K:

    Bongo, I can smell your desperate trolling from here, and it’s minus 20 so smells don’t travel that well.

    Feel free to ask somebody in your wide meatspace social circle about effective deodorants. They’ll be able to help you out.

  60. leni:

    It doesn’t mean shit. If you wanna have a debate, then have a debate in a public place.

    Had that same thought.

    Not sure why kacyray needs to have private conversations with everyone he thinks should debate him, and yeah, it’s a little weird.

  61. dingojack:

    Anthony K – I think Ed got a little tired of our (new) favorite chew toy leaving saliva stains* on the rug. Pity.
    Dingo
    ——–
    * at least I hope they are saliva stains

  62. Ed Brayton:

    Someone above actually wrote:

    First off, Ed, I hope you don’t mean to imply that Thunderf00t has been anything but reasonable in his criticism, regardless of how you feel about his point of view. That is to say, he’s certainly not out there calling anyone anything vile.

    That is about as delusional a statement as I have ever seen — and I read the Worldnutdaily every day, for crying out loud.

  63. Ed Brayton:

    I wasn’t home this evening, but I’ve now relegated mrbongo to the trash where he belongs.

  64. Patrick from Michigan (Yes, that one!):

    Ed, I signed it:

    I am a Christian of 30 Years. However, I believe if someone should of a atheistic or skeptic mindset that they should be able to do it without fear from anyone or any group.

  65. kacyray:

    Dingo,

    I’ve never said anything about a private conversation. In fact, I specifically said that’s not what I’m suggesting. But hey…. don’t let that stop you from making your excuses.

    I think it’s hysterical how one of you makes something up out of thin air (he wants a private conversation!) and then the rest of you just run with it as though it were fact. It’s like a microcosm of how you operate.

    Check out comment 248 of this thread, where I made the offer.

    Then check out comment 261, where I specifically clarified that I wasn’t asking for a private conversation.

    Then sit and let you mind selectively delete that information from your biased database, like you always do. Then keep telling everyone that I’m asking for a private conversation when I never have, and watch the tribe believe it, like they always do. Then watch me shake my head at how typical and predictable you all are, like I always do.

    And Dingo (was his name-o?), don’t kid yourself… if I were a gay man, it’s not you’d be going after. It’s Gretchen.

  66. kacyray:

    Leni: Quick – believe everything your tribe says about me!

    Atta girl

  67. dingojack:

    My dear Kacy –

    1) I said nothing about private converstations
    2) What’s inhibiting you? Speak! Dazzle us with your wit and wisdom
    3) If I was a gay man I think I’d look for someone a little more stable

    Dingo

  68. pacal:

    poxyhowzes said:

    “…If we cannot have a discussion with those who scream “witch hunt and “you just hate men,” then with whom can we have the discussion.”

    Your being facetious I hope.

  69. Rodney Nelson:

    kacyray

    You claim you want a discussion but not in a public forum like Pharyngula or here. You offer to give an email address. Therefore it looks like you want a private, email discussion. It’s not Dingo’s fault if you’re a lousy writer who can’t express yourself well.

    So start discussing. Nobody’s stopping you. Explain to us why bitches ain’t shit and don’t deserve to be treated like human beings. Explain how your fee-fees are hurt by conventions having sexual harassment codes. Tell us all about how free speech lets you say whatever you want but criticism of what you say is censorship.

    The world awaits for you to drop your load of wisdom on us like a manure spreader fertilizing a field.

  70. Gretchen:

    And Dingo (was his name-o?), don’t kid yourself… if I were a gay man, it’s not you’d be going after. It’s Gretchen.

    Poor, poor misunderstood Kacyray…..he’s really just a reasonable, rational, clear-thinking skeptic with the best of intentions. A civil, well-mannered person beset on all sides by a pestilent den of man-haters (including those who are, in fact male) who single him out for their bile because he dares to call out the bullshit that is feminism. In this eternal echo chamber he finds himself mysteriously stifled, quite unable to say what he really means– to show what a decent and totally non-sexist person he is– and must settle for being quite indistinguishable from a bigoted moron.

    That’s why he wants you to email him, people! It’s not remotely obfuscatory, narcissistic, or creepy. He just wants his true self to shine through. A self which anybody would want to get to know better….right?

  71. kacyray:

    Dingo

    1. You’re right… it was Leni. You just implied it, as confirmed by Rodney (thanks very much, Rodney).
    2. I’m not inhibited. I’ve explained my reasons to take it off-site. But keep on acting like you haven’t read them.
    3. More stable? Citation please. (snicker)

    Rodney – What I asked for was a level playing field. I know that’s the last thing you’d want to play on. Poor guy.

    Gretchen – You’ll never know, will you?

    Don’t mistake my unwillingness to jump through hoops for an unwillingness to exchange ideas. Any honest person who really wanted to discuss ideas would take me up on my offer. If I was really some viscous troll, you could eject at any time.

    But I know what your fear is. You’re afraid that you get to talking to me, you find out that I’m not really this caricature you’ve painted me out as and that I might have some ideas worth discussing… and then you’d be faced with the terrifying choice of either having to admit that here at some point (thus incurring the wrath of your tribe) or denying it (and swallowing the bitter pill of accepting what you really are).

    The best you can hope to do is to continue pretending that everyone who opposes feminism only does so because they hate women/misogynist/sexist/[insert caricature here]. That way you don’t have to have a human conversation.

    It’s easier to demonize someone you don’t see as human.

    And why do I keep beating this drum? Because I am convinced that this paradigm in which one tribe sees the other as inhuman monsters is the “poison” that has caused this schism and turned allied skeptics into bitter feminist/anti-feminist rivals. And I think it’s guys like PZ, who are more interested in popularity than principle, that continue this viscous cycle.

  72. Gretchen:

    Kacyray….

    Yes, I do know. Because I have talked to you. And you talk…..like this.

  73. dingojack:

    My dear Kacy -
    1) Nope Rodney (wrongly as it happens) inferred it.
    2) Speak!! (if it can’t bear public examination then how strong is the evidence being presented?)
    3) see yours #54

    Dingo

  74. kacyray:

    Dingo:

    Really?? You’re going to say this: “if it can’t bear public examination then how strong is the evidence being presented?” and then claim you aren’t *implying* that I’ve asked for a private conversation?

