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Wha! Huh? Yeah? What is it good for?

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Re: Wha! Huh? Yeah? What is it good for?

Post  Cuduggan2K2 on Wed Oct 31, 2012 8:38 pm

No Posts will be moved but it would be more appropriate to have this discussion here

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Re: Wha! Huh? Yeah? What is it good for?

Post  Eldin Alvere on Wed Oct 31, 2012 9:28 pm

Cuduggan2K2 wrote:
You can voice dissent, just not in offensive terms. Here, no such non-offense is required.

Uh, no, you can't. Not on the freethoughtblog forums of members from the A+ forum and not on the A+ forum. Every single thread I participated in was locked. At no point did I ever insult or belittle anyone. I was never banned but I was warned repeatedly that they did not need to explain/justify/etc. their claims. On all of the A+ forum members that I have attempted to comment on, I am either banned or in moderation so they can select/edit the comments I make. It is NOT remotely an open forum to discuss anything. It's an echo chamber for them to reaffirm their unwarranted beliefs.

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Re: Wha! Huh? Yeah? What is it good for?

Post  B-Lar on Thu Nov 01, 2012 1:14 am

The argument isn't that SR says all men are rapists, it's that SR tells women (and men) to treat men as thogh they were rapists. Do you see the difference? No?

I understand the difference, (and im so sorry for totally misrepresenting your views although to be fair, further down the thread we also see "Which IMO comes back to the point that apparently Ms. Starling sees ALL men as potential rapists") and no. It doesnt tell people anything other than "now you know what kind of thing goes on itside a womans head when she meets you, you can adjust your behaviour to help her trust you if you so wish". I find it staggering that I read that article and got it first time, whereas so many people, yourself included, have concluded that its somehow an attack on men, that it subverts male/female relationships. HELLO! this is an elegantly worded description of things that were already going on in womens heads. it is not new. when the article was released, there were loads of women who came out and said variants of: "thankyou for expressing something that I feel every day in a way that other people can understand". Are you saying that the experiences of these women are wrong? Perhaps you just object to women expressing things you dont like. Perhaps you are concerned that you might have to make your own sammiches if this slippery slope keeps sliding. If you are suddenly confronted with the news that women make personal security decisions all the time and your response is to desperately twist it around to find some little bit to object to then the text is your mirror darkly.


Lovely, lovely unskiptical dogmatism here. So apparently, if you disagree with A+ dogma, your opinion MUST be "ill informed", and you "deserve disgust". If you think that's unreasonable, you have "empathy failiure".

Did you fail to note the hilarious [/paraphrase] tag there? Allow me to clarify regardless. IF your opinion is ill informed then you earn MY contempt. If you object to the idea that subjugated people need a safe space (or A+ "dogma" as it is apparently now called) then you have empathy failure. This is not dogmatic. It is me excercising my right to recognise those who are standing in the way of social justice and forcefully explain how you dont get to tell people who have actually suffered that their safe space is actually your pissing ground.

I know you cant get your head around the idea that there isnt some immutable code which you have to follow to be part of A+, BUT THERE ISNT. All you have to be able to do is listen honestly and excercise your empathy gland. good faith dissent is welcomed. It helps us grow. Bad faith dissent is ignorant whining. It is poison.

I've seen this "rebutted a million times over" argument mor ethan once on my brief tenure in "safe space", yet amazingly, when I asked for people to link me to these amazing rebuttals, all I got was the FAQ. And when i decided to give concrete examples of where I disagreed with the FAQ, I got tempbanned for "doubling down" and told to change my attitude or go away.

What do you call an organisation with a set of idea(l)s that may not be questioned, where the litmus test of acceptance in the group is unquationing adherence to these rules and tenets? A religion or a cult..

Oh my. You were given the FAQ. What did you do? Look at it blankly because there was no back patting about how were all so clever because we figured out there is no god? Did you read it? Maybe you saw something that looked like your tired question in there but because a couple of words were out of place that invalidated the entire FAQ? What were your questions. Link me to the posts you made. If you have actually exposed a hole then I want to know about it. Seriously.

Furthermore, An organisation with a set of ideas which may not be questioned? are you high? All of these ideas may be questioned, but if all the questions that you bring have been rebutted then you are not bringing anything new to the table and you can be safely ignored. Chump scientists go around trying to prove that E doesnt equal MC squared and so they fail to use their time to add something to science.

Branding something a dogma/cult/religion because you cant meet the minimum requirements of understanding is sad. Why not try to learn something instead?


What you fail to realise is that all the charges you drummed up are ad hominem fallacies to dismiss the arguments/criticisms of a poster, unless you logically demonstrate A+ to be valid. And that's where you completely fail too meet the burden of proof. For all the posing and posturing as "rationalists" and "skeptics", you refuse to discuss your ideas and ideology, and hound out and ban anyone with the audacity to try to do so.


You are demanding proof for the assertion that people are subjugated and that they deserve a space to not have to listen to your drivel? Demanding proof for the assertion that we are better off without people who arent willing to contribute? The ideas and ideology are all there for you to peruse. Heres something YOU fail to realise. There are 2 elements to A+. The core, which is the safe space where the refining of ideas, honest education and the actual action happens. And the borderlands, right here, where guys like me who are fucking livid that the safe space even needs to exist, keep those who arent interested in the honest discussion running round in circles until their ego is tired. The ideology IS being discussed. By people who know how to have a discussion. If you want to be part of the discussion, you dont have to change your mind. You just have to refine it. Check the limits of your knowledge. Temper your reason with compassion or it will fail to be useful.


My Mommy said I was, and she's less privileged than you, so she's right and you're wrong.

Your Mommy was wrong, and she shouldnt compete in the oppresion olympics. Everyone loses there.



I CAN HAZ SHOUTING TOO?!!

WE CAN ALL HAZ SHOUTING!11!


Some stuff...What happens when one or several of you "mislabel" someone as "privileged" and pile on? More stuff...

This is worth having a conversation about, although there are many facets which need to be considered and taken into account. If we profile people according to their behaviour so as to make judgements about their true intentions, then there will be some people who have honest, good faith questions that suffer false positives. IMO any number of false positives is unnacceptable. The optimal choice would be to assume good faith in all cases and maintain infinte patience even after someone has shown that they are a troll because everybody deserves to be more educated. This is impractical though, and actually moves the burden of responsibility for ignorant behaviour from the ignorant party onto the educator party. In addition, the educators, who are used to seeing disgusting attacks on them for just being who they are are expected to swallow all that and spend their time engaging with people who sometimes arent willing to accept that their opinion is ill informed, who demand to be spoon fed information without going to do background reading, and who have no actual investment in the topic whatsoever.

This is a problem. The best solution from the subjugated persons point of view, is to treat anyone who displays these flags as hostile because most of the time, they are. Time and energy are at a premium when you spend your life at the mercy of others. The best solution for the enquirer is for the educator to put up with any and all their bullshit until they get it. Because the cause is the ignorant person wading in, the responsibility for choosing the reaction lies with the educators who, surprise surprise, choose the action which is optimal for them. In schools, teachers are supposed to help all the kids, but I have total sympathy with the teachers who focus on the kids who actually want to learn. It stops being about what is optimal for the whole group and starts being more about the time/energy to succesful-result coefficient. Can you suggest a more efficient way of seperating the chaff from the wheat?

Confucious (or someone quite like him) said that when he teaches a student he lifts one corner, and if the student does not respond by lifting the other three corners then he is not interested in learning and is a waste of time. The answer to the problem (at least for me, until someone suggests a better way) is to cut out those who are a waste of time which is exactly what A+ does. Are you a waste of time?

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Re: Wha! Huh? Yeah? What is it good for?

Post  rEvolutionist on Thu Nov 01, 2012 1:19 am

b_lar wrote:good faith dissent is welcomed.

Why isn't there a 'coffee spray' smiley here? At the very least we need a ROFL smiley for this.

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Re: Wha! Huh? Yeah? What is it good for?

Post  Dar on Thu Nov 01, 2012 1:24 am

In other words, the atheismplus.com forum believes that anyone who posts anything is Schrodinger's Troll, and will treat them as such unless they go 'out of their way' to fix the 'problem'.

