Attack of the American Girlyban

Your burka says no, but your knees say YES YES YES! 

NOTE: I have just edited and slightly modified this earlier foundational post on the Skepchick-ElevatorGate-Dawkins et.al. brouhaha.  It was offered back then as pointed satirical levity in response to all the online chatter in the skeptical blog-sphere at the time.

There was no way of predicting that Rebecca Watson would…how do the kids say these days?…remix..my web parody piece into an actual work of living performance art by deciding to go full freakin’ Girlyban over the course of the following year(s). Remember those early initial whines were coming from a Youtube video broadcast from the relative safety (is anywhere really “safe”?  Pearls? Clutched!) of her Girlyban Bunker.

In her latest missive, likely smuggled out of Girlyban HQ by (Richard) carrier pigeon, she bows out of attending the TAM meeting being held in the heavily occupied luxurious South Point Hotel, Casino and Spa and Debauching area, probably because it is located in the dangerous outlaw territory of Afghanistan Las Vegas.

Some of the greatest men of skepticism and science were taken completely unaware last week, when an internal coup attempt unexpectedly sprang up from within the very heart of the skeptical movement.  In a move that threatens to upend the very foundations of the skeptic/atheist movement, a dedicated group of sleeper females, though wit, great cooking, and feminine guile, gradually infiltrated the heralded halls of rational intelligentsia.  I have chosen to label them as the American Girlyban for reasons that shall become quite clear.

Entire herds of atheist males are now frozen from panic and shock.  Skeptics are increasingly becoming more skeptical.  Some All are facing exhaustion from endlessly dodging incoming rounds from Girlyban snipers on skeptic websites.  Others suffer from the nausea of just running around in circles getting more skeptical and hysterical at the same time.  It’s a scene reminiscent of that Alien movie, right after the baby beast comes ripping out through the chest cavity of that dude on the gurney.

These crafty Girlyban infiltrators are using psychological warfare tactics on the guys.  This is so NOT COOL.  It’s OK to use a logic bomb to fry the circuits of an out-of-control sci-fi movie robot, (by putting them in an endless loop until they explode in smoke and fire-DUH).  It a violation to the spirit of camaraderie, if not the Geneva convention, to use them against your fellow travelers.   But it’s foolish to complain that terrorists don’t follow the rules, because then they wouldn’t be terrorists would they?

Many atheist men, (and some of the atheist women who love them) are concerned with the direction of the atheist movement now that the warlord Captain Benedict PZ Arnold Myers threw his vast and powerful virtual army of support to the side of the rapidly swelling Muslima coalition, now being referred to by some insiders as the Octopussy Coalition Girlyban Apologetic Society (GAS).

Some of the guys sensed the early warning signs.  There were whispers of discontent early on, specially with the imposed addition of lighted make-up mirrors in the unisex bathrooms  in the Atheist Freedom Center.  It was a bad omen, but proper social decorum, then as now, seemed to require those who spoke up be labeled as misogynistic douchbags or worse, much, much worse.  Many men sighed, gave up, and  just started wearing make-up themselves.  The old adage, “If you can’t beat ‘em join ‘em” was adopted.

The history of guy-liner use within the rationalist community is still a touchy subject, but I’m not here to dance the Gish Gallop, so let’s get on with the ball.  It’s already too late to un-think the horror of what might happen if warlord Captain Benedict PZ Arnold Myers were to meet an out of control Girlyban bikini-wax enthusiast.***  He’s known as a guy who’ll  kiss up to nearly anything in a (non-Catholic) skirt.

***Consider yourselves lucky Google image search returned a null result for “bearded guy gets bikini wax”  EVEN with safe search turned OFF…..nuff said.

My personal fear is that all this feminine familiarity is leading  PZ down a path of succulent female temptations ruination.  The atheist community has been longing for its own honest-to-goodness sex scandal of Haggardian proportions for quite some time now.  I know it is horrible to contemplate, but seeing how the world survived goatse boy, it might survive if pics of PZ popped up showing him wrestling nude in pudding with even the most grizzled of the Muslima coalition.

You’d think WMD’s need to actually exist to have an effect, but we all know better.  The actual existence of the zombie elevator guy, with a penchant for caffeine fueled sex romps, proves even a phantom threat can be ginned up to a full scale Girlyban cyber-battle.  Enter Richard Dawkins.

Richard Dawkins, one of the founding fathers of new atheism (“Four Horsemen“), was blindsided by a barrage of verbal shrapnel, after innocently stumbling into a well hidden landmine planted by a fully embedded American Girlyban operative.  The poor guy had no idea the “hell on Earth” he was unleashing by simply offering his reasonable, if opposing opinion, to a prominent Girlyban missive.

What Mr Dawkins, a native Brit didn’t realize, is that his contrary opinion on a subject the American Girlyban (AG) considered as long settled American atheist tribal law, was being received by the AG community with the same enthusiasm the Muslim community feels toward artists of Mohammed cartoons.  I’d caution Mr. Dawkins about getting cornered late at night in a hotel elevator by any American woman with multicolor hair and a tendency to imagine sexual dragons where none exist.  My suggested solution to these fearful trembling atheist flowers to “shoot first and let God sort out the rapists from the coffee addicts” probably isn’t making the world any safer for either Mr. Dawkins or myself.  Still, I have a duty to concerned female skeptics to offer practical suggestions geared to solve the problem, whether they embrace them or not.

Muslima “MadMaMa” aka Skepchick (alias Rebecca Watson) lobbed the initial IED (irritatingly exasperating detour).  MadMama appears below, in her latest posting to YouTube (from her secure, unknown bunker just slightly north, east, south and west of Baghdad – near the still hidden WMD’s).  This is a classic use of social media to bypass the “men” in charge at the top.  The irony of her having learned and copied it from a sexist man living in a cave in a Pakistan suburb, just makes the irony more profound.

And just like the Taliban, the American Girlyban are fed up with the lurid sexual nature of a depraved Western culture..  Here’s a previous example of their ‘outrage’ to the subject of blending their sexuality with their role in skepticism:

In hindsight, it’s obvious these wily operatives were just filling the atheist church pews with easy prey to make future example out of.  Is it any wonder a mob of slobbering, World of Warcraft addicted, socially awkward basement dwellers are starting to invade their ‘space’?,  Contrary to their more recent proclamations, their history of their deceit is well documented.  Right now they’re still playing out the “Bush – “We don’t torture” phase of their disinformation campaign.  Give it a couple months and they’ll be BRAGGING about the abuse and claiming it’s a necessary tool in their war against ‘creepy elevator guys’.  Watch and see.

The American Girlyban are even more scary than their Muslim counterparts, if for no other reason than the wild mood swings.

Enjoy.

107 thoughts on “Attack of the American Girlyban

  1. Thanks for getting Amanda to ban your ass for threadjacking, and in the future, please rename your blog to the “dim channel”.

    Thank you very much.

    • Somehow, I’ll manage to survive. I don’t do the banning thing here, even to people who I disagree with, or who are just disagreeable. The fact of the matter is you’re all wound way to freakin’ tight.

      I’m glad you took the time to announce my banishment. It says way more about feminine based dedication to ‘free speech’ than any of the more minor abuses I’m satirically skewering.

      Banning a contrary commenter is also something the skeptic community sees happening to us a lot in the other extremist cult weblogs (creationists, evolution deniers, fundamentalists).

      Enjoy.

      • You skewered something? I must have missed it.

        But while we’re on the topic. Why exactly were you banned?

      • Commenters on Pandagon do not get banned for being disagreeable or contrary. As far as I know, the only reason anyone gets banned there is for being “dumber than a stick.” I’m guessing that your inability to form a cogent response to an argument is what qualified you for banning.
        I also suspect that the reason you haven’t felt a need to ban idiot commenters who drag down the quality of discussion is because you don’t have that many commenters in the first place and because most of the morons here agree with you, not because you are taking a principled stand on “free speech,” whatever it is you think that means.

  2. Well done, Shemonster. But alas, he ignored that same link in his previous thread.
    http://thetimchannel.wordpress.com/2011/07/04/skepchick-blues/

    That he has escalated to comparing feminism to Islam doesn’t surprise me either. But it’s ironic that he is now resorting to the tactics of creationist to defend his point of view from fellow atheists. To wit, using charged language, lies (the video promoting Skepchick isn’t made by skepchick) and the sort of “Ms. Watson = Taliban” rhetoric that I thought you could only find on Fox News. One would have thought that anyone who valued reasoned argument and evidence would be ashamed to engage in such tactics.

    In his previous thread he has been reduced to poking new posters whom perhaps he believes he can overcome based on how pissed they are at the time, or to agree with their frothing agreement with him. Thus leaving established queries, arguments and questions unanswered. This man is not interested in reason when it extends into any corner he’d sooner have left alone.

    The fact remains that what he “suffers” from now is the result of a wave of unjustified male hysteria that then broke raggedly on the sharp edges of fact (and no…denial of fact does not remove fact, unless you’re a creationist). Calling Mr. Meyers a traitor because a mass of people, Mr. Dawkins included, couldn’t be bothered to think before responding to precisely the sort of inflammatory rhetoric Tim himself is spouting, is shoveling coal on his own merry little bonfire.

    Perhaps we should be asking Tim why HE wants to split the atheist movement?

  3. Wow, I landed over here and have been wading into this uproar after seeing your comment over at John Cole’s.. what a mess!

    Do yourself a favor and tune in down a bit – and this is already further than I want to get involved in this nonsense – but I think you’ll find that making a stink about reverse sexism is just as ridiculous as all the reverse racism garbage on Fox News.

    btw: I’m an American student living in Jena, Germany – where are you at?

  4. If you’re offended by the contents of this post, or if you attempt to link any of it to the ‘reality’ of the original events, let me give you a clue. It’s offered as humorous satirical fiction and relies on a good dose of hyperbole for effect.

    If you were unable to fathom this, after two posts of mine on the subject, you would be wise to quit your furious commenting and return to the completion of you high school equivalency exam.

    Enjoy.

    • Oh…
      That was meant to be funny?

      So…all of your entries are satire, or just these two? Even if its just these two on this topic, apparently the humor niche you’re going for are exactly those who could use the advice most. Presuming, that is, that they DID think it was funny.

      So… you don’t actually believe Mr. Dawkins is being unjustifiably lynched, that Mr. Myers is a traitor to atheism or that Ms. Watson should have kept her mouth shut at all?

      Well, that’s excellent.

      Sorry for the misunderstanding.

      • Godfrey, in the other thread he went from his original “man up” position, to claiming that his “only ‘argument’ is that she’s complaining about HUMAN NATURE,” to “devil’s advocate,” to some incoherent concern about having to “keep hearing about it again and again.” It’s pretty clear that he doesn’t actually think much about this, other than that for some reason being asked to have empathy with a woman makes him feel funny, and so he’s going to keep claiming that his position is whatever he thinks will make those who disagree with him look unreasonable—not that he’s even doing a good job of that. We can’t really expect any consistency from this guy, and I doubt he’s even capable of it anyway.

      • I have nothing to cite that would support a contrary opinion at this time.

        However… It has been whispered to me that he may be being conveniently awkward and contrary in order to boost his site hits. In which case, I have been well and truly duped. Such is the fate of those who would seek to actually stand for what Tim feigns to hold dear.

        Another amusing theory… Could this insane male response be localized to a very vocal overlap be tween skepticism/atheism and libertarianism? One wonders sometimes.

