QED panel on god belief

QED has released the video of the panel “A Question of God” from last March. The panel is moderated by Paula Kirby and has Maryam Namazie, DJ Grothe, and me. Ironic, isn’t it.

It’s as I remembered it – fun, congenial, entertaining, interesting. That’s why I was so surprised when a few months later Paula Kirby called me a Feminazi and Femistasi. Watching that panel, she doesn’t seem like that kind of person.


  1. Ron Wilson says

    Paul Kirby has my utmost respect, unlike you, who can only put up spite-posts against so-called “sister punishers” who you don’t like.

    It is your reputation that lies in tatters, and not Kirby’s. Unlike you, Kirby gets on with her life without responding to every little drama she can find, just so she can whine about them on a blog. That is what professional victims do, and you are one of them.

    Finally, when you “call out” spurious allegations of “rapist”, your moans about being described as “femistazi” (your memory-holing and censorship make the Stazi comparison accurate, BTW) will be dismissed as flummery.

    Watching that panel talk, the only conclusion one comes away with is just how low Ophelia Benson has now sunk.

  2. says

    When I what? What do you mean when I “call out” spurious allegations of “rapist” – when do I do that?

    I do post about child-raping priests; is that what you mean? Are you from the Vatican?

    Something tells me you’re not really “Ron Wilson.” I think you probably usually go by a different name. That’s because your vocabulary is both peculiar and familiar – in other words, you’re recycling familiar tropes from the playbook.

  3. hjhornbeck says

    Yawn, more Slyme Pit lies. No blogger on FtB has ever used the term “sister punisher” against someone, though there are a few mysterious commenters who keep bringing it up. And pray tell, what should someone do if they are targeted daily for attacks? Ignore them?

    Boring, long-debunked talking points are boring. You should stick to photoshops.

  4. Bjarte Foshaug says

    There’s that expression “sister punisher” again… As I recently asked on Twitter, who are all these feminists I keep hearing bout who constantly refer to other women as “sister punishers” or “gender traitors”? Speaking for myself, I have only ever heard it from the Mildew crowd.

    If pricks like “Ron Wilson” had anything of actual substance to accuse people like Ophelia of, you would think they’d have produced it by now instead of the same old vague accusations of “stirring up drama” (as in “not taking the vicious and malevolent harassment and bullying coming from the other side lying down”) and (as far as I can tell) outright lies like the one about the “sister punishers”. It’s almost as if they didn’t have anything real they could point to. Come to think of it, that’s exactly how it is. Nevermind.

    BTW, “Ron” your donation to Ophelia was a success. I’m sure she appreciates the cookies.

  5. Bjarte Foshaug says


    No blogger on FtB has ever used the term “sister punisher”

    You beat me to it 😛

  6. says

    Why are the anonymous cowards anonymous and cowardly? Must be some random idiot without the #bravehero cred to post in a real name.

    @Bjarte, I see you have really annoyed EG and he is spamming FTBullies about you, even better some of the usual crowd have crowned you “as bad or worse” than “that SpokesGay” ! So good going on the Nugent thread as what you said obviously hit a nerve… That and your stick figure anyway.

    Ophelia, thanks for the link to the video – will add to playlist and wonder what went wrong…

  7. Margaret says

    That was indeed “fun, congenial, entertaining, interesting” and makes me even more mystified by how things have become so different. I was however struck by the fact that all 3 of the others found religion “comforting” at one time. My upbringing was more religious than Ophelia’s, but I have never understood this “comfort” or “sense of community” that so many of the more liberal religious often talk about. There’s some personality difference here which may explain better than the silly stupid/smart thing why some people are more likely than others to apply their reason to religious claims.

    BTW, “Ron” your donation of another pair of earrings to Ophelia was a success. Ophelia doesn’t appreciate earrings as much as cookies, but I’m sure she is happy for the women’s shelter whose thrift store will be getting the earrings to sell.

  8. Bjarte Foshaug says

    @oolon #6

    @Bjarte, I see you have really annoyed EG and he is spamming FTBullies about you, even better some of the usual crowd have crowned you “as bad or worse” than “that SpokesGay” !

    Yay! 😀

  9. Aratina Cage says

    How will any of us go on knowing you don’t have the respect of a ninny like Ron Wilson? We’re all doomed! My word, they are a silly bunch.

  10. says

    The phrase “sister punisher” was used ten months ago, in the comment section of a Greta Christina article. Slymepitter “CommanderTuvok” (who sounds very much like “Ron Wilson” above) turned up, and started making a scene. As far as I can see, every mention of the phrase stems from that one incident.

  11. Wowbagger, Designated Snarker says

    Now, let’s not be so hasty to call Ron Wilson a liar. It’s entirely possible that Ron Wilson is simply stupid and gullible and has believed the lies of his scumbag pals and either lacks the insight to realise xe’s been played for a fool or the character to call them out for being liars.

  12. says

    Well yes, that too – I’ve never once called anyone a “sister punisher” – it’s just not part of my vocabulary.

    But they don’t care; lies are believed as easily as non-lies.

  13. Wowbagger, Designated Snarker says

    Ah, but for the Slymepit the simple appearance of a phrase here at B&W means you said it, Ophelia – and now they’ve got a couple more examples they can use to ‘demonstrate’ your ‘use’ of it.

    Dishonest scumbags? Why, yes, that’s exactly what they are.