If that's the case, they should market themselves accurately. That forum has made liars out of Greta Christina, Jen McCreight, Matt Dillahunty, Beth Presswood, Tracy Harris, and many others who passed on the info on the home page and in the FAQ.

What if the new poster is a marginalized person? Under the principle of Schrodinger's Troll, shouldn't the forum 'go out of its way' to fix the problem? No. Of course not. The atheismplus.com forum members and moderators only apply such principles when they work in their own favor.


Last edited by Dar on Thu Nov 01, 2012 1:25 am; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : very minor fix. damn, i need to proofread before i hit send.)

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Re: Wha! Huh? Yeah? What is it good for?

Post  rEvolutionist on Thu Nov 01, 2012 1:26 am

"Schrodingers Troll"... I like that! Very Happy

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Re: Wha! Huh? Yeah? What is it good for?

Post  Skavau on Thu Nov 01, 2012 1:46 am

I understand the difference, (and im so sorry for totally misrepresenting your views although to be fair, further down the thread we also see "Which IMO comes back to the point that apparently Ms. Starling sees ALL men as potential rapists") and no. It doesnt tell people anything other than "now you know what kind of thing goes on itside a womans head when she meets you, you can adjust your behaviour to help her trust you if you so wish". I find it staggering that I read that article and got it first time, whereas so many people, yourself included, have concluded that its somehow an attack on men, that it subverts male/female relationships. HELLO! this is an elegantly worded description of things that were already going on in womens heads. it is not new.
The original article attempts to validate the idea of all women presuming any unknown male in their vicinity as a threat. Additionally it also assumes that all women think like it.

when the article was released, there were loads of women who came out and said variants of: "thankyou for expressing something that I feel every day in a way that other people can understand". Are you saying that the experiences of these women are wrong?
I would say that their fear is probably overstated and is unhealthy to their mental health, long-term and they should seek help not confirmation.

Of course, some of those women were rape and/or other sexual abuse victims and thus their fear is understandable but still not helpful to their mental health in the long run.

Perhaps you just object to women expressing things you dont like. Perhaps you are concerned that you might have to make your own sammiches if this slippery slope keeps sliding. If you are suddenly confronted with the news that women make personal security decisions all the time and your response is to desperately twist it around to find some little bit to object to then the text is your mirror darkly
The irony here is flawless (which is not to say the same for your logic).

You accuse AliRadicali of twisting SR around to find some affront towards men and yet just prior you use his objections to SR and twist them to suggest that he is a misogynist.

Keep it classy B-Lar.

Did you fail to note the hilarious [/paraphrase] tag there? Allow me to clarify regardless. IF your opinion is ill informed then you earn MY contempt. If you object to the idea that subjugated people need a safe space (or A+ "dogma" as it is apparently now called) then you have empathy failure.
I've read much of that forum and the subjugated people you're referring to here are deeply damaged. I read through the "Effects of Lacking Privilege" thread sometime ago where many of the regulars there elaborated on negative effects their mental illnesses, physical impairments, sexual preferences, gender identity issues and sexual assaults gave them. There's some seriously damaged people on there, and I don't mean that condescendingly or patronisingly. They have real medical issues and they themselves admit it readily. It is not hard to see why they are attracted towards the goals of A+. The problem is though that their experiences and conditions lead them completely hostile and incapable to dealing with any measured criticism. They are not stable people. They need help. Perhaps they are getting it somewhere, but I do not think the bunker atmosphere of the Atheismplus safe space is helpful for them to move on in any way. They get affirmation everywhere from shall we say 'healthy' members of A+ that all of their problems and issues in life are never their fault, ever. None of how they interpret any event ever can be put down to a misjudgement or a bias and it is intensifying their paranoia and fear of mainstream society. Some bloggers behind FTB such as Ophelia Benson and Stephanie Zvan (nominally allied with A+) who frequently highlight supposed examples of sexism on the internet does not help either.

It is always someone else's bigotry, or privilege, or the patriarchy or some other invented explanation and so when someone from the outside, or someone in a 'privileged' group gets involved in the discussion they immediately turn hostile presuming some negative motive or low intent from them. This is a problem not just for the members there but for the public image of A+. It stands to be ruined by this hostile group of damaged people throwing people out on their ass for trivial crap. It is a forum takeover by damaged people and their protectors (who probably do it on the best of intentions).

By the way, this kind of phenomenon of 'forum takeover' is not remotely unique. I've seen it happen elsewhere and have even seen it attempted in an old chatroom of mine in a different context.

This is not dogmatic. It is me excercising my right to recognise those who are standing in the way of social justice and forcefully explain how you dont get to tell people who have actually suffered that their safe space is actually your pissing ground.
This is just it. You assume, by the fact that they disagree that they are against social justice. They aren't.

At the moment by the way, the idea of 'social justice' per A+ has evolved to seem to mean 'social retribution' or 'social revenge'.


I know you cant get your head around the idea that there isnt some immutable code which you have to follow to be part of A+, BUT THERE ISNT. All you have to be able to do is listen honestly and excercise your empathy gland. good faith dissent is welcomed. It helps us grow. Bad faith dissent is ignorant whining. It is poison.
What constitutes "good faith dissent"? This is key.
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Re: Wha! Huh? Yeah? What is it good for?

Post  Dar on Thu Nov 01, 2012 2:24 am

B-Lar

Over there, when I said:
EZRD wrote:I'll go PC and call it 'Legal parental abdication' here. I've never heard it called that anywhere else. Instead, I've always heard it refered to as 'Male Abortion'. I'm not a big fan of that term either. Still, I think it good to at least have an acknowledgement of that label in the discussion for others like me who have only ever heard the issue called 'male abortion'.
I was met with:
Submor wrote:
EZRD wrote:I'll go PC and call it 'Legal parental abdication' here.

And thus I have renamed the thread.

I also resent your passive aggressive jab in saying you're "going PC." Words matter. If you don't respect that, don't use them.

Don't you think that was a bit harsh? There are more polite ways of explaining that a place is so PC that you aren't allowed to use the expression PC. After that, naturally, I got defensive. I did what the moderators told me to do when I contacted them about it. That led to me getting dog-piled and repeatedly asked the question of doom: "What do you want". When I replied, in a moment of frustration, I referred to the situation... and not any person... as retarded. I did so in the forum matters thread, where a moderator had already told me via PM that area of the forum was not moderated for language. Despite that, I recieved a 24 hour ban before I could request that my account get deleted.

And, if you want to argue that the forum matters forum falls under those rules... and those rules are clearly visible in that forum... You'd be right... they do now.

But at the time of my ban...



The next day that changed.

Might I refer you to this video reading...
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=utzzHvBOihs...
of this blog post...
http://greylining.com/2012/09/08/the-dealing-with-atheism-ftb-and-skepchick-survival-guide/

I certainly don't agree with these guys on everything... but here they make some excellent points that have proven accurate.

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Re: Wha! Huh? Yeah? What is it good for?

Post  AliRadicali on Thu Nov 01, 2012 2:40 am

B-Lar wrote:
The argument isn't that SR says all men are rapists, it's that SR tells women (and men) to treat men as thogh they were rapists. Do you see the difference? No?
I understand the difference, (and im so sorry for totally misrepresenting your views although to be fair, further down the thread we also see "Which IMO comes back to the point that apparently Ms. Starling sees ALL men as potential rapists") and no. It doesnt tell people anything other than "now you know what kind of thing goes on itside a womans head when she meets you, you can adjust your behaviour to help her trust you if you so wish". I find it staggering that I read that article and got it first time, whereas so many people, yourself included, have concluded that its somehow an attack on men, that it subverts male/female relationships. HELLO! this is an elegantly worded description of things that were already going on in womens heads. it is not new. when the article was released, there were loads of women who came out and said variants of: "thankyou for expressing something that I feel every day in a way that other people can understand". Are you saying that the experiences of these women are wrong? Perhaps you just object to women expressing things you dont like. Perhaps you are concerned that you might have to make your own sammiches if this slippery slope keeps sliding. If you are suddenly confronted with the news that women make personal security decisions all the time and your response is to desperately twist it around to find some little bit to object to then the text is your mirror darkly.
I'm sorry, but an article that addresses "good, honest, charitable, etc. etc. men and then feels the need to tell them that rape and sexual assault is NOT OK, is condescending and insulting to any decent human's level of empathy. Yes, that presupposes that men, even good, honest, charitable, yaddayadda men need to told that rape is bad.

