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Re: [atheists-27] MISOGYNY IS NOT Trouble with American Skepticism

From: Mathew G.
Sent on: Monday, August 12, 2013 6:31 PM
It was unfortunate that Don Wharton gave this discussion that title, a better title would have been Trouble within American Skepticism.  But there is an identifiable community here, the three accused people all have leadership roles within that community, and the accusations are that the bad behavior occurred in the offices of these non-profit organizations and at the conferences during conference sponsored events.  So this should be of concern to everyone who is a member of any of these organizations, or a subscriber to their publications, or an attendee of the conferences, or who associates or corresponds with any of these three individuals, and it should be of particular concern to the people who sponsor these conferences and who manage these non-profits.  The community has a responsibility to police itself.

On Aug 12, 2013, at 1:27 PM, Larry CARTER CENTER <[address removed]> wrote:

> there is a bit of incompetence and broad brush statements here.... 1st, there are a great many MEN's RIGHTS groups who are not the least misogynistic and are instead feminist focusing on equity divorce, child custody as well as marriage equality for gay men..... the "Woody" below is obviously incompetent and a misognynist crying wolf.....sexual harassment is a very clearly defined crime by perpetrators and constitutes a HOSTILE WORK ENVIRONMENT on the part of employers... there is no vague nature of this crime nor is the duty of ALL EMPLOYERS to post policies as to ZERO TOLERANCE of employees AND SUPERVISORS making any employee gay or straight MALE OR FEMALE feel obliged to tolerate sex crime.... misogyny is the feeling if not action of anyone who claims ENTITLEMENT over women, this ranges from rape, demands for sexual favors, rapists rights to force women to stay pregnant, violent porn industry, pedophilia as most victims are females under age 18, the
> completely 100% bankrupt claim of casual sex partners pretending no obligation to pay child support and all laws that discriminate against women, 15 states refuse to RATIFY E.R.A. are misogynist bastions pretending "special" laws against women are ok....AND WHAT ALL THIS HAS TO DO WITH AMERICAN SKEPTICISM I was not able to scroll down to find below
> --------------------­--------------------­----
> On Mon, 8/12/13, friend of Smokey the Bear <[address removed]> wrote:
> 
> Subject: Re: [atheists-27] Trouble with American Skepticism
> To: [address removed]
> Date: Monday, August 12, 2013, 6:39 AM
> 
> "No."
> is a complete sentence.
> 
> Little is more
> irritating than an adult who cannot comprehend that.
> 
> 
> just my two
> bits.
> Ms. chandler
> wiland
> 
> 
> 
> On Mon, Aug 12, 2013
> at 2:43 AM, Martin <[address removed]>
> wrote:
> 
> 
> 
> 
>     Don - Agreed. 
> 
> 
> 
>       Office romances are alive and well, and work or school
> is still
>       the most common place people meet their future spouse
> (at around
>       20% of marriages, through friends being the next most
> common). If
>       someone is attracted to a co-worker, the typical way
> things work
>       is they try to engage in friendly conversation now and
> then at
>       work and if the other person shows interest in them
> then they ask
>       them out, often for lunch initially. If they are
> rejected then
>       time to move on and the other person has no reason or
> grounds for
>       a complaint. This is hardly rocket science, it is a
> basic and
>       universal element of human interaction.
> 
> 
> 
>       But we are not discussing office romance here. We are
> discussing
>       sexual harassment ranging from: sexual jokes and
> innuendo;
>       unwelcome sexual advances, both verbal and physical;
> ploys of
>       suggesting promotion/reward at work for sexual favors,
> or
>       conversely demotion/penalty for lack thereof; sexual
> assault; to
>       statutory rape. It is quite alarming that Woody, and
> whoever these
>       MRA guys are, seem unable to distinguish normal
> romantic behaviour
>       from such predatory sexual harassment.
> 
> 
> 
>       Martin.
> 
> 
> 
>       On 08/12/[masked]:43 AM, Don Wharton wrote:
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
>             A great many if not most women
> appreciate an
>                 appropriate communication of interest. 
> The
> 
>                 point is to graciously cease showing that
> interest if
>                 requested and not include any threats or
> inappropriate
>                 touching in the process.  The notion that
> relationships
>                 between the sexes need to cease because of
> legal risk is
>                 a strawman created by the MRA
> crowd.