      • I agree with Dawkins. I disagree with PZ and Skepchick. That’s about all there is to it really. The rest is just embellishment for diversion and entertainment. Maybe you actually think they installed make-up mirrors in the ‘unisex’ bathrooms at the Atheist headquarters e.g.? FWIW, I don’t write for a sixth grade level. I’m using sixth grade material at a college level. I know it’s confusing, but try to keep up.

      • More sleight-of-hand ad hominem attacks? How predictable of you. Notice that I haven’t had to resort to insulting you once, even indirectly, to get my points across. Those sorts of tactics, including hiding behind satire, are the last bastions of the thoroughly unreasoned. Please don’t hide there.

        I know you have opinions. Have you any evidence?

    • “I agree with Dawkins. I disagree with PZ and Skepchick. That’s about all there is to it really.”

      If that’s all there is to it, and you don’t want to add anything or engage meaningfully on the matter, then why on Earth did you write a blog post about it? If you don’t think there is anything worthwhile you can contribute to the conversation that Dawkins hasn’t already said, then why would you run around the internet injecting links to your blog into conversations between people who do have something to add, and do want to actually engage with other people’s ideas?

      If you do have something worthwhile to add, and do want to engage (it’s clear that you don’t) then please respond to the actual criticisms that have been offered. You have done basically everything but answer the questions that Godfrey and I have asked, and then you imply that we’re too dense to get your brilliant satire.

      • On satire… Because it amuses me.

        “Satire (n.) – An obsolete kind of literary composition in which the vices and follies of the author’s enemies were expounded with imperfect tenderness. In this country satire never had more than a sickly and uncertain existence, for the soul of it is wit, wherein we are dolefully deficient, the humor that we mistake for it, like all humor, being tolerant and sympathetic. Moreover, although Americans are ‘endowed by their Creator’ with abundant vice and folly, it is not generally known that these are reprehensible qualities, wherefore the satirist is popularly regarded as a sour-spirited knave, and his every victim’s outcry for codefendants evokes a national assent.” [Ambrose Bierce, "Devil's Dictionary," 1911]”

        But then that may not be college level enough, so…

        “satire definition
        A work of literature that mocks social conventions, another work of art, or anything its author thinks ridiculous. Gulliver’s Travels, by Jonathan Swift, is a satire of eighteenth-century British society.”

        And finally, for the traditionalists …

        “sat·ire [sat-ahyuhr] –noun
        1. the use of irony, sarcasm, ridicule, or the like, in exposing, denouncing, or deriding vice, folly, etc.
        2. a literary composition, in verse or prose, in which human folly and vice are held up to scorn, derision, or ridicule.
        3. a literary genre comprising such compositions.”

        enjoy.

  5. I share your great disappointment with PZ. The Pharyngulites and the Skepchicks (a silly name) are becoming increasingly irrational. The threads at Pharyngula are filling up with abuse, and they bring shame on the “Gnu Atheists” (another silly name). This proliferation of abuse, as well as the censorship of views that they disagree with, shows that the “Gnu Atheist” movement is turning into a cult.

    • I don’t know if I’d go as far as that. Many humorless prigs perhaps. Some easily offended females. Not as much intellectualism as I would have expected.

      For example, not one person has even NOTED my concerns about how this type of inappropriate behavior is suppose to be the fault of creepy elevator guy in light of the fact that the most prominent members of the atheist community don’t buy into the idea that humans possess free will. I can pull up YouTube debates with any number of the most distinguished members of the atheist movement where they elegantly explain away the crimes of even serial killers (not joking here folks) by carefully stepping through a rather solid framework of logical and proven, scientific observations on the nature of the human mind.

      I’m not pointing this out because I necessarily agree or disagree on their opinions regarding free will. That’s irrelevant to the matter. I know what they believe because they’ve been more than happy to share it far and wide. I’m thankful to them for their efforts. I’m looking for one of them to explain why, when I, for the sake of consistency and clarification, try to apply it in the case of a much more minor ‘crime’ committed by the now notorious “Creepy Elevator Guy”, the issue of free will gets chucked out the window, along with what looks like quite a few pairs of unnecessary and unused male gonads.

      I cannot cope with the cognitive dissonance of hearing female rationalists applaud an honored member of the the atheist community when they are making the observations I noted above about ‘free will’ in one their public appearances/speeches/debates, and then, turn around 180 degrees and blast the inappropriate ‘decisions’ made by elevator guy.

      The idea isn’t that we’re suppose to let serial killers run free because they aren’t,… um… personally responsible for their actions. It’s just that we ought to instill a retribution free method of incarceration (the public does need protection – atheist don’t believe in God, they’re obviously not idiots). In the meantime, some posit that there may be a cure found to ‘fix’ the mixture of social/biological damage that keeps serial killers from being able to stop serially killing people. That’s an extreme example, and I’m using it because I recently saw Sam Harris using it in one of his talks concerning the subject.

      To sleep. Per chance to dream. Dreams of a future when every CEG (creepy elevator guy), along with the odd serial killers, can be cured of the many potential maladies inherent in being human.

      Please don’t hate on me. I’m one of the good guys. I fully support gay rights, accept that religion is total bullshit, and think you ought to be kind and show the proper deference to both puppies and women.

      • If the argument is that EG acted without agency because he has no free will, and therefore Ms. Watson has no grounds for complaint, then go there and show it. Dig into those arguments made by the greatest of atheists, carefully step through a rather solid framework of logical and proven, scientific observations on the nature of the human mind, and apply them to EG. Seriously. Make the points and make them stick.

        But then you go on to say that maybe you don’t agree that we don’t have free will. And that the real issue is that people who applauded the arguments you mentioned before refuse to see that the same reasoning applies to EG. And if they like it or a serial killer they should like it equally for him. Not that it necessarily makes what he did or serial-killing okay.

        If you want to go there, go there. I’d like to see it. However this again drives us away from the original incident and its context. The context was that a talk on the topic of what can be done to make women more comfortable within the atheist movement had just been delivered. And it wasn’t a new topic that day, the discussion of what keeps women away or makes them uncomfortable at meetings had been circulating for some time. It was a known issue. The speaker was Ms. Watson. and as a frequent attendee of such meetings she is and was quite qualified to speak on the matter. Then that night at 4am EG, who had been present to hear the presentation, did what he had been just been advised that he should not. Ms. Watson, possibly chagrined as many of us are when people seem to not have heard a word of it then mentioned the incident as one of may items in a vlog (video) on youtube, which is a thing she does from time to time, nothing new there.

        EG was not and still remains unnamed. EG was not insulted. Men as a class were not insulted. Ms. Watson reiterated points made during her earlier talk and advised men in general not to do what EG did. Her reason being that it made her and would make other women at such events uncomfortable. Clearly thinking that we all wanted less of that, and more women in attendance.

        It’s important at this point not to confuse the base issue with the many-headed monsters that sprouted thereafter. Many people disagreed and did so publicly. Many people spoke up in agreement likewise. However, whatever criticism or approval is to be apportioned, it should be in regards to and in perspective of the original matter at hand. Things went seriously bad when people started arguing not over the root issue but the characterizations of the root issue. Satire, if you will, took center stage and the resulting noise and conflict is what has wedged things.

        At this point, pouring more gasoline onto things from either side is irrational. And where I see satire, or hyperbole, or insults and derision thrown about seemingly more for the sake of “we’re right” than discussing the real issue I will speak up.

        At this point I’m looking for every atheist and skeptic to calm down and figure out just what they’re so worked up about.

    • Abuse is piling up on all sides of the issue, yes. This is largely due to the employment of increasingly charged rhetoric, and on occasion, ignorance of the original issue at hand (sometimes willful). However I haven’t seen any censorship (links please). And a group of people who don’t share your opinions are not automatically a cult. Particularly when at least as many people arguing against them are behaving in the same manner.

      And names are irrelevant, no matter what you think of them.

  6. More sleight-of-hand ad hominem attacks? How predictable of you.

    More sleight-of-hand ad hominem attacks? How predictable of you.

    • I said what I said because Tim did something similar, or seemed to, when responding to Phil in his other thread. He’d done it once, this was “again”.

      That said, I was citing his statement as unproductive, not insulting him personally to undermine a point he was making. I don’t know him personally. And my debate barometer says that the first person to hurl insults is usually the one who’s got no argument.

      I made no such fallacious attack, and repeating me like a parrot is also unproductive.

  7. Watson has form on attacking prominent atheists. A similar shitshorm erupted in April when Watson launched a vendetta against Professor Lawrence Krauss who dared to defend his friend Jeffrey Epstein against charges of soliciting underage women.

    http://www.thearmchairskeptic.com/2011/05/rebecca-watson-engages-in-demagoguery.html

    The same hysteria, the same unjust accusations and the same rush to judgment occurred as Watson’s supporters called for Krauss’ head.

    • I am aware of that incident, but I was unaware of the involvement you mentioned. Interesting, relevant and solid addition to the subject. Really a breath of fresh air in amidst a bevy of responses much less worthy.

      To be sure, it was the unglued attack on Dawkins that caused my entry into this maelstrom. The more I looked into it, the more my opinion of atheist feminism soured. And let’s be clear on one thing. This appears to be an American based movement. I’m gobsmacked these girls are wasting time kneecapping Dawkins (for starters) all the while the fundamentalist religious freaks are busily motoring along restricting access to abortion.
      I fully expect to see the Skepchick crowd signing on with Michelle Bachman’s anti-pornography pledge any day now.

      Enjoy.

      • Before I begin I suppose you might like me to apologize for my “much less worthy” contributions. That’s sleight-of-hand ad hominem number 3 and counting against your critics on this subject.

        As to your opinion of atheist feminism. I have to wonder if it’s only within atheism that feminism upsets you so. Regardless I think this may be worth reading, though I don’t expect it to change your mind:
        http://gretachristina.typepad.com/greta_christinas_weblog/2011/07/why-we-have-to-talk-about-this.html

        Also, it makes hypocrites of the entire movement if we decry inequalities among theists while we tolerate or foster them within our ranks. So no matter what atrocities the religious are up to. It doesn’t excuse us, as atheists, of anything.

        Finally, from someone who actually lives in the sea of religious, conservative, and frankly blind constituents who have elected Bachman time and again despite my best efforts to prevent if (by voting at the very least), I don’t find that comment at all helpful or constructive. Saying that women in atheism have the right to be heard and taken seriously without being dismissed is not the same as making them fundamentalist christian conservatives and you know it well.

        Besides you, and whomever made the video you posted, clearly think that the skepchicks like being sexualized. At least enough that you have used that also as a reason that their concerns should be dismissed.

    • Not at all like the hysteria, unjust accusations and rush to judgment of people who read her advice and didn’t like it.

      Having read trough the satire, and then the serious article, it is clear that Mr Epstien is the villain of the piece, and clearly did commit a crime. In his (Mr. Krause’s) place I would not have spoken up for Epstien, but that’s me, not Mr. Krause. I don’t approve of Mr. Krause’s defense, and would have spoken out against it…but would not then also assume that he is/was involved in or complicit with Mr. Epstiens actions.

      In the context of this thread you are clearly trying to build a case that Ms. Watson has a pattern of attacking high-visibility atheists and skeptics. Is it really a pattern though? Or is it natural that a well established and self-described feminist would 1) have a problem with and 2) want to talk about an atheist who seems to be defending underage prostitution? Just as the same person would be likely to talk about the discomfort of women at atheist gatherings when it’s the topic on the table.

      This is not self-promotion. This is following the issues that she has always and will always follow. And I predict that any issue she speaks out on which also involves a even a perceived misstep by any prominent athiest will be likely to upset you.