Now you can go out of your way to read that in the most charitable light, but I don't see why you would do that, and then come here and read the complaints about the article in the most unfavourable light, as uncaring sexism.

I avoid acting in a way that will harm other people. I think almost all people do this, certainly people who I'd deem decent human beings. I don't think men need to be told not to act like creeps. So when I read stories about a feminist who feels creeped out by an invitation to coffee, when I read an essay on how women naturally treat all strangers as rapists when its dark, and how men should be appreciative of that, I take offense. Excuse me for not wanting to be lumped with the worst excesses of humanity based solely on my gender. I've said this in another thread, i'll say it again here: if I'm acting creepy, feel free to respond accordingly. If my mere presence as a man creeps you out, maybe the problem isn't me.




Lovely, lovely unskiptical dogmatism here. So apparently, if you disagree with A+ dogma, your opinion MUST be "ill informed", and you "deserve disgust". If you think that's unreasonable, you have "empathy failiure".

Did you fail to note the hilarious [/paraphrase] tag there? Allow me to clarify regardless. IF your opinion is ill informed then you earn MY contempt. If you object to the idea that subjugated people need a safe space (or A+ "dogma" as it is apparently now called) then you have empathy failure. This is not dogmatic. It is me excercising my right to recognise those who are standing in the way of social justice and forcefully explain how you dont get to tell people who have actually suffered that their safe space is actually your pissing ground.
My problem is that the A+theism safe space is being promoted as a place for openminded skeptics/atheists who support a progressive agenda and equality/human rights to freely discuss issues, when in fact criticism of, say, feminism vs egalitarianism, is certain to get you dogpiled, silenced, banned.
A critical tone or attitude is taken as proof that you don't qualify to be a part of those forums.

if you want to be a sheltered, isolated support group, fine, be that way, but don't advertise the place as if it were a place for open discussion.


I know you cant get your head around the idea that there isnt some immutable code which you have to follow to be part of A+, BUT THERE ISNT. All you have to be able to do is listen honestly and excercise your empathy gland. good faith dissent is welcomed. It helps us grow. Bad faith dissent is ignorant whining. It is poison.
What is the litmus test for bad faith? How does one prove good faith, when disagreement is taken as evidence that you have bad faith, that you're ignorant or trolling?


I've seen this "rebutted a million times over" argument mor ethan once on my brief tenure in "safe space", yet amazingly, when I asked for people to link me to these amazing rebuttals, all I got was the FAQ. And when i decided to give concrete examples of where I disagreed with the FAQ, I got tempbanned for "doubling down" and told to change my attitude or go away.

What do you call an organisation with a set of idea(l)s that may not be questioned, where the litmus test of acceptance in the group is unquationing adherence to these rules and tenets? A religion or a cult..

Oh my. You were given the FAQ. What did you do? Look at it blankly because there was no back patting about how were all so clever because we figured out there is no god? Did you read it? Maybe you saw something that looked like your tired question in there but because a couple of words were out of place that invalidated the entire FAQ? What were your questions. Link me to the posts you made. If you have actually exposed a hole then I want to know about it. Seriously.
http://atheismplus.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=7&t=294&start=25#p37053

If you get the same "tired old questions" every time, maybe the problem isn't the questions or the questioners, maybe the problem is the FAQ's answers.


Furthermore, An organisation with a set of ideas which may not be questioned? are you high? All of these ideas may be questioned, but if all the questions that you bring have been rebutted then you are not bringing anything new to the table and you can be safely ignored. Chump scientists go around trying to prove that E doesnt equal MC squared and so they fail to use their time to add something to science.

Branding something a dogma/cult/religion because you cant meet the minimum requirements of understanding is sad. Why not try to learn something instead?
The difference between E=MC2 and A+theism is that E=MC2 has evidence, real world applicability, etc. A+theism embraces (radical) feminism, which has a flawed methodology(following the theory rather than the data), a history of misusing statistics to their advantage, and quite frankly, some unquestionable tenets which make it seem religious. I'm for gender equality, and I happen to believe that feminsim doesn't advocate for gender equality. But discussing that is an impossibility at A+, since feminism is dogma, and raising such questions makes you a "misogynist priviliged person who ought to shut up and learn".


What you fail to realise is that all the charges you drummed up are ad hominem fallacies to dismiss the arguments/criticisms of a poster, unless you logically demonstrate A+ to be valid. And that's where you completely fail too meet the burden of proof. For all the posing and posturing as "rationalists" and "skeptics", you refuse to discuss your ideas and ideology, and hound out and ban anyone with the audacity to try to do so.
You are demanding proof for the assertion that people are subjugated and that they deserve a space to not have to listen to your drivel? Demanding proof for the assertion that we are better off without people who arent willing to contribute? The ideas and ideology are all there for you to peruse. Heres something YOU fail to realise. There are 2 elements to A+. The core, which is the safe space where the refining of ideas, honest education and the actual action happens. And the borderlands, right here, where guys like me who are fucking livid that the safe space even needs to exist, keep those who arent interested in the honest discussion running round in circles until their ego is tired. The ideology IS being discussed. By people who know how to have a discussion. If you want to be part of the discussion, you dont have to change your mind. You just have to refine it. Check the limits of your knowledge. Temper your reason with compassion or it will fail to be useful.
When people claim to be the victim of a crime or injustice, I tend to believe them, tentatively. It depends on the claim and the evidence presented.

In the case of a+theism, and it's raison d'etere, "sexism/bigotry in the atheist community", I find the claims to be exaggerated or unrealistic compared to my own experiences, and experiences related by third parties, and I find the evidence presented to be completely lacking.

I'm not saying there aren't any rape victims, oppressed minorities and various other people who have been subjugated or otherwise unjustly dealt with at one point or another, and I'm certainly not saying they can't have their own little corner of the internet, what I'm saying is that that corner should not try to present itself as a free and open community when that's not what they are or want to be. And I think I have a valid reason for questioning a "safe space" where rape victims are assumed to be trolls for disagreeing with a mod who says death is preferable to rape. Oh and banned for angrily repsonding to the implication that they'd be better off dead.

And I'm sorry, but I know how to discuss things. You use these things called arguments, you use reason and evidence. You don't go about disqualifying people from the debate because you don't like the tone of their voice. That would be fallacious, not reasonable. If reason and logic "won't be useful" in discussions on A+, maybe that says more about A+ than it says about my rhetorical skill.
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Re: Wha! Huh? Yeah? What is it good for?

Post  B-Lar on Thu Nov 01, 2012 3:46 am

I would say that their fear is probably overstated and is unhealthy to their mental health, long-term and they should seek help not confirmation.

Of course, some of those women were rape and/or other sexual abuse victims and thus their fear is understandable but still not helpful to their mental health in the long run.

Foolish Samurai. You seek to diminish the experiences of countless women with a wave of your hand. "Oh, but is not healthy to let your fear take over... Im so concerned about your mental health." How about this. Stop your armchair intellectualising and think about how you, personally, can make it so women in the world suffer rape less, and therefore have less to actually fear. Then the problem goes away! Women have to suffer the rock and a hard place scenario of being blamed if they get raped for not being careful, but then being demonised for being careful. This is fucking madness, and if you are defending this state of affairs then I have to ask, what the fuck is wrong with you?

What can you do? look out for people on the internet, in the pub, on the fucking moon, whatever, who thin that things are fine just the way they are, and point out to them, forcefully or gently (whichever floats your boat) that actually the world isnt that great for some people, in all these various ways that we discover when we use our capacity for empathy. One of my freinds, while out on the town, suddenly started groping a young woman and told her that she should be loving it. I grabbed him and chewed him out. Would you believe that he had assumed that his behaviour was fine? Do you think his behaviour was fine? If not, and you would have stood by and let it happen, you are part of the problem.

It is always someone else's bigotry, or privilege, or the patriarchy or some other invented explanation and so when someone from the outside, or someone in a 'privileged' group gets involved in the discussion they immediately turn hostile presuming some negative motive or low intent from them.

