The FFRF’s Strange Response to the Silverman Firing

The FFRF issued a response to David Silverman’s firing and I find it to be rather odd.

First, the FFRF (Annie Laurie Gaylor, Co-President)  begins by complaining about the negative stereotypes about atheists and blames the Bible.  These activists don’t seem to understand that when the media turn people like Madalyn Murray O’Hair, Richard Dawkins, and David Silverman into the “public face of atheism,” that their behavior might have something to do with those negative stereotypes.

She then goes to promote how wonderful the FFRF is.

She finally gets to Silverman and claims:

But Silverman’s highly aggressive brand of atheism does not represent FFRF or many nonbelievers, nor do his alleged actions here. There’s room in the movement for differences. There’s not room for this kind of misconduct.

The FFRF is not engaged in a highly aggressive brand of atheism?  Using the social justice concept of “safe spaces” to threaten some small community into tearing down its 100 year old cross sounds like highy aggressive atheism to me.  Apparently, the FFRF is oblivious to the way their own actions contribute to the negative stereotype about atheists.

She then spends two paragraphs telling us there has long been bad blood between American Atheists and FFRF.  It’s in these paragraphs were we find the most she has to say about Silverman:

In all fairness, Silverman denies the allegations. Our dealings with him have been scant and only at a professional level. That Silverman is accused of saying to a woman fighting him off, “You don’t get to say no to me,” however, unfortunately rings true to me. I felt “bullied” while attempting to work with Silverman on the speakers committee for the second Reason Rally. I say “attempting” because I was summarily booted from the committee he was chairing and denied a voice in the planning (but at least not before I was able to secure Julia Sweeney as a speaker, I’m pleased to say).

She claims:

The #metoo movement is rightfully taking down many a predator. Such allegations have, thankfully, been rare so far in the freethought movement.

Huh? She waves away Krauss because he was not an official “movement organizer” and simply ignores Shermer and Carrier.

She then spends five paragraphs bashing religion.

And ends by recounting two examples of sexual misconduct in the FFRF and ends with a promise:

A commitment to women and equality means nothing unless the freethought movement makes clear it will not tolerate sexual misconduct or sleazy behavior by leading nonbelievers……Let’s make sure women are assured that sexual harassment (much less assault) — and the misuse of authority, or the power of “celebrity” — is not tolerated within our movement. We’re better than that.

Like I said, strange.  All she really says about Silverman is that the allegations ring true to her because he once bullied her.  Other than that, all we get is complaints about negative stereotypes, lots of religion bashing, some mild bashing of American Atheists, and promises that sexual harassment are not tolerated in the atheist movement.

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4 Responses to The FFRF’s Strange Response to the Silverman Firing

  1. Ilíon says:

    She then spends two paragraphs telling us there has long been bad blood between American Atheists and FFRF.

    And for the same reason that there was “bad blood” between the National Socialists and the International Socialists in Wiemar Germany — they are competing for market share in a very small market.

  2. Mark Plus says:

    FFRF has basically become a rent-seeking scam for atheist attorneys. Frankly I hope the money dries up for this group and American Atheists because they are both unnecessary now; atheism has become a socially accepted and mainstream view, and probably for reasons that these organizations can’t take credit for.

  3. Kevin says:

    My favorite line in the FFRF piece was this:

    “If you value women, you must make known your dissent from organized religion.”

    Obi-wan was wrong. It’s not only Sith that deal in absolutes, but also progressives. Life is much easier in black and white.

  4. TFBW says:

    They demand that you make known your dissent from organised religion while standing on a platform of something very much like an organised religion, given the pontificating about what one must do.

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