Feminism

Who Should Win a Free Button?

In my DayQuil haze yesterday, I completely forgot to mention that there’s an awesome petition on Change.org asking my Skeptics’ Guide to the Universe podcast co-hosts to kick me off the show. We get emails like that every now and again, but this is the first time there’s been an honest-to-dog organized campaign. This is exciting, because rarely do Men’s Rights Activists and the like actually get organized and take real action on an issue. So I wanted to help them!

When I first saw the petition, there were only about 30-some signatures. Friends started passing it around and signing it with their own hilarious statements, so I tweeted about it in the hopes that more would join in. I offered a free button to the funniest submission.

Now, though, there are 171 signers, and I’m having trouble picking my favorite. So please, Skepchick readers, help me out! Which comment is the best? I can’t choose! Pretty much all of them made me laugh, but here are a few of my current favorites:

Raymond Luxury Yacht Throckmorton on Puddleswipe, United Kingdom

So I sez to this skirt I’m hitting on on the subway, I sez, “Someone needs to do something about this Waston frail. She’s against my free speech! If I want to corner a woman and skeeve her out with unwanted attention, that’s my right as a John Thomas support unit!” Kudos to Mr. John Smith, which is obviously his real name and not a pseudonym he’s hiding behind, because only a spineless coward would do that. It also important to point out that the mere threat of a petition that has no legal bearing or any repercussion whatsoever will bring that Novella doctor to his knees! A crank on the Internet has spoken, and he must be heard, much like the dull background rumble of the AC unit in my house. Is that thing at 78°? Really? Doesn’t feel like it. And, men’s rights [email protected]@[email protected]@#!!11ty!!!

Norbert Seriously leeds, United Kingdom

She has different opinions which I find confusing. I also think Evan should go as I find it confusing that they all have different names.

Chris Hatfield London, United Kingdom

The rogues (including Rebecca) taught me about the dangers of groupthink., in the context of a disussino about Scientology. I would welcome Rebecca back, once (if) she stops behaving so irrationally. FreeThoughtsBlogs and Skepchick or AtheismPlus discourage critical thinking.

Monty Assclown Dicktown, IL, Tuvalu

Skepticism should be about celebrating scientific skepticism and putting women back in the kitchen where they belong. And touching their boobies at conferences.

Annie Kenney London, United Kingdom

Watson must be stopped. I didn’t get where I am today by being a woman, and neither did my fathers before me.

Shockwave Plasma London, United Kingdom

She has to be stopped..That song Friday drives me insane

Virgin Douchebag Webster, MA

Females confuse and frighten me!!! I hate them and distrust them and don’t think they count as real people. Also I don’t understand why they won’t let me make sex at them.

Adam Clear Spokane, WA

I stopped listening to SGU after Elevatorgate. I could no longer take Watson seriously for her dogmatic, hyper-feminism. I miss the show.

My hovercraft is full of eels. Washington, Japan

My atheism and skepticism go as far as that. I don’t believe in a god, and I demand evidence before accepting claims as true. Please present the evidence for your assertions that the majority of the atheist/skeptic movement have sexually harrassed you to the point where you feel unsafe attending TAM, despite after the ascendance of Mr. DJ Grothe (a homosexual)’s administration, it achieving a 50/50 split of female speakers. If this is done, I will publicly, loudly, and giving my full name, apologize for my mistake. Until then, using your fauxlebrity to name and shame every socially awkward idiot who may make you feel uncomfortable occasionally is overboard, and being continuously granted a platform from which to do similar is tantamount to rape.

Pillock Mr f, AL

We cannot alienate possible allies! We should be reaching out to every rapist, Klansman, and child molester possible to shore up our ranks. SEMPER FE TYRANASAUROUS!

Zachary High-Leggett Calgary, Canada

I am the organizer for the world’s largest annual convention of elevator manufacturers. Although our attendance rates have their regular ups and downs, Rebecca Watson has been the number one reason that our attendance rates have dropped significantly. She keeps putting down elevators and it’s starting to push all my buttons. What used to be one of the fastest rising attendance rates in the industry has slowed to a halt. It’s like we’re starting out at the ground level. Our convention started in 2000 and we’ve had events every year since. Now however, thanks to Watson, it’s starting to look like will have to skip ’13. I hope we’ll be able to resume in 14 and up, but I don’t have the highest hopes right now. This whole thing is just wrong on so many levels, but I’m trying not to let it get me down.