  14. says

    Oh surely not. Surely they’re sensible reasonable people we can have a civil discussion with if only we keep trying. And trying and trying and trying and trying and trying.

  15. Dennis Greatbatch says

    Melody Hensley uses the term “sister punisher”, on this very blog.


    You can use this search term in Google: “site:freethoughtblogs.com “sister punisher”, and it returns many examples of the use of the term here at B&W, and other FTB sites.

    I guess you can add those other terms beloved of FTBers, “chill girl” and “gender traitor”.

    BTW, Bjarte, “pricks” is a gendered epithet. Naughty, naughty.

  16. says

    So what? So Melody used it here once; so what? I’m not Melody.

    I don’t call people “chill girl” or “gender traitor” either. Get another fucking script.

    You’re not “Dennis Greatbatch,” either, are you. You’re the same troll, aren’t you, reading from the same stupid stale moth-eaten script.

  17. says

    And that is such lying bullshit about doing a search for the word. I just searched comments here for it, and the first is that one you point out, that Melody said; all the others come after that in time and they’re all using it the way we’re using it here – meta-use. There is not one comment apart from Melody’s that uses it in a non-meta way.

    You are such a liar.

  18. Wowbagger, Designated Snarker says

    Ophelia wrote:

    You are such a liar.

    Such is the stuff a #bravehero is made of.

  19. Silentbob says

    There’s currently only one comment on the video on YouTube. It’s provenance will surprise nobody.

  20. arthur says

    I thought it was interesting that Paula Kirby and DJ Grothe describe previous intense religious phases in their lives. Grothe compares himself to Michael Shermer who he says has a similar background as a Christian evangelical.

    The idea of being a thinking adult, and yet being religious, is difficult for me to imagine. Then ditching all that and becoming an atheist activist?

    Maybe the atheist activist thing is a phase they’re going through as well? Unlikely I know, but it does baffle me that people who are intelligent enough to communicate and campaign for secularism now, could be so stupid in the past.

    Regarding these slurs against Ophelia Benson in the comments, none of them are true. Ophelia Benson doesn’t dismiss people in the fashion alleged, and isn’t remotely chargeable for the offenses claimed. The accuser is lying for no apparent reason other than to discredit and smear. Tosser.

  21. hjhornbeck says

    Oh yes, and I keep forgetting to mention this: DONATED! Here, have a puppy too:

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  22. Bjarte Foshaug says

    @Anonymous Coward #15

    You can use this search term in Google: “site:freethoughtblogs.com “sister punisher”, and it returns many examples of the use of the term here at B&W, and other FTB sites.

    Except, those examples (two pages of hits for the whole FTB network since the beginning of time) seem to consist mostly of slimepitters accusing feminists of calling other women “sister punishers”, unless they link to the same comment by Melody.

    This just goes to show, yet again, that it’s actually you assholes who have to go actively looking for something to complain about. People like Ophelia don’t have to look. It comes to them 24/7/52 whether they want it or not. I’d like to see you put up with the shit you say others have to endure without complaining. But then again you don’t have to worry about things like that, do you? Because that shit only ever comes from your own side, doesn’t it?

    BTW, Bjarte, “pricks” is a gendered epithet. Naughty, naughty.

    As a male myself, I don’t mind calling other men “pricks” if they’re the kind of guy who thinks this earns them a cheap rhetorical point in the current debate. If all men where like the vermin who hang out at the Pit, then misandry would be a perfectly reasonable position.

  23. says

    I was wrong to say that “sister punisher” was used once, ten months ago. It now transpires that it was used twice ten months ago.

    Except, those examples (two pages of hits for the whole FTB network since the beginning of time) seem to consist mostly of slimepitters accusing feminists of calling other women “sister punishers”…

    Indeed, the third one down is an article called How to make baseless accusations become true via repetition, which addresses this very lie.

  24. Bjarte Foshaug says

    Let’s have a look at the last supposedly ubiquitous “slurs” used by feminists against other women while we’re at it, shall we? Yes, we shall. The “slurs” in question are of course “chill girls” and “queen bees”. Stephanie did indeed use both terms in one of her posts, in which she wrote:

    How do you know whether you’re a chill girl? Simple. Is your reaction to complaints from other women of harassment and discrimination based on gender to turn to the guys and say, “Nah, I’m fine. It’s all cool”? Then you’re a chill girl.

    How do you know whether you’re a queen bee? Simple. Did you struggle your way up to a position of power or influence in what was decidedly a man’s world, only to then turn around and tell other women that unless they can do what you did, they have to stay in their subservient positions? Then you’re a queen bee.

    Notice, first of all, that Stephanie doesn’t say that any particular woman is a chill girl or queen bee. She most definitely doesn’t say that “anybody who disagrees” with her, or anybody she happens to “dislike”, is a chill girl or queen bee. Instead, she identifies certain specific criteria and states that if they apply to you, then by definition that’s what’s meant by a “chill girl” or a “queen bee”. If the criteria don’t apply, there is no reason why anybody should feel attacked in any way.

    Secondly, these are not actual “slurs” in any non-Newspeak sense of the word, any more than “misogynist” or “racist” are slurs. These are labels that identify a person as displaying certain patterns of behavior or attitudes, not as belonging certain disfavored groups. That’s a key difference right there.

  25. hjhornbeck says

    Wow, I’m an insensitive asshole. Sorry, Benson, I’ll switch to vanilla “donated” messages.

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