Sunday Morning Survey – What Makes For A Unified Atheist Movement?

Edit - Oh look, something new happened to further illustrate my post: CFI Canada: Half-truths and scandal

Sunday Morning Survey – Because I’m Still Taking A Quasi-Successful Break From Blogging And I Had This One On A

Sticky Note On My Computer For Quite Some Time Now And The Sticky Bit Isn’t Working Anymore So I Might As Well Use This Idea Before Throwing It Away.

Three things happened.

One: Alan Moore talked about how he feels about a whole lot of protesters world-wide using his idea of the V-For-Vendetta mask – “Meet The Man Behind The Protest Mask”

But with the mask’s growing popularity, Moore has come to see its appeal as about something more than identity-shielding. “It turns protests into performances. The mask is very operatic; it creates a sense of romance and drama. I mean, protesting, protest marches, they can be very demanding, very gruelling. They can be quite dismal. They’re things that have to be done, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that they’re tremendously enjoyable – whereas actually, they should be.

At one point in V for Vendetta, V lectures Evey about the importance of melodrama in a resistance effort. Says Moore: “I think it’s appropriate that this generation of protesters have made their rebellion into something the public at large can engage with more readily than with half-hearted chants, with that traditional, downtrodden sort of British protest. These people look like they’re having a good time. And that sends out a tremendous message.”

Two: I got food poisoning. Kind of unrelated, but it’s dampened down my enthusiasm for moving out of this chair, let alone heading into the city to meet up with a bunch of Perth Atheists today and try to make my way home afterwards while apologising profusely to my body for tormenting it further by waving potato wedges with chili sauce in front of it.

Three: friends and associates have been talking about for some time about how the FreeThought Blogs reflects a number of diverse voices in atheism (and skepticism and freethought and secularism and so forth). We don’t all agree with each other, and I don’t think it’s feasible to expect us to agree with each other all the time. Otherwise it’d be ‘FreeThought BLOG’ rather than the plural.

In fact, not everyone agrees as to just HOW skeptic or atheist or ‘on goal’ they are – or even what the goal should be, or even how to define what makes a skeptic, or a skeptic separate from an atheist or how a skeptic and/or an atheist should behave, and all the various permutations on this topic (even a rather odd drive-by commentator who cut-and-pasted a Carl Sagan quote unattributed and rather hilariously got told off for not only plagiarism but for coming across as a concern troll!)

Does it all make your stomach hurt too? Can we ever accept the notion of ‘many boats heading in one direction’? No massive Cruise Liner ships running over paddle-boats while trying to get to the destination? No boats piking the sides of other boats? Should bigger boats regularly throw the occasional life-buoy to those smaller travellers be standard practice?

Even if there’s no bloody way in hell that some of us will EVER want to have the logo of another group associated with our smaller craft?

Is all we need… is unity?

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About Kylie Sturgess

Kylie Sturgess is a Philosophy teacher, media and psychology student, blogger at Patheos and podcaster at Token Skeptic. She has conducted over a hundred interviews including artists, scientists, politicians and activists, worldwide.
She’s the author of the ‘Curiouser and Curiouser‘ column at the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry website and travels internationally lecturing on feminism, skepticism, and science.


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