Friday, August 12, 2011

If Atheism is not an organized movment, why do they have a world conference?

Myers at world Atheist conferience

PZ Myers is a biologist and associate professor at the University of Minnesota, Morris.
He writes about the conference on his blog:
I've been bad. I've been busy. I'm at this conference, and the combination of bad wifi (I can't get connected in my room at all) and constant distractions means I haven't been keeping you updated here. Fortunately, Rorschach is here and has been blogging away while I can't, so I can just cheat and link to him.

The Muslims have invaded. They don't have much stamina. They were there for Richard Dawkins' session yesterday, asked a stupid question, and since have retired to a table outside, where they peddle bad literature that looks like clones of Christian creationist nonsense.

A curious thing, a non movement that is nothing more than the absence of a belief, with no organization, but the hold a big conference in Dublin. They have a big conference Atmosphere. What's really puzzeling is they even have a evangelism course called "communicating atheism." Myer writes: "The communicating atheism discussion was fun. Aron Ra was impressive, Rebecca Watson was fabulously indignant and persuasive about the specific problems women atheist speakers face." That discussion had a panel with Richard Dawkins, Rebecca Watson, Aron Ra and Tom Melchiorre. On the Fourious Purpose Blog: "Rebecca told about the sexist and abusive emails she gets – from atheists, and challenged the conclusions of the earlier panel on female atheist activism."

Do you see the problem there? It's not a movement, it's not an organized thing, yet they speak of "activism." I'm sorry but what we are looking at here is obviously a moment work furiously to perpetuate itself. Every time I've pointed this out atheists have spoken vehemently of how wrong it is to think there is any kind of movement, when obviously it's in front of our faces.

Is the hate part of the organization? Well there's a very telling statement here the last one in the article on the Furious Purpose Blog. "Dawkins had 2 points he wanted to make, one, that ridicule and sarcasm are useful tools in confronting religious people, and second, that we have to raise consciousness about atheism." Let's look at that again:

Dawkins had 2 points he wanted to make, one, =That reducible and sarcasm are useful tools in confronting religious people, and second, that we have to raise consciousness about atheism.
What does this tell us but that Dawkins supports the hate group atheism, the bullying, the brow beating, he does not advocate reasoning with people but wants his lackeys to assault their self esteem. It tells us that one of the major tools the leaders of their movement organize their people to use is mocking and ridicule. So the mocking and ridicule are not merely top down they are being organized into the proceedings form the top down.

Atheist Ireland sports a website advertising the event. Here's a list of speakers and topics.

  • Richard Dawkins (evolutionary biologist)
  • Lone Frank (neurobiologist, science writer, Denmark)
  • Michael Nugent (chairperson Atheist Ireland)
  • Paula Kirby (secular consultant, activist UK)
  • PZ Myers (author science blog Pharyngula, USA)
  • Jane Donnelly (Education officer Atheist Ireland)
  • Dan Barker (Freedom from Religion Foundation, USA)
  • Rebecca Watson (Skepchick blogger, podcaster)
  • David Nash (professor, expert on blasphemy, UK)
  • Aroup Chatterjee (author, IN)
  • Ivana Bacik (Irish Senator in 30th Oireachtas)
  • Mpagi Michael Kirumira (Atheist Association of Uganda)
  • Annie Laurie Gaylor USA (Freedom from Religion Foundation)
  • Mark Embleton UK (President Atheism UK)
  • Thomas Prosser (Trinity College, Dublin)
  • Nick Lee (Freethinkers Association of Central Texas)
  • Tanya Smith (Atheist Alliance International)
  • Bobbie Kirkhart (Author and Activist, USA)
  • Tom Melchiorre (Editor, Secular World, USA)
  • Phillipe Besson (ILCAF, France)
  • Richard Green (Atheism UK)
  • Rene Hartmann (Int. League of Non-religious & Atheists, Germany)
  • Maryam Namazie (British Council of Ex-Muslims)
  • Roger Lepeix (ILCAF, France)
  • Aron-Ra (vlogger for science education, co-host Magic Sandwich Show)
  • D.P.R. Jones (vlogger on religion, science and philosophy, host of The Magic Sandwich)

Topics will include

  • Weird science versus weird religion
  • Communicating Atheism
  • Secular education: teach, don’t preach
  • Women Atheist Activists
  • Speaking out against blasphemy laws
  • Religion: accommodate or confront?
  • Building Secular Coalitions
  • Dublin Declaration on Religion in Public Life
  • Launch of new Atheist Alliance International

Delegate participation

As well as listening to speakers, this Convention will be an active one for delegates who want to participate. We will be debating and voting on the Dublin Declaration on Religion in Public Life, and some panel discussions will include audience members on the panels alongside our listed speakers. Click through to the Conference Program.

Look at those, not going to accommodate but confront. It's designed to be feisty. It's designed to be communicated, and it seeks to build coalitions to grow into a huge movement. All of this smacks of an organized movement. Yet atheists on message boards act like it's just horror or horrors to imply that there is a movement.


Anonymous said...

Here's one you missed...

"Pakistani Atheists & Agnostics (PAA) is a social organization for atheists, agnostics and freethinkers of Pakistan. We are affiliate members of Atheist Alliance International. As an organisation we promote secular causes and the separation of religion and state. We advocate the rights of women and minorities, as well as secular humanist values and free speech.

PAA is about rational thought, compassion, science, freedom and education. Above all, we provide a forum for freethinkers in Pakistan to get together, share ideas and strive for common ambitions.

To the Atheists and Agnostics of Pakistan - you are not alone :)"

Oh, those hateful Brownshirt atheists, how dare they get organized?!1!!1! ;)

Joseph Hinman (Metacrock) said...

hey thanks. Just having an organization is not bad. Having conference is not bad. It's the reactionary fear of admitting it's a movement that bothers me.

In fact it may be several movements.

Anonymous said...

There is a bit of a knee-jerk response to that suggestion I've noticed, although I think it's true that most atheists don' belong to an organization in the same way that most Christians belong to a church, for example. Some of us spent a long time breaking away from organized belief, so we're a bit touchy about being seen to be part of another one.

But if a freethought group with a really good choir program were to open up in my neighbourhood I might consider joining...;)

Joseph Hinman (Metacrock) said...

LOL ;-)

Anonymous said...

Seriously though, what do you think of those Pakistani atheists? Considering the political environment they live with every day it seems to me to be an extraordinary act of courage on their part to organize publicly like that. Wouldn't you agree?

Joseph Hinman (Metacrock) said...

yes I agree. one thing I refuse to all into is the the hypocrisy of doing to others what I decry in their behavior. We must stick to our (well not guns but you know principles).

Ross said...

Dawkins' comments are very telling. I get a bit tired of the arrogance of some atheists, who seem to think it's acceptable to treat religious people as something to wipe off their shoes.

Joseph Hinman (Metacrock) said...

right on! yesterday on carm an atheist said I insulted Einstein's intelligence becuase I said he believed in God.