Sometimes these kooks reveal that they even read the blog…somewhat obsessively and angrily. This one seems to be a follow-up to yesterday’s email, and I think he’s unhappy that I put up that other crank’s letter and not his. I’m sorry, but I don’t even remember what his previous letter’s point was, and if this one is any indication, it was another spittle-flecked disjointed ramble, and I’m afraid I don’t read those with much attention. However, since he really wants to join the pantheon (a very crowded pantheon) of irate readers, I’m happy to oblige.
Don’t get any ideas, though, all you other crackpots! This guy got away with it, but if you all start demanding your tirades be posted, I’m not going to be accommodating.
I hesitate to believe that your silence is some kind of assent to the truth of what I tried to express in my previous e-mail message yesterday. I notice in your “blog” today—somewhat amazingly considering the typical time constraints on an associate professor—that you graciously acknowledged receiving
“11 weird harangues . . . in my mailbox this morning.” Perhaps my harangue was one of these? Well mister you need to get a few harangues in your mailbox in the morning, if you don’t mind my saying so. You opened up this silly door by being a “public figure” with an exceptionally big mouth who likes to put down other people—seemingly every day of his life—so take it like a man, would you please? Go ahead, dismiss me all you want, laugh at me, lump me in with all the other people you marginalize and stereotype. Oh I know, you probably feel so useful in your roles as atheist “blog-meister,”
small-town scientist, condemner of “inferior people,” Lord over ALL “creationists” and defender of truth (as you seem to perceive it anyway), and you probably don’t have time for my little rants. So be it. I don’t care, I will write my rants anyway. Really, I am not trying to be clever or to persuade you of anything. Why would I do that? What would be the point? You’ve obviously heard it all before and you obviously know everything you need to know for your own personal fulfillment. So be it. What I am doing, in fact, is condemning you, as best I can. Why? Because in my estimation your actions reflect something that is fundamentally wrong and disgraceful, and I feel that it is my duty to write whether you read it or not—whether you butcher up my comments in your silly “blog” or not. Since we will probably never meet in person, this is the best I can do. It is, for me, a matter of principle or I would not feel or speak so strongly about it. Like you, I will not remain silent when I am offended by something or someone, especially something or someone in the public eye. This is not an attempt to offend you, rather, it is me telling you what I think about you since you have chosen to enter my world with your public presence. How is that you say? When, as of late, I have often to read about a certain person named “PZ Myers,” often just in my ordinary non-specific reading, and when this person often does ridiculous bizarre things, apparently to gain attention to himself in furtherance of what appears to be a
self-perceived “cause,” it becomes a nuisance to me, and to many others who don’t take the time to write you. Since you are a “public” person, I am entitled to tell you what I think and feel, whether you care or not. I am not writing depending on whether you care or not, obviously. Why do you think so many people write these “harangues” anyway, professor? Or perhaps you ONLY prefer to listen to the people who react favorably to you as a public entity? Wouldn’t that be nice, if everyone thought you were peaches and cream? Think about it, would you please? To pretend to worship you, as others might, for sharing some superior insight you believe you have into the nature of things, would be lying on my part to say the least. I don’t think that in much of any way, obviously quite the opposite is what I think: I think that you offer NO insight into the nature of things of any real or lasting value, and the only reason that you persist is most probably because you enjoy being a nuisance for its own sake. I think that if you actually did value getting at the true nature of our planet and the cosmos of which it is part, it wouldn’t be so important for you to have daily opportunity to belittle others in a public forum like the internet—you would instead, as most decent people have in ages past, offer your particular contribution to knowledge humbly and with respect for others. You have earned my disrespect with your actions and words against others, and you do no service to humanity with such behaviour, no matter how strongly you feel about your scientific insights—they are not worth the pain you cause to others. Of course, you probably don’t care to hear this.
Think about these two statements for a nanosecond:
What do you know that I don’t know? What do you know that I need to know?
I don’t believe that you can answer these questions at all. “Ahhh”, you might say, (just to give a random example I picked up from your so-called “blog” today. You might say: (imagine a real arrogant guy with a beard for a second saying this)
“You need to know that whales had babies on land at one time, and what a profound revelation that is!”