      • Godfrey, if you go to the youtube version of that video, you will see that it was made by skepchick.org. They are promoting themselves. If you still find it negative publicity, then you will be coming around to our point of view.

      • Which video are you referring to? Ms. Watson’s initial video which began “Elevatorgate”, or the video Tim posted promoting Skepchick?

  8. I believe Rebecca Watson is influenced in her feminist approach by Minnesota atheist Amanda Marcotte. Marcotte was outspoken in 2006 over the Duke University lacrosse case, where three students were wrongly accused of rape. “Marcotte declared on her blog that people who defended the wrongly accused Duke students were ‘rape-loving scum.’ ” (Wikipedia)

    • Possibly. She has cited Marcotte as among her supporters in “Elevatorgate”. That does not mean that they share a brain any more than Mr. Krause and Mr. Epstien share a brain.

      Even were this well established it would not make her initial comments and advice which spawned “Elevatorgate” unreasonable or antagonistic. And further would not justify the massive backlash she received as a result.

      • She has cited Marcotte as among her supporters in “Elevatorgate”.

        Can you provide a link to support this claim?

      • If you’re considering this affirmation of your previous statement which purported that Ms. Watson is somehow Doing the same thing Ms. Marcotte did in regards to the Duke incident. It isn’t. It’s still irrelevant. Ms. Watson accused no one, insulted no one and attacked no one. Any evidence you may produce to the contrary in regards to “Elevatorgate” will in all likelihood be her responses to the backlash which were still measured if more vehement, and nothing like the things being said to her by her detractors.

  9. Godfrey, you know very well which video I am referring to, and it is dishonest of you to pretend otherwise. It must be embarrassing for you to have been proven so wrong.

    • Fine, I’ll play this little game.

      If you mean her first video which sparked the inferno. Then it’s not self promotion for the reason that it has been and is one of her regularly used channels. Also that the anecdote and advice were offered casually amid a lot of other “news” of what she’d been up to recently, which was also not uncommon. Saying this is self-promotion begs the notion that if she had something like this to say she should have said it… On someone else’s blog? In a newspaper, some venue she’s NOT affiliated with? What exactly would have been the non-self pro motive way to broach the subject have been? To have someone else say it for her maybe? She thought it. She said it. She said it herself and in her own space.

      The fact that it then got a mountain of offended attention was not her intention nor was it her fault.

      Now, if you meant the promotional video which followed (note that both are posted above, so it was a fair question), then the answer is even simpler. Skepchick and Ms. Watson did not make it. It’s not their video. It was made by Rystefn, and was an entry in a contest the Skepchicks held to make promotional videos. They are no more responsible for its specific content than any contest holder (in any creative medium) is for the content of the submissions they receive. That having been established, Skepchick as a web site and as a YouTube channel are allowed to promote themselves and expand their audience. If you watch the contest video, you will note Ms. Watson does not even appear in it, and it is not a video promoting herself or her views.

      “Godfrey, if you go to the youtube version of that video, you will see that it was made by skepchick.org. They are promoting themselves. If you still find it negative publicity, then you will be coming around to our point of view.”

      Finally… When two videos were posted. Asking you to clarify which one you mean by “that video” does not make me wrong. My first inclination was to think you meant Ms. Watson’s video, (which I have covered above). But then I thought to myself, “he can’t seriously mean that one,” and thought perhaps you were confused about the precise origin of Rystefn’s promotional video contest entry.

      There is a difference between Skepchick trying to widen their readership as a group, and your previous unlinked and unproven allegation that Ms. Watson specifically is attempting to promote herself by attacking high-profile atheists.

      What Skepchick has done with the contest is very like what our host Tim has done by posting links to this and his previous thread on the topic over at Pharyngula and possibly other blogs. So in that respect if Skepchick can be said to be guilty of self-promotion, so can Tim.

      And now the meat: Whether any of this has or has not served to expand Skepchick’s readership, or done anything good or bad to Ms. Watson’s personal reputation is immaterial to the original issue. Which is ; that what was posted in that video above (Ms. Watsons – I’m being specific) was not an attack on men, was not intrinsically inflammatory, and in no way justified the backlash that so many leapt onto to create “Elevatorgate”.

      Accusing her of self promotion is just another tactic designed to dismiss her legitimate concerns by calling her motives into question without substantiation of any sort.

      And I am neither wrong nor have any reason to be embarrassed, but your concern is appreciated, Silkworm.

      • We’re all guilty of a fair bit of self promotion, but I’m not using mine to collect money from people who wish to support rationalism, only to see it being used to host feminist whine fests at Skeptic funded events.

        I don’t think for a minute that Skepchick realized that what she said in her infamous video would lead to what is happening. It’s just an issue that was jostling about in her head that she felt compelled to comment on. It’s not so much that she was ‘wrong’ to bring it up. It’s the idea that those who disagree with her conclusions (Richard Dawkins, e.g.) become “fair game” for attack, not unlike an apostate of Scientology (or Mormonism) is treated.

        I fault her for not immediately calling off the American Girlyban, specially when Pandagon (Amanda Marcotte) decided to ‘self promote’ the issue (and continue to conflate what could just as easily been an awkward pickup situation/line) into an epic battle between the sexes.

        Enjoy.

      • The second video promotes the Skepckicks as “sexy,” “hot” and “pretty” (flash picture of Rebecca). Clearly, they are using their bodies to sell their brand of skepticism, in much the same manner as the Children of God use their women (“flirty little fishes”) to bring men into their cult. And then there’s “Hot chicks get drunk and hit on nerds.” These are women who use their sexual power to take control over men, but when a man has the gall to approach them, they scream to high heaven. They do not like men having control. They assimilate that to “privilege” and “misogyny.” They are utter and complete hypocrites. Boobs too.

      • Okay, I see I have a couple of points to speak to.

        First, having a video contest and handing out prizes isn’t collecting money. And in neither video was any donation of any sort solicited. Second, if by “feminist whine fests” you mean discussion of feminism within atheism, and also that you find apportioning the time to that instead of a topic you would personally find more worthy offensive, then I can only say that not all atheists share your priorities and all segments within atheism are allowed a voice. Whether what you want to talk about is High school science curricula, fundamentalism in theism attempting to drive changes in constitutional law or feminist issues within theism and indeed within atheism. Your very characterization invalidates a perfectly valid issue in a derisive manner.

        As to “fair game for attack” she wasn’t offering momentous conclusions to defend. Ms. Watson related an anecdote, and dispensed some reasonable advice in an honest, non-inflammatory and casual manner. She did not mention rape. She did not name or insult EG personally. She did not insult all men as a class or tell them never to talk to women ever.

        I’m going to leap back and forth a bit between your second and third paragraphs now. What was and is astonishing is the level of upset that her video caused in the first place. Even before Ms. Marcotte and Mr. Dawkins or even Mr. Myers got involved, the backlash against what she INITIALLY said was already at high tide. So, before we can say she made Mr. Dawkins fair game for attack, we have to ask who made Ms. Watson fair game for attack. Because she was attacked. Read the comments to see the attacks she received. The top two comments (should you visit the video on youtube now) are examples of completely missing the point, and are temperate as that goes. But both conclude that by even making the statement that her feelings and impressions (which are as widely echoed as they are dismissed) were either unworthy, unproductive or insulting. They dismiss legitimate concerns. And when real attacks occur in real elevators and that this did NOT result in attack on anyone from Ms. Watson, I see no justification for this summary, accusatory and derisive dismissal.

        I’ve never been to Pandagon. Before the last week or so I’d never been to Skepchick.org or the Skepchick Youtube Channel. But whatever Ms. Marcotte then said, conflatory or not, was also a reaction. Post-facto. The attack had already begun and it was coming at Ms. Watson. “Elevatogate” had happened So yes, there was a counterattack. There usually are. And I don’t hold Ms. Watson responsible for her every commenter, nor do I hold Mr. Dawkins for every dismissive trope employed that supports his view.

        For Mr. Dawkins, the fact of the matter is that he need not have commented. Now this should sound familiar. It should sound a lot like telling Ms. Watson she shouldn’t have spoken up, perhaps Mr. Dawkins could have spent his day attending to issues more important to atheism? Is that fair. no not really. And that’s the point. No more fair for him than Ms. Watson. Also, where Ms. Watson could have no idea of what was about to occur, the inferno of “Elevatorgate” was already melting basalt (so to speak). And, he chose to step in. I don’t know how informed he was when he stepped in. But when he did, he did so with flippancy and sarcasm. Making fallacious arguments that he later denied making (that a very bad thing makes a less bad thing not bad). And as he went on demonstrated that (either with full information or not), that in his view feminism within atheism was negligible. In doing so, he dug his own hole. He might as well have said that the victims of molestation by catholic priests should quiet down because at least they hadn’t been bombed in an abortion clinic. It’s the same argument. Still alive and molested is less bad than dead. It;s fallacious. And no one would ever argue it isn’t. But, because broadly speaking men (and some women) don’t feel the threat of an elevator at 4am with a stranger, for those it does affect it can be dismissed as “zero bad”. It’s still fallacious. Would be fallacious even if Ms. Watson had said she was sure she’d be raped (which she didn’t) or said that she fears all men (which she didn’t) or that men shouldn’t ever pick up women (which she also didn’t).

        So instead of defending Mr. Dawkins for stepping blithely into terra incognita and upsetting people, why are you not interested in the first wave of elevatorgate? The one Mr. Dawkins eventually joined of what could be argued is his own free will (presuming he has one). The one that came crashing down on Ms. Watson. And inspired so many others (men and women alike, Ms. Marcotte and Mr. Myers included) to speak against those antagonists, Mr. Dawkins, or both.

      • “The second video promotes the Skepckicks as “sexy,” “hot” and “pretty” (flash picture of Rebecca). Clearly, they are using their bodies to sell their brand of skepticism, in much the same manner as the Children of God use their women (“flirty little fishes”) to bring men into their cult. And then there’s “Hot chicks get drunk and hit on nerds.” These are women who use their sexual power to take control over men, but when a man has the gall to approach them, they scream to high heaven. They do not like men having control. They assimilate that to “privilege” and “misogyny.” They are utter and complete hypocrites. Boobs too.”

        Silkworm… Those weren’t their words. I’m not even sure those were all their images. Contest entrants were not given a script.

        Apart from which, Ms. Watson has herself said that she doesn’t mind being hit on (see link previously provided). The point was that time, place and circumstances made it unwise and her uncomfortable and made EG, in doing it, look a bit dense.

        That said that does not mean that they cannot HAVE a sexuality or express it. Even to promote skepticism, atheism or even site traffic. Again this was not JUST Ms. Watson, but Skepchicks as a group. And just because they can and have allowed themselves to be seen as sexy, does not make all sexual advances toward them fair game under all circumstances. You can get into a fair amount trouble for accosting a stripper outside the club, which is an extreme example of the same thing. Having a sexuality, even a visible one, does not nullify one’s concerns or boundaries.

        This is common trope. It is fallacious and immaterial. It could only prove that you believe that any woman who uses sex for any reason should never complain if anything vaguely sexual should make her uncomfortable or occur against her will.

        Further… at what point did men’s control become an issue? Unless… Do you mean the ability of men to tell her to stop complaining?

      • And in neither video was any donation of any sort solicited.

        Self-promotion does not have to involve solicitation for money, but she does get paid for speaking. She is drumming up business for herself as a speaker, and at the same time she is drumming up men to have sex with.