>              
>             I fully agree that (as I said before)
> that as
>                 evidence all of this is extremely thin.  A
> major problem
>                 is that in most cases of real rape or
> sexual harrassment
>                 the perpetrator is usually very careful to
> not leave
>                 much evidence.  They choice of time and
> location is
>                 calibrated to minimize any chance of
> witnesses.  The
> 
>                 he said/she said situation that normally
> results is
>                 never satisfactory in court of
> law. 
>              
>             Of all of the people cited in this
> story Michael
>                 Shermer is the only one that I have
> appreciated on a
>                 routine basis over recent years.  I would
> be very sad to
>                 lose the insight and wisdom from that source
> if the
>                 force of law removes him as a leader of the
> skeptic
>                 community.  I passionately want him not to
> be hurt if
>                 the charges are false.
>              
>             It seems to me that what we want is a
> system that
>                 follows up on reasonable claims of abuse and
> makes the
>                 best use of available evidence.  This is
> not easy to
>                 do.  It is immensely complex.
>              
>             Don
>              
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> From:
>                         Robert W Ahrens <[address removed]>
> 
>                         To:
>                         [address removed]
> 
> 
>                         Sent:
>                         Sunday, August 11,[masked]:52 PM
> 
>                         Subject:
>                         Re: [atheists-27] Trouble with
> American
>                         Skepticism
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
>                               I'm sorry, but this
> is just wrong.
> 
> 
> 
>                               It is perfectly fine to
> approach a
>                                 woman, as long as one does
> it in an
>                                 appropriate manner, place
> and time.  If
>                                 one takes one's cue from
> the lady, she
>                                 should be able to make it
> perfectly
>                                 clear when a touch is
> welcome and when
>                                 it is not.  To survive, a
> man must be
>                                 come sensitive and should
> COMMUNICATE
>                                 while listening to
> what the lady
>                                 has to say.  Your
> accusations are
>                                 exactly what many
> misogynistic "Men's
>                                 Rights Activists" (or
> MRA's) say to
>                                 accuse women of these things
> and try to
>                                 shut them up!
> 
> 
> 
>                               Woody, your statement is
> the precise
>                                 way to fail, and is exactly
> how
>                                 organizations and men in the
> past have
>                                 failed to do it right.
>  Your statement
>                                 is exactly WHY many women
> DON'T report
>                                 these things to the police.
>  Because
>                                 they are not taken
> seriously, and are
>                                 immediately accused of false
>                                 accusations.
> 
> 
> 
>                               This is not a court of
> law, this is
>                                 the court of public opinion,
> and the
>                                 rules are different.
>  Organizations that
>                                 wish to attract a larger and
> more
>                                 actively loyal following
> MUST attract
>                                 women, and they will never
> manage that
>                                 by acting as CFI has managed
> this
>                                 fiasco.  In the end, it
> doesn't matter
>                                 if the allegations against
> these guys
>                                 are true or false, what
> matters is that
>                                 their employers stop
> stonewalling the
>                                 allegations.  There are
> plenty of very
>                                 public examples of how to do
> it right,
>                                 and at the same time
> protecting the
>                                 rights of both parties.  A
> properly
>                                 conducted investigation will
> tell the
>                                 truth of the situation, and
> heavily
>                                 influences the opinions of
> women in the
>                                 future as they see how an
> organization
>                                 has conducted itself.
>  
> 
> 
> 
>                               If this movement wants to
> grow and
>                                 attract more people,
> CFI's statements
>                                 and actions (and Woody's
> reaction) are
>                                 NOT the way to go about
> it.
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
>                                 On Aug 11, 2013, at
> 7:33 PM, Woody
>                                   Lipinski <[address removed]>
> 
>                                   wrote:
> 
> 
> 
>                                   As
>                                       long the women did not
> report to
>                                       police with some sort
> of
>                                       "witnesses"
> or proves we should
>                                       not discuss the issue
> because it
>                                       can be only
> accusations for some
>                                       sort of benefits. This
> days you
>                                       unable to ask women
> for anything
>                                       because she can take
> advantage of
>                                       your questions. But
> when you will
>                                       touch her you can be
> prosecuted
>                                       and accused of raping
> her.  To
>                                       survive, men must
> loose not only
>                                       aggression but also
> their sex
>                                       interest in women.
> 
> 
> 
>                                       Woody
> 
> 
> 
> 
>                                         On
> 
>                                           Sun, Aug 11, 2013
> at 1:38 AM,
>                                           Don Wharton <[address removed]>
>                                           wrote:
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> There are three
>                                                     leaders
> of the
>                                                     skeptic
> community
>                                                     that
> have had
> 
> astonishing
> 
> allegations thrown
>                                                     at them
> in the last
>                                                     few
> days. It started
>                                                     when
> Karen Stollznow
>                                                     posted a
> piece
> 
> reporting on four
>                                                     years of
> sexual
> 
> harassment including
>                                                     sexual
> assaults. 
