PZMinion Won’t Give Up The Cracker

August 15, 2008 at 12:03 pm (Uncategorized)

Just when you think you’ve heard enough about it.  Crackergate will be a scandal our kids will keep tabs on at this rate.  Regardless, this guest blogger tries to justify the whole mess through analogy…and for some reason thinks the point is even clearer when you have a disageeable protagonist!

…like a religious person!

I guess his analogy is technically correct, and probably the cleanest attempt so far to justify PZ’s actions…in context, which seems to be very important even though this happened over the Internet, out of context.  Oh well.

What if it had been this way:

A devout Christian student at a public university named Winslow Cork goes to an on-campus meeting of the Gay-Lesbian Support Group. He accepts the rainbow pin they give him, and then, when they ask him to tell his story, he announces that he is a Christian, and he is going to support them by warning them that homosexuality is a sin, and that those who don’t repent will burn in hell. He contemptuously turns the pin upside down, puts it on, and leaves.

Thanks for stopping by, jackass!  And even if you flip this around – a gay person crashes Sunday School in an attempt to open the minds of fundamentalists – it’s still pretty absurd, ineffective, naive, etc.

I myself will offer up an analogy – a friend of mine endeavoured to go to EVERY SINGLE club at his university which held meetings on campus.  As student clubs received university funding, he was technically entitled to go to any meeting he wanted, regardless of how appropriate it may be, so he wanted to test it out.  A lot of groups – like the anarcho-feminist one – appreciated this effort.  The Northern Chinese student society, not so much.  They screamed at him to get out, held a pissy meeting in which they clearly did not do what they had been planning on, and adjourned.

You can go on about the student handbook, go on about what you’re technically allowed to do, but at the end of the day you most certainly get a sense of a belief system being both unwanted and uncalled for in a given context – like a white person in an ethnic meeting, or godlessness in a church.  Reading these clues is part of being a socially conscious human being.

That is, being “allowed” to do something doesn’t justify being a prick.

Reaction is swift – and intense. This particular gay support group doesn’t just call him a snot and yell at him to never come back. They swing into action. Cork’s name is publicized, and he is accused of being a bigot, and worse. His actions are compared to the murder of Matthew Shepard, and what the Nazis did. The argument is that people who are often victimized have been attacked, and therefore it should be treated as a serious attack. The campus gay rights activists demand that Cork be charged with a hate crime, and expelled from the university. After all, he violated the sanctuary of those who are understandably sensitive to such violations. Cork is inundated with hate mail, starts getting death threats, and returns the rainbow pin, hoping things will calm down.

Apparently, this particular prick is operating somewhere like New England or California, where support for alternate lifestyles is very, very strong in the community.  Kind of like how the athiest cracker-nut pulled his little stunt in the deep South, where support for Jesus is very, very strong in the community.  Oops.

Way to enlighten us on the context of the situation.  Don’t call it context and give me an asinine soap opera devoid of the relevant bits…the context, if you will.

Instead, a nationally syndicated gay rights columnist joins in, and, rather than expressing horror over the death threats, only escalates the matter. This kid and his disrespectful, hate-filled religious viewpoint should not be expressed in an America where all citizens respect each other. Religion should be a purely private matter, kept behind closed doors. Speaking out and hurting the feelings of those who prefer the same sex by telling them they’re damned to hell is un-American. It violates their rights. This incident will be used to send a message, and hopefully get the law involved.

Um…yes?  Is there a problem here?  Don’t mind the part where only religious types can be hateful – everybody can be hateful, and they just spend their lives looking for excuses.  Whether it’s a godful or godless excuse doesn’t really matter, as if the Crusades wouldn’t have happened without God, Jesus, and Mohammad in the mix.  Bullshit.

In another university, a humanities professor named XY Nyers reads about this, and is appalled. He’s a Christian, and is furious at the over-reaction. Enough is enough. There is no right to not be offended by religion. Whether Cork should have gone into that room or not, informing gay people that the Bible condemns them should not be considered criminal hate speech, or treated like an act of violence. This point needs be made, and forcefully. He then vows on his popular website to film himself reading Leviticus out loud while he breaks apart a Gay-Lesbian Support Group rainbow pin – and he does it.

Shockingly, this part illustrates one of religion’s myriad benefits – without the code set forth in Leviticus, many more ancient Jews would have died from eating unsafe food and making unwise lifestyle chocies.  Do you know how many infections can be prevented by circumcision?  And when your people are on the lam from society, reproducing and not worrying so much about your man-crush on Joey over there is pretty important, too.  Oh, and don’t eat shellfish!

That so isn’t the point of this analogy though – the point is clearly that retaliation is justified.  And I guess it is, kind of.  However, it’s retarded to retaliate in a manner just as offensive as the original incident, if not even moreso.  Write essays on your blog on the internet, but don’t get all indignant when people react negatively to your self-righteous display the same way they did to the first one.

This is to say, if pounding on the door doesn’t work, go get a damn crowbar instead of pounding harder and whining about how it isn’t working.

He knew damn well it would hurt others, and piss people off, and result in death threats. Is pissing that many people off to make his point worthwhile?

I say yes. In this case, under these circumstances, it would be worth it. And I am an atheist who is in favor of gay rights, and want people to be sensitive and respectful to different sexual orientations. But I deliberately chose a protagonist and story I have less sympathy for, to illustrate that it’s not simply about rooting for a “side.” You have to take context into account.

Yes, you do!  Except this poster didn’t.  In all honesty, this little analogy doesn’t prove jack.  It’s really easy to write a blog post saying that if this number of absurd hypotheticals took place, he’d still be on the side of the hateful religious fundamentalist.  I mean, how forgiving are Pharyngulites when religious people comment on posts?

If you want to be sensitive and respectful towards other points of view, don’t barge in on where and when they do what they do just to spit on them.  That is essentially what this poster has tried to justify through this little experiment, and to be perfectly honest, I’m less sympathetic to the atheist side in this whole issue now.

And I don’t even believe in Jesus!

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2 Comments

  1. Tony Sidaway said,

    Wow, an entire blog devoted to denigrating another blogger. That is really, really deranged.

  2. dietcoupon said,

    Your mom is deranged!

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