|Sent on:||Tuesday, July 27, 2010 1:34 AM|
Good evening all,
While some have posted on the MMAH Meetup website that they had a good time last night or that they enjoyed the presentation, I have to say that I did not.�� Maybe it was the fact that Chris and I were verbally assaulted by one of the audience members.��
You know, people don?t seem to realize that groups like CFI can hire professional speakers because they charge admission and membership fees to their events.�� MMAH does not.�� So sometimes one of the regulars has to stand up and volunteer to present on a topic.�� I told everyone this before we started the talk.�� I said we are neither scientists nor psychologists.�� Chris did say that this topic was near and dear to us.�� There seemed to be a lot of people in the audience who knew a hell of a lot more about this topic than Chris and I did on an academic level, but I didn?t see any of them raise their hands and volunteer to do a talk on it, so we researched, reviewed documentaries, searched academic journals, and did our best to create a presentation that would be interesting and inspire discussion.�� We even invited the audience to discuss with us as we went.�� This was not a lecture, we were leading a discussion.�� That is why when some of you corrected terminology or told us something we did not know, we were happy to be corrected and excited to have more info brought into the conversation.��
However, I must talk about how this discussion was violated and why I am upset.��
There is such a thing as being a gracious host.�� We all know that.�� But there is also, and no less so, such a thing as being a gracious guest.�� And the woman who verbally attacked us was in no way a gracious guest.�� I will not apologize for calling her out on this because she spared us no warning or apology last night when she accused us of not doing our research and making claims that were untrue.�� To set the record straight, Chris was taken off our topic by a question, which is fine, but she was holding him accountable for his opinion rather than the info we had researched.�� Suellen pointed out to me that ?intersex? was a better term than ?hermaphrodite?, which she did quite graciously, and which I was glad to learn.�� That was the only ?error? of sorts in the information we presented.�� I also will admit that I probably should not have mentioned the female circumcision issue in the UK without remembering it better, but luckily for all of us there just so happened to be an audience member from the UK there to help me out.�� Which she also did with grace.�� I also enjoyed the part toward the end about gender being more fluid than fixed and some of the great info about genetics that came into the discussion.�� For those additions to the conversation I am very thankful.��
I have been advised by one audience member to just let this be, but I can?t.�� She is right I am sure, but I am very upset that we were treated so badly by an audience that should have been safe.�� By an audience that was told by us we were not experts but just interested peers and was invited to discuss this topic with us.��
So next month I do not plan to come to the meeting.�� The woman who was an ungracious guest will be the gracious host.�� And while I would like to hear what she might have to tell you all, I, like her, know that I cannot be a gracious guest.�� But I, unlike her, also know how to graciously decline the invitation to attend when I don?t think I can behave myself.��
I do also challenge some of you to step up to the plate and put yourselves in the hot seat for the MMAH dinner meeting sometime soon.�� We need speakers...
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This message was sent by Catherine Tucker ([address removed]) from The Mid-Michigan Atheists & Humanists Meetup Group.
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