The point, which you miss, is that as a priveliged person your experiences blind you to the problems that these actual people face. They are turning hostile because you are presuming that your opinions are worthwhile. You are silencing and minimising their experience by saying "of course, I have never lived through that, but heres my opinion anyway". Its insulting on a level which goes much deeper than name calling or casual dismissal. If you are turned away because you got all uppity that your opinion didnt impress anyone you cannot blame anyone except yourself.

If you spent a greater than zero amount of time listening to the conversation, you would discover this. You would also witness myriad chumps just like you come along and experience your narrowly avoided fate. All you have to do is want to learn. I live in privelige land, but I seem to have been able to grasp the understanding. Whats your excuse?

This is just it. You assume, by the fact that they disagree that they are against social justice. They aren't.


They arent in principle, but when it comes to listening to those who are on the recieving end and suggesting solutions, suddenly there are lots of excuses for why they shouldnt have to do anything. Denying that the problem exists, quibbling over minor details, lots and lots of ego protecting and empty rationalisation. Disagree with the strategies if you like, but only if you are actually going to be involved in their execution.

What constitutes "good faith dissent"? This is key.

Yes. Finally, a worthwhile point.

Using good faith is basically, honesty and humility. Evolution deniers who ask questions like "blah blah irreducable complexity blah blah" and receive a rebuttal but then ask the very next people the very same question, trying to trip them up or co-erce them, are not asking honest questions. They have pre-conceptions which they are not willing to let go of even temporarily. Be fully honest with yourself and humble enough to know that you might be wrong*. However, it is difficult to know when you might be deceiving yourself. Heres some pointers:

The first prequisite is this. You dont have to give up your pre-conceived ideas... just put them to one side temporarily and ask the question hoping for an honest answer. An honest question will be asked of someone who is likely to know the answer ie, your mate who "has a couple of black freinds" is probably not a good place to start asking questions about POC subjugation. If you ask the question and someone takes offense at how you have formed it, politely rephrase the question. If you get defensive, then you failed to put aside your preconceptions

The second prequisite is that the answer that you get not be immediately discarded. If you immediately discard an answer that was provided by someone who should know the answer, its probably because you failed to put aside your presumptions. Dismissing an answer you dont like should only be done if you can show that answer to be false in the context the question was asked.

The third is that if the answer isnt what you would like to hear, but that given the data or other relevant evidence it seems to make sense (from the background reading you already did, because duh.), then check it. ask someone else, read more resources, think about all the facets to the problem dont dismiss something just because it sounds inconvenient. educate yourself for educations sake. If it still makes sense, then its time to throw your preconception away and replace it with the new, more substantial offering. Dont be afraid to put this to one side in the future if new data arises that contradicts it.

Apply the same rules to dissent. Be honest, and willing to put aside your preconceived notions. check that you are getting your point across, and if your point has been rebutted in an FAQ, for FSM sake, dont be the guy who demands someone waste their time rebutting it again. Recognise that noone knows if you are a troll or an honest joe, and dont get defensive. be as clear as possible. if someone brings up a facet to the problem you didnt consider, have the humility to take that on board.

If you are doing it right, you should find that 95% of your preconceptions turn out to be bogus. Why? because our brains fill in the blanks with things that make sense according to the flawed filters that we have over our minds. The further you go through your life, the more you learn, and the more you discover how limited your previous understanding of the world is. If you want to ask me about my experiences in this endeavour, please do.

*FYI, I might not look very humble here, and quite right too. This is my Juggernaut hat. I reserve my humility for people who can actually teach me something. If ANYONE here can teach me something, then I will learn it in accordance with the segments above. I only look like a troll because you are all trip-trapping accross my bridge.

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Re: Wha! Huh? Yeah? What is it good for?

Post  Skavau on Thu Nov 01, 2012 4:10 am

Foolish Samurai. You seek to diminish the experiences of countless women with a wave of your hand. "Oh, but is not healthy to let your fear take over... Im so concerned about your mental health."
It isn't healthy. Why would it be healthy to live in constant fear? Why would someone not in that condition not want to do something about it?

How about this. Stop your armchair intellectualising and think about how you, personally, can make it so women in the world suffer rape less, and therefore have less to actually fear.
There are many things that I, or anyone could do to help women suffer less rape. However that is not specifically the topic here at all. We're talking about, amongst other things how A+ tells victims that their fears, paranoia and prejudice are acceptable and nothing they experience ever regarding that can ever be a misunderstanding or their own fault. You can't query their experiences, suggest an alternative explanation or imply or say that they're being too sensitive on anything ever.

Then the problem goes away! Women have to suffer the rock and a hard place scenario of being blamed if they get raped for not being careful, but then being demonised for being careful.
I don't blame anyone for getting raped and I don't demonise anyone for being careful about their personal safety. So long as those terrified by every unknown man recognise that it is likely their paranoia that to them implicates the random guy as being a potential rapist.

This is fucking madness, and if you are defending this state of affairs then I have to ask, what the fuck is wrong with you?
I'm not. I'm arguing against the attitude on this advocated by A+ and how unhelpful I think it is.

What can you do? look out for people on the internet, in the pub, on the fucking moon, whatever, who thin that things are fine just the way they are, and point out to them, forcefully or gently (whichever floats your boat) that actually the world isnt that great for some people, in all these various ways that we discover when we use our capacity for empathy.
I already know that the world isn't that great for some people.

What makes you think that I don't do this in this or any context anyway?

One of my freinds, while out on the town, suddenly started groping a young woman and told her that she should be loving it. I grabbed him and chewed him out. Would you believe that he had assumed that his behaviour was fine? Do you think his behaviour was fine? If not, and you would have stood by and let it happen, you are part of the problem.
To answer: I wouldn't.

Not sure what this has to do with anything since I wasn't at any point defending random sexual harassment.

The point, which you miss, is that as a priveliged person your experiences blind you to the problems that these actual people face.
By the way, this is a part of the problem. "Privilege" is not a binary male = privileged, female = non-privileged setup. There are varying levels of privilege and non-privilege that transcend sex.

They are turning hostile because you are presuming that your opinions are worthwhile.
This is a part of the problem. It doesn't matter whether or not I think my opinion is worthwhile. What matters is its content. There is a tendency to condemn people quickly just for being considered "privileged" on that forum if they dare utter an observation or make an assertion too quickly, or without enough grovelling. That kind of attitude is hostile, loses potential allies and creates contempt for the community.

You are silencing and minimising their experience by saying "of course, I have never lived through that, but heres my opinion anyway".
Don't be stupid. I'm doing what I'm doing: giving an opinion. I would not be 'silencing' anyone (by the way, I haven't posted on the A+ forum).

Its insulting on a level which goes much deeper than name calling or casual dismissal.
Honestly people who can't take someone else's opinion on something about them or an experience they've had are very thin skinned and probably should not be involved in debate.

If you are turned away because you got all uppity that your opinion didnt impress anyone you cannot blame anyone except yourself.
I'm not sure where, if ever anyone "turned away" (read: banned) from the A+ forums was "uppity" that their opinion didn't impress anyone but that they were banned.

I wouldn't care if 50+ people piled on a fallacious argument I've made. So long as I can defend myself.

If you spent a greater than zero amount of time listening to the conversation, you would discover this.
I've already told you I've read a lot of A+ content.

You would also witness myriad chumps just like you come along and experience your narrowly avoided fate. All you have to do is want to learn. I live in privelige land, but I seem to have been able to grasp the understanding. Whats your excuse?
I don't quite know what this is supposed to mean. You've been able to magically "grasp the understanding" or "getting it" (which so far seems to be just sitting down, shutting up and taking as fact every utterance by anyone who's less privileged than you).

They arent in principle, but when it comes to listening to those who are on the recieving end and suggesting solutions, suddenly there are lots of excuses for why they shouldnt have to do anything.
Funnily enough, if you're reading to those "on the receiving end" then you're probably listening to them as well. That you might elect to argue against their suggestions still means that you listened.

Denying that the problem exists, quibbling over minor details, lots and lots of ego protecting and empty rationalisation. Disagree with the strategies if you like, but only if you are actually going to be involved in their execution.
Here's the thing. What I've noticed from you here is that A+ only accepts criticism (and only criticism of strategy) from those who actively sign up to their cause in their name. Anyone outside looking in scrutinising is told in no uncertain words to "fuck off".