        Second, if by “feminist whine fests” you mean discussion of feminism within atheism, and also that you find apportioning the time to that instead of a topic you would personally find more worthy offensive, then I can only say that not all atheists share your priorities and all segments within atheism are allowed a voice.

        The cause of contention is the talk in which Watson chose to attack Stef McGraw. The talk was entitled “The Republican War on Women,” yet Watson chose to go off topic and discuss sexism within the atheist movement. So yes, it turned into a feminist whine fest, and it is totally her fault. She is not serving the interests of atheism or even skepticism. She is serving her own version of feminism, which is sexual narcissism.

        As to “fair game for attack” she wasn’t offering momentous conclusions to defend… She did not mention rape.

        Elevatorgate is a trivial issue, and that is why the Skepchick defenders are trying to drag the focus back to it, but it’s a diversion. The real issue is Podiumgate and the vendetta against Dawkins. In Podiumgate, Watson accused McGraw of “parroting misogynistic thought.” That is a wild and crazy allegation. She was projecting. That is what narcissists do. She was placing her own vindictive fantasies into the mind of McGraw. When people came to McGraw’s defence, including Dawkins, the attacks took off from there.

        Even before Ms. Marcotte and Mr. Dawkins or even Mr. Myers got involved, the backlash against what she INITIALLY said was already at high tide.

        You’ve conveniently left out Podiumgate.

        Because she was attacked.

        She was attacked because she attacked McGraw.

        And I don’t hold Ms. Watson responsible for her every commenter.

        I do, because she has made no attampt to moderate or discourage them.

        For Mr. Dawkins, the fact of the matter is that he need not have commented.

        The fact of the matter is that Watson need not have commented. The fact of the matter is that you need not have commented.

        Is that fair. no not really.

        Congratulations. You just condemned yourself.

        But when he did, he did so with flippancy and sarcasm.

        That’s what trivial events deserve. What happened in the elevator was trivial, but Watson has an elevated sense of her own feelings, because she is a narcissist. And like a narcissist, she quickly switched to victimhood, and this justified her supporters to go on the attack. That’s my opinion.

        And as he went on demonstrated that (either with full information or not), that in his view feminism within atheism was negligible.

        It was off topic.

        He might as well have said that the victims of molestation by catholic priests should quiet down because at least they hadn’t been bombed in an abortion clinic.

        You may not know this, but Dawkins was sexually abused as a child. He knows what he is talking about, and he knows that what happened in that elevator in no way amounts to abuse. What I think happened in that elevator is that Watson’s ego was hurt, but she has cleverly manipulated the situation to turn it into some kind of sexual threat. There are a lot of us who can see through this.

        or that men shouldn’t ever pick up women (which she also didn’t).

        I don’t have the reference to hand, but as I recollect, she did say something to that effect. She seemed to take offence at men making passes at women, and said that they should consider women making the first move. Maybe someone can correct me on this if I am wrong. She couched it in the language of “could” and “maybe,” but I think it was just for appearances. I think she finds men taking the lead as offensive, because it threatens her authority, just as Dawkins threatened her intellectual authority. She is a narcissistic bitch and no one is going to threaten her authority as top bitch.

        Those weren’t their words. I’m not even sure those were all their images. Contest entrants were not given a script.

        Those words and images were endorsed by skepchick.org. It says so on the youtube page. Endorsed. Get it?

        Apart from which, Ms. Watson has herself said that she doesn’t mind being hit on (see link previously provided).

        This is the first time I’ve heard this. If this were true, then it would destroy the argument I made above about her narcissism. I am willing to admit that. However, you say that she said this at the link you provided. That means I am going to have to trawl through all the comments on that page to verify what you said. Can you help me out here? Where precisely can I find this comment?

        The point was that time, place and circumstances made it unwise and her uncomfortable and made EG, in doing it, look a bit dense.

        I still think the whole incident was overblown. It all comes down to her feelings, and we don’t have any feedback from elevator guy to back up what she claims happened. Skepticism is about relying on evidence, and in this case we unfortunately don’t have enough evidence to argue safely about what happened. As I said, I believe Watson is a narcissist, and from my experience with them, they are prone to fantasy, so I don’t find her testimony totally reliable. Harsh, I know, but that’s what skepticism is about. Watson has made the case revolve around her feelings in the elevator. Feelings are subjecticve things. It is next to impossible to mount an objective argument about subjective experiences.

        That said that does not mean that they cannot HAVE a sexuality or express it.

        Of course they can HAVE a sexuality. But by using their sexuality to advertise skepticism ot themselves, they make themselves open to criticism about their sexuality. The message she is sending out is very imprecise and open to interpretation. The second video appears to be saying, “come on to me,” but the first video appears to be saying, “don’t come on to me.” Girlyban indeed.

        You can get into a fair amount trouble for accosting a stripper outside the club, which is an extreme example of the same thing.

        Can we leave out extreme examples please? Extreme examples are strawmen. Elevator guy never touched her, never used the word “sex,” and accepted “no” for an answer. Now he’s being vilified for not recognizing some imaginary boundary. The only conclusion I can make is that Watson is creeped by elevator guy for approaching her in the first place, i.e., for making the first advance, and for not being able to anticipate her answer. How is he supposed to know how she feels unless he asks? As far as I can see, he was being sensitive. He asked, he got given an answer, and he respected that answer. He showed respect. Unfortunately, the Skepchicks are deaf to respect. Instead they throw around wild and unjust accusations of elevator guy being a potential rapist, and while the debate about women’s safety has been useful, let’s not forget that one of the Skepchicks notoriously made false rape allegations against the three men in the Duke lacrosse case, all to satisfy her narcissistic misandrist fantasies. It’s happening all over again with elevator guy. I pity this poor guy, because I have compassion and I try to understand. The Skepchicks have no compassion, only lust. And they have little understanding, because they don’t listen, and they don’t listen, because they are narcissists. They don’t argue in good faith. They don’t respond rationally to cricitism. They just hurl abuse at their critics. In my opinion, they, like PZ, are traitors to the skeptical movement.

        It could only prove that you believe that any woman who uses sex for any reason should never complain if anything vaguely sexual should make her uncomfortable or occur against her will.

        Do you come from the Rebecca Watson school of mind reading, or the Amanda Marcotte school of false rape allegations? Quit it with the false accusations against me, OK? I know there are feminists out there who make it their business to go around accusing men of thought crimes. Are you one of them? If you keep this up, I will get really nasty with you, and then you will feel my wrath. This is a warning.

        Further… at what point did men’s control become an issue? Unless… Do you mean the ability of men to tell her to stop complaining?

        She should restrict the complaining to her blog and her Facebook page. It does not belong at a conference where she has the power of the podium. Address Podiumgate, if you are able… but I’m skeptical.

  10. Here’s Rebecca Watson adding her two cents at the end of this thread.

    http://skepchick.org/2011/07/the-privilege-delusion/

    It was inappropriate because the subject of my talk AND the conversation at the bar was entirely about how I DO NOT WANT TO BE HIT ON/TOUCHED/FUCKED WITH.

    Did you get that? Her talk was ENTIRELY about HERSELF. What a huge ego that woman has. Me me me.

    BTW. No one touched her. She got her way on that, but she’s still complaining as if she were. The woman is a delusional narcissist.

    • She can only speak for herself. The fact that so may other women just happen to agree based on their own life experiences may be vexing, but it’s a fact. Many women do not want to be hit on. Others like being hit on, but not all the time. It’s not up to me or anyone else to define these parameters for any individual regardless of gender. It was her experience. She wasn’t trying to speak for everyone. Just to bring an issue to light (again) and dispense some good advice.

      Re-watch the video. At the root of it, she is complaining that her talk was ignored, her vocally stated wishes were also ignored and that she now (unfortunately) had a case in point to illustrate the issues she spoke of in that talk from immediately following it (which were about sexism within atheism).

      If EG had approached Mr. Dawkins in the elevator at 4am and asked him to come back to his room for coffee after being told that Mr. Dawkins was done for the night, after a long talk he had delivered about common courtesy toward notable atheists, and then Mr. Dawkins mentioned in his blog how not everyone apparently paid attention to the talk, and please don’t bother notable atheists in elevators at 4am when they’ve told you they want to go to sleep…

      Would we be having this conversation about narcissism, vendetta, self-promotion, and how Mr. Dawkins didn’t actually have to go get coffee so why is he complaining?

      • Re-watch the video. At the root of it, she is complaining that her talk was ignored, her vocally stated wishes were also ignored and that she now (unfortunately) had a case in point to illustrate the issues she spoke of in that talk from immediately following it (which were about sexism within atheism).

        1. The only person who she claims ‘ignored’ her talk was a person that I don’t believe was even confirmed to have been at the talk, which I’m pretty sure concluded sometime before four a.m. in the morning. Then there’s the derivation of devious intent from a simple ‘coffee’ request, of which one can not be certain.

        What is certain is that anybody who questions the facts of the incident or her analysis of it, including the estimable Richard Dawkins, became fair game for the Girlyban attack dogs.

        Enjoy

        Enjoy.

      • “1. The only person who she claims ‘ignored’ her talk was a person that I don’t believe was even confirmed to have been at the talk, which I’m pretty sure concluded sometime before four a.m. in the morning. Then there’s the derivation of devious intent from a simple ‘coffee’ request, of which one can not be certain.

        What is certain is that anybody who questions the facts of the incident or her analysis of it, including the estimable Richard Dawkins, became fair game for the Girlyban attack dogs.”

        You do not believe that EG was present. That’s your opinion. However I don’t think M. Watson would have specifically cited him as not paying attention had he not actually been present. That’s my opinion. So we have your belief and my belief. Both beliefs in this case would then be subject to evidence offered in one direction or another. I have seen is said in a few places that his attendance was confirmed. Who confirmed this and based on what I do not have at my fingertips at present. However my belief is not reliant on implicitly accusing Ms. Watson of lying. Perhaps you don’t intend to do this, and perhaps you do. Not being you I can’t say.

        As to devious intent… Well there are clearly shades of devious, but let’s deconstruct this. After a public talk and a long night at the bar (until 4am), EG never availed himself of the opportunity to speak to, be introduced to, or make his invitation to Ms. Watson. Instead, he waits until she has declared her intention to go to bed and that she’s done for the night and then does it when he has her all to himself in an elevator. I say “has her all to himself” not “when she’s vulnerable” or “where she can’t easily get away” because although these are in fact also true they may not in fact reflect his mindset. It’s entirely possible that EG is just shy and prefers not to make his overtures where he may be publicly seen to be rejected. However, regardless of his intent. He proceeds to preface his overture with “don’t take this the wrong way”, which always means the person saying it knows that it either can or will be taken the wrong way and is trying to mitigate it beforehand. However this rarely works (as in the case of statements that begin “no disrespect intended” which always then contain disrespect). He then asks her to go to a more private place, his room, still at 4am. And he asks her to come and talk and have coffee. They had coffee at the bar. Bars do. Rooms, if they have coffee, is rarely good coffee. So saying his intentions were purely platonic, given the timing and circumstances, is dubious to laughable depending on your point of view. I can say no more about EG than that he embarked on a path that was doomed to failure given the information he had at hand, and also that he either did not pay any attention to the talk or the post-talk conversation in the bar – or did pay attention and decided he knew better what Ms. Watson’s intentions and preferences were than she did herself. You will notice that at no point did I or Ms. Watson in her video ever say he intended to attack her. He doesn’t need to have intended to attack her to merit the comments Ms. Watson made.

