Over the past few days, almost everyone I know has commented in one way or another over the supposed “Joint Statement” by one of The Usual Suspects.
I’ve read the statement, and in general I have no problem with what is being said. In general. What I do have a problem with is someone that is known as a serial bully and harasser defining what everyone else should be saying or doing.
I mean, just look at the title: A Joint Statement by Ophelia Benson and Richard Dawkins. What does that say to you? It’s not a joint statement, or at least it doesn’t appear to be so because Professor Dawkins addition is left until the end.
All this represents to me is someone that a) wants to be noticed, b) wants to define the terms of any cease fire of words and has never in my experience, ever, moderated her language towards others; especially toward women that happen to disagree. The history is there. I really don’t need to diagram for you every instance.
I like the idea of people being decent in disagreement. Many have tried with The Usual Suspects and been called all sorts of names and then allowed to be dog-piled by their commenters. If you don’t believe me, ask EllenBeth Wachs for one, AmbrosiaX, Miranda Hale, and SaraMayhew for other examples of a War on Women That Dare to Disagree. Lot’s of men as well. Too numerous to list even a smidgen of them.
All are in some way or other rape apologists, misogynists, the list goes on and on. And lets not forget about the completely anonymous allegations made about “certain men” that are rapists, sexual assaulters, harassers, etc. No proof ever offered.
You want to be able to dialogue without acrimony, Ms. Benson? You first.
8 thoughts on “A Usual Suspect Demands ‘Ethical Disagreement’”
“… over the supposed “Joint Statement” …”
You have no good reason to question the notion that it is a joint statement. The full statement was also posted at the Richard Dawkins Foundation website (http://richarddawkins.net/2014/07/joint-statement-by-ophelia-benson-and-richard-dawkins/). So it is not a “supposed joint statement” but is in fact a joint statement.
You’re not “getting it”. That meat of the statement was authored by Ophelia.
“It should go without saying, but this means no death threats, rape threats, attacks on people’s appearance, age, race, sex, size, haircut; no photoshopping people into demeaning images, no vulgar epithets.”
Do you really think that Dawkins pays attention to all the petty BS that goes on? Of course not.
“It’s not a joint statement, or at least it doesn’t appear to be so because Professor Dawkins addition is left until the end.”
Wrong. The first part three paragraphs are in fact a joint statement. The final paragraph is an addendum added by Dawkins to clearly distance himself from those who would misrepresent or have misrepresented his views.
“What I do have a problem with is someone that is known as a serial bully and harasser defining what everyone else should be saying or doing.”
Either you agree with the statement or you don’t. It should be irrelevant who is saying it. Benson is no more a serial harasser or bully than those who have harassed and bullied her and others online. But these actions should have no influence on any person’s evaluation of the substance or merit of the statement itself.
Whether you like Benson or not, she has as much right as you, I or anyone else to issue a challenge to all to stop the bullying, harassment, death threats, rape threats, and personal attacks. It is, I think, time for all parties to stop this immature, juvenile and appalling behavior. There has been enough of it from both sides in this ridiculous feud.
notice this comment on her latest pos concerning Phil Giordano:
“He’s thinking that because I don’t let him comment on my blog, he’s entitled to punish me with death threats, rape threats, attacks on people’s appearance, age, race, sex, size, haircut; photoshopping people into demeaning images, vulgar epithets. ”
He’s never done any of that.
Who’s immature? Well, if you disagree with her on anything, you rank in the above statement. What’s ridiculous?
It is difficult at best to read the mind of a person from written comments. But my interpretation of Ophelia’s remark you quoted was not that she was accusing Phil of having done this in the past, but rather she was saying that Phil was advocating the position that he and others should be permitted to use these verbal tactics going forward. Afterall, Phil did say in his remarks on the Facebook post “Don’t accommodate the online SJWs.” Note that Ophelia began the statement you quoted with “He’s thinking that…” She is, perhaps inaccurately, interpreting Phil’s mindset in writing the statement not to accommodate Ophelia and the other so-called SJW’s.
My interpretation of Phil’s remark was that he was saying the joint statement should be ignored, disregarded. When Olivia called him on that very point in the Facebook thread, he did not clarify or deny this interpretation.
Even if Ophelia wrote the the first three paragraphs, you sincerely think Dawkins did not read them? What possible basis could you have for such a ridiculous assumption? You think I am not getting it but you are? I think you need to think this through again.
What petty BS are you speaking of in this instance? Are you saying that Dawkins thought the joint statement to be a case of petty BS and therefore unworthy of the time to examine before agreeing to attach his name to it? Perhaps he doesn’t pay attention to all the petty BS. But then again perhaps he does. I don’t know and neither do you. But whether he does or does not, I will not assume that he blindly signed on to the joint statement. If you think he did not read it and agree with it then you are making an unreasonable assumption. I think it much more reasonable to assume that Dawkins read the statement before agreeing to have his name attached to it. Isn’t this what any reasonable person, yourself included, would do? If you think not then why don’t you e-mail him and ask him.
I read Olivia’s post on her blog. If indeed she was accusing Phil of this kind of behavior in the past then obviously she went too far, thought I don’t think that was what she was doing. But there was nothing in her post that was threatening. There was nothing in her post that was or should be interpreted as bullying. There was nothing in her post that was a form of harassment. She used no vulgar epithets. She did not employ any insults or slurs . Her post was a criticism of Phil. You may not agree with the criticism. But nothing in her post deserves to be interpreted as her having violated the “cease fire” called for in the joint statement. In fact, Phil by advocating that the so-called SJW’s not be accommodated was in effect declaring an unwillingness to end the fight. He fired the first salvo in this particular instance. Ophelia had every right to respond. With the possible exception of her attempt to read Phil’s mindset, the criticism was not harsh nor undeserved.