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← [UPDATE-07-Jan: commentary by Russell Blackford] Prejudiced Danes provoke fanaticism

[UPDATE-07-Jan: commentary by Russell Blackford] Prejudiced Danes provoke fanaticism - Comments

Twatsworth's Avatar Comment 211 by Twatsworth

slamic regimes are not the same as Muslims. There are a billion of them. To compare all of them to Nazis is bigoted and stupid.
A billion of them, half of whom are slaves. Regularly beaten, told what to wear, prohibited from doing anything that their husbands or male family members don't allow. You're right, Nazism is nowhere near as nasty as Islam. Comparing them is bigotry against Nazis.

Tue, 05 Jan 2010 16:51:00 UTC | #428815

Adrian Bartholomew's Avatar Comment 212 by Adrian Bartholomew

To compare all of them to Nazis is bigoted and stupid.
Sigh perhaps he should have said Islam compares unfavourably with Nazism EDIT: Instead of Muslims vs. Nazis meaning the ideology can be compared rather than the groups. Frankly I think it's just politically correct semantics. The odd thing I’ve noted about those outside of Islam is that most don’t seem to realise quite how consistent Muslims actually are. They aren’t at all like Christians from what I can tell. The homogeneity of beliefs I have found to be startling.

Tue, 05 Jan 2010 16:53:00 UTC | #428819

Twatsworth's Avatar Comment 213 by Twatsworth

In terms of how much human suffering the respective belief systems engender, I think Islam makes Nazism look benign. What a scary thought.

Tue, 05 Jan 2010 16:55:00 UTC | #428821

Ophelia Benson's Avatar Comment 214 by Ophelia Benson

blitz, it's in reference to the whole 'sexist epithets are just fine and we like the locker room so fuck off' thing.

Oh and for the record, 'Saint Stephen,' the irony of 'pricks' was (obviously!) fully intentional. Your bray of laughter seemed to indicate that you thought it was unconscious. Duh - it wasn't.

If it's true that Richard approves of this crap and tells off women who object, I think that's appalling.

Tue, 05 Jan 2010 16:57:00 UTC | #428823

Twatsworth's Avatar Comment 215 by Twatsworth

Cunt cunt cunt cunt. Gasp! Shock, horror! Should you believe your eyes? Did he really write that? It is so...offensive! Moderators, ban him! Ban the taboo-breaker!

Akin to the Blasphemy Challenge, no?

Tue, 05 Jan 2010 17:12:00 UTC | #428828

blitz442's Avatar Comment 216 by blitz442

216. Comment #447498 by Ophelia Benson

I think that you are grossly overstating the amount and degree of "sexist" language in this forum.

First, define what you mean by sexist and what constitutes sexist language, as opposed to merely crude or crass language. If you have done this in previous posts then refer me to those.

As I mentioned to a previous poster, Logicel, the use of sexual organs as pejoratives is not just directed against females, or limited only to female bodyparts, nor are males the only users of this type of language. If this type of language constitutes sexism, then men are also clearly objects of “sexism”.

Furthermore, regarding the use of the word “bitch”, females engage in a double standard here. Females liberally use this term in reference to other females. What is your rebuttal here, that it is ok when females use it (but not men), or are these females also sexist?

Tue, 05 Jan 2010 17:15:00 UTC | #428831

Nick LaRue's Avatar Comment 217 by Nick LaRue

I didn't read the stupid article because I had a feeling of where it was going. I've read a lot of the comments and found them somewhat interesting to say the least. I would like to make a few points.
Everyone seems to forget here that the violence was incited by two Muslim clerics from Denmark that went to areas they knew would get up in arms about this. As well they also took other 'images' with them to inflame the situation further. The fact that other areas of the world went off as well is a clear indication that this is not a 'peaceful' religion.
This situation is very similar to what happened with the three fundies going to Africa. That is people going out of their way to incite violence and encourage people to kill. Whether it's gays or infidels it doesn't matter.
Those images would have disappeared into obscurity if it wasn't for those two clerics purposely taking them to the more fundamental areas of the Islamic world as they were printed in a Danish paper not on the internet.