    And I’m supposed to take you seriously… why?

    Gretchen – Neither you nor any member of the tribe have had a conversation with me outside the echo chamber on neutral ground. I really don’t think you’re so lost as to imagine that the way a guy talks when surrounded by antagonists is the way he would talk when not having to constantly defend himself. But I’ve been wrong before.

    And it’s clear you don’t want to find out.

    Like i said, you all can make all the excuses you like. You won’t engage me in neutral territory. This is consistent with tribal behavior.

    And by neutral, I’m talking about a forum which, while public, would facilitate a conversation between two people. And if more than two people, would consist of more than just those who support your position and pat your back every time you get a good snark in. It would potentially consist of some folks who might actually…. wait for it… SCORN the type of behavior you and the tribe exhibit here.

    God… the prospect of that must terrify you!

  75. dingojack:

    Kacy – quote me implying any such thing.
    Dingo

  76. Gretchen:

    Kacyray,

    I have a blog. I pour out my own thoughts on a regular basis, to a very small audience which rarely comments. Occasionally I get trolls, but generally speaking people don’t even care enough to troll. I do it mainly for my own edification– because I want to put some thoughts down for myself, but am pleased by the idea of others reading and responding if they think it would be of some use.

    I also, obviously, comment on other people’s blogs….some of which are more hospitable than others.

    If I find that a comment section on a blog is grossly inhospitable, I don’t comment there. I don’t post there on a regular basis over a period of years, bitching and moaning about what a cesspit it is and how nobody is willing to engage me privately– privately!– “away from the echo chamber,” to listen to whatever really important, valuable message I think could be conveyed, which I somehow am utterly incapable of transmitting otherwise.

    Especially not after I just got done insulting them in the most juvenile way possible.

    My advice to you? Get your own blog, and stop whining about people being too cowardly to get to know the real you. If they give a shit, they’ll read your blog. If they don’t, they won’t. You don’t get to demand that they do.

  77. kacyray:

    An offer = a demand, eh? Only in femi-land – where everyone is either a delicate victim-flower or a sinister misogynist boogeyman.

    “Get your own blog, and stop whining about people being too cowardly to get to know the real you.”

    I use FB notes for that purpose, and people do read them. And I do get dissension. Frankly, I wish I had more, except I don’t advertise and you’d have to be on friends list to know they exist. However, they are public and all are welcome to read and comment on them. But none of this has anything to do with what I’m talking about.

    I do have a profession that occupies much of my time, and a wife to whom I commit much of the remainder. What you see me doing here constitutes a momentary reprieve from the rigmaroles of my life – not a manifestation of them.

    “If I find that a comment section on a blog is grossly inhospitable, I don’t comment there.”

    You might, if you felt you had something to contribute, regardless of what anyone else there thought. And I will mention again… the last conversation we had – where I offered people to contact me directly – resulted in a big surprise for me. I received three messages expressing support for my position from folks who simply didn’t want to interject here and deal with the demonization they were sure to incur.

    So what i found was that, although the ones bashing me here are the vocal ones, there are actually folks reading what I’m saying (even at this very moment) who tacitly appreciate the fact that I’m speaking up.

    I also found out by socializing at other message boards that there are entire groups of people that watch what goes on here, and appreciate my modest contributions. I’m sure that chaps your ass to no end.

    “Especially not after I just got done insulting them in the most juvenile way possible.”

    In the most juvenile way possible? Have you been reading the other commenters? I haven’t hurled an insult. Perhaps you have me confused with everyone else on the board?

    Bottom line is – I am happy to have a conversation about where the A/S movement is headed and what I see as the right and wrong directions being taken. I’ve explained that the very short-term nature of these comments sections is a horrible place to have an in-depth discussion of complex, nuanced issues. Naturally, since you see me as an enemy of feminism and therefore the antagonist to all women and, by extension, reason itself, you would not want to have that conversation on neutral ground without your social support system, because then you’d have nothing to fall back on except maybe some bingo cards. You wouldn’t have demagoguery, tribal support, or snarky “gotcha” blogology to fall back on. You’d have to actually have a conversation with someone on equal footing.

    Believe me, I fully understand why that prospect doesn’t appeal to you at all.

    Anyway, it doesn’t matter. I”ll be headed off to the Mediterranean on a ship very soon, and you can spend the rest of 2013 confident that you’ve run off ol’ “Troll Kacy Ray” because your “arguments” are just oh-so witty and compelling.

    And Dingo “citation-please” Jack can stroke your ego, tell you how he’s helped vanquish the sexist, and look up at you with his puppy-dog eyes, seeking your reluctant toleration in return for the relinquishment of his identity. You guys have fun with that.

  78. kacyray:

    Kacy – quote me implying any such thing.
    Dingo

    Dingo – Go pack sand.

    Kacy

  79. TCC:

    You know, I’m so sick of hearing how “inhospitable” blog comments are for debate, especially when the alternative seems to be Facebook posts (which aren’t really “public,” as you’ve suggested, KR, since your account is private). As someone who very frequently was a dissenting voice on this blog (and received more than my fair share of grief for it, frankly), I actually like the tenor of discussion on this blog (Pharyngula has too much volume for my taste) because it forces people in minority positions to articulate their points well or shut up. If you articulate your arguments logically and fairly – even if they’re not popular – you can earn respect. (I’d like to think that’s what I did, when I was commenting here as a Christian, and there have been other Christian commenters who were able to do the same.) On the other hand, if you consistently provide lousy arguments and logical fallacies, then you can expect to feel the full force of the commenters’ wits and intellects down on you. Which is what’s happened with you, honestly. It’s not like people haven’t engaged your arguments; look at how many people demolished (in a variety of ways) your argument about gender differences in cell phone use in public. If no one cared about debate, we’d have simply laughed you out of here, but that’s not what has happened.

