Thursday, September 18, 2014

Purging Freethought Dayton: why it's not okay that Richard Dawkins insults everyone

Since I'm purging Freethought Dayton, I want to say that the argument that it's okay to be a racist and sexist because you're a misanthrope is bullshit.

In the first place, the argument that it's okay to be racist and sexist because you're vile to everyone is just using one vice to defend another.  "Richard Dawkins is a terrible human being generally so it's okay that he's also a racist and sexist!"  Oh, that makes it much better . . . ?  I don't think so.  You can be a jerk and also be a racist and sexist.  Being a jerk isn't somehow a defense.

Secondly, when a rich white man attacks another rich white man it has different significance if that same rich white man attacks a poor black woman.  The structure of society matters.  There is considerable difference in meaning depending on the context.  We all know this.  Something your friends might say - "You suck at your job" - has a different significance when you boss says it.  The social influence that a rich white man has is extraordinary and, to them, almost altogether invisible.  Which is why sexist and racist pigdogs like Richard Dawkins say those kinds of things - he isn't even aware of significance of his status in many ways.  It is also the reason why so many people defend him - they share in his status and like exercising it, too.

Anyway, that's what I think about the argument that it's okay to discriminate so long as you're also a jerk.

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