No Excuses.

No Excuses. December 30, 2011

Up until now, this lady has stayed completely out of any discussion of the atheist/skeptical community and misogyny/sexism.

I didn’t want to get involved. I felt that people wrote enough words, discussing sexism to the point of overwhelming inanity. I stayed out of elevatorgate, convinced that other people had better, more eloquent, more convincing things to say than I ever could, and that my voice would disappear in a cacophony of diatribes and rationalizations.

I was wrong.  Greta and JT (and everybody else) convinced me. Even if I have nothing new or groundbreaking to say, I still must say something, if only to stand in solidarity with everyone else who has already made their voice heard.

We have a problem with misogyny in the atheist/skeptic community. Rebecca Watson exposed one particular problem in one particular Reddit board.

The people who posted rape and kidnapping comments about the 15 year old young woman should have their feet held figuratively to the fire. Their behavior is completely unacceptable. If nothing less than complete condemnation of such behavior resulted from Rebecca’s exposure of the /r/Atheism board occurred, the community would move on, back to our regularly scheduled promotion of science and criticism of nonscience.

The problem: That didn’t happen. Instead, we got a deluge of excuses, backlashes against people pointing out that this kind of misogyny occurs, victim-blaming, minimizing, and subject-changing.

If you want women to feel comfortable in the atheist community, have the decency to treat (and expect others to treat) us like godamned fucking human beings. Even on the internet.

Otherwise, you’re no better than the Christians who convince women that being a producer of children is their only value as a human being.

Otherwise, you’re no better than the ACLJ when it claims preventing people from bullying gays infringes on their religious freedom.

Otherwise, you’re no better than Catholics who blame gays or atheists or the secular world or anybody but themselves when their leaders systematically cover up the abuse of boys.

Otherwise, you’re no better than the Muslims who blame a woman when men rape her because the woman revealed too much skin by wearing only a hijab.

Otherwise, you’re no better than the conservatives who want to take away a woman’s choice and control over her own body.

If you want people to move on, to stop making a big deal out of this, stop “whining” – then acknowledge that elevatorgate and redditgate are examples of blatant, horrific, intolerable misogyny that should stop, and make no excuses for such behavior.

We don’t let a family’s religion excuse them from allowing their child to die because they believed prayer helps more than doctors. We shouldn’t excuse jokes about raping a 15 year old young woman, either.


Christina holding a banner reading, "No Excuses!"
Excuses: Have none of those.



Reach Christina at Zizturiswrong {at} gmail [dotcom] or on Twitter @Ziztur

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