        Also, I don’t understand why it needed questioning in the first place. EG still remains anonymous and immune from anyone’s questioning, criticism or abuse if any were to be offered. Also he has not come forward to contradict Ms. Watson, who has had all of the above. He was not put on trial or accused of anything except perhaps missing the point (which is self-evident by his actions), men also were not put on trial or attacked. Only after a crashing wave of inexplicable disquiet about Ms. Watson’s remarks descended, did anyone begin to question the motives of those who seemed so insistent that she never should have spoken up about it at all. Further, your continued use of phrases like “attack dogs” and “girlyban” show that you do not intend to argue in good faith, merely to bolster opinion on one side.

        If you indeed seek to question events or facts in this case, then do so in a way that is rooted in reasoned argument and understanding of the events and issues in question. It is unproductive to make slanted statements that question Ms. Watson’s motives or accuse her of lying (however obliquely) in an attempt to render her experience and advice as negligible, insulting or irrelevant. Attacking her and not arguing what she actually said is the definition of ad hominem. If you’re under attack for your opinions, please measure them against the facts and the reasoning attached thereto. I don’t think your frequently charged any hyperbolic view of what occurred is doing you any favors.

        Finally, You did not even attempt to address whether a similar set of circumstances would have been a discourtesy had it been Mr. Dawkins in the elevator in Dublin that he then could have remarked upon without being attacked as Ms. Watson was. Instead you chose to question her veracity. This then looks to me as though you still don’t grasp the issue. But as I’m not you, I cannot say whether this is the case, or whether you’re simply more interested in demonizing feminists within atheism or perhaps controversy as and end in itself. I have no way of knowing what your purpose is. But Mr. Dawkins can defend himself and I don’t at this moment understand what your stake is in this argument.

    • This was not amusing. It is trivializing, insulting, and is nothing more than sensationalism in very poor taste at best.

      It also happens to be irrelevant.

      • Au contraire. I was at least half way through it before I even suspected satire. That’s how far down the toilet we are. Great satire is plausible and painful. You prove it.

      • If you read even a line of that and credulously believed that was even possibly the TAM schedule, then you’re absolutely right. We are down the toilet…but not for the reason you think.

        It means that you believe the hyperbole. That possibly you think that feminism is negligible. Also possibly that women in atheism and skepticism are unimportant.

        I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to lose half the movement because one half seems to think it can act like the other is unimportant.

        IF (and it’s a big if) the movement is collapsing at all, it is doing so because a lot of inexplicably butt-hurt men want to take their toys and go home because a girl said something they didn’t want to hear.

    • I can see that each of these little memes is thoroughly not steeped in reasoned and well supported argument.

      I restate my response to the link above. Irrelevant.

    • What is the purpose of this remark?

      Also, I’m working on a response to your previous long response. I’m dividing it in two to address your “podiumgate” query separately from your other comments and statements. I’m taking my time and you shall have to be patient, as it’s been a busy week and weekend.

  11. For Silkworm, Response part 1:

    “Self-promotion does not have to involve solicitation for money, but she does get paid for speaking. She is drumming up business for herself as a speaker, and at the same time she is drumming up men to have sex with.”

    So by relating her news, and by Skepchick holding video contests, they (Ms. Watson and/or all members of Skepchick) are always (intentionally or not) promoting themselves for speaking engagements and sex? I’m not at all certain that you meant to say that. Please clarify if you didn’t. If that WAS what you intended to mean, then how then should she and/or they communicate to broader atheism or feminists within atheism so that it would not be self-promoting? Is that even possible? If communication is promotion, who among us is not promoting? Because the video we’re talking about at the root of things wasn’t even a promotional contest. It was her news.

    The inclusion of the promotional video in this discussion is a distraction and irrelevant to what Ms. Watson said, and the reaction it received (including from Ms. McGraw). If you have a point to make about how precisely Ms. Watson was soliciting speaking engagements or sexual attention through her video above, then offer them.

  12. Second for Silkworm:

    “The cause of contention is the talk in which Watson chose to attack Stef McGraw. The talk was entitled “The Republican War on Women,” yet Watson chose to go off topic and discuss sexism within the atheist movement. So yes, it turned into a feminist whine fest, and it is totally her fault. She is not serving the interests of atheism or even skepticism. She is serving her own version of feminism, which is sexual narcissism.”

    It sounds like the topic didn’t change that much. Only instead of focusing on what Republicans are up to she turned things inward to atheism. It was still a panel on feminist issues. And this, although clearly tangential, was still a feminist issue. That said, it may still have qualified as a “whine fest”, if only by the standards of Republicans.

    And clearly, all the “gate” activity has shown that Ms. Watson’s “version of feminism” is indeed broadly shared, although not uniformly, among women in atheism/skepticism. This was why there was that previous talk in Dublin on how to make atheism and atheist gatherings more inclusive of, and friendly to, women in the first place. So call it topic bleed-over as well.

    I think I’ve said before, or at least alluded to the thought, that if we within atheism and skepticism are poor on feminist issues, we have diminished credibility in questioning the behavior of other groups on the same issue. I don’t want us as a mass to be hypocrites. So if Ms. Watson is a “sexual narcissist” then so are more than half of the actively vocal women in the group. I know you still don’t see the validity of “elevatorgate” as an issue, and you seem to have moved on to “podiumgate” in your arguments. But I’ll get back to that next.

    But before I leave the narcissism comment be…

    “Sexual narcissism

    Sexual narcissism has been described as an egocentric pattern of sexual behavior that involves an inflated sense of sexual ability and sexual entitlement. In addition, sexual narcissism is the erotic preoccupation with oneself as a superb lover through a desire to merge sexually with a mirror image of oneself. Sexual narcissism is an intimacy dysfunction in which sexual exploits are pursued, generally in the form of extramarital affairs, to overcompensate for low self-esteem and an inability to experience true intimacy.[44] This behavioral pattern is believed to be more common in men than in women and has been tied to domestic violence in men and sexual coercion in couples.[45][46] Hurlbert argues that sex is a natural biological given and therefore cannot be deemed as an addiction. He and his colleagues assert that any sexual addiction is nothing more than a misnomer for what is actually sexual narcissism or sexual compulsivity.[47]”

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Narcissism

    Please explain in reference to the definition above how you arrived at the conclusion that Ms. Watson is a Sexual Narcissist.

    • … they (Ms. Watson and/or all members of Skepchick) are always (intentionally or not) promoting themselves for speaking engagements and sex?

      “Do you find hot chicks sexy? … Hot chicks get drunk and hit on nerds…. Also there are pretty girls…. If you’re into that sort of thing … I think we all know that I am… and pretty girls (with picture of Rebecca)… or if you just like hot chicks… (Boobs)… then you belong with us.”

      How long will you go on disregarding the evidence?

      It sounds like the topic didn’t change that much.

      Your argument is without merit. What does sexism within the atheist movement have to do with the Republican war on women? They are different topics. And she was being inflammatory. Her tactic worked. Well done, Rebecca. You’ve split both the atheist and feminist movements.

      Sexual narcissism has been described as an egocentric pattern of sexual behavior that involves an inflated sense of sexual ability and sexual entitlement.

      “Hot chicks get drunk and hit on nerds;”

      “I think we all know that I am…” I am fairly sure that that is rebecca referring to herself.

      “… and pretty girls” (with picture of Rebecca).

      There’s your proof.

      Over to you.

      • So then you agree that you believe every time they communicate they are self-promoting?

        Also, and I want to be clear on this. Neither Ms. Watson or any contributing member of Skepchick made the video you’re citing. It was entered in their April 2008 promotional video contest. and was made by Rystefn. Added to which, he didn’t win the contest (this video did: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v9mIoXhZMcw). Also I’m wondering how exactly they “endorsed” it, as you previously claimed. They did not provide anyone with words or pictures, the contest entrants had to gather and assemble whatever they presented themselves. So, no… Ms. Watson did not juxtapose herself with those words and those were not her words to begin with. Ms Watson was not even the member of Skepchick who was running the contest. That was Jill.

        So saying anyone is referring to themselves in that video is spurious. Therefore those same people cannot be evidencing “an egocentric pattern of sexual behavior that involves an inflated sense of sexual ability and sexual entitlement” as they never typed those words to begin with. If anything, you may have proof that Rystefn likes Ms. Watson. Mind you, the video may have been meant as satire, in which case we don’t even have that.

        Next, my argument has merit because both were about sexism. Or are you going to claim that a Republican War on Women has nothing to do with sexism? If so… what exactly was that talk meant to be about? It just so happens that what’s going on within the atheist/skeptic community hasn’t escalated to or been classed as a “war” with sweeping institutional and policy mandates (which is good, in that it’s not as bad as all that). Does it mean we’re perfect on the issues of sexism because we’re atheists and skeptics? No, it doesn’t. Nor does it mean that because someone’s behaving monstrously that we have no accountability for ourselves as individuals within the atheism or skepticism. She was raising a valid and ongoing issue in a related talk, which apparently did not stop them actually discussing the Republicans as well. If it was inflammatory, it was for the same reason that telling people that 80% of high-school science teachers are creationists is inflammatory. People don’t like bad news.

        However she was not insulting or attacking Men, Atheism, Skepticism or doing anything sensationalist. She put what she had received and what she knew on the table. That what was then on the table upset people is, in my view, completely understandable.

      • Oh, and for clarity sake, if you read the text of the video in full, it is written in Rystefn’s voice and narrative. “…Also there are pretty girls…. If you’re into that sort of thing … I think we all know that I am…” That’s him saying he’s into pretty girls.

  13. Another for Silkworm:

    “Elevatorgate is a trivial issue, and that is why the Skepchick defenders are trying to drag the focus back to it, but it’s a diversion. The real issue is Podiumgate and the vendetta against Dawkins. In Podiumgate, Watson accused McGraw of “parroting misogynistic thought.” That is a wild and crazy allegation. She was projecting. That is what narcissists do. She was placing her own vindictive fantasies into the mind of McGraw. When people came to McGraw’s defence, including Dawkins, the attacks took off from there.”

    I don’t believe that “elevatorgate” was trivial. That said, I will address “podiumgate.” Now the video (as far as I know) of the talk in question has yet to be posted. I’m looking forward to that. I have, however read Ms. McGraw’s blog posts (the before and after). What Ms. Mcgraw says that Ms. Watson in fact said was this; “She went on to explain how I didn’t understand what objectification meant and was espousing anti-woman sentiment,” which isn’t quite as charged or extreme as “parroting misogynistic thought.” As accusations go, what Ms. Watson said is much less wild than a “vendetta against Dawkins” or “sexual narcissism” or “attacking prominent atheists to promote herself.” And having read Ms. McGraw’s initial blog post, which Ms. Watson then shared from the podium, I have to agree. If I were in Ms. Watson’s place I would have thought it a callow slap in the face. Because, and this ties back to “elevatorgate” too, women are attacked in elevators. It happens. Women get hurt in isolated spaces and when approached on their own. The reason for concern and disquiet is very real even if you haven’t just finished a talk about how it’s not a good idea to put women in uncomfortable situations. That not EVERY woman feels or would feel this disquiet signifies nothing. If it every woman DID have to agree, then precisely how do we determine how many actual attacks would have to take place to justify even one woman getting nervous? McGraw and many others simply looked at this in hindsight and said that nothing happened, even though (as one might view leaving the gas-stove on – if in fact the house didn’t explode before remembering to turn it off), there was potential, an opportunity for danger there. This time nothing happened. That doesn’t mean nothing could ever have happened. That the incident occurred when it did, and with someone who had just attended the talk about “being careful to turn the stove off” (so to speak) might have made me extra nervous in Ms. Watson’s position. She is an outspoken feminist and has received threats from both outside and INSIDE the atheist/skeptic community. Some of which Ms. McGraw speaks of seeing at that same talk in which she was called-out (“I shared her disgust as she showed screenshots of people online calling her demeaning names, making comments about her appearance, and, worst of all, making rape comments.” http://www.unifreethought.com/2011/06/fursdays-wif-stef-33.html). It was good that nothing happened. But that does not then mean that it was wise of the much commented upon “EG” to do what he did. The advice Ms. Watson gave was good, her concern was real and valid. Ms. McGraw’s response just didn’t see the realities or possibilities Ms. Watson was aware of and sensitive to in that incident. McGraw was dismissive, and proceeded from the false assumption that men and women are already equal in our culture and society. You’re right that things went mad from there. I think they went a bit mad before then, but clearly went stratospheric after. Matters were not helped when McGraw (not Ms. Watson) said “If you really want social equality for women, which is what feminism is, why not apply the same standards to men and women, and stop demonizing men for being sexual beings?” (http://www.unifreethought.com/2011/06/fursdays-wif-stef-32.html) Ms. Watson hadn’t demonized anyone, but it became a nice rallying point for upset men.