Also lets keep in mind that 'images' of Muhammad have been around for a while...
Muhammad Paitings

Regardless how you feel I don't think violence and killing is a justificaiton for the so called 'hurt' that the Muslim world responded to.

Tue, 05 Jan 2010 17:21:00 UTC | #428833

LaurieB's Avatar Comment 218 by LaurieB

Twatsworth,

You are a first class asshole. Your post 447503 marked offensive.

Tue, 05 Jan 2010 17:22:00 UTC | #428834

Adrian Bartholomew's Avatar Comment 219 by Adrian Bartholomew

217. Comment #447506 by blitz442 on January 5, 2010 at 5:15 pm
As I mentioned to a previous poster, Logicel, the use of sexual organs as pejoratives is not just directed against females, or limited only to female bodyparts, nor are males the only users of this type of language. If this type of language constitutes sexism, then men are also clearly objects of “sexism”.
You have to be very careful when doing these kind of reversals not to just picks elements to reverse and not reverse BIG elements. Women have been on the negative receiving end of sexism far more throughout the years than men. So when doing a reverse comparison, like you have done here, you have to reverse ALL the men’s position. Imagine how men would react to sexism had they been the ones that didn’t have the vote until recently or still didn’t earn as much as women in the same jobs. Sexism in that light carries different weights.

I’m not sure which side of this I am on by the way I’m just pointing out a rather obvious flaw in that argument.

Tue, 05 Jan 2010 17:26:00 UTC | #428838

Ingar A's Avatar Comment 220 by Ingar A

Comment #447124 by Richard Dawkins

What a truly despicable woman.


A slip of tongue I presume.

How about - "What truly despicable ideas that woman is expressing" instead?

Tue, 05 Jan 2010 17:28:00 UTC | #428839

blitz442's Avatar Comment 221 by blitz442

216. Comment #447509 by LaurieB

I think that you have made Twatsworth's point for him.

I also noticed that you have ignored by request to provide some examples of St Stephen's sexist posts. Strong accusations require some evidence.

This is a serious issue. Either some of us are being sexist without knowing it, and should therefore apologize and modify our behavior, or some of us are getting hysterical over nothing.

I would like to see these sexist posts, and a clear, objective definition of sexism, so that I can determine for myself whether these accusations hold water.

Tue, 05 Jan 2010 17:29:00 UTC | #428842

Twatsworth's Avatar Comment 222 by Twatsworth

You are a first class asshole. Your post 447503 marked offensive.
Why, because I said "cunt"? I broke the taboo, eh? Too bad, because I'm going to carry on saying it. Feminists don't have a monopoly over the English language any more than do Christians or Muslims.

There are, incidentally, two types of atheists. There are the rank and file, the hoi polloi, who are little better than theists because while they have outgrown religion, they fall foul of other dogmas of their environment, such as political correctness. Then there are a few, outstanding individuals, who have thoroughly surpassed the herd mentality, and reliably think for themselves.

Tue, 05 Jan 2010 17:32:00 UTC | #428843

Vaal's Avatar Comment 223 by Vaal

I am with Steven Fry on this one..

If I had a large amount of money I should found a hospital for those whose grip upon the world is so tenuous that they can be severely offended by words and phrases yet remain all unoffended by the injustice, violence and oppression that howls daily

Can't be enough satire in the world to expose religion for the nonsense it is, and as for the offence brigade stamping their feet like a petulant infant every time they see something they don't like. Well, grow up.

People demanding respect for religion through murderous threats only earns contempt, not respect.

One wonders why Islam is so weak that it requires its adherents to threaten anyone who criticizes or satirizes it. Surely God doesn't need spittle spitting, bulbous eyed, frenzied automatons to defend him. Not much of a God is he? Could it be he doesn't exist?

