Rhys Morgan wants us to "fuck off and die".

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Rhys Morgan wants us to "fuck off and die".

Postby hyperdeath » Tue Oct 09, 2012 10:27 am

I was sad to learn of the following conversation on Twitter. Rhys Morgan (who has generally been an ally to the anti-misogyny side of the movement) took offence to Schrodinger's Rapist. When told that he had missed the point (he seemed to think that men were being required to indentify as potential rapists), he refused to do any back-reading and doubled down instead. (Edit: I didn't see subsequent tweets in which Rhys agreed to read the article.)

Rhys Morgan ‏@rhysmorgan wrote:Atheism+, at first, you sounded like a good idea. Now I just want you to fuck off and die. You’re beyond parody. viewtopic.php?f=7&t=1642


Rhys Morgan ‏@rhysmorgan wrote:@JlnFrancisco If you agree with that thread, bye.


Sarah Moglia ‏@Mowgli3 wrote:@rhysmorgan @JlnFrancisco Rhys, I think you're overreacting.


Rhys Morgan ‏@rhysmorgan wrote:@Mowgli3 @JlnFrancisco Sorry, but I really want nothing to do with any kind of community that goes round calling people “potential rapists”!


Sarah Moglia ‏@Mowgli3 wrote:@rhysmorgan @JlnFrancisco Have you never read Schrodinger's Rapist? http://kateharding.net/2009/10/08/guest ... ing-maced/


Rhys Morgan ‏@rhysmorgan wrote:@Mowgli3 @JlnFrancisco No, I haven’t. But I don’t have to to know that I don’t want to be involved in that kind of community.


Jackie Paper ‏@Jitterysquirrel wrote:@rhysmorgan @Mowgli3 @JlnFrancisco Rys, you need to educate yourself. You don't know what you're talking about.


Rhys Morgan ‏@rhysmorgan wrote:@Jitterysquirrel @Mowgli3 @JlnFrancisco For what? Not wanting to identify as a “potential rapist”? Fuck. That. Shit.


I think we're losing the propaganda war. :(
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Re: Rhys Morgan wants us to "fuck off and die".

Postby piegasm » Tue Oct 09, 2012 11:00 am

I dunno...Is this guy publicly displaying his refusal to even read the document he's disagreeing with so vehemently really such a bad thing for us? In my opinion, this kind of behavior is far more embarrassing for the critic than it is for the person/group they're criticizing.
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Re: Rhys Morgan wants us to "fuck off and die".

Postby SubMor » Tue Oct 09, 2012 11:18 am

I skimmed his recent tweets. He seems to object to the idea of wearing the label "potential rapist" as a badge. I find this perplexing because nobody here is advocating that anyone adopt "potential rapist" as an identity. That would be absurd, and if that's what SR meant, I'd object to it, too. That's not what it means.

I just can't fathom how people come to these strange conclusions. (Oh yeah. "Propaganda war.")
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Re: Rhys Morgan wants us to "fuck off and die".

Postby hyperdeath » Tue Oct 09, 2012 11:47 am

SubMor wrote:I just can't fathom how people come to these strange conclusions. (Oh yeah. "Propaganda war.")


I really don't know what to think. On balance, I think the obsessives congregating around the #atheismplus and #ftbullies hashtags are a good thing. Anyone who says anything slightly positive about us receives frenzied abuse. Anyone who asks questions receives creepy advice on why they should hate us. As many of our new members are telling us, this is practically an advertisement for A+.

Then again, there's the "big lie" problem. If a lie is repeated again and again, people start to believe it.
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Re: Rhys Morgan wants us to "fuck off and die".

Postby JamieStanton » Tue Oct 09, 2012 11:49 am

I'd say you certainly are losing the propaganda war, and for me the reasons are clear. As I have been trying to say for weeks, the manner in which AtheismPlus (and feminism) presents itself is counter productive to its stated goals. It has been extremely frustrating trying to engage in a meaningful way without being dismissed out of hand as a "mainsplainer" or a "tone troll" or a "concert troll" or "privileged" other terminology used to marginalise. There are many Atheists and Skeptics interested in building and egalitarian society but not willing to accept core tenants of the type of feminism prevalent here, so are excluded from participation because their views are not perceived as valid. When you make civil disagreement impossible you make uncivil disagreement inevitable.