Aaaaagh there are too many please help, friends! Quote your favorite in a comment, and also help me figure out what should go on the winner’s button. I’m thinking something simple like “I win 1 internet” or “I’m awesome” but I’m open to suggestions.

Rebecca Watson

Rebecca leads a team of skeptical female activists at Skepchick.org. She travels around the world delivering entertaining talks on science, atheism, feminism, and skepticism. There is currently an asteroid orbiting the sun with her name on it. You can follow her every fascinating move on Twitter or on Google+.

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108 Comments

  1. When I read this:

    Annie Kenney London, United Kingdom 4 days ago Liked7
    “Watson must be stopped. I didn’t get where I am today by being a woman, and neither did my fathers before me.”

    I lol’d so much.

    1. That was actually the signer’s listed name, which makes it really weird that the comment that follows actually might be serious. I can’t tell, which makes me laugh harder, so that’s why that’s there.

      I bolded the names and locations to make the list more readable…

      1. Oh, I see. Well then I’ll have to change my vote to:

        Shockwave Plasma London, United Kingdom
        She has to be stopped..That song Friday drives me insane.

        Better name and she/he didn’t use the world “fauxlebrity”.

    1. I’m voting for the elevator one as well. It just wins in creativity.

      But I also like the one by “Annie Kenney” (“didn’t get here by being a woman”) and the one by “Norbert Seriously” (confusing names)… and quite a few not listed here.

  2. There are soooo many great ones, but the one that truly made me laugh out loud:

    Shockwave Plasma London, United Kingdom 5 days ago Liked7
    She has to be stopped..That song Friday drives me insane

    I have a soft spot for humor that aims for “completely unaware of the topic at hand”.

  3. Oooh, tough choice! So many jewels in just what you’ve shown here.

    I’m going to have to split my vote between the guy who says that by being on SGU you are being a rapist (that’s EPIC right there!), and the elevator convention guy whose business you are trashing. He made me laugh the hardest.

    Maybe you should start a petition drive to vote on the best comment?

  4. I’m glad you are able to make a joke of it, Rebecca. That is probably the best attitude you could have about it. However, I think the people or person who started the petition is wrong. If you don’t like a certain show’s host, then don’t listen to it. No one makes you listen to SGU anymore than you are forced to watch The View. I for one enjoy having a female voice on the show I can relate to. And since I actually listen to the show on a regular basis, I already know that they won’t get rid of Rebecca and especially would not get rid of her for what most would consider petty reasoning.

  5. There are some jems… I like “Don Lloyd Middletown, DE 4 days ago Liked8
    Rebecca Watson has traumatized me to the point where I’m uncomfortable accosting strangers in elevators. Now I’m _never_ going to find a girl to bring home to my room in Mom’s basement!”

  6. So hard to tell if hovercraft’s message is real or a well-crafted poe. The interjected sexual orientation in parentheses is so over the top! Be he or she be a comedic genius or an actual hater, post is totally deserving of a button.

    1. I know, right? I honestly can’t tell, either. The (homosexual) part made me spray water out my nose, but maybe they’re for real? Plus the part about me being on the show being equal to rape. It’s gotta be a joke, I think…

      1. The “homosexual” parenthetical actually doesn’t make it unbelievable for me, since hasn’t even DJ himself used that as a reason for why he can’t be sexist? But the “tantamount to rape” comment keeps me from thinking that it’s at all serious.

  7. Holy crap, these are funny! I have to vote for the second one (“She has different opinions which I find confusing. I also think Evan should go as I find it confusing that they all have different names.”), although the first one is pretty great.

  8. I just went and signed it with a sarcastic response as well.

    Once I had, it told me that there were now 252 signatures and 248 needed. So apparently, somebody decided on a specific number (500) of signatures that would be required for Evan and the Novellas* to kick you off.

    “Once we have 500 signatures, they’ll not be able to ignore us! This will be a victory for reactionary activism (reactivism?), my brothers and s…. well, just brothers.”

    How did they arrive at that number? Numerology?nor was it just the biggest number they knew?

    * Evan and the Novellas sounds like it could be the title of a pretentious pseudo-intellectual sitcom about a writer with writer’s block and the hilarious hi-jinks he has with the zany people he’s had to let a room to in order to be able to pay the bills. The Novellas would be the zany housemates and Evan would be the writer and each episode would be full of laughter and jokes but also heartwarming and affirming as the wacky misadventures invariably inspire Evan to write a new story. The episodes would always have Evan doing a voice-over so we see that what’s on the screen is the story he’ll write at the end of the episode. Producers, call me!