Tue, 05 Jan 2010 17:39:00 UTC | #428845

epeeist's Avatar Comment 224 by epeeist

Comment #447498 by Ophelia Benson:

If it's true that Richard approves of this crap and tells off women who object, I think that's appalling.
There are a few people on the site who have met RD, but the majority won't have or at best will have listened to one of his lectures or had a book signed by him.

Any claims as to whether he approves of the kind of thing that is being posted here is therefore moot.

And I would ignore posts by SaintStephen and Twatsworth. Both of them have genitals that are smaller than Richards now deceased Coton de Tulear dog.

Tue, 05 Jan 2010 17:40:00 UTC | #428846

Ophelia Benson's Avatar Comment 225 by Ophelia Benson

blitz

It's tedious having to repeat the ABCs all the time, but

Sexist language includes sexist epithets, especially the ones I listed yesterday: bitch, cunt, twat, pussy. There is other sexist language but it's epithets that are in play here (and so often here and elsewhere).

Yes males are sometimes called genital epithets, but 1) I don't do that so I don't have to defend it and 2) males are not the subordinates, so 'prick' is not as sexist as 'cunt' for the same reason 'honky' is not as racist as 'nigger' or 'breeder' is not as straightist as 'faggot.'

I don't use 'bitch' and I think women who do are 1 making a huge mistake and 2 perpetuating the existing hostility to women.

Tue, 05 Jan 2010 17:46:00 UTC | #428849

Ophelia Benson's Avatar Comment 226 by Ophelia Benson

By the way - Comment is Free has a kind of opposite of Nancy Graham Holm piece today.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/belief/2010/jan/04/religion-islam

I suspect the juxtaposition was deliberate - I think Andrew Brown enjoys getting a rise out of people.

I wrote the piece.

(I wrote it long before seeing NGH's.)

Tue, 05 Jan 2010 17:52:00 UTC | #428851

Adrian Bartholomew's Avatar Comment 227 by Adrian Bartholomew

2) males are not the subordinates
Neither are women. I see your point (I made the same point above actually :-) ) but I think that is pretty unfortunate wording.

Tue, 05 Jan 2010 17:53:00 UTC | #428852

root2squared's Avatar Comment 228 by root2squared

Twatsworth and Adrian

Since it seems you are unable to articulate what you really mean, I'll leave you to your thoughts.

Tue, 05 Jan 2010 17:59:00 UTC | #428854

blitz442's Avatar Comment 230 by blitz442

210. Comment #447524 by Ophelia Benson

I don't care who you are, or how many books you have written, but don't condescend to me, okay?

I asked a simple question because I don't want to go trolling through all of your previous posts and articles on this topic.

And your argument is a little weak. So prick or dick or cock is sexist, just not "as" sexist. Which is based on the dubious premise that women are subordinates.

Tue, 05 Jan 2010 18:04:00 UTC | #428859

epeeist's Avatar Comment 229 by epeeist

Comment #447524 by Ophelia Benson:

Sexist language includes sexist epithets, especially the ones I listed yesterday: bitch, cunt, twat, pussy. There is other sexist language but it's epithets that are in play here (and so often here and elsewhere).
My elder daughter was women's officer at her college at university. She has told me of some of the cases she had to deal with, from simple unthinking abuse to deliberate date rape. Obviously she was fairly circumspect about it so that it wasn't possible to identify the people involved.

I wonder whether those here (and elsewhere) who seem to think such epithets as innocuous and such behaviours as having no consequences saw her case notes they would change their minds?

Tue, 05 Jan 2010 18:04:00 UTC | #428858

SaintStephen's Avatar Comment 231 by SaintStephen

209. Comment #447521 by epeeist on January 5, 2010 at 5:40 pm

Well, one might inquire as to just exactly how you came by this "information", and furthermore I'd be more than willing to prove you wrong with visible evidence, but that might just cause more PC-related problems than I care to deal with at this point in my week.

You are also more than welcome, btw, to PM me concerning your opinions on my physical attributes, but be nice, or else you may not get the logical, monochromatic response you seek.