I am of the mind - to use a cliche - that we must be the change we want to see in the world. In the real world I do not differentiate when engaging with people whether based on class, gender or race. I am most certainly not willing to dismiss someone's opinion outright on such a basis, and I find that idea abhorrent. Ultimately, the forum is built on the logic of the "Superior Virtue of the Oppressed" and this has an inverted hierarchy of privilege where voices of who is imagined to be the most oppressed is valued more. But an inverted hierarchy is still a hierarchy. I subscribe to the more egalitarian idea that our views should be viewed equally and on their own merit and not on the basis of who is saying them.

Hyperdeath, I should also note that I did appreciate having engaged conversation with you elsewhere, and wish such exchanges were more prevalent here.

It should also go without saying that much of the personal attacks on people, such as McCreight etc. are unacceptable.
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Re: Rhys Morgan wants us to "fuck off and die".

Postby ateisten » Tue Oct 09, 2012 12:01 pm

JamieStanton wrote:It should also go without saying that much of the personal attacks on people, such as McCreight etc. are unacceptable.
"much of"?
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Re: Rhys Morgan wants us to "fuck off and die".

Postby SubMor » Tue Oct 09, 2012 12:18 pm

JamieStanton wrote:I'd say you certainly are losing the propaganda war, and for me the reasons are clear. As I have been trying to say for weeks, the manner in which AtheismPlus (and feminism) presents itself is counter productive to its stated goals.

You'd have a far more compelling argument if you actually had some science here.

JamieStanton wrote:It has been extremely frustrating trying to engage in a meaningful way without being dismissed out of hand as a "mainsplainer" or a "tone troll" or a "concert troll" or "privileged" other terminology used to marginalise.

Your usage of the word "marginalise" is so completely and totally wrong. The reason you're called those things is because people are reacting to your attempts to marginalize them. You can't just adopt a "I'm rubber and you're glue" approach here to throw the word back at them. It actually means something, as do the terms you've objected to.

JamieStanton wrote:There are many Atheists and Skeptics interested in building and egalitarian society but not willing to accept core tenants of the type of feminism prevalent here ...

I don't think you have any idea what you're talking about. Or at least, I don't have any idea what you're talking about, so you're not doing a very good job of communicating your point. The feminism that's prevalent here is intersectional. If you have a problem with that, you should probably go start your own thread about the matter.

JamieStanton wrote:... so are excluded from participation because their views are not perceived as valid.

Any perspective that suggests men are disadvantaged when compared to women, or that men and women are equally disadvantaged, is invalid. We know because science.

JamieStanton wrote:When you make civil disagreement impossible you make uncivil disagreement inevitable.

Civil disagreement is possible, and the fact that you think otherwise clearly demonstrates your ignorance. (For example, you disagree with me, but I haven't banned you for it yet.)

JamieStanton wrote:In the real world I do not differentiate when engaging with people whether based on class, gender or race.

Then you're contributing to the problem. Pretending differences don't exist doesn't solve problems.

JamieStanton wrote:Ultimately, the forum is built on the logic of the "Superior Virtue of the Oppressed" and this has an inverted hierarchy of privilege where voices of who is imagined to be the most oppressed is valued more.

Again you obviously have no idea what you're talking about. If you were right, I would be forbidden to moderate here (or even interject my opinion) because of my white cis male status. This is clearly not the case. Thank you for playing, though.

JamieStanton wrote:I subscribe to the more egalitarian idea that our views should be viewed equally and on their own merit and not on the basis of who is saying them.

We all agree. It just so happens that most of your views here were entirely without merit.

Good day, sir.
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Re: Rhys Morgan wants us to "fuck off and die".

