Reason Rally Loses Depp

The second installment of the “Reason” rally lost its key speaker – Johnny Depp. Depp, along with his wife Amber Heard who was also scheduled to be a voice of “reason,” cancelled their appearances, probably because they are going through a nasty divorce where Heard accuses Depp of physical abuse and Depp accuses Heard of lying and trying to blackmail him.

This is a significant hit against the atheist movement, as Depp’s appearance would have drawn some very curious attention from mainstream media.  But without him, the Reason Rally is likely to remain a bunch of atheists patting themselves on the back while they mock the religious.

The ghost of ElevatorGate continues to haunt the Gnus.

 

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16 Responses to Reason Rally Loses Depp

  1. What’s “ElevatorGate”?

  2. Kevin says:

    http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Elevatorgate

    What the atheist wiki says about it, so any bias is their own.

  3. TFBW says:

    It’s a shame that all the reason-rallying and religion-deprecating doesn’t translate to a stable marriage. You’d think they’d be united by their common lack of belief.

  4. Dhay says:

    Robert Woodside > What’s “ElevatorGate”?

    Apparently, it’s a cause of major loss of interest in the RDF (richarddawkins.net) website

    http://www.conservapedia.com/Elevatorgate#Richard_Dawkins.27_loss_of_influence_post_Elevatatorgate

  5. Thanks guys. Also, you see that they’ve only raised 1/5 of what they need to put on the Reason Rally? Do you think it’ll even happen?

    http://reasonrally.org/main-stage/

  6. Michael says:

    Thanks guys. Also, you see that they’ve only raised 1/5 of what they need to put on the Reason Rally? Do you think it’ll even happen?

    Good catch.

  7. Dhay says:

    I see that the banner picture for the [Plan Your Trip / Schedule] page shows a crowd, and a solitary placard saying:

    REASON
    WE HAVE ONE
    SO BE HEARD

    http://reasonrally.org/schedule/

    The banner — presumably showing a previous Reason Rally crowd and placard — was chosen by the Rally organisers to advertise the 2016 Rally and impart a message. It’s a rather peculiar message, though: this big-looking crowd has apparently but one solitary reason between them at a Reason Rally.

    Perhaps the placard-wielder and Rally organisers were not bright enough to have more than one reason; perhaps the placard-wielder and Rally organisers were not bright enough to realise, that if that one reason should be heard, then that one reason really should have been stated on the placard, that people might know what it is (or was).

    It looks like a cock-up, a Reason Rally advertised via a placard message that doesn’t bear up to rational analysis.

    To be charitable, it’s possible that what the advertising copy-writer (at any rate) wanted heard was a word-association recollection that there would be a must-see celebrity speaker (and her bigger celebrity husband) at the 2016 Rally; if so, the banner’s a double cock-up now they have withdrawn.

  8. Dhay says:

    One of the memes which keeps coming up on the Reason Rally Facebook page is Carolyn Porco’s:

    All the atoms of our bodies will be blown into space in the disintegration of the Solar System, to live on forever as mass or energy. That’s what we should be teaching our children, not fairy tales about angels and seeing grandma in heaven.

    https://www.goodreads.com/quotes/6575888-all-the-atoms-of-our-bodies-will-be-blown-into

    Whatever the merits or otherwise of teaching children about angels and seeing Grandma in heaven — in his book surprised by HOPE the conservative Anglican theologian NT Wright deprecates the many popular hymns which have “seeing Grandma in heaven” type messages — Porco really should refrain from promoting teaching children (especially younger children who struggle with adult concepts like the eventual disintegration of the Solar System) that they are going to be blown up and blown into space; this sounds like the stuff of child nightmares; somehow, I don’t think Porco is a child psychologist.

    As for teaching children that they as persons or as their atoms will “live on forever as mass or energy”, this is a strange use of the word “live”; that atoms can “live” as mass or energy sounds rather like a fairy tale; somehow, I don’t think Porco is a biologist.

    Interesting, that she should seek to replace one fairy tale of eternal life after death with … with another fairy tale of eternal life after death.

  9. TFBW says:

    Do you think it’ll even happen?

    On the one hand, they’ve got three days left to raise 80% of their goal, which seems like a lost cause. On the other hand, there are plenty of rich atheists who could make up that difference at short notice without feeling any pain, so anything is possible. If they don’t raise the funds, though, it will certainly say something about the general appetite for it: it would frame the one-and-only reason rally of 2012 more of a climax than a turning point; more of a catharsis than a cultural shift. They got it off their collective chests in 2012 — is there really any need for another “let’s all vent hate at religion together” fest? After all, what can this year’s theme be, other than, “we still hate religion a lot?”

    We’ll see soon enough.

  10. Crude says:

    They got it off their collective chests in 2012 — is there really any need for another “let’s all vent hate at religion together” fest? After all, what can this year’s theme be, other than, “we still hate religion a lot?”

    I’m imagining the unintentional comedy of Reason Rally 2016 being co-opted by Atheist+ drones, and the whole thing turns into a combination of feminist ranting and attempts to address the New Atheist’s problem with diversity and the need to respect muslim contributions to society.

  11. iblase says:

    don’t think i’ve seen so many white men in one place as the pictures at the site show

  12. Doug says:

    Interesting: with only two days to go, they are still behind in their fund-raising to the tune of almost $80k. There appear to be three possible scenarios:
    1. The $100k is an actual requirement, and they won’t get the funds together, and the event will be cancelled. What an embarrassment!
    2. The $100k is an actual requirement, and they will get the funds together. In this event, it will likely be a very wealthy individual who feels personally invested in the rally. Is Dawkins (who isn’t attending) up to it? Is there anyone else who cares enough?
    3. The $100k is not an actual requirement. It was just a means to extract funds for the organizers. Not exactly confidence-building…

  13. TFBW says:

    Events like that with large open-air stages and invited guest speakers don’t happen without significant expenses, so $100,000 isn’t suspicious, in and of itself. Still, it would be interesting to see where the money goes. According to their “donate” page (via wufoo.com), “The Reason Rally Coalition is a 501(c)(3) educational nonprofit organization,” such that donations are tax deductible. How detailed do the public records of such an organisation have to be? If the organiser happened to be taking a hefty slice of the money as payment for actually organising the event, would that be a matter of public record? Are there any records relating to the 2012 event? I’m not sure how to hunt for those specifics.

    The running total on their site stands at $21,953.66 as I post.

  14. Dhay says:

    I see that up to 11 May, the average donation was $66.66. So that’s about 330 donations so far, out of (at that rate) the 1,500 needed.

    http://www.facebook.com/reasonrallyorg/photos/a.366271970063316.90357.207694299254418/1170142766342895/?type=3&theater

    Of course, Johnny Depp’s now cancelled appearance is likely to have been a major now cancelled expense. His apparent indifference to the Reason Rally and its cause indicates he was probably in it for the money. So the $100,000 originally needed might well now be substantially reduced.

    *

    Thinking back to the debate Sam Harris recently had with Maryam Namazie, which Harris claimed was “boring”, I note it is Namazie who is scheduled to speak at the Reason Rally, not Harris.

  15. Doug says:

    There is no small irony in the apparent correlation between apathy (<25% fund-raising) and "reason". If only "evidence-based" individuals would take a moment to consider why fostering co-operation among atheists appears to be so difficult…

  16. Dhay says:

    iblase > don’t think i’ve seen so many white men in one place as the pictures at the site show

    That picture was of the 2012 Reason Rally. Looks like the 2016 Rally was the same; here’s Thunderfoot’s commentary on the faces in the crowd at this year’s Rally:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jMvj1eLdYqI#t=31m12s

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