Author Topic: Interesting article on how New-Atheism lead to Alt-Right  (Read 299 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Askold

  • Definitely not hiding a dark secret.
  • Global Moderator
  • The Beast
  • *****
  • Posts: 7437
  • Gender: Male
Interesting article on how New-Atheism lead to Alt-Right
« on: October 22, 2017, 03:09:09 am »
https://thebaffler.com/latest/new-atheisms-idiot-heirs-nichols

New Atheists got an easy start, debating against born again Christians who have all kinds of whacky beliefs and all you needed to seem smarter was to point out that scientific consensus agrees that evolution is real or simply shout something along the lines of "Noah's ark wasn't physically possible you fool!"

Then the golden years came to an end.

Quote
Once Bush left office, the promoters of “intelligent design” curricula retreated from the public sphere, and millennials asserted themselves as the least religious generation to date; the group that had coalesced around the practice logically refuting creationists needed new targets. One of the targets they chose was women. Militant atheism had always been male-dominated, but it took several years and a sea change in American politics for the sexism within its ranks to fully bloom. In 2011, skeptic blogger Rebecca Watson described in a YouTube video how a male fellow attendee of an atheist conference had followed her into an elevator at 4 a.m. in order to ask her on a date—behavior that, understandably, made her uncomfortable. The community erupted into what was later remembered as “Elevatorgate.” A forum was created to harass Watson, and Richard Dawkins himself wrote a comment telling her to “stop whining” because she had it better than victims of honor killings and female genital mutilation.

Nowadays you see oddly familiar arguments from Alt-Right. Emphasis put on how "The Left" rely of "feels instead of reals" and how "The Right" has their agenda based on facts and science.

What's your take on this?
No matter what happens, no matter what my last words may end up being, I want everyone to claim that they were:
"If you strike me down, I shall become more powerful than you could possibly imagine."
Aww, you guys rock. :)  I feel the love... and the pitchforks and torches.  Tingly!

Offline Skybison

  • The Beast
  • *****
  • Posts: 751
Re: Interesting article on how New-Atheism lead to Alt-Right
« Reply #1 on: October 22, 2017, 10:09:22 am »
Yeah I'd mostly agree.  Back when I was in high school and starting university I was a big fan of Dawkins and other new atheists.  But then I read more and more about religion and history, and new atheism just couldn't stand up to it.  Religion is simply to huge and diverse of a thing to be dismissed with a simple "it's bad" and just about everyone in the movement was a dunning-kruger on the topic.  I've seen left wing progressive atheists express shock over how bigoted many new atheists became, but looking back on it it was always bigoted.  New Atheism was always full of people who mostly wanted to pat themselves on the back for being so much better then everyone else and say all the worlds problems exist because other people are different from us.  It's not a shock that this produced a lot of bigots.
« Last Edit: October 22, 2017, 10:32:19 am by Skybison »

Offline Askold

  • Definitely not hiding a dark secret.
  • Global Moderator
  • The Beast
  • *****
  • Posts: 7437
  • Gender: Male
Re: Interesting article on how New-Atheism lead to Alt-Right
« Reply #2 on: October 22, 2017, 10:22:55 am »
I remember the first few times when an Atheist ended up on the FSTDT mainpage. Huge uproar with people complaining that we shouldn't do that. They saw it as a game with two teams and that those who submitted the Atheist comments (just as bad and deluded as many of the religious comments) were cheating or traitors.

What it really was that they saw an "enemy" to mock and went deep enough in their fundamentalism as to declare religious people subhuman that should be destroyed. Which is a fundie thing to do.

Those that migrated to anti-Feminism / anti-SJW groups were once again looking for a mob that they could run in with and enemies that they could mock for being less "enlightened" or too emotional. Their mentality really is simple when you look at it. There's "US vs THEM" mentality with intelligence and logic assigned to their side the enemy is seens as emotional and relying on feelings rather than cold hard logic.

Very little room for complexity.
No matter what happens, no matter what my last words may end up being, I want everyone to claim that they were:
"If you strike me down, I shall become more powerful than you could possibly imagine."
Aww, you guys rock. :)  I feel the love... and the pitchforks and torches.  Tingly!

Online Art Vandelay

  • Greatest Person to Ever Grace this Shitty Forum
  • The Beast
  • *****
  • Posts: 8901
  • Gender: Male
  • Check Your Privilege
Re: Interesting article on how New-Atheism lead to Alt-Right
« Reply #3 on: October 22, 2017, 10:33:45 am »
It's a huge shame, honestly. Religion, Christianity and Judaism in particular, are placed on giant fuckoff pedestals and enjoy privileges that white straight men can only dream about in our society. A movement like New Atheism that realises that this is a very very bad thing that needs to be opposed was and in my view still is sorely needed. It's just a damn fucking shame that those ideas have largely faded back into obscurity because the majority of New Atheists were apparently small minded, tribalistic mouth breathers who are less concerned with the special treatment religion gets and more interested in taking shots at the easiest target.

Ah well, that's humanity for you, I guess.

Offline Lana Reverse

  • Pope
  • ****
  • Posts: 479
  • Gender: Female
Re: Interesting article on how New-Atheism lead to Alt-Right
« Reply #4 on: October 29, 2017, 04:55:35 pm »
Yeah... there's a few things in this article (and your comments, btw) that I have to disagree with. I'm not the world's biggest fan of New Atheism, but let's not claim it led to the alt-right or exaggerate the overlap. The alt-right existed well before elevatorgate, and I'd hardly call Dawkins "alt-right".

And in any case, SJWs and religious fanatics have a lot in common. Anti-science, dogmatic, openly bigoted, etc. Why do they deserve different treatment than fundamentalists?

New Atheism certainly isn't above criticism, but let's not make up reasons to attack it. While the article has some legitimate points, and I won't write it off entirely, I'm not going to wholeheartedly endorse it either.
« Last Edit: October 29, 2017, 08:24:00 pm by Lana Reverse »
I also pissed in an old woman's sauce pan when I was a child. Have you?

Offline Tolpuddle Martyr

  • The Beast
  • *****
  • Posts: 2516
  • Have you got thumbs? SHOW ME YOUR FUCKING THUMBS!
Re: Interesting article on how New-Atheism lead to Alt-Right
« Reply #5 on: November 12, 2017, 03:24:40 am »
"SJW" is a pretty meaningless term these days roughly translating to "do gooder" and is mostly used by the same idiots who use "cuck" unironically.

I had my suspicions about Phil Mason, Dawkins et al because they placed the blame of most social malaise squarely on one source-religion pointedly ignoring the role economics played, let alone race, class or gender. They seemed to think that Muslim Fundamentalism just popped out of the blue and couldn't care less about America's role in quashing the secular Arab nationalist movement or the role of the US and it's allies in nurturing fundamentalist Muslim factions. They just wanted to wipe the Muslim fundies off the face of the Earth and were agressively incurious about context.

Ultimately they were shit at arguing with people who weren't arguing from a position of blind faith. Their reaction to Watson and Mason getting punted from Freethought blogs was hysterical and idiotic.

The new atheists still have some smart cookies but if you degenerate into a mass of whiny infants squalling about "ess jayy wawawas" and "feemeenassis" because Rebecca Watson says "don't do that" to some dude making her uncomfortable in an elevator then you've lost your bragging rights for being the tip of rationalism's spear. That shit aint rational!