Using good faith is basically, honesty and humility. Evolution deniers who ask questions like "blah blah irreducable complexity blah blah" and receive a rebuttal but then ask the very next people the very same question, trying to trip them up or co-erce them, are not asking honest questions. They have pre-conceptions which they are not willing to let go of even temporarily. Be fully honest with yourself and humble enough to know that you might be wrong*. However, it is difficult to know when you might be deceiving yourself. Heres some pointers:
This presumes that I, and others who disagree with A+ lack both honesty and humility and are comparable to credulous creationists.

The first prequisite is this. You dont have to give up your pre-conceived ideas... just put them to one side temporarily and ask the question hoping for an honest answer. An honest question will be asked of someone who is likely to know the answer ie, your mate who "has a couple of black freinds" is probably not a good place to start asking questions about POC subjugation. If you ask the question and someone takes offense at how you have formed it, politely rephrase the question. If you get defensive, then you failed to put aside your preconceptions
My objection with A+ has little to do with their goals, but with how they handle criticism and handle questioning. I actually have little dissent (as do most people here I suspect) with A+ intended goals.


If you are doing it right, you should find that 95% of your preconceptions turn out to be bogus. Why? because our brains fill in the blanks with things that make sense according to the flawed filters that we have over our minds. The further you go through your life, the more you learn, and the more you discover how limited your previous understanding of the world is. If you want to ask me about my experiences in this endeavour, please do.
Here is the problem. A confirmation bias. You assume that people who dissent from A+ have major preconception issues that they can't get rid of and if they only acted in good faith they would see that.


Last edited by Skavau on Thu Nov 01, 2012 4:16 am; edited 1 time in total
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Re: Wha! Huh? Yeah? What is it good for?

Post  Dar on Thu Nov 01, 2012 4:14 am

B-Lar,

You have some great advice there. That advice should go both ways though. A group that is dismissive of and hostile to the concerns and feelings of others shouldn't expect them to consider and accept the concerns of those dog-piling on them.

At the atheismplus.com forum there is an argument to avoid:

SubMor wrote: First world problems! or There are bigger problems in the world! or You don't really have it so bad!
ischemgeek wrote:Dear Muslima was a specific case of this. In short: "This more severe problem exists, therefore we should ignore your problems!" Which is foolish: Murder is a more severe crime than assault, but you don't see our justice system exclusively punishing murderers and letting those who assault people walk free, do you? It's the same here. We can work to solve less serious problems at the same time as we work on more serious ones.

If one trivializes the concerns and feelings of those considered (rightly or wrongly) as privileged, or who seem not to have it as bad: one is committing this argument to avoid. Calling this board a well of white male tears is no different than bringing up Muslima to trivialize Elevatorgate.

Maybe to you we are just wrong, stupid, and ignorant. Perhaps you already know everything, and no one here could possibly teach you anything.

Then again, maybe you should check your privilege.

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Re: Wha! Huh? Yeah? What is it good for?

Post  B-Lar on Thu Nov 01, 2012 4:31 am

AliRadicali,

It doesnt matter how elegant or sexy you are if you are condescending and assume bad faith before you even get started. NEWSFLASH! A+ IS DIVISIVE! Its designed to distance those who care about making the world better from those who dont. Coming along with:

"Now I haven't spent a vast amount of time on this forum, but from what I've heard and read elsewhere, people critical of atheism..." - (HA! Poetry!)

"the label itself is off-putting to many atheists"

"to promote this movement as somehow being a "kind" of atheism, is misleading IMO"

"Here's to hoping I was misinformed and all this talk of censorship and bans are overblown, I hope to be pleasantly surprised."

...is just priceless. You waded in, self confessed ignorant, condescending, dismissing everything that had been said on the subject, apparently only listening to one side of the argument, and you expected cookies? as if saying PS Im not trolling would actually help your case?! BWAHAHAHAHAHA!

When people called you out on it? did you sit back and go, "hmmm.. maybe I should look at this in more detail... maybe there is a slim chance I might have the wrong end of the stick..." NO! We get hoity! We double down into:

"This might be a shock to you, but posts like this don't exactly reinforce the idea that atheism+ is an inclusive, tolerant, openminded community."

not a shock at all! in fact, posts like this reinforce the idea that if you arent engaging in good faith, you can fuck off!

Ceepolk had it perfect - "thanks for your input. have fun on those parts of the internet you don't find silly." brilliant. You turned up with your sense of self entitlement, to complain about something which you dont even think is worthwhile, which you had already predecided was going to turn against you and boom. self fullfilling prophecy.

There were other posts on that thread from people calling you out on various aspects of your failure. Did you read them? did you assume because they were disagreeing with you that they must be wrong, because you must be right?



I find the claims to be exaggerated or unrealistic compared to my own experiences, and experiences related by third parties, and I find the evidence presented to be completely lacking.

well thats okay then. you find the evidence lacking. You can discard all those personal experiences, because anecdotes arent data right? and of course, your third party evidence box couldnt suffer from confirmation or sample bias right? All these people are getting into a big flap about nothing at all.

You are trying to make this problem go away by denying it exists. Your hyper skepticism is disturbing. Not everyone enjoys the luxury of redefining their abuse out of existence, so they are lucky that they have you to do that for them, amirite?


You don't go about disqualifying people from the debate because you don't like the tone of their voice.

No, you get to disqualify them from the debate when they show that they are not interested in doing the basic groundwork for the debate. Actually, dismissing someone/something purely on tone is not acceptable. You were disqualified because your content, steeped in freindly words as it was, was dripping with entitlement and as I have said in a previous post, veterans can spot that a mile off. No cookies for you.



Im not going to try and educate you about feminism, though your post makes me want to. You are totally a lost cause there. A total cherry picker. It seems like I could quite happily brand you as someone who makes a decision after only listening to the side which you already most agree with. Evidence A: your rhetoric here, and Evidence B: your A+ forum posts.

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Re: Wha! Huh? Yeah? What is it good for?

Post  B-Lar on Thu Nov 01, 2012 5:18 am

Skavau, good styles. I am very sorry that i didnt go through and quote mark all your lines. I only responded.

You presume that people have a choice when it comes to fear. You presume that they have the power to do something about it.


No. It tells the victims that the shit that happened to them shouldnt have happened to them in an ideal world. That the emotions that they experience as a result are understandable. being the person who says these things lends a shoulder of support, and can help people to let go eventually. Telling these people that they have only themselves to blame for not picking themselves up after being pushed down is incredibly callous and counterproductive. It isolates them more. Your comments seem to show that you condsdier these things carefully... why would you make this error?


so you dont demonise anyone for being careful about their safety but you do demonise those who have uncertainty fears about a random guy. Dude. I was in a situation were I was nearly raped by a random guy, and I can tell you, that even though I managed to escape, it took me literally years before I was able to think clearly when in a situation myself and just one other random guy. Its crazy to think in those terms, but it takes a lot of work to get out of. Ever been in a situation like that?


If you already call people out on this shit already, then you get more than just cookies. You get my respect. Is this the case?

Correct. Content matters. your use of "dare" and "grovelling" is telling though. You dont have to dare or grovel if the substance of your argument is good. If you get ejected, could it be because the content was not as good as you thought? Also, a point which the "A+ is hostile" crowd dont seem to be able to bed in is that damn right its hostile! lets say you want to build a house, and you get a bunch of bricks. when they arrive, it turns out that half of them are broken. You do not have the luxury of buying more bricks. Conventional thought for this metaphor suggests that you should use as many of the bricks as possible, discarding only those which completely useless in order to build the biggest house possible. The A+ method is to only use the bricks which are not broken. You get a smaller house, but it is more stable. Hostility keeps the broken bricks away and the way you use it suggests that you think hostility must always be negative.


Simply giving your opinion is more than you just opening your hands and letting the words flow out. that message will be received and considered. If your opinion dismisses the experiences and opinions of others, then you are silencing and minimising them. You shouldnt be surprised if you receive contempt here.


No. getting it does not mean taking every utterance as gospel. Getting it means getting that you dont get it. (see south park - apologies to jesse jackson) and working from a position of assumed ignorance. apply the scientific method from this starting point and you cannot fail.