    “You’ve conveniently left out Podiumgate.”

    Here’s your “podiumgate”, lots of offended men latched onto the faulty arguments of one person to justify their disquiet, and used one woman’s opinion to justify their unreasoned outrage. I say unreasoned because there was no reason for it. They were not insulted, accused, abused or in the slightest way impugned as a class. UNLESS, and this is the leap we all must take to connect Ms. Watson’s statement and advice to the following outrage: Men are supposed to be able to do what they like whenever and no one should suggest otherwise. This is an indefensible position for an individual, a group, a country or a gender.

    That Ms. Watson mentioned it in her talk later was part and parcel to the issue of sexism within atheism. Amid the backlash Ms. Watson received about the initial video (yes there was plenty before Ms. McGraw posted her blog response) was Ms. McGraw’s response. She was part of the initial backlash.

    If your disquiet rises because Ms. Watson had the podium and Ms. McGraw could not defend herself then that’s a strawman. Ms. McGraw could have used the Q&A and chose not to claiming it was off-topic. If Ms. Watson questioned her during her talk she made it on-topic and no one would have thought any less of Ms. McGraw to respond unless she was unable to defend her statements. Second, saying her blog doesn’t get as much traffic as Skepchick is immaterial for the following reason: This talk was given to the atheist and skeptic community, not a group normally associated with taking ANYONE’s word for ANYTHING. The moment Ms. Watson questioned Ms. McGraw’s statements every interested member of the community was going to go find what she said in its original context. And Ms. Watson herself made it easy for them to do so. And they did. I daresay she has plenty of hits now.

    The narrowing of the audience only occurred at the meeting where Ms. Watson called out Ms. McGraw for enabling sexism within atheism with faulty arguments. She never posted those criticisms online, though, as Ms. McGraw said, she could have. Since that time, Ms. McGraw has posted her rebuttal, and has had the every bit as much visibility as Ms. Watson herself.
    At this point I’m tempted to say “zero bad” but I don’t like repeating other people’s mistakes.

  14. @ Silkworm:

    “She was attacked because she attacked McGraw.”

    At what point does having your statements criticized constitute an attack? If it is the same thing, then I suppose the crimes of atheism against theism must be a charge sheet miles long.

    Ms. Watson was attacked using Ms. McGraw’s words because Ms. McGraw’s bad reasoning was taken up as a case of “See! Women think what we think!” even though her points and argument were based on a false assumption. It does no one any good to passionately defend a bad argument just because the person who made it seems as though they should be right. That’s a self-contained appeal to authority. And the authority was mistaken.

    Ms. Watson was was attacked, questioned, and dismissed because people didn’t like what she said, apparently. Which continues to mystify me. So far no one has been able to reason out to me what was so terrible about what she said.

  15. @ Silkworm:

    “I do, [ hold Ms. Watson responsible for her every commenter] because she has made no attampt to moderate or discourage them.”

    Then it is the job of every blogger to moderate and discourage the people who respond to their posts who use escalating hyperbole and language?

    Would you feel the same about Ms. Watson or any blogger moderating or actively discouraging (outside of direct response and argument) the voices of dissenting responders? You would advocate editing both sides? I don’t think you would. I think it’s best not to remove as little as possible and let people have their voice. This is why I also am not advocating your silence or Tim’s or anyone’s. I only (through inquiry and argument) am questioning some of the things I’m reading.

  16. @ silkworm:

    [For Mr. Dawkins, the fact of the matter is that he need not have commented.]
    “The fact of the matter is that Watson need not have commented. The fact of the matter is that you need not have commented.”

    I think you misunderstand how this works. Ms. Watson said something that was not at all controversial. As a result she received a large backlash (including the response of Ms. McGraw). And she met her critics and questioners with counterarguments and explanations. A few cycles later as backlash was met with counter-backlash (is that a word?) Mr. Dawkins waded in too. Now as each of us has individually waded into the fray we come with the inherent responsibility to prove whatever points we wish to make. I came prepared to argue my points. Ms. McGraw and Mr. Dawkins perhaps felt they were prepared as well. Further argument and analysis have shown that neither Ms. McGraw nor Mr. Dawkins had a valid point to argue. If perhaps he (Mr. Dawkins) did not want his statements, points or arguments commented upon, rebutted or refuted he could have stayed clear. Therefore he is not a victim of attack or vendetta. Therefore I am not a victim of attack. Therefore Ms. McGraw is not a victim of attack, and nor is Ms. Watson (except in any and all cases of responses that are clearly intended as insults and threats and not counterargument against any of the aforesaid). But Mr. Dawkins entered the debate with poor arguments that he then could not back up, possibly because they were flippant and sarcastic. To do so in a society of skeptics is unwise.

    [Is that fair. no not really.]
    “Congratulations. You just condemned yourself.”

    By making an argument that I cannot support? No, I haven’t done that. But it is not fair that Mr. Dawkins be allowed to drop lazy reasoning on an important issue and walk away smiling. It is precisely this attitude that has earned whatever ire he is currently experiencing. The implied argument becomes “He’s Richard Dawkins, if he says it’s so it’s so.” And I don’t honestly believe he himself would put that forward. And then it becomes the burden of anyone criticizing Mr. Dawkins’ statements themselves to defend their heretical views in questioning him, which within skepticism and atheism is rather bizarre. The counterargument, criticism and disappointment he has received he has earned fairly. That he has ceased to defend or give his points any further consideration sends unfriendly signals to the members of the community who feel that he has slighted issues important to them.

    So then is it fair that Ms. Watson’s statements are open to criticism or rebuttal and Mr. Dawkins’ are not? No, not really.

  17. @ Silkworm:

    [But when he did, he did so with flippancy and sarcasm.]
    “That’s what trivial events deserve. What happened in the elevator was trivial, but Watson has an elevated sense of her own feelings, because she is a narcissist. And like a narcissist, she quickly switched to victimhood, and this justified her supporters to go on the attack. That’s my opinion.”

    I cannot possibly contradict that that is your opinion. But to characterize what happened as trivial is divisive. That Ms. Watson had an unfortunate experience in the elevator which resolved itself without serious incident and that she then commented upon it publicly as it was what was very much on her mind and on topic at time could have been trivial. It could have been trivial.

    That it was then followed up by a rising wave of stung sensibilities, abysmal reasoning, and arguments you wouldn’t dirty yourself by using on a passing theistic proseltyzer…That was not trivial. What Mr. Dawkins waded into was no longer trivial. And I hold to account every person that maintains that Ms. Watson should not have spoken-out without providing their own cogent reasoned argument as to WHY she should not have for making it non-trivial. This isn’t because of what she said. It’s because of what an amazing number of people said in response to what she said. Which, admittedly, could have been trivial.

  18. @ Silkworm:

    [And as he went on demonstrated that (either with full information or not), that in his view feminism within atheism was negligible.]
    “It was off topic.”

    That’s your argument, not his. He did not defend his comments by saying that Ms. Watson’s statements were off topic. He said she was complaining about zero bad. Which demonstrated his ignorance of the dynamics of the situation on which he was commenting.

  19. @ Silkworm:

    [He might as well have said that the victims of molestation by catholic priests should quiet down because at least they hadn’t been bombed in an abortion clinic.]
    “You may not know this, but Dawkins was sexually abused as a child. He knows what he is talking about, and he knows that what happened in that elevator in no way amounts to abuse. What I think happened in that elevator is that Watson’s ego was hurt, but she has cleverly manipulated the situation to turn it into some kind of sexual threat. There are a lot of us who can see through this.”

    He knows what it’s like to be female in a male dominated society? I doubt it. He knows that when women do get assaulted in elevators that saying that they’re easy to escape is flippant at best? Clearly he does not.

    I did not know he was abused as a child. That being the case I could expect him to be a well informed and zealous advocate in cases of child abuse in any community. However this wasn’t about an adult cornering a child. However, if Ms. Watson had seen her child get into an elevator at 4am with a stranger and felt really nervous for their safety and commented on it… Might it be possible that Mr. Dawkins at least not have been sarcastic about her concerns. Sure you can poke that example full of holes like “who would let their child alone on an elevator at 4am.” That’s not the point. The point is that not all possible-danger situations are the same. This is one Mr. Dawkins has clearly never experienced.

    There’s a difference between actual abuse and the potential for abuse, yes. Abuse did not occur. That wasn’t the point. She never alleged that abuse did occur. The point was that EG created (inadvertently or not) a situation with the potential for abuse – which many (but not all) women find threatening. And if you’re arguing that being propositioned hurt her ego, I’m wondering why you think that, and what your evidence is. Further, how has she manipulated it into a threat? Please be specific.

  20. @ Silkworm:

    [Those weren’t their words. I’m not even sure those were all their images. Contest entrants were not given a script.]
    “Those words and images were endorsed by skepchick.org. It says so on the youtube page. Endorsed. Get it?”

    Can you point out this endorsement to me? I’ve been all over Rstefn’s video page on YouTube and cannot find it. Also by “endorsed” does that mean they put it on their channel? That he won the contest (he didn’t)? Or that they in some other way said “yes this exactly what we would have said and exactly how we would have presented it”? I’m very curious as to how this 3 year old video made by a guy who likes (or at least liked) the Skepchicks is presently relevant.

    Also see my previous comments on the video a few posts up.

  21. @ Silkworm:

    [or that men shouldn’t ever pick up women (which she also didn’t).]
    “I don’t have the reference to hand, but as I recollect, she did say something to that effect. She seemed to take offence at men making passes at women, and said that they should consider women making the first move. Maybe someone can correct me on this if I am wrong. She couched it in the language of “could” and “maybe,” but I think it was just for appearances. I think she finds men taking the lead as offensive, because it threatens her authority, just as Dawkins threatened her intellectual authority. She is a narcissistic bitch and no one is going to threaten her authority as top bitch.”

