AS29: Reaction to Reaction to Greta Christina, and Debate with Elijiah T

AS28 received a ton of feedback. So many people felt comfortable to confess their possible unpopular opinions, which I look at as a great accomplishment for the show. In a very long Tommentary, I talk about all the messages I received about the show, and make several points about feminism and atheism, again. Also, don’t tell anyone, but I talk briefly about the elevator incident (with great reservations.) My hand was forced because of how many people mentioned it in their messages to me.

After that, it’s the first debate with Elijiah T! You can find his blog here:

And on Twitter @elijiaht

Let me know how you think I did, though you’ll have to find out on Thursday since we ran out of time on today’s episode! Or… you can simply go to and hear the rest already!

8 thoughts on “AS29: Reaction to Reaction to Greta Christina, and Debate with Elijiah T”

  1. I think one thing you left out in your description of the elevator gate descrption is that the man (a stranger) asked Rebeca to come back to his room for coffee. This in combination with it being 3 or 4 in the morning and in an elevator with just the two of them makes for a unsettling situation. I am a 50 year old, white male and its clear to me that this would make a woman uncomfortable. also I personally was not insulted or threatened by the famous video by Rebaca. When I first discovered the online atheist community I felt joy knowing there were so many people like me but when all the negative comments about feminisim started, I was embarrassed.

  2. I hadn’t heard your argument to the first premise of the kalām cosmological argument. The idea that the universe is the only thing that’s began to exist. I think it really dismantles the argument and is quite compelling.

    1. I agree. Had not framed it that way before. Energy cannot be created or destroyed. But 2nd Law of Thermodynamics is the got to Law.

  3. I feel like you’re still lacking in empathy for the female point of view. I’d love to hear you say on your next podcast: “It is entirely reasonable for a woman in the situation described by Rebecca Watson to fear being raped.” Stop dodging the issue by using weasel words like “uncomfortable.” Use the word. The word is “rape,” although Rebecca’s message was also about being objectified and not being heard. Also, shortly after the elevator incident, I read a great essay about a gecko and a dog that really illustrated the issue of “privilege,” Here’s the link: Read it. Then maybe you can understand why some of us have a problem with Richard Dawkins. Richard Dawkins is that dog.

    1. I don’t understand why it is reasonable for Rebecca in this situation fear being raped. To make that claim, there would have to be a reasonable indication that a hypothetical man would be a rapist; bad attempts to pick someone up and social awkwardness are not indicative of rapist tendencies by any psychological metric I am aware of. If you are saying what I have heard elsewhere, that women have to consider all men potential rapists to a significant degree, I would say that that is simple bigotry permitted by a social construct of men as barely-controlled beasts. To take the same structure of argument for that and demonstrate it as bigotry, it is the same as saying that there is a high enough likelihood that black people are murderers that I have to consider all black people potential murderers.

      If there is some other argument that I am missing, that you meant, please let me know as I find the confusion over this particular frustrating. Thanks for your time.

  4. The blog mentioned in the above post was very well written and did explain how these things work, very well. My only philosophical objection to it is the line where it says “Men don’t ever have to be wary of sexual interest.” Although I would agree this is generally or usually true, it is not a universal truth. Saying it like this, plays into men’s rights activists hands. They are always putting out examples of men who’ve been beaten or abused by their girlfriends and wives, and decrying the fact that these men have a high suicide rate because no-one listens to them or takes them seriously. The answer to that of course is that this attitude is wrong, and that in rare instances of female-on-male violent or sexual abuse, the men should be taken seriously. However, if we really believe that “Men don’t ever have to be wary of sexual interest” then there’s no reason to do so.

    I don’t dispute that Dawkins is sometimes the dog. However, people like Arizona Pastor Steven Anderson are seemingly ALWAYS the dog, and yet don’t get nearly as much criticism. My point is that as obnoxious as Dawkins can be (and his post-Elevatorgate conduct was disgusting) this is only part of his “contribution” as it were, and overall there are others more worthy of our derision.

    1. Well…After Dawkins’ horrible comments on rape from Twitter today (29/7/14), I take that back. He is a Total Dick and well worthy of derision (at least for that). He should stick to commenting on biology, science and evolution only. Apologies to Nancy…

  5. The Theist in the debate was breathtakingly bad; I kept wanting you to ask him if he knew what the Second Law of Thermodynamics was and if he could describe any of the others. He had a bunch of parts of bad arguments cobbled together and bad assumption after bad assumption after bad assumption. Very frustrating.

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