Of course! lets hypothesise. You are running a project of some kind and have a team who have looked at the goals and strategies for acheiving these goals. Suddenly some guy turns up and wants in. he has lots of ideas, but he has no knbowledge about the goals or strategy of the project. Now imagine that its not just one guy, but hundreds. You cant educate them all because resources are tight, so you educate those who are willing to learn. the rest are going to be counterproductive. If you havent made any efforts to understand, your criticism is going to be only fit for the bin.


Good! you dont disagree with A+ stated goals! You disagree with the strategy of implementation. Now. Do you UNDERSTAND what I have been saying about hostility and divisiveness, even if you disagree? You think you can tell someone that they are wrong but without being "divisive" or "hostile"?


Actually, I got that 95% from my own experiences, so there is almost certainly some kind of bias there. As it is though, such things are nearly impossible to quantify. I also assume that EVERYONE has major preconception issues. The A+ folk seem to be interested in unravelling them. The key problem is, how do you explain to someone that they are not thinking clearly when they are not thinking clearly and you cant be sure that you are either?

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Re: Wha! Huh? Yeah? What is it good for?

Post  Skavau on Thu Nov 01, 2012 6:01 am

B-Lar

Skavau, good styles. I am very sorry that i didnt go through and quote mark all your lines. I only responded.

You presume that people have a choice when it comes to fear. You presume that they have the power to do something about it.
No I don't think that people have a choice there. I don't think that people with deep phobias can just snap out of it, or 'choose' to not be scared. I do think though it is in their power to work on fighting their fear. I also think that those with the fear should not demonise and condemn other people for pointing out that it is in fact, a phobia.

No. It tells the victims that the shit that happened to them shouldnt have happened to them in an ideal world. That the emotions that they experience as a result are understandable. being the person who says these things lends a shoulder of support, and can help people to let go eventually.
I believe I already said that the emotions of those on the receiving end of traumatic events involving sexual abuse on this are understandable. That does not make them rational nor does it mean that people they encounter should expect condemnation for not recognising them and adjusting specifically to them.

Telling these people that they have only themselves to blame for not picking themselves up after being pushed down is incredibly callous and counterproductive. It isolates them more. Your comments seem to show that you condsdier these things carefully... why would you make this error?
I mentioned in my original post to you on this that I read the "Effects of not being privileged" thread. A significant amount of the respondents who had traumatic experiences also seemed to have social anxiety and/or depression. Some of these respondents, if their examples are to be believed suffered from major social anxiety. These are not healthy people by their own omission. Paranoid, fearful and dysfunctional by their own admission. These same people are major posters who actively insult and attack people who they perceive to be flaunting too much privilege.

I would put it to you, as humbly as possible that they because of their major mental illnesses are unable to represent events that happen in their life in an objective way and that they see bigotry, prejudice and persecution wherever they look and amplify and internalise and exploded effrontery towards them more than mentally healthy people would. To put it bluntly: encouraging their phobia and paranoia is causing them to isolate themselves more and more from society and causing them to bunker down in the 'safe space' and lash out at people they perceive as representative of those that would do them harm in society. That cannot be healthy longterm.

Me arguing this does not by the way mean that I would contemptuously tell a rape survivor that their anxiety and paranoia are of their own making. I would recommend though, each and every time that they seek assistance in some fashion for their mental illnesses.

so you dont demonise anyone for being careful about their safety but you do demonise those who have uncertainty fears about a random guy.
I wouldn't actually. So long as they didn't put their fears about the random guy as the fault of the random guy.

Dude. I was in a situation were I was nearly raped by a random guy, and I can tell you, that even though I managed to escape, it took me literally years before I was able to think clearly when in a situation myself and just one other random guy. Its crazy to think in those terms, but it takes a lot of work to get out of. Ever been in a situation like that?
No, I haven't.

If you already call people out on this shit already, then you get more than just cookies. You get my respect. Is this the case?
If I see sexism, homophobia, racism, whatever-ism then I call it out. This probably does not extend to the accepted A+ practice of making insensitive and prejudice jokes, or filtering my media content.

Correct. Content matters. your use of "dare" and "grovelling" is telling though. You dont have to dare or grovel if the substance of your argument is good. If you get ejected, could it be because the content was not as good as you thought?
It could be. Then it could also be that you were ejected for reasons other than your content or that your content was simply not welcome, as I've observed from people's AAR on the Atheism+ forum.

Also, a point which the "A+ is hostile" crowd dont seem to be able to bed in is that damn right its hostile! lets say you want to build a house, and you get a bunch of bricks. when they arrive, it turns out that half of them are broken. You do not have the luxury of buying more bricks. Conventional thought for this metaphor suggests that you should use as many of the bricks as possible, discarding only those which completely useless in order to build the biggest house possible. The A+ method is to only use the bricks which are not broken. You get a smaller house, but it is more stable. Hostility keeps the broken bricks away and the way you use it suggests that you think hostility must always be negative.
I'm not sure what this analogy means in context to the A+ is hostile point I made. Non A+ people are the broken bricks?

Thank you for confirming what many suspected though.

Simply giving your opinion is more than you just opening your hands and letting the words flow out. that message will be received and considered. If your opinion dismisses the experiences and opinions of others, then you are silencing and minimising them. You shouldnt be surprised if you receive contempt here.
Dismissing someone's opinion =/= Silencing someone's opinion.

This distinction is important. If A+ advocates will say that a moderator of a forum banning someone or deleting someone's comments is not anti free speech and that only censorship can be advanced by the government then similarly someone ignoring or dismissing someone's experience is not the silencing of it.

No. getting it does not mean taking every utterance as gospel. Getting it means getting that you dont get it. (see south park - apologies to jesse jackson) and working from a position of assumed ignorance. apply the scientific method from this starting point and you cannot fail.
This is yet another re-phrasal of the assertion that people who might disagree somehow lack understanding to the point of almost complete ignorance.

Of course! lets hypothesise. You are running a project of some kind and have a team who have looked at the goals and strategies for acheiving these goals. Suddenly some guy turns up and wants in. he has lots of ideas, but he has no knbowledge about the goals or strategy of the project. Now imagine that its not just one guy, but hundreds. You cant educate them all because resources are tight, so you educate those who are willing to learn. the rest are going to be counterproductive. If you havent made any efforts to understand, your criticism is going to be only fit for the bin.
Right, so thank you for confirming the point.

A+ is hostile towards outside criticism. On this I will ask you a point (and it relates to your claim above that you don't have to take every utterance of A+ as "gospel")

Is it possible, according to you to be for social justice while not identifying as a feminist?

Is it possible, according to you to be for social justice while rejecting or downplaying the existence or prevalence respectively of the 'patriarchy'?

is it possible, according to you to be for social justice while interpreting privilege in a vastly different and more expansive way than it seems to be understood in A+?

Good! you dont disagree with A+ stated goals! You disagree with the strategy of implementation. Now. Do you UNDERSTAND what I have been saying about hostility and divisiveness, even if you disagree? You think you can tell someone that they are wrong but without being "divisive" or "hostile"?
I disagree with their expanded goals on reddit. I disagree with many issues in AtheismPlus, such as:

- The constant feeding of trolls as some attempt to achieve social justice. The article I read by Stephanie Svan arguing that "Not feeding trolls is bad science" was simply wrong and a major reason why A+ is under constant scrutiny.
- The vilification of major A+ critics and forums as misogynists or sexist cesspools by elements of A+ and FTBloggers.
- The overdramatisation of trivial 'microaggression' by ultimately (some would say) privileged bloggers.
- The demonisation of New Atheism up to and including the reprehensible "white supremacist" statement by Sikivu Hutchinson.
- The puritanical views on comedy, music, movies, video games, television shows that reminds me vaguely of a left-wing Mary Whitehouse.

Just off the top of my head. I realise some of this predates A+ but it continues in it regardless.

Actually, I got that 95% from my own experiences, so there is almost certainly some kind of bias there. As it is though, such things are nearly impossible to quantify. I also assume that EVERYONE has major preconception issues. The A+ folk seem to be interested in unravelling them.
I disagree that they are.
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Re: Wha! Huh? Yeah? What is it good for?