    I’m fully in agreement with Gretchen: if you want to have a debate with only two people, do it with a blog, not Facebook posts that only your friends can see or find. There have been lots of good dialogues that have happened that way, by trading blog posts on a subject, and having two separate spaces where the dialogue can continue in comments (assuming that you still want that) can help level the playing field.

    Then again, I don’t see any reason so far to think that your arguments are worth engaging. That someone lurking but too cowardly to say so even anonymously on a blog agrees with you doesn’t exactly strike me as a ringing endorsement.

  80. abear:

    I am proposing another petition to make Valerie Solanas and Andrea Dworkin full feminist saints.
    If you refuse to sign this you are a misogynist and a fuckwitted cupcake and will be drummed out of the freethought movement for freethought crimes and sins against radfem dogma. Oh, and did I mention the raping with the dead porcupine?

  81. dingojack:

    Kacy – could it be that you’ve got nothing? Surely not!
    Dingo

  82. kacyray:

    TCC:

    @ 80, you said: “(which aren’t really “public,” as you’ve suggested, KR, since your account is private).”

    Only two comments earlier, @78, I said: “I don’t advertise and you’d have to be on friends list to know they exist. However, they are public and all are welcome to read and comment on them.”

    So… what have you learned here about your own reading comprehension?

    Not, much I’m guessing. My account is public. What I said was that yo’d have to be on my friends list in order to know they exist (because when I author them, they don’t go popping up all over FB – they only appear to those on my own list…. however anyone can access and read them. If you don’t believe me, give it a shot.)

    Occams Razor is pretty appropriate here. No one wants to meet on a level playing field. Excuses abound, as well as the transparent attempt to delegitimize me personally. I state clearly that I’m all about being on a public (albeit neutral) forum with a saved dialogue, and everyone wants to pretend I’m asking people to meet in private so that no one can see how gawd-awful I really am. Keep on going with that caricature.

    How do you go to sleep at night knowing how absolutely cowardly and dishonest you are?

  83. kacyray:

    Kacy – could it be that you’ve got nothing? Surely not!
    Dingo

    Dingo – you’re welcomed and encouraged to find out.

    Kacy

  84. bridgetgaudette:

    So you care about feminism and diversity? Prove it: http://www.emilyhasbooks.com/so-you-value-feminism-and-diversity-prove-it/

  85. cactusren:

    I do have a profession that occupies much of my time, and a wife to whom I commit much of the remainder.

    I don’t advertise and you’d have to be on friends list to know they exist. However, they are public and all are welcome to read and comment on them.

    Okay, I looked you up on FB. There are several Kacy Rays (and some Kacey Rays), but none of those with public accounts have a wife. One is in high school, one is in a domestic partnership in New York, and one is engaged. I’ll take your challenge and talk to you elsewhere, but you’ve gotta help me out here a bit.

    Though I will say this: saying “I have super important things to say, but I can’t say them here–first you have to meet me somewhere else” is pretty creepy. It’s not much different from Scientologists saying “We know the truth, but you have to pay us money before we’ll tell you.” No, you’re not asking for money, but you are setting the terms under which you will tell us these super important things.

  86. cactusren:

    Ok, I just realized you linked your FB page–my apologies for not noticing earlier. (Though interestingly, you don’t show up on a FB search for Kacy Ray.)

  87. kacyray:

    I’ve been saying I’m a click away.

  88. kacyray:

    “Though interestingly, you don’t show up on a FB search for Kacy Ray”

    I believe I’ve fixed that. My wife and I have been butting heads on that for as long as we’ve been married. She goes in and changes all my privacy settings to the max. I prefer to be as open and accessible as i can (without being stupid about it), so I always have to go in and change them back to the way i want them. I think you can search my name now, although as you’ve found – there’s no need.

  89. kacyray:

    Though I will say this: saying “I have super important things to say, but I can’t say them here–first you have to meet me somewhere else” is pretty creepy. It’s not much different from Scientologists saying “We know the truth, but you have to pay us money before we’ll tell you.”

    Really?

    So you’re saying that for me to offer to have a conversation with someone offsite at a place of their own choosing is creepy?

    Oh… you didn’t know that I never demanded that it be on my own turf, did you? You never knew that I offered to let others make the decision on where and how? Gee… I wonder how that information got left out of this vibrant, welcoming forum. No, instead everyone thinks that I’m trying to whisk people off to my own private lair.

    All I asked was for a conversation somewhere – anywhere – away from the noise of the tribe. No one has the stones to take me up on it, but we sure hear a lot of excuses. And I’ve already explained at least a dozen times why I don’t want to start a complex and nuanced conversation in the comments section of a blog post that will be relegated to history within a matter of days.

  90. Michael Heath:

    TCC writes:

    You know, I’m so sick of hearing how “inhospitable” blog comments are for debate, especially when the alternative seems to be Facebook posts (which aren’t really “public,” as you’ve suggested, KR [kacyray], since your account is private). As someone who very frequently was a dissenting voice on this blog (and received more than my fair share of grief for it, frankly), I actually like the tenor of discussion on this blog (Pharyngula has too much volume for my taste) because it forces people in minority positions to articulate their points well or shut up. If you articulate your arguments logically and fairly – even if they’re not popular – you can earn respect. (I’d like to think that’s what I did, when I was commenting here as a Christian, and there have been other Christian commenters who were able to do the same.) On the other hand, if you consistently provide lousy arguments and logical fallacies, then you can expect to feel the full force of the commenters’ wits and intellects down on you. Which is what’s happened with you, honestly. It’s not like people haven’t engaged your arguments; look at how many people demolished (in a variety of ways) your argument about gender differences in cell phone use in public. If no one cared about debate, we’d have simply laughed you out of here, but that’s not what has happened.

    TCC speaks for me here on both his observation of this venue.

    This venue’s not perfect, e.g.,
    a) we could do a far better job taking down sub-optimal liberal-friendly arguments like we do those from the right,
    b) we frequently sucuumb to tribalism as an excuse to hypocritically use a weaker standard for a liberal-friendly theme where we’d never allow such sloppiness from someone on the right;
    but it’s the best venue I’ve encountered for a group of regulars – and small enough a reader can manage to keep up with most commenters’ posts while also not having our own posts drowned out like venues with thousands of comments and no effective exchanges.