This is an example of what you daily worry about? This is what I, therefore, need to worry about? I need to worry and think about how scientists think whales used to reproduce in the past? Or, I need to overly concern myself the fact that scientists believe that whales may have changed over millions of years? That’s IT? That is an example of the kind of earth-shattering insight that you would share with humanity as a scientist? This is why you are so incessantly noisy and bothersome and offensive to others who don’t happen to be scientists? This is why God is dead for you? Because whales like everything else in this incredible universe, have changed over time? That’s just wonderful. Great. Do you think it is then justifiable to condemn other people because (for whatever reason) they may not believe just as you do as a professional scientist, (and who gives a fig whether it’s about whales, it could be anything, that’s just my example). Should we condemn the “common” people if they do not subscribe to certain ideas in other academic areas as well? Should this be the calling of all practitioners of academic subjects, to condemn others in an offensive manner, oh yes . . . in the name of truth? I honestly don’t think you really care a bling for any brand of truth, but unfortunately that seems to have made you especially vociferous, and miracle or miracles the internet allows you to fully vent.
Probably you protest that we are strangers, and you object to receiving this kind of e-mail where I ask these kinds of questions and make these kind of observations. Perhaps we are strangers, but only in the sense that I have never met you in person as a fellow human being, that is to say, as a flesh and blood person; but your persona, which is to say, your social facade via the internet, and your actions as a person in the public forum are regrettably there for all to see, and this is what I know about PZ Myers; and it is this public persona that offends me that I am addressing. You are a professor at a university, but that of itself engenders nothing special to me, nor does it earn my automatic respect. You went to college and majored in biology. Would you like a medal or something? You seem to equate the noble profession of science, and particularly the subject of biology with atheism? My question is, why? And by what authority do you speak for scientists? Do you have a right to speak for all scientists? Or even all atheists? Can you see how your arrogant, dismissive attitude towards others might be offensive and an embarrassment to many, if not most scientists? Or, to many if not most atheists? Do you think scientists or atheists want to be thought of as being like that “communion-wafer maniac.” Based on your example, should all scientists crusade against people of religious faith in the most offensive possible manner? I may have majored in biology myself, for all you know, I may have more degrees than you, but that is not the point. I have known and worked with many fine professors, and you sir, are not one. Not because of what you do or do not know, but because of your actions as a public figure and your lack of comportment as a supposedly learned man in the public eye. You undoubtedly believe that you are in some sense “saving the world” by condemning others, but what in God’s name do you hope it will accomplish ? In the hope that there will be more “intellectual”, sarcastic, blow-hards such as yourself? How liberating! What a positive boon for thinking people everywhere! What a vision for the future well-being of the human race! La-de-dah-de-dah-de-da. I have looked hard for a while now to find some redeeming qualities in all your brouhaha, but from one intellectual and humanist to another, they just ain’t there.
You are a curiosity to me, as I find curious anyone—and forgive me here but I think that you yourself have made this a fact—as I find curious anyone who holds themselves in the public spotlight as possessing “special revelations” that we all need to know about as educated human beings. For those who daily “blog-in” to praise you for your “special insights,” it seems perfectly natural to them in their eagerness to identify with you, and you become a kind of (forgive me) messiah to some of them undoubtedly in their zeal. I repeat: What do you know that I don’t know? What do you know that I need to know? Answer: you don’t know anything that I need to know. You think you know something profound about the way the world works? So what. Many people have this same delusion. You think evolution explains the world. So what, could be. I don’t object to your science, I object to your arrogance in the public forum. I have known and admired some wonderful iconoclasts who had some genuine insights worth considering, but my God, they knew when to shut up! You are an embarrassment to the academic world. With all your knowledge, your are in my estimation a failure as an educator, at least as far as one can judge from your public utterances and actions. You educate others in the false way to behave. You are doing more damage than good. You are a negative karma engine. As an atheist, perhaps the idea of doing damage while you can is for you a point of personal pride, but not everyone on the planet really gives a rat’s behind about how you inject your personal vengeance against faith into your professional career, or how good you are at pretending to be superior to others. It would be a hoot, I am sure, to sit in on one of your classes. Who cares what the “truth” might be if it comes from some arrogant, prattle-mouth such as yourself. God forbid that one of your students may not think as you do! Do you really think you are doing scientists, your students, and the general public a favor by pretending to be some kind of lunatic, defacto “defender of the scientific cause”? Even the other atheist scientists of the world find you obnoxious, and wish you would be quiet. Probably never happen.
Don’t let all the insipid praise that you may receive on your “blog” go to your head. Do something surprising and print this e-mail in your little internet newspaper, I would love to read 500 tons of criticism of what I have just written by your fellow maniacs.
just another human being,
Man, this guy really needs to learn that if I put something on the web, he is not required to read it, especially since he has declared that I don’t know anything he needs to know. I’m very concerned for his blood pressure.