Post  Westprog on Thu Nov 01, 2012 6:25 am

B-Lar wrote:
Of course! lets hypothesise. You are running a project of some kind and have a team who have looked at the goals and strategies for acheiving these goals. Suddenly some guy turns up and wants in. he has lots of ideas, but he has no knbowledge about the goals or strategy of the project. Now imagine that its not just one guy, but hundreds. You cant educate them all because resources are tight, so you educate those who are willing to learn. the rest are going to be counterproductive. If you havent made any efforts to understand, your criticism is going to be only fit for the bin.

Suppose that you're the guy who wanders in off the street. There's a big sign up saying "all welcome - discussion on subjects that concern you!" He walks in the door and says hello to a receptionist, who tells him that there's a special room for people who've just come in, where questions will be answered in a non-judgemental way. He joins a discussion where he sits listening for a few minutes, and then when there's a moment of silence, he asks a question, with a little joke thrown in. Suddenly everyone in the room turns and stares at him. A woman starts crying. A large man looms over him, swearing. He gets annoyed, and defensive. "I didn't do anything wrong," he shouts. Two more men creep up behind him, throw a bag over his head and drag him to a corner. "Sit there and shut up," one of them tells him. An hour later he's released. He goes to the complaints room and starts talking about what happened. The man who swore at him comes in and tells him that he's gone too far, and the same two guys grab him by the arms and throw him into the street. The next day when he walks past there's a six foot high picture of him on the front of the building labelled "TROLL".

Wouldn't you say that the mistake was to ask him in in the first place?

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Re: Wha! Huh? Yeah? What is it good for?

Post  scott1328 on Thu Nov 01, 2012 6:37 am

Westprog wrote:
B-Lar wrote:
Of course! lets hypothesise. You are running a project of some kind and have a team who have looked at the goals and strategies for acheiving these goals. Suddenly some guy turns up and wants in. he has lots of ideas, but he has no knbowledge about the goals or strategy of the project. Now imagine that its not just one guy, but hundreds. You cant educate them all because resources are tight, so you educate those who are willing to learn. the rest are going to be counterproductive. If you havent made any efforts to understand, your criticism is going to be only fit for the bin.

Suppose that you're the guy who wanders in off the street. There's a big sign up saying "all welcome - discussion on subjects that concern you!" He walks in the door and says hello to a receptionist, who tells him that there's a special room for people who've just come in, where questions will be answered in a non-judgemental way. He joins a discussion where he sits listening for a few minutes, and then when there's a moment of silence, he asks a question, with a little joke thrown in. Suddenly everyone in the room turns and stares at him. A woman starts crying. A large man looms over him, swearing. He gets annoyed, and defensive. "I didn't do anything wrong," he shouts. Two more men creep up behind him, throw a bag over his head and drag him to a corner. "Sit there and shut up," one of them tells him. An hour later he's released. He goes to the complaints room and starts talking about what happened. The man who swore at him comes in and tells him that he's gone too far, and the same two guys grab him by the arms and throw him into the street. The next day when he walks past there's a six foot high picture of him on the front of the building labelled "TROLL".

Wouldn't you say that the mistake was to ask him in in the first place?

cheers
Okay where's the like button?

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Re: Wha! Huh? Yeah? What is it good for?

Post  uncrystal on Thu Nov 01, 2012 6:56 am

I've read this entire thread and realize it has taken a different turn and I don't wish to derail, but I'd appreciate it if B-Lar answered my questions (if B-Lar has answers to my questions of course).

B-Lar wrote:
"A place where we can all go and bitch about how much the A+ people were mean to us because we couldnt be bothered to listen
I don't think most of your post needs a response, but I would like to address this one point..

uncrystal wrote:

Firstly, there is quite a bit of bitching about your forum (I'm assuming you are a member since you came here to defend) that goes on here. Whether or not that is helpful or productive could be argued, but I've seen no personal attacks on anyone from your forum (if I'm wrong someone please correct me). Every complaint has been about something specifically said or done on the forum or about its general tone.

Personally, I waffle between finding the forum humorous, disgusting, and bizarre.

My one legitimate concern has nothing to do with the way I was treated (as I had some idea what the A+ forum was before posting and I am not in need of safe place), but with the general disregard anyone you find it easy to "other" is treated.

What happens when one or several of you "mislabel" someone as "privileged" and pile on? Your forum is touted as a safe place. What happens if that "ignorant" mislabeled person is just as much in need of safe place as all of you?. Pigasm told a rape survivor that they would be better off having been raped and murdered rather than just raped. What if that person weren't in a place where they could handle such a comment?

If you want to be a club that just "reverse bullies" everyone you think is privileged enough to deserve their own medicine fine, but don't be sanctimonious about it and don't misrepresent yourself to people who may go there wanting a "safe place" (whether their interpretation of what a safe place is or should be is correct or not).

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Re: Wha! Huh? Yeah? What is it good for?

Post  Westprog on Thu Nov 01, 2012 7:16 am

uncrystal wrote:I've read this entire thread and realize it has taken a different turn and I don't wish to derail, but I'd appreciate it if B-Lar answered my questions (if B-Lar has answers to my questions of course).

[quote=B-Lar]
"A place where we can all go and bitch about how much the A+ people were mean to us because we couldn't be bothered to listen
[/quote]

If you're attacked in a public place, statements are made about you, and you are denied access to the forum where the statements are made - when you're on a list of names with erroneous statements about why your presence was so toxic that they couldn't tolerate you speaking for another moment longer - well, it seems to me to be a bit much to demand that you keep quiet about your own view of the situation.

It's hardly surprising if this forum is full of people who were banned from A+safe. If they were on that forum, they presumably wanted to be there, so they presumably want to be on this one as well, for similar reasons. It's also quite reasonable that they would want to continue the discussions they were having there.

If all these banned people are in fact misogynistic troublemakers looking to disrupt and confuse, shout down and insult, then this forum will probably be destroyed by their presence. They will antagonise and repel the vulnerable people that A+ was supposed to include. We shall see.

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Re: Wha! Huh? Yeah? What is it good for?

Post  Eowyn on Thu Nov 01, 2012 7:17 am

Skavau, I dare you to try to post something similar about survivors' feelings, reactions, need of treatment and what is healthy for survivors on e.g. https://www.ptsdforum.org/ I am certain that the type of message that you have presented in this thread will not wash there at all.

Relevance: we have several PTSD sufferers and several more with at least some of PTSD's symptoms as members of A+safe, and according to A+safe's ethos, they are welcome and valued members who will be met and treated as they say they need to be met and treated. They will not be told, by anyone, to do or be anything in particular, especially not on anyone else's timetable or for anyone else's convenience. They also do not need to report what medications, therapies or other interventions they are currently using or have gone through.

Explaining to someone whom you have just met and who is mentally unstable or ill that they need help/therapy/treatment/medication is about as respectful as if your very first utterance to someone whose house just burned down would be asking if they called the fire department. Please don't do either.

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Re: Wha! Huh? Yeah? What is it good for?

Post  devilsadvocate on Thu Nov 01, 2012 7:44 am

Eowyn, seeing as you're a long lasting regular at the safe space version of the forum, what are you're hopes for this forum? Is there something that is not suitable for or done well in the A+safe you would like to see here?

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Re: Wha! Huh? Yeah? What is it good for?

Post  Skavau on Thu Nov 01, 2012 7:44 am

Eowyn wrote:Skavau, I dare you to try to post something similar about survivors' feelings, reactions, need of treatment and what is healthy for survivors on e.g. https://www.ptsdforum.org/ I am certain that the type of message that you have presented in this thread will not wash there at all.

Relevance: we have several PTSD sufferers and several more with at least some of PTSD's symptoms as members of A+safe, and according to A+safe's ethos, they are welcome and valued members who will be met and treated as they say they need to be met and treated. They will not be told, by anyone, to do or be anything in particular, especially not on anyone else's timetable or for anyone else's convenience. They also do not need to report what medications, therapies or other interventions they are currently using or have gone through.
I haven't told anyone to do anything. I've given my general observation of A+ members.