  91. jazzmac251:

    I don’t understand the tone coming from people right now.

    First of all, regarding the actual substantial matters here, I’ve watched all of Thunderf00t’s videos regarding the issue, watched them all again with my girlfriend, watched the videos in which he reads verbatim the posts he made on FTB that lead to his dismissal, and I watched the videos where he reads verbatim his correspondence to PZ, I’m not hearing anything vile come out of that. Pointed criticisms, yes. Maybe even a little over the top from the perspective of a disinterested party, but I don’t recall him saying anything crude about anybody.

    Second of all, some of you guys need to back the fuck off and remember something about discourse. Perhaps I’m just wrong or misinformed about an issue. That doesn’t mean I’m a “fucking idiot” or a “misogynist” or “DELUSIONAL”, ED. The entire point of the OP is that people need to fucking learn to talk to each other, and the entire point of my OP in this thread is that it was surprising to me how quickly that vanished in a forum that I respected. What some of you have done here – without a single jot of irony – is engage in the exact same childish name-calling/marginalization-bullshit being argued AGAINST here. Jesus Christ.

    Third, regarding PZ’s thread, I was not an asshole. I made a dissenting comment that suggested that PZ’s criticism amounted to “concern trolling”. Incidentally, my girlfriend, a self-described feminist, read my post, all the posts made in response to it, and was absolutely disgusted by what the other commenters were saying. To use her words, the “feminists” in that thread were engaging in “slut-shaming” generally, and were responding to critics in a particularly vile, hateful, unproductive way to boot.

    I did tell one character to “fuck off” because “adults were talking”, but that was merely in response to a slew of obscenity-laced invective containing no actual arguments save for “you’re an MRA” and “fuckwit”. It’s not fair to call someone an asshole because they respond to bullying – again, being labeled several nasty, offensive things right from the very first comment – in kind.

    Finally, this “white-knight” stuff is a joke. Attaching the label of “bigot” to someone using the metaphor of an individual erroneously riding to the rescue of another person they believe requires their championing is an example of such absurd political-correctness that it borders of self-parody. This is a perfect example of the extremist type of rhetoric that is guaranteed to alienate people from your cause. To those of you that regularly engage in this offensive vitriol, do you even know what what word means?

    “Bigot: one who regards or treats the members of a group (as a racial or ethnic group) with hatred and intolerance”

    Do you really think for two seconds that just because I “white-knighted” (to borrow the absurd phrase), it necessarily means that I regard or treat women with hatred and intolerance? What the fuck? If so, words fail me. You belong on precisely the margins society has likely seen it fit to place you.

  92. Nick Gotts (formerly KG):

    Only in femi-land – where everyone is either a delicate victim-flower or a sinister misogynist boogeyman. – kacyray

    Thanks for making it so abundantly clear, to anyone with a spark of decency and more than two brain cells, that spending any time in a conversation with you would be both pointless and unpleasant.

  93. Gretchen:

    So you’re saying that for me to offer to have a conversation with someone offsite at a place of their own choosing is creepy?

    Do you go to skeptical conferences, refer derisively to feminists as “delicate victim-flowers,” and then ask random people to go somewhere else and talk about the future of skepticism with you, then call them cowards if they turn you down?

    No, I didn’t think so.

  94. Gretchen:

    jazzmac251–

    I honestly have no idea what you’re talking about, but “white knight” is a term generally used by anti-feminists to refer to male feminists and men who support feminism who do so in the hopes that it’ll help them get laid. As in, that’s the only reason anti-feminists can come up with for why a man would give a damn about feminism.

  95. jazzmac251:

    Gretchen,

    Yeah, I think this thread has splintered a bit. Thanks for the comment.

  96. Nick Gotts (formerly KG):

    You don’t have to be stupid to claim that Thunderfoot has only been “reasonable in his criticism,” just ignorant of much of what he has actually said.- Gretchen

    Jazzmac251 explicitly said he had been following the issue and agreed with Thunderf00t. Nor do I believe for a moment that he has actually been following Pharyngula for years – apart from the point that if he had, he would know that referring to adult women as “girls” would attract snarky responses*, how is it that no-one there can ever remember seeing any comment by him, yet suddenly, this one post impelled him to comment?

    *Since jazzmac251 is whining about his treatment on Pharyngula, here’s the context of my own rudeness to him – which I neither deny nor apologise for, since I consider him both a fool and a liar. After first pretending that the rule under discussion, to whit:

    exhibitors in the expo hall, sponsor or vendor booths, or similar activities are also subject to the anti-harassment policy. Booth staff (including volunteers) should not use sexualized clothing/uniforms/costumes, or otherwise create a sexualized environment.

    was motivated by a belief that being naked in public is degrading to women (rather than, as is of course the case, a belief that the use of naked or near-naked women by exhibitors would make some attendees uncomfortable), he then claimed that having a rule about this was unnecessary, and could lead to the organisers themselves harassing women:

    I think that it would be up to the event staff to only allow in vendors they feel reflect their event appropriately. All of these rules are unnecessary, I think. Has any skeptical event had a booth that featured “booth babes”?

    The problem with these rules is that they are overly broad and subject to abuse. What EXACTLY constitutes “sexualized clothing/uniforms/costumes, or otherwise create a sexualized environment”? If a vendor at TAM, for example, has its booth staffed with pretty girls that chose to wear flashy “going-out” attire (which is often quite sexy) to get the attention of passers-by, are they going to be harassed by event staff demanding they cover themselves to the coordinator’s liking?

    Here’s my response:

    jazzmac251,

    Jesus wept, you’re stupid. The point of having the rule is to provide guidance to both event staff and exhibitors. Of course the rule requires interpretation – like most rules, including actual laws – but potential exhibitors are warned by it that if they intend to staff their booth with “pretty girls” in sexy attire (you meant, of course, women – or maybe you’re thinking of the pedophile market), they should check with the organisers that what they intend is considered acceptable.

