• The Great Fire of Atheism

    Looks like I’ve been called out once again by one of the bloggers at FtB. As per usual, I’m not allowed to reply there, so I’ll have to reply here.

    Misogyny has been the great fire of atheism. 2012 saw a pitched fight for smoke detectors to be used at cons, in which, as thick plumes billowed from every window, DJ Grothe said TAM was totally fire-free, no one having caught so much as a whiff of smoke, and women shouldn’t assume too much from the sky high column of it over the building.

    If I’m following Alex’s analogy correctly, “smoke detectors” are intended to be analogous to anti-harassment policies at conventions. I’ve never objected to well-crafted policies, and I am on the record here in support of them. As part of the organizational team for FreeOK (some years ago) I argued in support of their adoption of a reasonable conduct policy as well. Maybe others were involved in a “pitched fight” over the placement and availability of smoke detectors, or maybe that expression is just bit of hyperbolic artistic license. Moving on:

    Later, Reinhardt et al decided piles of soot and ash wherever some male skeptics went didn’t conclusively prove fire damage, and so there was no reason at all to check for any.

    Again, assuming I’m following the analogy correctly, “soot and ash” represent the barrage of allegations of sexual impropriety, sexual harassment, and sexual assault which poured forth back when the floodgates opened. Allegations such as those against Bill Nye and Lawrence Krauss, which were hastily retracted or redacted when no one stepped forward as an eyewitness. Allegations such as those against Steve Packard, which proved to be nothing more than rumor built up on a foundation of fearful speculation. Allegations such as those against Benjamin Radford, which were recently publicly retracted. Not to mention random allegations of cyber-harassment that I cannot even begin to understand.

    Maybe the piles of soot and ash aren’t actually what Alex presumes? Perhaps they are, in fact, mostly dust in the wind?

    If rather than Bindel, Jane Clare Jones or other transphobes, someone on this network promoted men with antifeminist records – Shermer, Reinhardt, DJ Grothe – would she accept their history wasn’t worth mentioning?

    Assuming feminism means what what I think it does, it’s a fairly damning accusation to say that someone has an “antifeminist record” and a history worth mentioning. Then again, maybe antifeminist is code for anyone who dares to openly question the veracity of the factual claims and the utility of the moral pronouncements ringing forth from Freethought Blogs.

    In other words, a freethinker.

    Category: Atheism Plus

    Article by: Damion Reinhardt

    Former fundie finds freethought fairly fab.