;-P

Tue, 05 Jan 2010 18:08:00 UTC | #428862

/Mike's Avatar Comment 232 by /Mike

Please, enough with the bickering and name calling. Some comments moved here as explicitly trolling and bickering. Others move here for context.
/Mike

Tue, 05 Jan 2010 18:15:00 UTC | #428865

epeeist's Avatar Comment 233 by epeeist

Comment #447538 by SaintStephen:

Well, one might inquire as to just exactly how you came by this "information", and furthermore I'd be more than willing to prove you wrong with visible evidence, but that might just cause more PC-related problems than I care to deal with at this point in my week.
Touched a small nerve there did I? Are you familiar with the phrase "All mouth and no trousers"?

Tue, 05 Jan 2010 18:21:00 UTC | #428872

Pedantic Twit's Avatar Comment 234 by Pedantic Twit

She makes a valid point. To an extent.

The actions of those fanatics who rape and kill are inexcusable. They must be condemned in the strongest terms.

But that does not excuse those who decide it is fun to dress erotically.

"Instead, they saw in it a defamatory and humiliating message: women are sexy. Humiliation is a devastating feeling."

Absolutely right. It is.

There need not be a wrong and a right side here. Just because we utterly condemn the fanatics does not mean praising those who dress erotically, unless that erotic dress is worn for very good reason.

What we should not do, though, is place the blame on the fanatics on those who provoke. People have personal responsibility for their actions.

So overall, she is very wrong. But it is not a simple matter.

Tue, 05 Jan 2010 18:27:00 UTC | #428874

Ophelia Benson's Avatar Comment 235 by Ophelia Benson

Adrian, no, not the ideal word. I couldn't think of the ideal word and was in a hurry! There are various words like subaltern or Other but they make me bristle, because I don't like jargon. Anyway you put it very well, I wouldn't have bothered if I'd seen yours before I typed.

blitz, you were condescending to me; you seemed to be assuming I'd never thought of any of that. This stuff is all very old news. (If I did condescend it's probably more because of vast old age than assumed superiority. I've seen all this a million times before.)

Tue, 05 Jan 2010 18:28:00 UTC | #428876

SaintStephen's Avatar Comment 236 by SaintStephen

217. Comment #447548 by epeeist on January 5, 2010 at 6:21 pm

The way you persist in talking about "touching" me is flattering, good Sir, but irrelevant to the matter "at hand", so to speak.

Your position in the peanut gallery is duly noted. Thanks for spilling the beer on my head, by the way, you PC-drunken sot.

And now, I am off to the links, but rest assured: I'll be thinking of you on the tee at the longest Par 5 on the golf course.

;-P

Tue, 05 Jan 2010 18:31:00 UTC | #428882

Twatsworth's Avatar Comment 237 by Twatsworth

(If I did condescend it's probably more because of vast old age than assumed superiority. I've seen all this a million times before.)
Yes, well, you can be as old as Tom Bombadil and still not know shit from Shinola. The existence proof is Yahweh, who, despite being infinity years old, thought pi is identically equal to 3.

Tue, 05 Jan 2010 18:37:00 UTC | #428884

Sciros's Avatar Comment 238 by Sciros

It's tedious having to repeat the ABCs all the time, but
Welcome to the club, except that you don't even read what I have to say on the topic, do you. At least, I have never seen a response.

Yes males are sometimes called genital epithets, but 1) I don't do that so I don't have to defend it
No-one is asking you to "defend" it; rather it is something to accept as fact and consider the reasons that it is so.
and 2) males are not the subordinates, so 'prick' is not as sexist as 'cunt' for the same reason 'honky' is not as racist as 'nigger' or 'breeder' is not as straightist as 'faggot.'
This is basically bullshit. The terms are as sexist and as racist as the person means them to be. These words are insulting words -- they are not something you'll look up in the dictionary and see "prick - (n) man." Just like you won't see "prick - (n) bad man." Their meanings change with context, and we can only really talk about what they mean by considering the context and what people mean to say when they use them. You cannot get away from this, no matter how hard you try. If someone says they did not mean term X in a sexist or racist way, and they are being truthful, then, if you wish to maintain intellectual integrity in this matter, you will accept that term X has indeed been used in a way that is not sexist or racist. Depending on how often this non-sexist (or non-racist) sense of term X is invoked, it may become one of general usage. That is how words went from being non-derogatory to being derogatory, and that is how they can go back to being non-derogatory.

