The cause that wit is in other people
One good thing, Rosenau’s goofy “I haven’t heard the Lindsay-Mooney podcast but I know PZ (who has heard it) is rong about it anyway” post elicited some good comments (along with a whole lot of bad ones from the usual suspects, especially the indefatigable McCarthy). From PZ for instance.
Your problem, Josh, is a total inability to appreciate any approach beyond your own. There is no surprising inconsistency in my views; all along the Gnus have been saying we need a multiplicity of approaches, so I can simultaneously endorse someone advocating a softer approach while favoring a hard core strategy myself.
My approach works for some people — actually, it works very, very well for a lot of people. And some people run away screaming. So? I’m not the one pretending a one-size-fits-all set of tactics is the way to go.
Quite. Me neither. I certainly don’t dispute that some people run away screaming. Mooney seems to think we don’t get that. Of course we get it.
Being nice doesn’t work. All that happens when you treat rank superstition with respect is you lend it credence it doesn’t deserve. If polite, rational argument stood a chance of swaying the believers, we wouldn’t be living in a world where over 80% of the population is some form of theist.
As H.L.Mencken observed in 1925, “The way to deal with superstition is not to be polite to it, but to tackle it with all arms, and so rout it, cripple it, and make it forever infamous and ridiculous. Is it, perchance, cherished by persons who should know better? Then their folly should be brought out into the light of day, and exhibited there in all its hideousness until they flee from it, hiding their heads in shame.”
See? We ain’t so gnu.
Correction: May 14 6:59 a.m. We ain’t so new. We are gnu, but not new.