    1. I actually think the “number of signatures needed” is automatic? Because when this first started, it was at 100 — then it went up from there, when more than 100 people signed, etc. I’m not 100% certain on that one, though.

  9. This is a bit off topic, but I’ll post anyway…

    Rebecca, I think you focus too much on negative comments made about youself and the Skepchick community.

    I’m sure you get some real positive responses.
    Why not share some of those in the future?

    Back on topic…

    The one by Virgin Douchebag Webster strikes me as funny only for its insanity.

    1. I’m sure you get some real positive responses.
      Why not share some of those in the future?

      Uh you mean like ALL THE COMMENTS I JUST POSTED ABOUT (except for maybe two)? Seriously, how can you read this website and not understand this post?

        1. SERIOUSLY? Wow.

          It seems to me that you were so damn focused on giving Rebecca shit for being “so negative” that you totally missed the huge red flags of CONTEXT waving right in front of your face.

          Also, can you be any more fucking hypocritical? You are the one super-focused on the negative. So focused you can’t even see a clear joke. I MEAN COME ON.

          1. I think you’ve completely misinterpreted my intentions.

            I will admit that I was indeed too focused on negativity. But I was doing so from the standpoint that I do so in my own life; that I focus too much on what’s negative in my life that I can’t enjoy the positive (which is probably why I didn’t “get” the joke).

            I offered what I did because I thought I was trying to help Rebecca. NOT give her shit, but just offer some friendly advice. THAT’S ALL.
            I had an interpretation that maybe Rebecca might also be depressed with all those attacks. So I felt that a change in pace might be helpful.

            I had only good intentions. Lousy advice, perhaps, and of course on something that I probably should not have even thought of doing.

            If anything, I was overzealous. And in being such, I not only missed the joke, but also appearently gave an impression of myself of being a pompous ass. And I’ll admit that.

            I was NOT finger wagging at her. I was NOT trying to give shit.
            I was simply trying too hard, and made a lousy attempt to help someone. And I sucked at it, BIG TIME.

            If this experience has shown me anything, it’s that I has no place on this blog, despite that I totally support what you people are doing and hope you are successful.

            I only hope that in the future, if you do see someone that seems to not get the joke, you might at first simply ask “You do know this is a joke, right?” instead of making that person feel like shit for simply trying too hard (and failing) at trying to offer friendly advice to someone.

            Fair winds and following seas….

          2. So in what context would it have been okay for him to lecture Rebecca for being “too negative” about the abuse she has been receiving?

            Oh… Yeah. There isn’t a context in which it would have been appropriate.

            How about we stop tone trolling under ANY context. Sound good?

          3. This is in reply to your other response (as it doesn’t have a reply button).

            I recently experienced a real world situation that seems like what I just brought up here, when my uncle offered me advice as to what I “should” be doing.

            Despite his good intent, it still came across as if he was trying to be controlling.

            Afterwards, I realized I did the same thing to Rebecca with my post! No wonder you two were pissed off at me!

            In a way, it seems I acted like those that I have come to detest, which probably makes it worse.

            I thank you for setting me straight and making me realize the error of what I have done.

            Just remind me of Rule #51.

        2. Also, it doesn’t matter if there was no malice. Intent doesn’t really mean much when you’re pointing and wagging your finger at a woman for being ~too negative~ over having to deal with some intense sexist, threatening behavior, and often from her own peers.

          You may want to take some time to reflect. Because seriously, dude, that’s not cool.

          1. In response to your reply above:

            I would normally be nodding my head to your angry posts, but in this case it seems like the poster made a genuine mistake (both in misreading Rebecca’s post and in thinking it was at all appropriate to tone troll) and then APOLOGIZED for it. A lot.

            I get that you get pissed when you see tone-trolling. I think most of us do. I just think in this case the poster apologized and you chose to keep at them. Let’s just consider it a “yay now they hopefully know not to do this” moment and move on instead of continuing to yell at them. I think GL gets that their “friendly advice” wasn’t welcome. I also think Rebecca’s ONE response to GL did a pretty good job of pointing out GL’s mistakes.

  10. Rebecca Watson,

    How dare they! Seriously! Its not like people in the men’s Rights movement doesn’t have controversial opinions that might alienate supporters. They probably wouldn’t care either if you were a man making false claims in support of their misogyny instead.