Postby thecynicalromantic » Tue Oct 09, 2012 12:50 pm

What's the big friggin' deal with being called "potential" whateverthefuck? If people don't know you from a hole in the wall, they don't know you from a hole in the wall; you are potentially anything and anybody. If you have a problem with this idea, don't talk to strangers.

Some people are entirely too used to being given the benefit of the doubt.
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Re: Rhys Morgan wants us to "fuck off and die".

Postby jinxybunny » Tue Oct 09, 2012 1:09 pm

thecynicalromantic wrote:Some people are entirely too used to being given the benefit of the doubt.


I am going to borrow this sentence forever ! :D
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Re: Rhys Morgan wants us to "fuck off and die".

Postby emptyell » Tue Oct 09, 2012 1:35 pm

thecynicalromantic wrote:What's the big friggin' deal with being called "potential" whateverthefuck? If people don't know you from a hole in the wall, they don't know you from a hole in the wall; you are potentially anything and anybody. If you have a problem with this idea, don't talk to strangers.

Some people are entirely too used to being given the benefit of the doubt.


From my own experience I would say more like the presumption of the benefits.
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Re: Rhys Morgan wants us to "fuck off and die".

Postby Yallery Brown » Tue Oct 09, 2012 2:33 pm

thecynicalromantic wrote:What's the big friggin' deal with being called "potential" whateverthefuck? If people don't know you from a hole in the wall, they don't know you from a hole in the wall; you are potentially anything and anybody. If you have a problem with this idea, don't talk to strangers.

Some people are entirely too used to being given the benefit of the doubt.


Because if you're being asked to identify your potentially according to a trait that you are set against you might well be insulted.

If I say "you, cynicalromantic, are a potential whateverthefuck" and the whateverthefuck I mention is an insult to you, I don't expect it to go down well, even if it's undeniable that - provided that the whateverthefuck is something you could potentially be - you are a potential whateverthefuck.

Nor is the exercise of Schrodinger's Rapist, nor the "Are you happy to be called a potential rapist" thread (which are two different things even though people are here conflating them), really to get people to acknowledge the existence of potentialities - it's an attempt at a social construction of behaviour based on a badly thought notion of a particular potentiality which is further based on negative stereotype.

But only one negative stereotype (well, there's some class snobbery there too, but for the moment let's ignore it).

In my experience if you point out that the same logic could apply in interactions between people of varying ethnic background or sexual orientation you tend to be treated as a bigot - which is how it should be because such stereotyping is cause for bigotry.

So the notion that men need to somehow cede their potential rapiness over other potentialities can only be a disaster. Most men won't (and most of them would be right to do so because most of them actually won't commit a rape). The sort of men who do behave badly towards women are even less likely to. Men who might otheriwse be won over to the cause in general will leave.

The men who will heed it will mostly be ... as a tendancy ... considerate men, men who tended not to hit on strangers anyway, men who women-who-are-afraid-of-men might actually benefit from MORE exposure to - not less.

And the snobby denigration of those with tattoos and halitosis ... really, just why?

The essay serves to illustrate the writers personal distaste with being hit on, and many women and men may agree. But the notion that there need be, or should be, some sort of acknowledgement of her pecadillo in who people tend to behave is noxious, and this community's overweaning support of it is not good for this community, IMO.
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Re: Rhys Morgan wants us to "fuck off and die".

Postby ateisten » Tue Oct 09, 2012 2:37 pm

Yallery Brown wrote:The men who will heed it will mostly be ... as a tendancy ... considerate men, men who tended not to hit on strangers anyway, men who women-who-are-afraid-of-men might actually benefit from MORE exposure to - not less.
Or so they would like to think. And therefore are not that considerate after all.
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Re: Rhys Morgan wants us to "fuck off and die".

Postby maiforpeace » Tue Oct 09, 2012 2:40 pm

Yallery Brown wrote:
The essay serves to illustrate the writers personal distaste with being hit on, and many women and men may agree. But the notion that there need be, or should be, some sort of acknowledgement of her pecadillo in who people tend to behave is noxious, and this community's overweaning support of it is not good for this community, IMO.


