The end of skepticism is nigh

by | September 12, 2014

No, not really, but I guess it makes good click bait.

Will Misogyny Bring Down The Atheist Movement?

Mostly just a rehash of the drama, but somewhat balanced.

I did like this part…

Penn Jillette says that he has distanced himself from the skeptic movement entirely; his quasi-affiliated party aside, he claims that he hasn’t had anything to do with TAM in four or five years — not because of pervasive sexism, but because of the increased sensitivity. “There started to be a sense in TAM that not all subjects can be discussed, and I just pulled myself out of it,” he said. The final straw came when his attempt to bring South Park creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone into the fold was met with resistance. “Some people were like, ‘Ooh, they use obscenity.’ If they don’t want Matt and Trey, I am out.”

Amongst the many scandals, bad behaviour and acrimony, I see nothing particularly new or uniquely awful in the skeptic/atheist movement… Except the skepticism and atheism. The splintering and schisms are part of how movements evolve. And as with evolution there is no perfect route to take, nor ultimate end product. Life is a negotiation.

Also…. Heroes are myth….beware of them. We embrace ideals at our peril. Reality is much richer anyway. Hope for the best… Plan for the other thing.

2 thoughts on “The end of skepticism is nigh

  1. KC

    I really don’t believe that skepticism or atheism are comprehensive enough ‘belief systems’ to create much of a coherent ‘movement’. I don’t think libertarians and social justice warriors (to just name two) are going to bury the numerous outstanding hatchets they have between them in the name of relatively narrow ideas like ‘skepticism’ or ‘atheism’. We may be able to cobble together an ad hoc coalition on this or that issue but certainly nothing broad and comprehensive.

    And even the ability to create “ad hoc coalitions” is imperiled by this obnoxious tendency among the social justice warriors to demand ideological conformity on a slate of issues that are unrelated or marginally related to skepticism or atheism.

    1. Joe Post author

      My experience with volunteer organizations is that of the 10 who walk through the door, one will end up being of use in anything resembling a long term capacity. But even among the 10 percent… Some will burn out, some lose interest, while others just fade away. I was initially annoyed with the SJ types for their distraction from the more common cause, but I’m an accommodater, a postmodernist, and more of a philosophical skeptic anyway… So I move from project to project myself, with little focus on… The movement. Mostly I find the ‘disillusionment’ people claim is most often a result of unrealistic expectations. I’m old and jaded though… So I’ve always had low expectations… It would be nice if people could separate the cause from the drama, but that’s not really people.


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