We've got ourselves a sleuth (and he has earned ban #4)

A commenter named The Laughing Coyote (Canis Sativa) has caught me.

Impressive. Instead of taking care of the mess you made, you went ‘LALALALALALALALA I CAN’T HEEEAAR YOU I’M ON VACATION!”, and then you put up a post patting yourself on the back for what a GREAT ‘ally’ you’ve been when you get back.

Oh well, I see all your smug privileged buddies are clapping and cheering, so all is well I guess.

When I look back, I guess it was kind of obvious.  I thought I was being clever by buying the plane ticket to Kansas ages before writing the post on the new comment policy (you know, the one that says you’ll need to provide an argument along with your insults, which Coyote must’ve read).  I even thought the pictures of me at a barbecue would provide the perfect alibi for having the temerity to walk away from my blog to enjoy my fleeting time with my girlfriend.

But no, Coyote saw through that smoke screen like a hawk eying its prey.

As for the post about the SSA and making the world better for high school students, again, I was foiled.  First, I actually did the work with high school students.  I figured that would throw even the most unflappable detective off the scent.  Then, after a small group of thread-derailing people ignored my warnings that they need to actually provide arguments along with their insults, I followed through on my warning and banned them.  I knew it was wrong!  I should just let potentially useful threads get hijacked, otherwise I’m privileged and a bad ally, but I was just so upset that I couldn’t help myself!  I figured at least two people would be furious, and so I immediately got together with my boss to arrange that letter to be sent out so that I could write a post about it to massage my poor, mutilated ego.  Good thing I’d spent doing all that work the previous few years to build up the impression that I actually give a shit about secularism.  Of course, it was all part of my plan.

I bought that plane ticket in March, which means that now months of planning are down the drain thanks to Coyote’s insight.  I even had Stephanie Zvan go in and tell everybody I was on the road, away from a computer.  I thought it all looked so perfect; so natural.  I didn’t think anybody would look at all the readily available and so-obvious-it’s-practically-slapping-you-in-the-face evidence to the contrary and think that it couldn’t be that simple.  Then Coyote did what you’d expect with this discovery: he went with the same tactic of banned commenters before and decided that he knew my true motivations (better than I did, apparently) and went public.  And so now all WWJTD readers know: I must be running away and repairing the damage their insults have done instead of enjoying my vacation and feeling good about the work I’ve done.

Brilliant.

So I deleted the comment and was writing a warning to Coyote that insults don’t do much for changing my mind and that I needed him to include arguments in the future when Coyote posted this comment.

Deleting posts now, JT? *tsk tsk tsk*

But do go on about what a great ally you are and how interested you are in listening to people.

Asshole.

That’s when I decided Coyote was too keen and too witty to be left around.  All my future plots would be in jeopardy if I didn’t nip this in the bud.  So I gave him the ban hammer.

It certainly wasn’t because he was trying to derail threads with only insults, if that’s what you’re thinking.  It’s because he sees right through my story of having a life outside my blog and not being bugged in the slightest by people who can’t lift a finger to make an argument (but who are sure ready to scream privilege and bias instead).  The truth is that I’m emotionally attached to my position, have no interest in revising it, and I see the overpowering arguments of people like Detective Coyote as a threat to my fragile, fragile self-esteem.

He left another comment that got caught in moderation; something about wanting to see me learn from my mistake.  Here’s what kills me about people like this: they vent, rage, and do nothing that even resembles attempting to educate someone (you know, like trying to convince them they made a mistake in the first place).  Then when that person doesn’t want to hear it and instead wants to listen to someone who actually wants to converse or try and educate, we get “I’m trying to help you learn from your mistake!”  What a dishonest sentence.  Neither of those comments resemble wanting someone else to learn or even wanting to help someone else learn.  They’re meant to only demean, not to teach.  They’re you derailing threads while claiming your personal, empty griping is the equivalent of wisdom.

Why would these people think anyone would give their opinion any credibility?

Introducing a new contributor: Gabrielle.
About those annoying ads and trouble with iphones accessing the blog.
Possible solution to "play store" problem.
Welcome "Brooke" as a contributor.
About JT Eberhard

When not defending the planet from inevitable apocalypse at the rotting hands of the undead, JT is a writer and public speaker about atheism, gay rights, and more. He spent two and a half years with the Secular Student Alliance as their first high school organizer. During that time he built the SSA’s high school program and oversaw the development of groups nationwide. JT is also the co-founder of the popular Skepticon conference and served as the events lead organizer during its first three years.


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