    Here’s the full quote:
    “…all of you except for the one man who didn’t really grasp, I think, what I was saying on the panel, because at the bar later that night, actually at four in the morning, we were at the hotel bar. Four a.m., I said I’d had enough, I was going to bed. So I walk to the elevator, and a man got on the elevator with me and said, ‘Don’t take this the wrong way, but I find you very interesting, and I would like to talk more. Would you like to come to my hotel room for coffee?’ Um, just a word to wise here, guys, uh, don’t do that. You know, I don’t really know how else to explain how this makes me incredibly uncomfortable, but I’ll just sort of lay it out that I was a single woman, you know, in a foreign country, at 4:00 am, in a hotel elevator, with you, just you, and–don’t invite me back to your hotel room right after I finish talking about how it creeps me out and makes me uncomfortable when men sexualize me in that manner…”

    She never said it. At a stretch, and it is a stretch, some people have singled out “…it creeps me out and makes me uncomfortable when men sexualize me in that manner…” as a condemnation of all flirtation. But that ignores the context. The context being; being isolated by a man with a thinly veiled proposition which if it was not for intimacy and the possibility of sex, then it was wearing an AMAZING disguise as one. I can re- argue why it reads as this regardless of his actual intent again if needed, but I shan’t do so now.

    If you are referring to a later statement, she did say “…and I started suggesting to the men that maybe they relax a little and not try to get in the pants of every woman who walks through the door. Maybe they could wait for her to make the first move, just in case.” But this will be shown in full context in my next response. But for the moment suffice it to say that this statement is a far cry from saying that men should never be able to pick up women. Yes there are a lot of “maybes” and “coulds” are in there. But that’s because it was a suggestion she had been making. Not a proscription on male behavior.

    You will have to support your statements regarding how you know it was done for appearances, how you know that she finds men taking the lead offensive, and how precisely it threatens her authority. Mr. Dawkins did not threaten her intellectual authority. He merely treated her concerns as negligible and used poor reasoning to do so. Finally, what exactly do you intend to prove by calling her a bitch, and how do you know she’s so concerned about her authority? Please be specific.

  22. @ Silkworm;

    [Apart from which, Ms. Watson has herself said that she doesn’t mind being hit on (see link previously provided).]
    “This is the first time I’ve heard this. If this were true, then it would destroy the argument I made above about her narcissism. I am willing to admit that. However, you say that she said this at the link you provided. That means I am going to have to trawl through all the comments on that page to verify what you said. Can you help me out here? Where precisely can I find this comment?”

    Absolutely. Fifth paragraph down.
    “And I got messages from women who told me about how they had trouble attending pub gatherings and other events because they felt uncomfortable in a room full of men. They told me about how they were hit on constantly and it drove them away. I didn’t fully get it at the time, because I didn’t mind getting hit on. But I acknowledged their right to feel that way and I started suggesting to the men that maybe they relax a little and not try to get in the pants of every woman who walks through the door. Maybe they could wait for her to make the first move, just in case.”

    In full context her suggestion to relax a bit is clearly not intended as incendiary.

    But the bit you want is the third sentence.”I didn’t fully get it at the time, because I didn’t mind getting hit on.”

  23. @ Silkworm:

    “I still think the whole incident was overblown. It all comes down to her feelings, and we don’t have any feedback from elevator guy to back up what she claims happened. Skepticism is about relying on evidence, and in this case we unfortunately don’t have enough evidence to argue safely about what happened. As I said, I believe Watson is a narcissist, and from my experience with them, they are prone to fantasy, so I don’t find her testimony totally reliable. Harsh, I know, but that’s what skepticism is about. Watson has made the case revolve around her feelings in the elevator. Feelings are subjecticve things. It is next to impossible to mount an objective argument about subjective experiences.”

    Yes, I agree it was overblown. What we’re likely to disagree on is who overblew it.

    Also, I’ve been wondering WHY we haven’t heard from EG. Then again, why should we? He has not been named and has no one bothering him at all about this so far as I know. Unless of course he had a counterargument to make or a different tale to tell, then I should expect to hear from him. But we haven’t. We only have the evidence we have. But that said, none of it is damning, and EG isn’t accused of anything serious.

    However, were we to claim that Ms. Watson is lying, then the burden of proof shifts to us. Just as when we say to a theist “god does not exist” they get to say “prove it” and we get to say “you can’t prove a negative” and they say “ha! We win!” and we say “okay if you win, prove he does exist” and hilarity ensues. So if and when you claim that she’s lying you should have some evidence to support that theory.

    Mind you, you could always go and say that you think she’s lying, on her blog, and ask her to verify her account of the incident. I wasn’t there, of course, so I can’t help you to prove or disprove that the statements she made are accurate to what transpired. But why stop there? You could also query the existence of the elevator. You know, anything other than make a cogent argument as to why she should not have said what she said in that video.

    Also you have not proven that she is a narcissist.

  24. @ Silkworm:

    [That said that does not mean that they cannot HAVE a sexuality or express it.]
    “Of course they can HAVE a sexuality. But by using their sexuality to advertise skepticism ot themselves, they make themselves open to criticism about their sexuality. The message she is sending out is very imprecise and open to interpretation. The second video appears to be saying, “come on to me,” but the first video appears to be saying, “don’t come on to me.” Girlyban indeed.”

    Again, they did not make that video. A guy made it. Please follow up with proof of their ”endorsement” of it if you can.

    Also, how precisely are the actions of Ms. Watson, and Skepchick as a group, like those of the Taliban? I’m not seeing the satirical parallel here.

  25. @ Silkworm:

    “Can we leave out extreme examples please? Extreme examples are strawmen. Elevator guy never touched her, never used the word “sex,” and accepted “no” for an answer. Now he’s being vilified for not recognizing some imaginary boundary. The only conclusion I can make is that Watson is creeped by elevator guy for approaching her in the first place, i.e., for making the first advance, and for not being able to anticipate her answer. How is he supposed to know how she feels unless he asks? As far as I can see, he was being sensitive. He asked, he got given an answer, and he respected that answer. He showed respect. Unfortunately, the Skepchicks are deaf to respect. Instead they throw around wild and unjust accusations of elevator guy being a potential rapist, and while the debate about women’s safety has been useful, let’s not forget that one of the Skepchicks notoriously made false rape allegations against the three men in the Duke lacrosse case, all to satisfy her narcissistic misandrist fantasies. It’s happening all over again with elevator guy. I pity this poor guy, because I have compassion and I try to understand. The Skepchicks have no compassion, only lust. And they have little understanding, because they don’t listen, and they don’t listen, because they are narcissists. They don’t argue in good faith. They don’t respond rationally to cricitism. They just hurl abuse at their critics. In my opinion, they, like PZ, are traitors to the skeptical movement.”

    I can agree to leave out extreme examples. I shall do my best to be moderate in my comparisons.

    1) EG is not being vilified because he’s anonymous. How do you vilify someone you’d never know if you met them or posted with them on a blog?

    2) EG is not being vilified because he is not accused of anything harsher than making an inappropriate advance.

    3) EG was present to hear that Ms.Watson was going to bed and was done interacting for the evening. So he knew she was done for the night and going to bed.

    The rest of your statements make no sense to me. No disrespect was shown to EG. He was not insulted or demonized. He was used as an example of behavior that makes women at atheist gatherings uncomfortable. Later charges of Demonization were brought by Ms. McGraw. Others began to try to explain WHY the situation was inappropriate and/or uncomfortable and that was later mischaracterized as an accusation that all men are rapists. There has been massive incidental lack of respect on both sides.
    Events involving the Duke LaCrosse case are immaterial to what Ms. Watson actually said in her video. It was another time, place, and person and the whole matter is a distraction. Further it is not an argument.

    You have yet to prove anyone is a narcissist, or lacks compassion, or is motivated by only lust. And saying “…they, like PZ, are traitors to the skeptical movement” when they merely disagree with you, is prejudicial, unsupported by argument or evidence and could also be characterized as abuse.

  26. @ Silkworm:

    [It could only prove that you believe that any woman who uses sex for any reason should never complain if anything vaguely sexual should make her uncomfortable or occur against her will.]
    “Do you come from the Rebecca Watson school of mind reading, or the Amanda Marcotte school of false rape allegations? Quit it with the false accusations against me, OK? I know there are feminists out there who make it their business to go around accusing men of thought crimes. Are you one of them? If you keep this up, I will get really nasty with you, and then you will feel my wrath. This is a warning.”

    No I don’t, nor do I think do you. Yet you seem to have uncanny insights into their motives and psychological disorders. Also I did not accuse you of anything or say that it DID prove that was what you were thinking. Just that the argument you put forward, as it was stated, would only support that as a conclusion. If that was not the argument you were making then please be more careful with your phrasing.

    Also, if you are now resorting to threats I think we’re done discussing this issue. I don’t believe in thought crimes. And not even being accused directly of one (a thought crime), or being asked to defend an argument I did not make would move me to making threats against you or insulting you personally.

    The useful response in discussion is to tell me that was not your argument and restate it. If I made a straw-man, call me on it. Fair is fair. I will never hold you responsible to prove an argument you don’t intend to make or support. However I only know what your arguments are by reading them, and you may need to clarify if your intended points are not coming across.

  27. @ Silkworm:

    [Further… at what point did men’s control become an issue? Unless… Do you mean the ability of men to tell her to stop complaining?]
    “She should restrict the complaining to her blog and her Facebook page. It does not belong at a conference where she has the power of the podium. Address Podiumgate, if you are able… but I’m skeptical.”

    I have. Read above.

    All done for now.

    • You have made insinuations against me, and you are too cowardly to admit it. I hold you in utter contempt. You say you might be done here. I hope that is the case, because I never want to hear from you again.

      • Name one. I answered your every point. Counter-argue or resign.

        This was your former complaint:

        [It could only prove that you believe that any woman who uses sex for any reason should never complain if anything vaguely sexual should make her uncomfortable or occur against her will.]
        “Do you come from the Rebecca Watson school of mind reading, or the Amanda Marcotte school of false rape allegations? Quit it with the false accusations against me, OK? I know there are feminists out there who make it their business to go around accusing men of thought crimes. Are you one of them? If you keep this up, I will get really nasty with you, and then you will feel my wrath. This is a warning.”

        To which I responded:

        “No I don’t, nor do I think do you. Yet you seem to have uncanny insights into their motives and psychological disorders. Also I did not accuse you of anything or say that it DID prove that was what you were thinking. Just that the argument you put forward, as it was stated, would only support that as a conclusion. If that was not the argument you were making then please be more careful with your phrasing.

        Also, if you are now resorting to threats I think we’re done discussing this issue. I don’t believe in thought crimes. And not even being accused directly of one (a thought crime), or being asked to defend an argument I did not make would move me to making threats against you or insulting you personally.

        The useful response in discussion is to tell me that was not your argument and restate it. If I made a straw-man, call me on it. Fair is fair. I will never hold you responsible to prove an argument you don’t intend to make or support. However I only know what your arguments are by reading them, and you may need to clarify if your intended points are not coming across.”

        If I insinuated anything in my response it would be that it is disingenuous of you to claim that I am reading your mind or putting words into your mouth when you appear to have no qualms about doing so for Ms. Watson or the Skepchicks as an organization. Particularly when I have done no such thing.

        Here is the response you made which claim is worded to support the conclusion that (quoting myself): ” that any woman who uses sex for any reason should never complain if anything vaguely sexual should make her uncomfortable or occur against her will.”

        “The second video promotes the Skepckicks as “sexy,” “hot” and “pretty” (flash picture of Rebecca). Clearly, they are using their bodies to sell their brand of skepticism, in much the same manner as the Children of God use their women (“flirty little fishes”) to bring men into their cult. And then there’s “Hot chicks get drunk and hit on nerds.” These are women who use their sexual power to take control over men, but when a man has the gall to approach them, they scream to high heaven. They do not like men having control. They assimilate that to “privilege” and “misogyny.” They are utter and complete hypocrites. Boobs too.”

