Sunday, 13 January 2013

Adam Lee Removes My Response....But Why?

You may be aware that Adam Lee has launched a petition recently aimed at conference organisers.

Here it is:

Feel free to have a read and even sign up if you agree with Mr Lee!

Mr Lee, who clearly touts himself as a skeptical thinker and proud advocate of diversity, then made a follow up blog entry whereupon he cleared up his reasons for launching the petition and gave his thoughts on the statistical side of where people line up in the associated issues

I had some issues with what Adam Lee had to say. Unfortunately Adam has taken it upon himself to simply remove the comment I had left, like the good skeptic he is!
I would ask that you honestly appraise my comment and decide for yourselves if it was worthy of deletion? Was it too rude perhaps?
Vulgar language?
Hate speech?

Perhaps compare my comment to others that ARE still up, alongside Mr Lee's own efforts, and see if you can work out why it was deleted. Perhaps even ask Adam why he took it down! One thing is certain: I haven't got a clue!

here is the comment:
and in text form
You wrote:
"In every case, the atheists who support social justice are the large
majority, whereas the hateful trolls are a minority - vindictive and
vociferous, yes, but a small minority nonetheless. They can harass and bully individuals, but they have no broad appeal or power to shape the direction of the secular movement."

Some awful jumps in logic and reasoning here. If this is what constitues 'Big Thinking' then I trust that my own thoughts remain small.

Firstly, decide what the hell you are talking about: is this about atheism or secularism? There are a great number of committed theistic secularists who get understandably hot under the collar when people such as yourself blur the distinction in this way.

Secondly, you play the shit trick of creating a false dichotomy such that one is either pro-social justice or against your approach. So I agree with you that, happily, the 'hateful trolls' are in the minority - and that includes the hateful trolls on both sides. But please, Mr Lee, don't attempt to conflate disagreeing with the socio-political hijacking of atheism via this atheism+ crap (which so far has amounted to nothing more than a forum filled with enough hatred and bigotry to fuel a new Reich) with being a troll. Many of us are representing viewpoints we GENUINELY hold and raising concerns and objections we earnestly believe: I don't label you a 'troll' when you do just this so why should I accept this smearing back off you?

Thirdly, I don't think your portrayal of the figures is an accurate reflection. You use the atheism+ logo on your blog entry for your poll and I can tell you that in the wider and more diverse community of YouTube (and we are all in favour of diversity, are we not?) your general position has gone down like a lead balloon. My first video on the subject (outlining my objections to A+) has twenty likes for every single dislike (1002 vs 50) and this is mirrored across the board in every video I have made on the subject, alongside the comments left from commenters of all gender identities and all sexual preferences (of those I know).

I have to ask, at this point, why you never quote the stats, out of balance, for Thunderf00ts first video? Given that your petition was in direct response to his video how on earth could you deem THAT not relevant? Admittedly, Thunderf00ts position is more extreme than my own here but he still has over eight likes to each dislike and even without extrapolating the ratio to the total viewership the bald numbers are of over 8000 people seemingly agreeing and endorsing his message and only 900 disagreeing. Maybe you feel YouTube is a less diverse environment than Freethought Blogs/ Skepchick etc? Is that really even possible? Or maybe when it comes down to what REALLY defines us - what we THINK - you don't champion diversity with quite as much enthusiasm as you claim?

Then you finish off with the claim that "they have no broad appeal or power to shape the direction of the secular movement". In this part you are probably right. People with a clear and focussed political agenda generally get their way in the end, whether for good or ill.

Finally, perhaps you ought to have a word with your friend Ian Cromwell, who made the frankly astonishing remark on the petition that:
"The idea that atheism specifically must not make the changes and
accommodations of underrepresented groups that EVERY OTHER COMMUNITY IN THE WORLD is making is, frankly, ridiculous".

Perhaps you should ask him to speak to a few of the communities he has obviously never heard about, such as the Muslim community, the Hindu community and the Sikh community about what they are doing to make the ethnic balance of people who walk through the doors of their mosques, mandirs and gurdwaras match the ethnic balance of our countries? As it stands, whilst, contrary to Cromwells laughably naive and misleading claim, they continue to do nothing towards representing the ethnic diversity present in society and to take such a huge chunk of the ethnically south asian populace in western countries it is simply inconceivable that atheist gatherings can be expected in any way to proportionally represent peoples from this part of the world (which, in the UK at least, represents a massive part of those who regard themselves as non-white).


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