Not good for this community, in what way, exactly? For our image, or for the community members?
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Re: Rhys Morgan wants us to "fuck off and die".

Postby Pteryxx » Tue Oct 09, 2012 2:42 pm

Great collection of myths to debunk for the SR misunderstandings thread, by the way. Much appreciated.
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Re: Rhys Morgan wants us to "fuck off and die".

Postby smhll » Tue Oct 09, 2012 2:48 pm

@Yallery

I have some idea that being categorized as the awful sex must be no fun. (It doesn't happen to female me now, but I absorbed a lot of "you belong to the stupid, illogical sex" messages when I was growing up decades ago.)

(responding to a different poster)

It has been extremely frustrating trying to engage in a meaningful way without being dismissed out of hand as a "mainsplainer" or a "tone troll" or a "concert troll" or "privileged" other terminology used to marginalise. There are many Atheists and Skeptics interested in building and egalitarian society but not willing to accept core tenants of the type of feminism prevalent here, so are excluded from participation because their views are not perceived as valid.


I don't want to sound mean, but can I suggest making better evidenced arguments and making them earlier in one's posts? You may be being drowned out by the numerous posters who think all feminists are mean and hairy and come here quoting Rush Limbaugh inspired descriptions of feminism as if they were true. I don't have a lot of patience for skeptics who are that credulous.

My observation is that nearly everyone who comes here with a beef about feminism or a negative opinion about A+ is that they have an opinion. They state their opinion. They state their opinion emphatically. But they don't include facts, they don't include links to studies, they don't even quote anyone they disagree with. This much loose generalization is like talking to smoke. Being specific could greatly improve discourse.

I encourage you to pick a single issue and ask in the I & A section, but ask an open-ended question, not a gotcha, I'm hoping to catch you looking foolish type question. (There seems to be a surplus of those.) If your issue is more about tone than about issues, then it's okay to start a thread that is about "tone", because talking about tone would then be "on topic" for that thread. IMO, it is also great to use "I messages", like titling your thread "I think tone is important" or "I find harsh statements to be alienating". Talking about "I" and "me" can come across as less accusatory than talking about "you" and "things you do that are wrong".
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Re: Rhys Morgan wants us to "fuck off and die".

Postby SubMor » Tue Oct 09, 2012 2:52 pm

Yallery Brown wrote:Because if you're being asked to identify your potentially according to a trait that you are set against you might well be insulted.

You might be, but that's not what SR does. I think I need to say it a few more times: That's not what SR does. That's not what SR does. That's not what SR does!

Yallery Brown wrote:The essay serves to illustrate the writers personal distaste with being hit on, and many women and men may agree.

Are we talking about the same article? I think your summary is somewhat less than satisfactory.

Yallery Brown wrote:But the notion that there need be, or should be, some sort of acknowledgement of her pecadillo in who people tend to behave is noxious, and this community's overweaning support of it is not good for this community, IMO.

It's a useful tool because it helps to illustrate a perspective that many people find alien. I don't see how that qualifies as "overweening support of" something that "is not good for this community."
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Re: Rhys Morgan wants us to "fuck off and die".

Postby thecynicalromantic » Tue Oct 09, 2012 2:57 pm

If I say "you, cynicalromantic, are a potential whateverthefuck" and the whateverthefuck I mention is an insult to you, I don't expect it to go down well, even if it's undeniable that - provided that the whateverthefuck is something you could potentially be - you are a potential whateverthefuck.


Under what circumstances is it being brought up that I am a potential whateverthefuck?

If we were at a party and you just came right up to me and yelled "You are a potential murderer" I'd probably be like "Jeez, what is her problem, what was that about?" because that would be weird.

