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Re: [bostonatheists] Is Slate Magazine Right that Sexual Harassment is Rampant in Our Ranks?

From: Jim H.
Sent on: Thursday, August 8, 2013 12:35 AM
I don't think of myself as part of a movement. I think trying to mold freethinkers into a movement is generally as futile as trying to herd cats. My reason for joining an atheists and freethinkers group was to be able to exchange ideas and learn from people who are not part of a movement. But there are times an external threat leads us to stand shoulder to shoulder against something, and stopping sexual harassment and assault in our own ranks would be one of those times.

On Wed, Aug 7, 2013 at 11:20 PM, Barry <[address removed]> wrote:
On 8/7/2013 9:37 PM, Paul G. Brown wrote:
All of which should remind us that being an atheist is no prophylactic against being a complete jerk.
A good point, but I wonder if the problem is worse than that.  I see no reason to think that there's a connection between being an atheist or skeptic and being a misogynist or sexual harasser.  Could the conferences and organizations themselves be attracting more than their fair share of people with problems?  Many people in the movement are going after targets - scammers, religious zealots, even religious people who aren't zealots.  And sexual harassers are targeting women.  While someone can be a nice, normal person and want to expose scammers and zealots, perhaps some people do it partly for antagonistic or antisocial.reasons, or perhaps they're better with ideas than they are with people.  When male, some of these atheists and skeptics might not be any nicer to women than they are to the people they target in their roles as activists.

I assume that most atheists and skeptics just go about their everyday lives, putting their values into positive action.  Is that what our movements have been about?

- Barry

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