    I’m quite clearly being snarky about jazzmac251′s infantilization of adult women, as an aside to demonstrating his stupidity and dishonesty; the implication that he is himself a pedophile is purely in his own head.

  97. Nick Gotts (formerly KG):

    Incidentally, my girlfriend, a self-described feminist, read my post, all the posts made in response to it, and was absolutely disgusted by what the other commenters were saying. To use her words, the “feminists” in that thread were engaging in “slut-shaming” generally – jazzmac251

    Anyone rational actually reading the thread will see how utterly ridiculous the accusation of “slut-shaming” is – the <I.onlyperson who suggested that stripping is degrading to women is jazzmac251 himself; they will probably share my scepticism about the existence of jazzmac251′s “girlfriend, a self-described feminist”. The trope of misogynists trying to prop up their drivel by saying “and my wife/girlfriend agrees with me” is so hackneyed as to be laughable.

  98. TCC:

    Only two comments earlier, @78, I said: “I don’t advertise and you’d have to be on friends list to know they exist. However, they are public and all are welcome to read and comment on them.”

    So… what have you learned here about your own reading comprehension?

    That wasn’t a problem of reading comprehension; I understood what you had said previously. My problem was assuming that you meant that they were simply open to people on your friends list; I also mistakenly thought your page was in fact private from a quick glance at that, but a second look did indicate that at least parts (including your notes) are public enough for me to see. Mea culpa.

    Occams Razor is pretty appropriate here. No one wants to meet on a level playing field. Excuses abound, as well as the transparent attempt to delegitimize me personally. I state clearly that I’m all about being on a public (albeit neutral) forum with a saved dialogue, and everyone wants to pretend I’m asking people to meet in private so that no one can see how gawd-awful I really am. Keep on going with that caricature.

    How do you go to sleep at night knowing how absolutely cowardly and dishonest you are?

    This is just absurd. Cut the victim complex crap already – you were given the same chance as anyone to provide arguments here, and they were rejected on their merits. This isn’t about “delegitimizing” or “dehumanizing” you, as you suggest; it’s just that it’s pretty clear that making the effort to find a perfectly neutral ground for you to be really able to make your argument (because all the mean feminists here are keeping you from being to argue effectively, apparently) isn’t really worth anyone’s time. You can claim other motives, but unless you’re suddenly able to read minds, that wouldn’t be the skeptical view to take.

  99. kacyray:

    Gretchen #93

    If

    1) I was having a conversation at a table filled with people, all of whom were hostile, and one person asked me to go into detail on a particular issue, and I couldn’t do so without derisive comments coming from all sides and

    2) I knew that the table itself would not be available very much longer

    then yes, I damn well might say “Hey, if you really wanna talk about this, let’s go somewhere else, sit down, and talk about it. You decide where we go – it can be anywhere you want other than this lousy place.

    Yes, I absolutely might do that. Especially if the person I was trying to talk to kept accusing me of having nothing of value to say.I would offer that person a chance to find out.

  100. Nick Gotts (formerly KG):

    And Dingo (was his name-o?), don’t kid yourself… if I were a gay man, it’s not you’d be going after. It’s Gretchen. – kacyray

    What is this even supposed to mean? There’s obviously a typo, since “it’s not you’d be going after” is ungrammatical, but whether I assume it’s supposed to be dingo or kacyray himself who’d be “going after Gretchen”, and whatever sense of “going after Gretchen” I assume, it still makes no sense.

  101. kacyray:

    TCC – @98

    Have you noticed that even my attempt to have a conversation at an alternate location has been mischaracterized? I was accused of wanted to have a “private conversation” and I’ve been told that it’s creepy (although I offered anyone to choose the venue).

    Now, with such a demonstratably horrendous noise-to-substance ratio, even on the simplest of non-intellectual subjects (venue), imagine that being multiplied by about 10,000 when I try to actually discuss nuanced ideas.

    I’ve already tried that in previous threads. I found out how it goes. I don’t need to experiment with that again. My statements are distorted, lies people tell about me are passed on as gospel truths, my positions are misrepresented, and I’m held to different standards of behavior than the rest of the tribe. I’m subject to a barrage of insults and accusations, and they all justify their behavior by claiming I haven’t offered a satisfactory argument (as though that’s an excuse).

    So instead of arguing against feminism, I’ve turned to demonstrating the toxicity of the atmosphere in an effort to demonstrate how the exchange of ideas has become impossible in such an atmosphere, and I’ve made the offer to discuss feminism elsewhere (anywhere anyone chooses, as long as it in a place without as much “noise”. Of course, none of the tribe have any interest in either having a conversation on a level playing field or acknowledging the fact that any exchange of ideas is no longer possible in the environment, and that this has become nothing more than an intellectually incestuous cesspool of echos and mutual stroking.

    I’m not here to jump through people’s hoops. I am more than happy to have a conversation. Just don’t expect me to play a game with shackles around both legs.

  102. kacyray:

    KG @100

    Really? You’re going to analyze a wise crack? This was worth your time and effort?

    It was supposed to read “it’s not you I’d be going after”

    Better?

  103. Gretchen:

    and one person asked me to go into detail on a particular issue

    Who did that?

    Whoever it was, ask them to go have this very important neutral ground conversation with you.

  104. Nick Gotts (formerly KG):

    It was supposed to read “it’s not you I’d be going after” Better?

    Well yes, in that it makes even clearer what a vile piece of misogynist shit you are. You say that if you were a gay man, you’d be “going after” Gretchen, who’s clearly presenting herself as a woman, given the nym. Since the context is a sexual one (and admittedly, dingo started that, but Gretchen had not contributed to it in any way), and since you could simply have said “it’s not you I’d be going after” without that addition of “it’s Gretchen”, the implication is that Gretchen isn’t a real woman, presumably because she has the impudence to argue with you.

  105. kacyray:

    KG – When people talk about how neofems are a humorless lot, make sure you remember your comment @104.

    By the way… I’d like to make an exception …. I would very much like to have a private conversation with you. But not about feminism. I have some things I’d very much like to explain to you about yourself.

