If I thought this was your group I would
have been gone ya liberal LOL. I appreciate you taking the initiative to set it
up and keep it going.
I don't expect agreement on everything, as long as
we can keep true to skepticism then lets party.
Sent: Monday, September 20,[masked]:39 PM
Subject: [WinnipegSkeptics] Winnipeg Skeptics Membership and
We recently had a member leave the group.
Upon doing so, this person was asked to provide a reason for leaving, which
was then forwarded to me. This is what I received:
Sorry but I have to leave your group. I am
very skeptical about some things that you accept and I can't work with
Good luck with your group!
Although this member
had not attended any meetups and had not been active in the group, this
message was the cause of some concern for me. This was my reply:
I'm sorry that you felt that you needed
to leave the group as a result of my beliefs. I'm not sure exactly what was
at issue, but I want you to know that you are always welcome back at the
Winnipeg Skeptics. It's not my intention to impose any sort of skeptical
litmus test on members or to model the group after what I do or do not
To my mind, the beliefs themselves are not as important as
the method used to arrive at them, and rigidity of thought is inimical to
skepticism. I strive to be always open to evidence and always ready to be
convinced. If you would like to present any evidence, you are welcome to
contact me via email or to post it to the Meetup page.
I wish you all
Now, it's possible that this former
member is a conspiracy theorist, or "Darwin Skeptic", or doesn't agree with
the scientific consensus on anthropogenic global warming. These are potential
areas in which this person and I may disagree. But regardless, the message
raised an important issue.
The only reason that I'm the organiser of
this meetup is that I was looking for a skeptics' group in Winnipeg and found
that there were none, so I started one (that, and I pay the monthly Meetup
charges). I've done my best as organiser of the Winnipeg Skeptics, but you
didn't elect me, and consequently I may not best represent you.
isn't my group: this is our group. I don't want what I may or
may not believe to have undue influence on its membership or its focus. This
is a grassroots organisation. Elected posts and membership dues and whatnot
carry with them their own special challenges, but perhaps it is time to
discuss those challenges and see whether that's the direction we eventually
want to go.
These are important issues, so if you have a moment please
let me know what you think. This email has been posted to the message
Please Note: If you hit
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message was sent by Gem Newman ([address removed]) from The Winnipeg
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