  11. No wait this one is my favorite!

    Clue Balfour
    Pratts Bottom, United Kingdom
    4 days ago Liked 3

    DON’T SIGN THIS PETITION. Rebecca is trying to make you do her bidding by signing this petition. Instead sign THIS petition: http://www.change.org/petitions/john-smith-stop-the-petition-sgu-remove-rebecca-watson-from-the-show

    To petition John Smith to stop supporting Rebecca’s manipulating of men.

    That petition has 7 signatures, all of them are silly, and one of them has a link to a petition to stop that petition.

  12. The men (or should I say boys) who came up with that petition are just as ignorant as the fundamentalists they mock. For all their skepticism, they look at women the same way the religionists do — they’ve just replaced the excuse of “God made women inferior” with “Nature made women inferior.” They’re pretty sad.

  13. I rather like this one by Jim Clayton:

    Because she’s clearly divisive. I mean, she doesn’t do things like put images up of people’s faces crossed out, and she doesn’t create petitions attempting to force groups she’s not in to remove her, but she’s divisive because….well, just LOOK at her! Why is she always complaining?! Why can’t she just keep quiet?!

    And she’s definitely authoritarian. She’s always telling me how to treat her. That’s claiming authority over my actions! Actions toward her, sure, but MY actions nonetheless!

  14. Although I’ve already voted for the elevator puns, I also recommend two more “serious” ones:

    My prize for the most concise staement goes to George Cunningham
    Kyneton, Australia:

    “She makes me question my beliefs – that’s not what scepticism is about!”

    And I like this one by Ladies Against Feminism
    Sheffield, United Kingdom:

    “It is important to make an example of Rebecca Watson. Feminism is a dangerous ideology which alienates potential supporters of the sceptical communities, especially sexist men. We do hardly want to appeal to the large body of feminist women and men who also promote critical thinking (see: bell hooks’ Cultural Criticism and Transformation on YouTube). They have no place in the sceptical community (or on SGU) and it is an outrage that anyone would suggest so or derive intellectual stimulation from such activities. Watson’s talks on feminism has provided a bridge between two groups of critical thinkers (sceptics and social critics). We do not want them brought together. Please burn this bridge to prevent this audience being able to sympathise with the sceptical community, and to prevent the two groups learning from one another. Scepticism is about being strongly opinionated and darkly cynical (occasionally it is about mammoths wearing jetpacks). We do NOT want sympathy and we do NOT want anyone learning from anybody else. Men are under-represented in the sceptical community as it is. God bless.”

  15. Throatwarbler Mangrove said:

    “I must be stopped”

    Oh, never mind, that was Rebecca…

    It’s too bad that the mystery writers and fans have already stolen the name “Edgar” for an award, because otherwise I would propose this petition for the “Poe of the Year” (or at least, “Best Poe Directed at Another Web Site or Blog”) Edgar.

    It’s hard to choose a favorite, but for compressed-in-a-confined-space punishment, no one can go higher than Zachary High-Leggett’s comment.

  16. I has a sad that mine wasn’t funny enough to be mentioned *sniff* :( Damn all you other people for being funnier than me! It’s all Rebecca’s fault! Especially Mr Luxury-Yacht, who is probably a stooge for Rebecca and/or Hitler, and who gets my vote.

  17. I like this one:

    Eeyore Stravinsky Cincinnati, OH 4 days ago Liked1
    Rebecca Watson has NO credentials which qualify her to be on a skeptical podcast. Unlike Bob, Jay, and Evan. They’ve got credentials coming out of their cocks.

  18. This should be the winner:
    “Paul Monk Rhyndaston, Australia 5 days ago Liked11
    Watson oppresses men. She refuses their right to focus on their dicks. She thinks the world would be a better place with human rights for all. This is not fair to men. she will not make me a sandwich.”

  19. My favorite was this one:

    “Neil Beck London, United Kingdom 5 days ago Liked2
    Rebecca is well known for arranging fairies in order of height.This kind of behavior must stop”

    I don’t even know why that tickles me so. But it’s hilarious.

  20. I feel like the following sums up a lot of what these people on the wrong side of this discourse really think:

    “Rebbecca Watson, what would I do without her? Before, I hated women in general for their refusal to sleep with me, but I could never focus my rage on any particular person. Now that Rebecca’s here I can focus all my hate on one person and it feels SO good.

    Thanks Rebbecca..”

  21. I loved the elevator puns and I vote for everyone who had a clever name.
    Now, I am going to make myself look like an idiot, but is there something I am just not getting with the name “Zachary High-Leggett”? It’s a good thing I’m home alone because I keep saying it out loud trying to figure it out.
    Reminds me of the “drinking problem” joke in Airplane that took me years to get.

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