Word meanings change over time.

Coming back to your claim that "because group A is subordinate to group B, term X is more derogatory than term Y" -- I will not bother for the time being to challenge you to make a general case for group A indeed being subordinate to group B in cases when these terms are invoked (for instance, in this thread where Nancy Holm has been referred to using much gender-specific slang). Instead I challenge you to support your statement that, basically, the relative social level of the target trumps the sense in which a derogatory term is meant. I submit that a single black woman is generally "subordinate" in your sense of the word to a married Jewish male. Would the term "Yid" therefore be less derogatory coming out of her mouth than out of a married WASP male? If you believe so, I invite you to support that belief. I, for one, consider it a counterexample to your position.

I don't use 'bitch' and I think women who do are ... perpetuating the existing hostility to women.
This is another assertion that you have not supported, and I don't think is clear enough to go without support.

Tue, 05 Jan 2010 18:48:00 UTC | #428897

blitz442's Avatar Comment 239 by blitz442

213. Comment #447531 by Adrian Bartholomew

You have to be very careful when doing these kind of reversals not to just picks elements to reverse and not reverse BIG elements. Women have been on the negative receiving end of sexism far more throughout the years than men. So when doing a reverse comparison, like you have done here, you have to reverse ALL the men’s position. Imagine how men would react to sexism had they been the ones that didn’t have the vote until recently or still didn’t earn as much as women in the same jobs. Sexism in that light carries different weights.



There is a lot to unpack here. First, you do not seem to be disputing the possibility that men are the also the object of sexism here, only that it is to be greatly discounted. You also imply that hypersensitivity by women to these issues is justified. Your reason for this is based on a skewed, simplistic view of history, an oppressor/oppressed role for men and women, respectively. Our male ancestors were villains, our female ancestors poor victims, and us modern men must continually acknowledge and apologize for this.

I would ask you to consider that fact that both men and women have been oppressed and been made objects by their respective roles throughout history. Before you go ballistic, I am in no way saying that these male/female roles did not result in some gross inequities against females, nor that the drastic expansion of female roles, rights and responsibilities that occurred in the 20th century was not sorely needed. What I am saying is that history cannot so easily be used to bludgeon men or silence them with guilt.

You mention the wage issue. Do you not know that this is a fallacy, and based on poor research methods? Women do earn less overall, but not for the same work. When type of work, job title, years on the job, education, etc. is controlled for, the wage gap shrinks to non-significance. I can point you to previous posts and research on this issue, but this is a major error that unfortunately many reasonable people believe.

Finally, you write stuff like “women have been on the receiving end of sexism throughout the years far more than men”, you make a colossal error in lumping all men or women, past and present, into one group. I was born in the mid-seventies. I was raised to view women as equals. I have never to my knowledge oppressed women or denied them rights. I do not condone the actions of some of my male ancestors, I was not responsible, nor can I magically undo what was done, but I am for some reason made to answer for them.

A female born in the same year I was, in the same place I was, has experienced a miniscule amount of oppression compared to her female ancestors. She didn’t experience not having the right to vote, not being able to go to school, yet she is lumped in with all of the women who preceded her, and allowed to therefore share in their suffering and righteous indignation.

So in many discussions of gender, we end up with these ridiculous situations when blameless modern men such as myself (who have doled out little or no oppression) are berated and gagged by modern women (who have experienced little or no oppression) and their sympathizers for the sins (real or imagined) of our collective ancestors.

Tue, 05 Jan 2010 18:50:00 UTC | #428900

Sciros's Avatar Comment 240 by Sciros

blitz, I find your lack of white male guilt disturbing!

Tue, 05 Jan 2010 18:56:00 UTC | #428905