Hello! I am a member of Freethought Fort Wayne, a small but rapidly growing freethought community in Fort Wayne, Indiana. We are pleased with our member base, but we are concerned about one thing: we don't have very many women. For the most part, we seem to fit the stereotype of the angry white 30-something male atheist.
Can anyone comment on this? Are women less prone to be atheists, or at least to actively engage in a community of atheists and secular humanists? I'd love to get someone's take on it -- maybe even — GASP — a woman. (-:
It took me about 15 seconds to find the referenced thread on Atheist Nexus (minus Jacqueline's comments, of course, since her account was deleted) I did note that some of the comments by other people quoted above either were not from that thread or have since been deleted.
I found, as expected, that some of what was being said was an accurate portrayal of the context, some was not, and that there was a lot of emotional content as one would expect in so emotionally charged of a topic. Indeed, a lot of the conflict seemed to stem from disagreements between people trying to approach the topic without emotional considerations and people for whom emotional considerations were primary.
A major point of conflict was the difference between culpability and risk assessment. Most of the people in the thread (male and female) were solidly of the opinion that how a woman dresses in no way mitigates the crime of the rapist. However, some people (again, male and female) were also of the opinion that while it did not and should not factor into the guilt and responsibility of the rapist, it did fall into 'risk assessment', in the same manner that leaving your car unlocked in no way makes the car thief any less guilty, but your actions did up the overall risk.
There were also some people posting that met the criteria for being a total asshat, including arguments about how clothing (particularly scanty clothing) should be considered as a factor in guilt, how flirtatious behavior is tantamount to asking for it, and how any objective discussion about said topic is the same thing as being a member of a southern white lynch mob.
Fortunately, the jerks were outnumbered by the rational people, even those who were disagreeing with one another.
Did you report the issues? Or did you just go away. Over the past year, anytime there was a problem, it was deleted as soon as it was reported and verified. Those guys, like Think Atheist admin, are not psychic.
To answer your question and refute your allegation that I am not being truthful:
I reported them several times. So did at least two other women that I know of, one of whom was directly and rather rudely and aggressively challenged by the site's admin/owner to produce proof that this sort of abuse targeting women was going on unchecked.
She posted the accurate quotation of entire laundry list of highly offensive and objectionable misogynistic comments made by these guys, including one comment that lent more than just a modicum of sympathy for men who go on shooting sprees killing women in the workplace in an attempt to justify femicide and hatred for women who dare ::gasp:: stand up for their rights, OK.
Not long after she posted this laundry list to prove her case on an open forum post addressing these problems that I put up — after her repeated complaints were ignored — the site admin/owner arbitrarily deleted her post which offered up proof that this was a serious problem.
The admin's arbitrary deletion of Jean's post while letting hate speech against women, and against feminists in particular, stand, sends a message that speaks volumes. So before you accuse me of not telling the truth and before you criticize me for resorting to a "copy/paste" use in conjunction with Vista's Snip It, I would strongly suggest that documentation is, by Snip tool or by link or JPEG, is proof. Stare decisis.
Complaints were made. Comments were deleted. At least two people were banned. Jean's posts were removed because SHE deleted her account.
I agree with almost every thing you say, but you are way to quick to call people sexist when they simply disagree with you. There is NO doubting that. Every mod I know about at Atheist Nexus is a woman. So I guess you think they are self haters.
Much of what you complained about was people being stupid, but they were not as bad as you say. For us to be true feminists we must act like equals not hurt puppies. Again I agree with a lot of what you do, but you go WAY to far. At least that is my opinion. And I won't run away and call you names when you disagree.
I don't believe you're being entirely fair. I did not "run away" and call anyone names. I posted a response to Andy's discussion offering an explanation (one of many that others could also make) as to what kind of things may be going on that may be a turn-off to THIS woman (me), and possibly other people as well.
And yes, the mods you mentioned are women...but at least one mod (who happens to be a friend of mine) admitted on my aforementioned blog post where Jean posted her laundry list, that she had requested permission to remove Duane's blog (that started a huge woman-bashing and feminist-bashing fest), but that her request to remove Duane's incendiary blog was DENIED by the site's owner/admin who calls the final shots.
On my blog (which is now no longer there) in an attempt to call attention to the problem and invite other people to give examples of where hate speech was a particular problem, Jean's post of her laundry list was deleted before she deleted her account.
Now, I didn't delete it, so that means she either deleted it herself before leaving, or someone else with authority and override access did. I don't know.
Jean was one of my friends. I do not have another email contact for her, so if you should happen to notice if she's still occasionally retreiving messages or whatever, please pass along that I said "Hi" and that I hope she's doing OK.
Meanwhile, I'm about to imbibe in a no-no...I'm going to go raid the fridge where some egg-nogg is calling my name :)
I know it's fattening and I probably shouldn't have it even though I LOVE it, but....at age 42 1/2, I lost my girlish figure awhile ago and you only live once :)