  106. Rodney Nelson:

    kacyray

    If your arguments have any merit, then it doesn’t matter where you present them. We all know, and that includes you, that your arguments are the same “I love women but I hate the straw feminist who only exists in my imagination and here’s why I hate the figment of my imagination” crap all you sexists like to trot out. We’ve all seen those arguments, we’re all familiar with how easily they’re shot down, and we all know you don’t actually have anything worthwhile to bring to the discussion.

    If I’m wrong then show me I’m wrong. Don’t whine about “level playing fields” and “unfriendly audiences.” You’re not going to get any sympathy from preemptive “you guys are big meanies so I’m not going to tell you my super-secret secret argument which would immediately turn you all into MRA misogynists” whining.

  107. TCC:

    Ah, the old “Hey you guys, I was just joking about that sexist joke I made!” trope. Not exactly helping your case here, KR.

  108. jazzmac251:

    Yes, Nick. You are one of the people I was speaking of before. Apparently you frequent this blog as well. Nice to see you have varied interests.

    As before, it’s a near constant stream of insults with you – liar, misogynist, stupid, a fool, dishonest, a winking implication at pedophilia – and on a thread drawing attention to a petition pleading for civility in discourse, no less! You truly are a piece of work, for sure. People like you need to relearn the absolute basics of how to talk to human beings and how to engage in debate without attempting to vilify your opponent absolutely. The only purpose vilification serves is “poisoning the well”, and I’m sure your position is strong enough without stooping to logical fallacies to bolster its perceived impact.

    “Jazzmac251 explicitly said he had been following the issue and agreed with Thunderf00t. Nor do I believe for a moment that he has actually been following Pharyngula for years – apart from the point that if he had, he would know that referring to adult women as “girls” would attract snarky responses*, how is it that no-one there can ever remember seeing any comment by him, yet suddenly, this one post impelled him to comment?”

    1) I never denied agreeing with Thunderf00t. Mention that I “explicitly” agreed with him is hardly necessary.

    2) You don’t believe that I’ve been following PZ for years. Well, I have. Your lack of acceptance doesn’t change the facts. Sorry, I don’t know what to tell you.

    3) I’m also sorry that my colloquial use of the word “girls” has offended you so, but you need to realize that people don’t use language in precisely the same manner that you do. The peer group I’ve grown up in culturally has always used the word “girls” to mean “females our age and younger” and the word “women” to mean “females significantly older than our age group” instinctively. Similar examples of colloquial usage exist in different professions too. For example, I’m a professional musician, and within the industry males often refer to females as “chicks” and females refer to males as “dudes”. The purpose of this, far from anything nefarious, is to reinforce a sense of “in-group” commonality among group members. They turn average words into buzzwords that say “I’m part of this group”, which I believe is a common human social exercise. What these terms DO NOT represent is an automatic, de facto announcement of the speaker’s view on the subservience of the opposite sex. You are free to decide the colloquial use of these terms DOES and SHOULD indicate that,but at that point you’re putting words in other people’s mouths. That is ill-advised.

    Regardless, there is no excuse for your reaction regardless of what you perceived my intent to be. It is entirely possible to believe someone incorrect without hurling out every insult you can muster right out of the gate.

    4) You haven’t seen any comments from me because I don’t regularly comment. These blogs likely have tens-of-thousands of regular readers but only a fraction as many commenters. I am usually part of the group that doesn’t comment. Not hard to understand.

    “*Since jazzmac251 is whining about his treatment on Pharyngula, here’s the context of my own rudeness to him – which I neither deny nor apologise for, since I consider him both a fool and a liar. After first pretending that the rule under discussion, to whit:
    exhibitors in the expo hall, sponsor or vendor booths, or similar activities are also subject to the anti-harassment policy. Booth staff (including volunteers) should not use sexualized clothing/uniforms/costumes, or otherwise create a sexualized environment.
    was motivated by a belief that being naked in public is degrading to women (rather than, as is of course the case, a belief that the use of naked or near-naked women by exhibitors would make some attendees uncomfortable),”

    I think you have misunderstood my position on this. You are misinterpreting my arguments. I can hardly blame you, though. The sheer volume of bullshit invective going back and forth made any actual discussion next to impossible. Allow me to clarify:

    1) I don’t believe that the harassment policy above was motivated by a belief that being naked in public is degrading to women. I realize that the proposed rule’s purpose is to mitigate the discomfort some conference attendees may experience as a result of a “sexualized” environment. My criticism of this point was – and is – that it is the job of event organizers to choose vendors that cater to the type of environment they believe event attendees are looking for. TAM likely isn’t going to be booking Sylvia Brown as a guest speaker or invite the local woo practitioners to set up vendor booths precisely because they know these are not acceptable to their key demographic (among other reasons, I’m sure). Along the same lines, if a vendor sets up a booth that makes conference-goers uncomfortable in large enough numbers and consistently enough to be an issue, then the vendor will be asked by the event staff to change their setup or risk not being allowed back next year. That is how the process works, and it’s how I believe it should work.

    My problem with the proposed rule is that it is overly-broad and, thus, subject to abuse. For example, there is a well known video of PZ engaging in a playful exchange with a female volunteer during one of his talks where he repeatedly makes sexual comments to her in a facetious manner. I don’t have a problem with this at all, but it is undoubtedly “creating a sexualized environment”. All it takes is one extremist that can’t take a joke to make a harassment complaint and PZ would be subject to the very anti-harassment policies he’s currently advocating. Further, as I understand it, these events are geared toward adults, and adults are sexual creatures. I just don’t see the point of making conference-organizers arbiters of the actions of adults, especially since, again, there are already mechanisms in place to deal with potential problems. Also, it’s obvious but worth mentioning that a lack of a harassment policy doesn’t suddenly mean that all manner of non-consensual grab-ass is suddenly legal. Obviously there are still local, state, and federal laws in effect.

    The desire to eliminate offensive things is a noble one, but it’s worth remembering that 1) people don’t actually possess a right to “not be offended”, and 2) it’s impossible to please everyone at once.