        You are saying that Ms. Watson cannot or should not mention or complain about EG, because she “…promotes the Skepckicks as “sexy,” “hot” and “pretty”…” and “Clearly, they are using their bodies to sell their brand of skepticism…” and “These are women who use their sexual power to take control over men…” and this is bad because “…when a man has the gall to approach them, they scream to high heaven…”

        This means that people who use sexual content to promote themselves cannot then complain about being approached sexually. Or, perhaps, that people who use sexual content to promote themselves cannot then complain about being approached sexually unless they also accept all advances made toward them. You postulate they are luring men with the promise of sex and then accusing those same men of wrongdoing when they come to collect on that promise. And because of this they have no grounds to complain if unwelcome sexual advances are made toward them. If that is not the argument, why raise the video as evidence in this context?

        Also… They did not make the video, so the video was a strawman to begin with.

      • “You have made insinuations against me, and you are too cowardly to admit it. I hold you in utter contempt. You say you might be done here. I hope that is the case, because I never want to hear from you again.”

        I again challenge you to name these insinuations. Your contempt is irrelevant. The fact that you say the above without making any effort to address my arguments tells me you have no counter-argument. That you have made a threat tells me that you have no counter-argument. Argue the points or resign.

      • Godfrey, I made some people aware of this thread, and here’s what one of them had to say about it:

        WOW! That Godfrey is a bit of a verbal diarrhoea sufferer!! Also simply does not get it that what a lot of people object to is not necessarily WHAT she said but the way she said it.

        Time for you to shut up. Keep that verbal diarrhoea inside your mouth.

      • I read this as confirmation that you are unable to counter-argue even one of my points. This extends to everyone who you showed it to as well apparently because the best yo can do collectively is to lamely say that she said it in a way that offended you.

        Okay, I’ll bite. What EXACTLY did she say and what was it about the EXACT way that she said it that upset everyone so much? At this point I expect you to collectively not address this point either so I’m not holding my breath.

        Finally, resorting to more mild insults (verbal diarrhea) because I have a vocabulary and am not afraid to use it, does not excuse your lack of ability to defend a single one of your arguments. I work my arguments at length to ensure clarity. If you can’t manage to stay awake to get to the end of my argument it isn’t my problem. Also I notice you have not cited any insinuations I had allegedly mad against you, there for as predicted there were none.

        You had nothing. You still have nothing. Except you now have nothing and want me to shut up…. Just like Ms. Watson.

      • And here I fall victim to NOT working at length…

        “…Also I notice you have not cited any insinuations I had allegedly mad against you, there for as predicted there were none.

        You had nothing. You still have nothing. Except you now have nothing and want me to shut up…. Just like Ms. Watson.”

        Should have been:

        Also I notice you have not cited any insinuation I had allegedly made against you, therefore, as I stated, there were none. Which, come to think of it, also means you were the one making false accusations against me. Ironic, really.

        You had nothing. You still have nothing. Except you now have nothing and want me to shut up… Which is the same thing you want from Ms. Watson.”

      • Yes. Clearly having actual arguments and reasons to back up ones statements is the same as being hysterical. Still, you have the invisible support of the tone-trolling lurkers. Perhaps that’s enough for you.

        You still have nothing. But by all means continue your empty semi-invective.

        But answer me one question, if you would be so kind. What does it feel like to have the same amount of logic and reason behind one’s point of view as a theist?

        Now before you get offended (again), you might consider actually MAKING an argument or counterpoint (the above were neither). And If you don’t or can’t, then you prove my statements for me.

      • What does it feel like to have the same amount of logic and reason behind one’s point of view as a theist?

        Have a look in the mirror.

    • “Have a look in the mirror.”

      Really? The best you’ve got has gone from a version of “you talk too much” (because I took the time to answer/rebut every point you attempted to make) to a version of “nuh-uh, YOU”?

      You can say that when you’ve pointed out any strawmen I’ve employed, goalposts I’ve shifted, baseless accusations I’ve made, or ad-hominem attacks I’ve launched (however oblique). Which you are welcome to attempt at any time. Would you like to try addressing any of the points I’ve made?

      • You are possibly an even more verbose and inane a fucker than Leland Jory. Watson is an amoral psychopath. A human tapeworm that feeds in the bowels of chumps like you and grows fat. All this dribbling does serve a purpose – it’s what we can show our incredulous children someday. “Yes, there actually were folks like that back then. They tried to collapse the movement”. It will really jolt some sense into them.

      • More of the same, then?

        Yes. Clearly atheists and skeptics acting with awareness and with at least the intention of treating the women among our ranks better than those with the theists will surely bring us all crashing down. I do wish someone could state WHY a little consideration and awareness on the part of men in atheism and skepticism would collapse the movement. No one seems able to. Can you?

        If you want to make an argument, make one. Calling me verbose and inane proves nothing. Calling Ms. Watson “…an amoral psychopath. A human tapeworm…” also proves nothing. Except perhaps that you are more inclined to insult than argue.

  28. Good article

    I loled

    Yeah, the so called feminists are pretty fucking sexist when you get right down to it. They believe that men will only pay attention to women if we want to get laid (from Greta Christina and PZ Myers) and women can’t handle themselves to be on the same side of the street as men (from Greg Laden.) I seriously wonder where the fuck they get these ideas and that they are somehow progressive or feminist at all.

    • Hello Phyraxus,

      Could you please link me to where either Greta Christina and/or PZ Myers said that “men will only pay attention to women if we want to get laid.” Or for that matter where Greg Laden said that “women can’t handle themselves to be on the same side of the street as men.” Thanks in advance.

      Oh, and if by some chance this response of yours was a satire of jingo-ed male attitudes, please disregard. I hate to ask you to justify an opinion you were mocking and not professing. It seems I have a bit of a satire blind-spot when my sense of incredulity is engaged.

  29. I am stumbling onto this website so late into the party, but man was this fun. Brilliant satire .. there are so many gems in there.. and I wish I could run into satire more often.

  30. As has been previously stated: Excellent satire. Very funny.

    It is also almost as much funny to see how incapable the Offened Ones™ are at seeing humour, or even understanding what satire is.

  31. “A common feature of satire is strong irony or sarcasm—”in satire, irony is militant”[2]—but parody, burlesque, exaggeration, juxtaposition, comparison, analogy, and double entendre are all frequently used in satirical speech and writing. This “militant” irony or sarcasm often professes to approve (or at least accept as natural) the very things the satirist wishes to attack.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Satire

    It had been bothering my WHY I didn’t see this post as satire. I like Satire. Swift, Pratchett, Blackadder, Python and more recently, 30 Rock and Futurama are all brilliant at it. And I really quite enjoy all of them. And then it struck me what was missing. In an effective satire there is a pointed “looking at it from the inside as if everything is just as it should be” that did not seem to be present here. It looked to me like a seriously slanted editorial. This may be because I had formed an opinion of Tim’s position on the matter, and that I didn’t honestly believe he could or would launch a satire intended to send-up the overblown male reaction to what has become known as Elevatorgate.

    Having taken a step back, I can see it now as a satire. It conforms to and hits every point of what a satire ought to be. So thank you, Tim, for holding the mirror up for the menfolk. I suppose being about to argue with those who also happened to read it as an editorial was still worth it from my point of view.

    • Dear Godfrey

      I’m not quite sure which is funnier – Tim’s post or your obsessive, tedious and masturbatory need to be right and have the last word.

      “Overblown male reaction” shall now be defined as Godfrey Temple responding to any and all contrary opinions to his own.

      Proof of this shall be Godfrey’s obligatory response to this comment. We can’t wait for it!

      In 5…4…3…2…1…

      • That’s hilarious and insightful my friend. I think we may be looking a whole new internet meme straight in the face!!
        The Godfrey Temple Syndrome (GTS)
        Enjoy.

      • Ah, well… I knew whatever came next wasn’t going to be any sort of argument.

        I’m glad you’ve enjoyed it.

        I’ll gladly own being tedious. making thorough arguments without room for misrepresentation sometimes demands it. And being long winded in text is a personal fault I completely own. However I will have to take your word on being masturbatory as I cannot claim to be an expert in that field. For clarity I’ll just offer you my word that I, at least, am not wanking as I type.

        Whether I’m right wholly relies upon someone, anyone, producing a counterargument. I could be wrong. Lets’ hear how I’m wrong and we’ll go from there.

        As to having the last word, I’d actually thought that just MAYBE I had misread Tim’s satiric intent. So I posted my last as a possible “aha, I feel dense if you were having a go at the men after all, well done and my apologies for being a blockhead”. But then instead of delivering what might have been a well-deserved “Yes, dumbass” which I’d have accepted quietly, he pats you on the back for a novel form of invective.

        If you want to redefine “overblown” for your personal use, that’s your prerogative. I simply answer the points and statements I’m given.

        Now in the spirit of discourse and argument (hope springs eternal), What exactly does my responding prove?

        a) That my reactions are overblown?
        Well that can’t be right unless my reactions were consistently disproportional. Say every time someone disagreed with me I told them they were destroying the movement. That would be overblown. I’m just thorough.

        b) That I need to be right?
        I don’t need to be. I just am until proven otherwise.

        c) That I need to have the last word?
        Very possibly. Time will tell.

        d) That my needs are “obsessive, tedious and masturbatory”?
        Are insults things one generally needs to prove? I’m tedious, fine. Obsessive is arguable. I’d like to think that by not going with the flow I’m getting at least someone to think twice. I’ll admit it’s possible. But I think it’s the contrary opinion in this case that is masturbatory. Pop off a witty sounding verbose insult and enjoy the satisfying afterglow. It’s cheap, easy, and requires no thought. But then, as I said I’m no expert on the subject so feel free to quibble.

        e) That as a gambit it would get me to shut up and go away?
        No chance.

        And Tim, I’ll take that meme.

        I don’t think it memes what you think it memes.

  32. I’ve just been to the new Pharyngula site, where I checked out the dungeon. Guess who I found there — Rystefn! Here is what Dr Myers banned him for: being “one of a recent crop of Men’s Rights Assholes with a remarkable sense of masculine entitlement.”

    I don’t get it. Rystefn was the one who put together the Skepchick video, the second video featured here. I can’t understand how someone who was so closely linked with Watson could get on Myers’ bad side. Does anyone know what Rystefn said at Pharyngula to get himself banned?

    I also note that Franc Hoggle, who has posted above, has also been put in the Pharyngula dungeon. Here is Franc’s crime: “Proud angry masturbator, aficionado of scat porn, all-around repulsive fellow. Did give us a new term: hoggling, or masturbating hatefully over an obsession. Turns out there are a lot of hogglers out there.” Masturbator? An ironic accusation considering that that is exactly what Godfrey Temple has been accused of here.

    For the record, I consider anyone who calls someone a Men’s Rights Activist or Men’s Rights Advocate, let alone a Men’s Rights Asshole, to be a misandrist.

    • Yes, this what happens to people that laugh at The Naked Emperor for being naked. Myers, whatever his reasoning for defending indefensible nonsense, has made an absolute fool of himself on each foray outside of his fortress. Without the “me too!” army behind him, he is unable to stand up for himself and has had his feelings hurt on each occassion. His only response to this is to retreat and slander us in his own safe house where there is no danger of him being held accountable. The Naked Emperor, he really is naked. Very sad sight.

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