Marginalized Groups, Civility, Privilege, and What Replaces Religion: An Interview with James Croft

I just finished having a great conversation with James Croft of the blog Temple of the Future for this week’s episode of The Camels With Hammers Show. There is a special announcement related to James’s blog at the end of the interview. We had some technical difficulties so the interview took the form of two parts.

In the first video we talked primarily about my stance in favor of civility. I have in recent months controversially argued that members of marginalized groups shouldn’t embrace using abusive language as a routine method of fighting oppression. I decided to run these views by James, who is himself gay and a vigorous activist for both atheist and gay causes.

In the second video, James answers my questions about whether people with social privilege can ever learn enough about out-group experiences in order to offer critical suggestions to members of marginalized groups or whether an epistemic privilege stemming from marginalization can be absolute. Then the rest of the video is spent discussing questions about controversies in the atheist community related to how to relate to religious people and how atheists can go about meeting people’s needs that most people presently turn to religion for–without turning atheism into a religion itself.

Click on the title of this post to see the videos! [Read more...]

Chances to Learn Empathy–or Bigotry

What could inspire church kids to try to bully a man in a wheelchair? [Read more...]

"So You Say Christ's Love Is Unconditional and Non-Judgmental? Are You GAY?"

Jonathan Zeng was offered a job to teach music at a nondenominational Christian academy. But just hours later, he lost the job after one of his interviewers had found something fishy about the portion of his application in which he described his religious views. Zeng explains what set off the alarm bells: [Read more...]

Why The Needs of Gay Kids Deserve Special Attention in Anti-Bullying Legislation

There is a major piece of anti-bullying legislation which will soon be up for a vote in Ontario, Canada. In the legislation, kids in Ontario Catholic schools will be protected from repeated aggressive behavior that occurs in a context where there is a real or perceived power imbalance between the pupil and the individual based [Read More...]

Colbert on Obama, North Carolina, & Gay Marriage

Two nights in a row last month Colbert had fantastic coverage of the news of Barack Obama’s “evolved” support for gay marriage and the unevolved decision of the people of North Carolina to even further restrict gay rights than they already had. In case you missed either or both of his segments on these subjects, [Read More...]

Students Walk Out On Dan Savage Criticizing The Bible

This is fantastic: a living symbolic depiction of Bible believers’ closed-minded resistance to challenges that they cannot answer and so refuse to even listen to. And Savage’s response to their walking out is great too. It’s like a work of art but real. Plug your ears and sing “la la la” all you want, Christians, [Read More...]

Another View From Mississippi

This is a guest post, written by Zach Booth. Alexandra Pelosi, correspondent on Real Time with Bill Maher, recently brought mild infamy to the worldview of (allegedly) typical Mississippians that she ran across. Ms. Pelosi spoke with a Toyota employee about how President Obama is a Muslim. She also featured a man missing several teeth [Read More...]

Oh, Homophobes

Will they ever learn? [Read more...]

Virginia Expected To Allow Religious Adoption Agencies To Discriminate Against Gays

More special, unconstitutional, protections of religious conscience bigotry, to the exclusion of equal protection: On Friday, the Virginia Senate passed SB 349, which gives private adoption agencies the power to deny the placement of children with same-sex couples on religious grounds. Known as the ‘conscience clause’ bill, the bill allows adoption agencies to deny same-sex couples the [Read More...]


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