>                                                    http://blogs.scie...­
> 
> 
> 
>                                                   She declines
>                                                     to name
> who it was
>                                                     or the
> 
> organization(s)
>                                                     within
> which it
> 
> happened. However,
>                                                     there
> were a number
>                                                     of
> people who knew
>                                                     the
> story and it
>                                                     came out
> that the
>                                                     person
> was Ben
>                                                     Radford,
> deputy
>                                                     editor
> of Skeptical
>                                                     Inquirer
> science
>                                                     magazine
> and a
>                                                     Research
> Fellow at
> 
> CFI.
>                                                    http://freethough...­
> 
>                                                    
>                                                    The next day
>                                                     Carrie
> Poppy
> 
> confesses that she
>                                                     had a
> similar
> 
> experience at the
>                                                     JREF
> with D.J.
>                                                     Grothe.
> Given that
>                                                     D.J is
> gay the
>                                                     misogyny
> is likely
>                                                     to be of
> a much
> 
> different character.
>                                                     This
> report confirms
>                                                     aspects
> of the case
>                                                     with
> Radford and
> 
> Stollsnow at a
>                                                     couple
> of TAM
> 
> meetings. Carrie's
>                                                     email
> included
>                                                     copies
> of a number
>                                                     of
> emails
> 
> documenting the
>                                                     history
> of the
> 
> complaints.
>                                                    http://freethough...­
> 
> 
> 
>                                                    To
> top off this
>                                                     there
> are several
> 
> allegation that
>                                                     Michael
> Shermer is a
>                                                     serial
> rapist.
>                                                    http://freethough...­
> 
> 
>  
>                                                    We
> have only
>                                                     modest
> confirmation
>                                                     of any
> of these
> 
> allegations and we
>                                                     have not
> heard from
>                                                     those
> who are
>                                                     accused.
> However,
>                                                     the
> quality of these
>                                                     claims
> suggest
>                                                     strongly
> that
> 
> something is very
> 
> wrong.
>                                                    
>                                                    For those who
>                                                     do not
> know there
>                                                     has been
> a very
>                                                     stupid
> culture war
>                                                     in
> secularism ever
>                                                     since an
> event
>                                                     called
> Elevatorgate.
>                                                     There
> was a strong
>                                                     feminist
> component
>                                                     and the
> other side
>                                                     that can
> be loosely
> 
> associated with MRA,
> 
> men's right
> 
> activists. At its
>                                                     worst
> many women who
>                                                     are
> secular bloggers
>                                                     or
> leaders are
> 
> subjected to rape
>                                                     threats,
> death
>                                                     threats
> and
> 
> grotesque twisted
>                                                     insults.
> DC's own
>                                                     Melody
> Hensley is
>                                                     only one
> of many
>                                                     that
> have been the
> 
> recipient of this
> 
> mistreatment. I have
>                                                     been
> ignoring this
>                                                     culture
> war as much
>                                                     as
> possible under
>                                                     the
> theory that if I
>                                                     am not
> personally
>                                                     tripping
> over this
>                                                     junk we
> can have our
>                                                     local
> sense of
> 
> community uninfected
>                                                     with
> this nonsense.
>                                                     Just as
> the Westboro
>                                                     Baptist
> Church
>                                                     should
> not be used
>                                                     to
> define all of
> 
> Christianity, this
>                                                     ugliness
> should not
>                                                     be used
> to define
>                                                     American
> skepticism
>                                                     or
> secularism.  My
>                                                     guess is
> that there
>                                                     are
> relatively few
>                                                     people
> responsible
>                                                     for the
> ugliness of
>                                                     this
> war.
>                                                    
>                                                   With
> 
>                                                     that as
> a
> 
> background, my
>                                                     reading
> of MRA
> 
> contingent is that
>                                                     they are
> being
> 
> remarkably silent
>                                                     with the
> current
> 
> revelations. There
>                                                     seems to
> be too much
> 
> substance and
> 
> credibility behind
>                                                     these
> allegations.
>                                                     This
> might be a
>                                                     major
> historical
> 
> transition point. I
>                                                     may be
> wrong but I
>                                                     think
> organized
> 
> skepticism will need
>                                                     to see
> some major
> 
> changes.
>                                                    
>                                                    Don
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
>                                                 --
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