Did They Just Say ‘She’?

One of my classes involves a lot of discussion. I have an obviously masculine name, which has been used to name me many times over the course of the semester. We have also all done oral presentations. No one has given me any sort of problem with my name or appearance all semester, and people generally identify me as male over 90% of the time, anyway. I can almost take it for granted that people will perceive me as male. So when a couple of people referred to me using feminine pronouns during the class discussion today, I wasn’t sure I’d heard them right.Read More »

Dear Close-Minded Atheist Hater

Dear Close-Minded Atheist Hater:

Of course atheists will live up to your bad expectations if you don’t give them the benefit of the doubt. No individual will counter your bad opinion of the group they belong to if you interpret every action of theirs in the worst light possible. If you take their condemnation of bad thing #1 and bad thing #2 to mean that they’re okay with bad thing #3. If they call you out on twisting their words, and you counter by saying that no one in their group needs your help in the twisting of words (oh look, victim blaming!). If you make absurd leaps in “logic” to take their position on a matter of fact to mean that they advocate <insert barely related horrible thing here>, and you say that their group is so awful because they are okay with <horrible thing> (hint: saying that people you hate advocate <insert horrible thing here> doesn’t make it so). If you act incredulous when they state that they do, in fact, have a problem with it when your group is the one being harmed. If, in fact, you generally assume they are the scum of the Earth, no matter how they act.

If you repeatedly fail to provide requested sources to back up your assertions, except to say that it is obvious that <vaguely referenced thing open to interpretation> is an example. If you then make fun of them when they say they hadn’t seen your interpretation of that vaguely referenced thing before. If you resort to insults because you don’t actually have good counter-arguments. If you resort to such petty tactics as modifying their comments to put a “[sic]” in after every typo or misspelling you can find. If you insert your own responses into the middle of their comments, so that no one can read their comment without seeing your response immediately. If you make assumptions about their position on a subject that hasn’t even been addressed. If you close comments after a day with a smug, sanctimonious exclamation that the atheists have proved your point about them.

Then you’re just making yourself look bad. You’re conceding that you don’t have good responses to their points by deflecting instead of engaging. You’re making it painfully obvious that you are unwilling to change your mind no matter what anyone says. The people you’re arguing against should take it as a compliment that you are failing so badly in countering their points that you resort to such tactics as deflection, insult, and deliberate (and obvious!) misrepresentation.

And it’s hilarious that you seem to think you’re the one who came off better in this interaction.

My Phone’s Auto-Complete Tries to Censor Me

One thing I have noticed since I started blogging from my phone more often, is that my phone’s auto-complete really doesn’t like some words. What I mean is, it learns new words as I use them, but there are some words it just refuses to learn. No matter how many times I use lower-case g “god”, it always tries to suggest that I actually meant to capitalize that ‘g’. Lower-case g “gods” is okay, though. It also won’t learn “fuck” or “fucking”, but apparently it will learn “fuckity” (which I used once, maybe twice). And it doesn’t like the words “suicide” or “suicidal”, but it did learn my typo “suicida”. That last one bothers me more than any of the others. I mean, coding morality policing into my phone is really annoying, and I don’t see why they couldn’t just leave those words out of the default dictionary as opposed to blacklisting them so the auto-correct can’t learn them. But censoring “suicide” is bullshit. It suggests that suicidal ideation, suicide attempts, and completed suicide are shameful or taboo. And fuck that.Read More »