Livefyre Profile

Activity Stream

Even after reading this post and the Slate version of this post, I'm not entirely clear on what exactly you are going to quit doing, Martin. From what I can tell, you are still going to "stand up and say something" against "intolerance based on belief systems" and try "to sway the believer into rethinking their position" using "reason and rational discourse" but you are going to stop doing it in a certain way. Apparently, you are going to henceforth avoid "contradicting the finer points of the religious texts," making fun of theists for their unreasonable beliefs, and generally being a dick to theists, e.g. "That’s a bullshit story, and you are a moron for believing it." I've never seen you take such an approach, but I can readily agree that it's not particularly productive to alienate one's audience from the get-go.

It might be helpful if you could point out some specific examples of arguments not worth having. Is it futile to try to convince Young Earthers to accept a scientific account of how the Earth came to be what we see? Is it futile to present philosophical arguments against theism? Is it futile to carefully critique the internal consistency of any given set of scriptures?

I do have to disagree with you strongly on one point, "Faith overrides knowledge and truth in any situation, so arguing with a theist is akin to banging your head against a brick wall: You will injure yourself and achieve little." This runs counter to my personal experience, and that of countless apostates I've known who will tell you that arguments with friends were what spurred them to reexamine their faith in the first place. Such fatalism and prejudice (assuming all theists are equally unreachable) sets back the cause of humanism.

7 months, 2 weeks ago on A Rant – I Quit


I agree with almost everything you're saying here, Martin, but does it seem to you that invention of a lexicon for punching up against priviledged white guys (like yourself) is intended to  “bring up” rather than "bring down" as you say? Google "philosophy dudebro" for one outstanding example of trying to bring people down. Or "mansplaining" for several more. Or "Schrodinger's rapist" for an example of how men (and only men) are portrayed as potentially violent criminals. This sort of generalizing to an entire gender doesn't speak to the ethos of humanism, from where I'm sitting.

1 year, 3 months ago on Feminism and Humanism


I'm just here to watch Albert J get kicked.  *popcorn*

1 year, 9 months ago on Yes, Another Post About Atheism