On the other hand... if I am applying for a job where I will be working with children, I expect that they will conduct a thorough background check on me and take my fingerprints (ie, treat me like a potential pedophile), because children's safety is more important than my feelings. If I am at a museum full of very old fragile artifacts that are made of expensive materials, I expect that they will be under glass or laser or at the very least that there will be a big "do not touch" sign and a guard with a taser (treat me like a potential thief), even though I know that I am not a thief and also know how to behave myself in a museum. I expect to be asked to provide identification when I am in a situation where money or sensitive information is supposed to be released only to me (treat me like a potential fraudster). I expect that when I meet somebody on the Internet and decide to meet them in real life, that they will want to meet in a public place during daylight hours where there are lots of people around (treat me like a potential Person Your Parents Warned You About When You First Got The Internet). All of this is because I am potentially bad news, because I am a person and some people are bad news. I expect the people around me to take this into account because I understand that I am not the center of the universe.

Hell, I am a woman and an English major and I spent a lot of time hanging out with science dudes in my college days; I am fucking flattered when people treat me like I am only potentially dumber than a box of hair instead of just proceeding upon the assumption that this is a self-evident fact.

I know what "potential" means and I was only raised with a moderate amount of undeserved coddling. I am sorry this is not true of everybody.

I am beginning to think a lot of feminist attempts to explain shit to dudes come off as more insulting that they were intended because the degree of coddling, deference, and general lack-of-being-"insulted" that the dudes are used to is just completely fucking inconceivable to us. (Then, of course, they call us oversensitive... the irony, it is unbearable.)
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Re: Rhys Morgan wants us to "fuck off and die".

Postby Yallery Brown » Tue Oct 09, 2012 3:14 pm

ateisten wrote: Or so they would like to think. And therefore are not that considerate after all.

Maybe, and that would merely add more mud to the waters.
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Re: Rhys Morgan wants us to "fuck off and die".

Postby captainmjs » Tue Oct 09, 2012 3:15 pm

I said in another thread that I think Atheism+ really needs to start making a concerted effort to debunk criticisms of this site and try to make these facts known to the rest of the skeptic community at large. Perhaps it could be part of a FAQ on the Atheism+ website or something of that nature. Then again if opponents are so unwilling to listen to reason on the subject that they refuse to even read then why bother calling yourself a skeptic in the first place?
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Re: Rhys Morgan wants us to "fuck off and die".

Postby Yallery Brown » Tue Oct 09, 2012 3:23 pm

maiforpeace wrote:Not good for this community, in what way, exactly? For our image, or for the community members?

My feeling is that it is likely to put off those who might otherwise fit with a broader (and to my mind more sensible) notion of what a socially progressive atheism might look like.

For example I might well be interested in an atheist movement that encompassed feminist ideas such as "it is wrong to make presumptions on people based on gender", "sexism has no place in the workplace" or even "some degree of equity must occur for there to be a fair society".

However, the notion that a particular notion to the end of "before approaching a strange woman a man must conceed that she may well fear him" receives so much attention on the boards, and that the more frank discussion of it has led to closed threads and accusations of trolling, make it seem that this is the soert of feminist ideology that recieves the movement's seal of approval.

Which I think will only serve to alienate the moderates.
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Re: Rhys Morgan wants us to "fuck off and die".

Postby julian » Tue Oct 09, 2012 3:26 pm

Apparently he's calling us an echo chamber and a pity party too. Saw it through a tweet by Watson half agreeing, half disagreeing. And he still seems to think we want all men to wear Potential Rapist as a badge.

Ah well. I guess we oughtta just close up shop then.

Seriously though, can we stop worrying about how atheists see us? For me this was never about bringing SJ to atheism. We're likely better off working outside of the atheist community. To them we're PC police and attempts to build bridges/reconcile differences are only going to keep being met with this tension. It'll be easier for us to just let them go.

P.S. Hey, Morgan. Quit reading our forum. You've made your contempt clear and you admit there's nothing to be gained from us. So ehy are you browsing our this website?
Last edited by julian on Tue Oct 09, 2012 3:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Rhys Morgan wants us to "fuck off and die".

Postby Yallery Brown » Tue Oct 09, 2012 3:27 pm

smhll wrote:@Yallery

I have some idea that being categorized as the awful sex must be no fun. (It doesn't happen to female me now, but I absorbed a lot of "you belong to the stupid, illogical sex" messages when I was growing up decades ago).