    2) PZ is clearly against the whole “booth babe” thing, and he seems to be against it because he finds it inherently degrading to women. This point is separate from the one above. As I said in one of my comments on PZ’s thread, the implied premise in his OP is that women choosing to use their sexuality for financial gain aiding in the marketing of a product – which is what “booth babes” do – is degrading to the female gender as a whole. This is where I criticized PZ for “white-knighting” (I guess?). These women made the choice of their own accord, and its entirely their right to do what they will with their bodies, up to and including playing the role of naked “fembots” to hock hard drives (IIRC).

    I don’t think the premise that the actions of A woman should necessarily reflect on the gender writ large has been sufficiently validated. This is why I brought up strippers. My exact words were: “To the extent that taking your clothes off for money is degrading, it’s only degrading to the stripper, not ALL WOMEN.” Perhaps it would have been better to say, “Being a Booth Babe is degrading to THOSE women.” To that I would agree for I would find taking MY clothes off for money degrading. However, the choice is that of the Babes alone, and I find the attempt to force the choices of those women onto the entire gender to be extremely patronizing. That’s the point I was trying to make.

    “Anyone rational actually reading the thread will see how utterly ridiculous the accusation of “slut-shaming” is – the <I.onlyperson who suggested that stripping is degrading to women is jazzmac251 himself; they will probably share my scepticism about the existence of jazzmac251′s “girlfriend, a self-described feminist”. The trope of misogynists trying to prop up their drivel by saying “and my wife/girlfriend agrees with me” is so hackneyed as to be laughable."

    1) My girlfriend's accusation of "slut-shaming" comes from my previous point.

    2) I didn't say that stripping is degrading to women. I was saying that IF one finds that type of thing "degrading", then it's degrading to the individual rather than the entire group the individual belongs to.

    3) Just like my patronage of PZ's blog, your immediate assumption of my lack of integrity changes the facts not one iota. As disturbing as this is may be to you and your agenda, my girlfriend – a self-described feminist – read what you have to say, read what PZ has to say, and finds your positions and your treatment of others when defending those positions disgusting enough to warrant a second thought about calling herself "a feminist" in the future.

  109. jazzmac251:

    I’m very, very sorry about the TL;DR book, but a lot of issues were brought up here that just don’t lend themselves to brevity.

    I’ll try not to let it happen in the future. :)

  110. BinJabreel:

    Maybe folk like you, kacyray, should suck it up and realize that, to some of us, we’re more interested in associating with people we don’t think are regressive misogynists than we are interested in associating with people who simply identify as atheist.

    I mean, I’ve been a self-described atheist for almost fifteen years, and it makes me so utterly happy to see that our community has finally gotten big and vibrant enough that we can have discussions like, “who the fuck are these assholes, and what are they doing in our movement?” I’m finally willing to unabashedly say I’m a member of this movement, and a lot of the feminists I’ve known, i know for a fact long since disavowed the idea of god, are finally coming around to saying that they are willing to consider themselves “atheists”. This is progress, people.

    For every asshole who peels off, it’s our gain. Fuck ‘em.

  111. lancifer:

    Ed says, in his original post,

    I support this petition because the entire atheist/secular community needs to stand up and condemn these vile attacks on those trying to bring attention to a real problem.

    “Vile attacks”? I went to You tube and watched what I assume are the Thunderf00t (hate that double zero instead of “o”‘s pretentious crap) videos in question.

    “Why ‘Feminism’ is poisoning Atheism” parts 1 and 2.

    Pretty much a rehash of the whole Rebecca Watson dust up and an appeal for Atheism “plus” to do it’s own thing and leave the rest of us atheists alone.

    Nothing “vile” in their that I can see. You may not agree with the guy, but are you implying that there is no room in the “atheist movement” for people of different viewpoints on issues not directly related to atheism?

    Seems rather petty and counterproductive to me.

  112. lancifer:

    BinJabril,

    Maybe folk like you, kacyray, should suck it up and realize that, to some of us, we’re more interested in associating with people we don’t think are regressive misogynists than we are interested in associating with people who simply identify as atheist.

    As you wish, but how do you figure you have the right to dictate terms to the rest of us atheists that just want to hang out with, you know, atheists?

    Also who are these “regressive misogynists” of which you speak?

  113. cactusren:

    I said:

    Though I will say this: saying “I have super important things to say, but I can’t say them here–first you have to meet me somewhere else” is pretty creepy. It’s not much different from Scientologists saying “We know the truth, but you have to pay us money before we’ll tell you.” No, you’re not asking for money, but you are setting the terms under which you will tell us these super important things.

    kacyray replied:

    Oh… you didn’t know that I never demanded that it be on my own turf, did you? You never knew that I offered to let others make the decision on where and how? Gee… I wonder how that information got left out of this vibrant, welcoming forum. No, instead everyone thinks that I’m trying to whisk people off to my own private lair.
    All I asked was for a conversation somewhere – anywhere – away from the noise of the tribe. No one has the stones to take me up on it, but we sure hear a lot of excuses. And I’ve already explained at least a dozen times why I don’t want to start a complex and nuanced conversation in the comments section of a blog post that will be relegated to history within a matter of days.

    How did “meet me somewhere else” turn into a “demand (to) be on my own turf”? I’m starting to see why people here don’t like talking to you.

    And for the record, Gretchen suggested that you set up a blog so that you could carry on these conversations there. Presumably, the commentariat would start off with only those people you mention the blog to. So why don’t you go do that? I’ll come and comment, and even be reasonably polite. But I will also be quick to point out examples like those above where you either made a mistake, or completely overreacted to what I *didn’t* say.

  114. TCC:

    lancifer, I think you’ll find that Ed’s statement wasn’t directed at thunderf00t’s video (which was pretty bad but not as much in the way of “vile attacks”).

  115. cactusren:

    Ed, sorry if this is too much of a derail–feel free to delete if so.

    jazzmac251:

    PZ is clearly against the whole “booth babe” thing, and he seems to be against it because he finds it inherently degrading to women.

