And how can a journalist have so little regard for the truth? Stephanie Zvan documents her bizarre behavior — apparently she was deeply offended by the fact that someone briefly put her on the block_bot a few months ago, and now she’s fully bought into this myth that FreethoughtBlogs is out to get her by sending our shadowy agents at the block_bot and Atheism+ to harass her.
I have no idea who she is, nor do I care.
But I did learn something from her ill-founded accusations and weird evasions, I think.
There are people who get really, really upset if you don’t pay attention to them — it’s an ego thing. I heard secondhand, for instance, that Thunderf00t had triumphantly announced that he was teaching me a lesson by blocking me on twitter — to which I could only say, “WTF?” I have no problem at all with people blocking me, or not reading my blog, or deleting my comments elsewhere. I have no sense of entitlement that says anyone is required to pay any attention to me. Go ahead!
So the block_bot is of zero concern to me. I could be put on it, and I’d shrug my shoulders and bravely soldier on. I don’t use it, so I’m doubly unconcerned. Atheism+ has some good goals, I think it’s great that they’re promoting their cause, but if I were banned there (and I could be, someday — I’ve been criticized by people on Atheism+ before), I would be unperturbed, and I’d still think what they were trying to do is good.
I’ve said all that before. It’s not what I learned from Becky Garrison’s disconnected discomfiture. I got some insight into a tactic being used.
These Ego Warriors are desperately trying to connect the dots. They don’t like being on the block_bot, and they have this vague unease about not fitting in with the community on Atheism+ — so they must be the same thing! Throw them into the pot!
And then FreethoughtBlogs…it has a loud voice, it has members who share some common ideals with Atheism+ — never mind that no one on FtB has anything to do with the block_bot, and I don’t know that any of us even use it, and none of us seem to be particularly active on the Atheism+ forums, even if Greta and Jen were instrumental in inspiring a greater focus on social justice — toss them in the pot, too! Anyone who is ever critical of the Big Names in Atheism must be in cahoots to destroy the godless community (Love It Unquestioningly or Leave It could be the Ego Warriors motto), so, in true conspiracy theorist fashion, they must all be working together, and someone must be pulling the puppet strings.
Here’s what they see as a win:win situation, though. Either we’ll all unreservedly announce that yes, We Are All One, We Are The Freethought Borg, your suspicions are all confirmed, or we’ll start throwing people under the bus. We’ll disown Atheism+ or the block_bot, and thereby use our loud voice to put down those terrible individuals who crush their ego by not listening to them.
Listen, Becky Garrison and all the other clowns who throw around the term “FtBullies”, and wrap your biased little brains around this: I do neither. I am not going to fit into the twisted dichotomy that you so deeply desire.
I support Atheism+, the block_bot, American Atheists, American Humanists, the IHEU, the Freedom From Religion Foundation, CFI, Americans United for Separation of Church and State, and the National Center for Science Education. That does not mean I own or control any of those groups. They do not even ask me for advice, I do not have any official input into their operations, and sometimes, even often, they may disagree with me, and I may criticize them. And when I do criticize them, it’s because I generally support them, and have opinions (which they rarely share) about how they can better do their job.
FreethoughtBlogs is not controlled in any way by any of those organizations, or the Democrats, or the Republicans, or the Libertarians, or the UUs, or the Mormon Church. We are a completely independent entity, containing a diverse group of writers who don’t even completely agree with each other, although we do tend to skew our selection for membership in the direction of supporting progressive values. We are not the propaganda arm of any organization, we eke out a small amount of money to keep ourselves going with ads (and soon we’ll be offering a subscription service), and are beholden to no one, which means we are free to disagree with just about everyone. Also, need I mention, I do not run FtB, and the other bloggers here can disagree with me on just about anything. And we like it that way.
So please, stop trying to fit a complex set of diverse voices into your pathetic, simplistic narrative. And if you find something we say bruises your fragile ego, just stop reading us. We won’t mind. Actually, we’d prefer it if you freaking narcissists would take a hike and leave us alone.