Which gets thrown at both sexes in different ways.

And the best way to counter it would be something more positive and harder hitting and less denaible, such as "it isn't right to make presumptions based on gender".
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Re: Rhys Morgan wants us to "fuck off and die".

Postby julian » Tue Oct 09, 2012 3:38 pm

Yallery Brown wrote:
smhll wrote:@Yallery

I have some idea that being categorized as the awful sex must be no fun. (It doesn't happen to female me now, but I absorbed a lot of "you belong to the stupid, illogical sex" messages when I was growing up decades ago).


Which gets thrown at both sexes in different ways.

And the best way to counter it would be something more positive and harder hitting and less denaible, such as "it isn't right to make presumptions based on gender".


The problem with "it isn't right to make presumptions based on gender" is, well, there are presumptions we can make based off gender at least when drafting policy or trying to deal with issues in the larger world. Going back to SR, we know that rape against women is almost exclusively committed by men. Every life time study of rape puts it at at least 95% of people women surveyed. If we ignore that how can we actually deal with the problem? We set ourselves up for the same kinds of protest we're seeing from Rhys Morgan and others. That it's wrong to emphasize how often men rape women because we're making assumptions about men based off gender.

If we're ever going to come up with solutions for problems like rape we're going to have to deal with uncomfortable and divisive truths. This shouldn't be something skeptics shy away from. It should be something we embrace however painful it may be to accept.
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Re: Rhys Morgan wants us to "fuck off and die".

Postby Pteryxx » Tue Oct 09, 2012 3:40 pm

Yallery Brown wrote:However, the notion that a particular notion to the end of "before approaching a strange woman a man must conceed that she may well fear him" receives so much attention on the boards, and that the more frank discussion of it has led to closed threads and accusations of trolling, make it seem that this is the soert of feminist ideology that recieves the movement's seal of approval.

Which I think will only serve to alienate the moderates.


(snark on)

Of course. Since attention just happens to fall on SR, and all the myths and misrepresentations just happen to spontaneously arise like maggots from wheat, and closed threads and accusations of trolling just happen to result, then the SR essay must be at fault. Not the content, just the fact that it exists. Couldn't possibly be due to another factor that's elided in your explanation? Like, say, THE TROLLING?

It's interesting to see victim-blaming elision directed at an essay. Maybe it shouldn't have dressed like that.
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Re: Rhys Morgan wants us to "fuck off and die".

Postby Yallery Brown » Tue Oct 09, 2012 3:41 pm

SubMor wrote:
Yallery Brown wrote:Because if you're being asked to identify your potentially according to a trait that you are set against you might well be insulted.

You might be, but that's not what SR does. I think I need to say it a few more times: That's not what SR does. That's not what SR does. That's not what SR does!


No, it's a matter of some inference. But my comment was in response to a poster who seemed oblivious as to why anyone would affronted by the suggestion of being identified as a "potential whateverthefuck".

Are we talking about the same article? I think your summary is somewhat less than satisfactory.


I'm talking about the Schrodinger's Rapist blogpost from 2009.

Same thing?

Yes it is a pecadillo. Most women do not react so strongly to merely being approached and/or 'hit on' in general. Most people don't immediately associate it with such harmful activity as rape. Not everyone subscribes to her logic or is cognizant of her numbers. Hopefully when people read of her particular objections to the smelly or tattoed.

A pecadillo - "I don't like it - it is icky - to be spoken to in public by strangers".

Something of substance - "It is a horrible violation to be raped".

Now even if you draw an association between your pecadillos and your arguments of substance, the pecadillo is a pecadillo.

It's a useful tool because it helps to illustrate a perspective that many people find alien. I don't see how that qualifies as "overweening support of" something that "is not good for this community."


It clearly puts a lot of people off who might otherwise be supportive, and there are a number of reasons, some quite solid, for finding it alien or objectionable.
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