Explaining to someone whom you have just met and who is mentally unstable or ill that they need help/therapy/treatment/medication is about as respectful as if your very first utterance to someone whose house just burned down would be asking if they called the fire department. Please don't do either.
Yes, saying it to someone individually is patronising. I would not do it at all as a case by case basis. I still though stand by my assessment that isolating oneself into a bunker-esque mentality on a forum that tells them they're never wrong about anything relating to their experiences is not healthy long-term.
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Re: Wha! Huh? Yeah? What is it good for?

Post  Westprog on Thu Nov 01, 2012 8:26 am

Skavau wrote:
Eowyn wrote:Skavau, I dare you to try to post something similar about survivors' feelings, reactions, need of treatment and what is healthy for survivors on e.g. https://www.ptsdforum.org/ I am certain that the type of message that you have presented in this thread will not wash there at all.

Relevance: we have several PTSD sufferers and several more with at least some of PTSD's symptoms as members of A+safe, and according to A+safe's ethos, they are welcome and valued members who will be met and treated as they say they need to be met and treated. They will not be told, by anyone, to do or be anything in particular, especially not on anyone else's timetable or for anyone else's convenience. They also do not need to report what medications, therapies or other interventions they are currently using or have gone through.
I haven't told anyone to do anything. I've given my general observation of A+ members.

Explaining to someone whom you have just met and who is mentally unstable or ill that they need help/therapy/treatment/medication is about as respectful as if your very first utterance to someone whose house just burned down would be asking if they called the fire department. Please don't do either.
Yes, saying it to someone individually is patronising. I would not do it at all as a case by case basis. I still though stand by my assessment that isolating oneself into a bunker-esque mentality on a forum that tells them they're never wrong about anything relating to their experiences is not healthy long-term.

Sometimes people whose house is on fire need the fire service.

The trouble with dealing with traumatised people in a supposed safe place is that when they attack somebody in response to a perceived failure to show understanding or empathy, the person being attacked may also be traumatised in some way, or in some other way vulnerable. Sometimes people don't wish to describe traumatic situations, and just because someone doesn't say up front everything that's happened doesn't mean that it didn't.

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Re: Wha! Huh? Yeah? What is it good for?

Post  AliRadicali on Thu Nov 01, 2012 9:02 am

B-Lar wrote:
I would say that their fear is probably overstated and is unhealthy to their mental health, long-term and they should seek help not confirmation.

Of course, some of those women were rape and/or other sexual abuse victims and thus their fear is understandable but still not helpful to their mental health in the long run.

Foolish Samurai. You seek to diminish the experiences of countless women with a wave of your hand. "Oh, but is not healthy to let your fear take over... Im so concerned about your mental health." How about this. Stop your armchair intellectualising and think about how you, personally, can make it so women in the world suffer rape less, and therefore have less to actually fear. Then the problem goes away! Women have to suffer the rock and a hard place scenario of being blamed if they get raped for not being careful, but then being demonised for being careful. This is fucking madness, and if you are defending this state of affairs then I have to ask, what the fuck is wrong with you?
A girl suffers from agoraphobia, a fear of wide open spaces. Now the fear is irrational, but it prohibits the girl from participating normally in everyday life. Is it our duty to eliminate all open spaces, or should we try to get the girl treatment?
Better example: A marine comes back from his tour in Afghanistan with severe PTSD. His fear may be irrational, because the chance of coming under gunfire back in the US is (somewhat) lower than in a warzone.
Should we coddle the marine to death, walking on eggshells, making sure no one dares make loud noises around him or otherwise upset him? Well maybe, initially. But ultimately, it's in everyone's best interest to see the marine get over his irrational fear, no matter how justified he is in having it.

A fear of being raped, just like a fear of flying or a fear of open spaces, is a phobia that can completely undermine someone's capacity to live life normally. And the answer, harsh though it may sound, is not to indulge that person's fears, but to (have a spouse, freind or relative) tell him/her(as gently and responsibly as possible) to try to fix the problem, ideally with professional help.

Yes I guess you could blame it on the war and say people wouldn't suffer PTSD if there weren't any wars, but vowing to put an end to all wars isn't going to helpt our traumatized vet and it isn't going to happen anytime soon. Saying we should all get together and put an end to rape sounds wonderful, but impractical. Getting women to do a self defense course and educating them on (the actual) risks and risk prevention techniques is going to do them and everybody a lot more good. It gives them a sense of control(agency) over their lives, rather than making them feel like helpless victims. Furthermore, if these women know the risks, the warning signs, etc. they might actually stand a better chance at avoiding getting raped/stopping their assailant.


It is always someone else's bigotry, or privilege, or the patriarchy or some other invented explanation and so when someone from the outside, or someone in a 'privileged' group gets involved in the discussion they immediately turn hostile presuming some negative motive or low intent from them.

The point, which you miss, is that as a priveliged person your experiences blind you to the problems that these actual people face. They are turning hostile because you are presuming that your opinions are worthwhile. You are silencing and minimising their experience by saying "of course, I have never lived through that, but heres my opinion anyway". Its insulting on a level which goes much deeper than name calling or casual dismissal. If you are turned away because you got all uppity that your opinion didnt impress anyone you cannot blame anyone except yourself.
When Richard Dawkins criticised RW for her post-elevatorgate posturing, the entire A+ gang went after him ruthlessly, callling him privileged, and all the other tired canards that A+ uses to rationalise dismissing a dissenting view.
Despite the fact that Dawkins had, in fact been molested as a child.

Apparently, the privilege of RW and her ilk prevented them from taking a rich old white man's opinions seriously, even when it was publicly known that he, more than RW, more than Jen McRight, more than PZ and the rest knew what it's like to be sexually abused.

But no, "old cisgendered white man, SHUUUUUUN".

You might feel comfortable barking down people with dissenting views, just because you assume they must simply be "too privileged to understand". I find that morally reprehensible(for a place calling tiself "safe") and profoundly unskeptical.



This is just it. You assume, by the fact that they disagree that they are against social justice. They aren't.


They arent in principle, but when it comes to listening to those who are on the recieving end and suggesting solutions, suddenly there are lots of excuses for why they shouldnt have to do anything. Denying that the problem exists, quibbling over minor details, lots and lots of ego protecting and empty rationalisation. Disagree with the strategies if you like, but only if you are actually going to be involved in their execution.
What is it that you, well, do, besides griping on the internet? I mean, they kicked Matt Dillahunty out, telling him to "get more involved in the community".

WTF.

All I see is a bunch of internet slacktivists.


*FYI, I might not look very humble here, and quite right too. This is my Juggernaut hat. I reserve my humility for people who can actually teach me something. If ANYONE here can teach me something, then I will learn it in accordance with the segments above. I only look like a troll because you are all trip-trapping accross my bridge.
If you want to come here and butt heads with your juggernaut helmet on or whatever, go right ahead. You don't have to be overly polite, you can be sarcastic and condescending, the prerequisite is that you argue honestly. That means address the arguments and refute them. Instead you go about lecturing us how to think critically, once again showing the presumption on your part that we must not understand because we're simply too biased/privileged/whatever to understand.'

I find it mightily ironic that a guy essentially telling us to think with our hearts and listen to emotional appeals is giving lectures on critical thinking.
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Re: Wha! Huh? Yeah? What is it good for?

Post  Zampano on Thu Nov 01, 2012 9:41 am

Eowyn wrote:
Relevance: we have several PTSD sufferers and several more with at least some of PTSD's symptoms as members of A+safe, and according to A+safe's ethos, they are welcome and valued members who will be met and treated as they say they need to be met and treated. They will not be told, by anyone, to do or be anything in particular, especially not on anyone else's timetable or for anyone else's convenience. They also do not need to report what medications, therapies or other interventions they are currently using or have gone through.

That doesn't fit with my experience at all. I joined A+ really hopeful and was willing to be as open as I could be about my experiences, and I was kicked out for responding to demands from mods with any sort of reservation.

I bitterly regret having shared anything at all now with the "safe" A+ community, there are many things I said on there about my own experiences that I would rather were scrubbed from that forum as it is not the kind of place it advertised itself to be. In addition, I'm wondering whether it might be the "right" thing to do to try to spread the word to other vulnerable folks that it is not a "safe" space in any meaningful sense of the word and they should give it a wide berth.

So "boohoohoo", I guess my "fee-fees" are hurt. I'm glad the A+safe folks are enjoying my delicious "man-tears".

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