    I don’t want to speak for PZ, but my understanding of his post was that the point of that clause is to make it clear that all harrassment policies apply to the vendors too, and to make it clear that the conference is a professional environment. “Booth babes” are degrading to everyone, because the whole premise rests on the idea that (A) whatever is being sold is something only men would buy, and (B) men won’t care about the specs of the product itself if they’re distracted by boobz. So it’s insulting to both men and women because it promotes gender stereotypes. As to an individual woman choosing to take the job–she’s certainly allowed to do so, and I don’t recall anyone in that thread saying that those particular women were the ones causing the problem. But when people in charge of marketing think “booth babes” are a good idea, it’s indicative of the sexism within our culture. In short, “booth babes” are a symptom, not the problem.

    About the language thing: you seem to understand that people in certain social groups use particular words as self-identifyers. Good–so you realize that the first time you comment on a particular blog, that if you haven’t been paying attention to the specifics of the ingroup language there, that you might say something that other people take issue with, like calling the presumably adult women who work at vendor booths “girls”. And if you’ve been paying attention to the comments at Pharyngula, you would know that people aren’t generally very nice to commenters who use language that infantalizes women.

    As to whether the rule itself is necessary, did you consider the example I gave in that thread? At a recent Society of Vertebrate Paleontology meeting, a vendor was selling vertebrate fossils. SVP does not approve of this, and it says so in the by-laws. Therefore, when the conference coordinators talked to the vendors, and showed them the by-laws saying SVP wouldn’t allow this, they quickly removed those fossils. What if that rule hadn’t been written down? The vendor might have still been nice about it, but they might also have argued that it doesn’t say anywhere that they can’t do that, and refused to remove the fossils. Then things would have been much more problematic.

    In short, conference organizers put these rules in place to establish what they feel is appropriate to their conference. And having the guidelines in writing is always a good idea. If you think they should be more specific, that’s a fair criticism, and worth discussing, but that did not seem to be the major point of your initial post.

    So–you want a reasoned debate with no name calling? Here’s your chance. Or you can keep complaining about how everyone at Pharyngula was just sooooo mean to you. Your call.

  116. cactusren:

    *sigh* apologies for the blockquote fail.

  117. lancifer:

    OK TCC, what were the “vile attacks” then?

  118. lancifer:

    Ed says,

    Adam Lee of Daylight Atheism has started a petition at Change.org, to be sent to the leaders of the top atheist/secular organizations, that responds to Thunderfoot’s latest video attack…

    So what videos constitute the “vile attacks” if not the two I mentioned?

  119. TCC:

    The petition responds to Thunderf00t’s video in that he ended one of them with a plea to contact leaders of secular/atheist groups to tell them that “feminism is poisoning atheism,” so this is a way of countering that. As for the vile attacks, there are quite a few of them, but just looking around Skepchick, B&W, and Almost Diamonds will produce many that involve sexist slurs (e.g. Google “Rebeccunt Twatson”).

  120. Childermass:

    It sounds like he is an attention seeker. The cold shoulder combined with banning and not linking to his sites might be the best response.

  121. kacyray:

    Gretchen suggested that you set up a blog so that you could carry on these conversations there. Presumably, the commentariat would start off with only those people you mention the blog to. So why don’t you go do that? I’ll come and comment, and even be reasonably polite. But I will also be quick to point out examples like those above where you either made a mistake, or completely overreacted to what I *didn’t* say.

    I might do that. But as I mentioned, I’m deploying soon, and I’ll spend most of 2013 floating around in the Mediterranean.

    Now, I don’t know how much time you’ve ever spent on a Naval amphibious vessel, but if you haven’t lived that luxurious life yet, I’ll let you know now that the internet don’t work so good. As a Department Head, I get some of the best bandwidth allocation on the ship, and yet I can hardly check CNN in the morning.

    You won’t see my smiling face much in 2013. Lucky you.

    But the fact that I don’t have my own blog is no excuse for asking someone to make an argument, then declining their offer to do so in a more conducive environment. Never let it be said that I didn’t try.

  122. tomh:

    @ #121

    You’ve got all the argument anyone could want right here. Just because your ideas have been considered and rejected by some people doesn’t mean you can’t argue them. All your incoherent rantings about a “more conducive environment” just shows how silly you are.

  123. Suido:

    Lancifer, have you had your head buried in the sand for the last two years? The vile attacks is a reference to the non-stop shit storm directed at (in no particular order) Rebecca Watson, Stephanie Svan, Ophelia Benson, Surly Amy etc.

    If you are speaking out of ignorance, then please, educate yourself. If you’re being deliberately disingenuous, please explain why you need to parse Ed’s words so carefully.

  124. jackiepaper:

    How exactly is claiming that feminism poisons anything not a vile attack?

    If you believe that equality and basic human decency is poisonous, I’ve got a message for you, from me.

    Look, anti-feminists, we get it. You like the status quo. You enjoy your unearned privilege. You’ll lie, deny and derail any chance you get to protect it. You may be so blinded by your privilege that you really can’t see from anyone else’s point of view or you may just not care to try. What ever the reason the result is always the same. You’ll punch down with all your might to try in vain to hold on to something that never should have belonged to you in the first place. I really do get it. You feel threatened, as you should. Because like every group of whiny bigots, you are going to lose. Why? Because you’re fossils from an age that is ending. We aren’t “coming for you”, as Shermer puts it, but we are claiming what was ours in the first place. We’re not going to be pushed out or shut up. You can’t stop us. You can’t slow us down. The more you twist your knickers and rail against equality, the more foolish you look and soon you’ll be joining the religious right as an increasingly marginalized group of haters. Why? Not because the mean ol feminists will silence you, but because your arguments against feminism are crap. You’re bias is transparent. You’re ideology is bogged down in the worst sort of denial and impotent anger. You only impress your anti-feminist allies for the same reason Ken Hamm only impresses other creationists. Luckily, in the face of facts, their numbers and yours are dwindling and that trend is not going to reverse itself. You are going from center stage to the fringe, where you belong. So long, farewell, Auf Wiedersehen, good-bye.

  125. mofa:

    19th of January where I am. Under 2000 signatures so far. Considering the number of atheists on the planet his = fail.

  126. TCC:

    Or, you know, not, since only a smaller percentage of the total atheists on the planet are going to be aware of this issue. Nice try, though.

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