It’s Okay to Make Mistakes, Even About Galileo
Recently, I’ve been talking a lot about mistakes and what happens when mistakes are compounded. But something came up today that makes me think some people could use a reminder that it’s perfectly okay to make mistakes, despite what people – including the male supremacists who harass me every day – may tell you.
On Twitter this morning, I saw this in my reply feed:
— oolon (@ool0n) June 19, 2013
I don’t normally click links where there’s a nearly 100% possibility of reading some bile-filled bit of idiocy directed toward myself, but I have to say that the “Rebecca Watson is the cause of all things I hate” meme truly amuses me. In this case, the link goes to a conversation between commenters Oolon and David Jones (aka Metaburbia).
Particularly I remember your bringing up the Rebecca Watson Galileo “mistake”… Created by Franc Hoggle and one of the rare lies from the pit that was so bad even some on there called it out. She corrected it! But apparently not fast enough for Franc “speedy” Hoggle… Thus proving she is no sceptic and repeated as if gospel by one Metaburbia/David Jones.
@MistressOfFrog look at her claim that the Catholic church killed Galileo…
— David Jones (@metaburbia) May 28, 2013
Also not even mentioning that she acknowledged the mistake and corrected very quickly. One of many pieces of bullshit repeated ad-nauseam by you.
David Jones responds:
>’She corrected it’
I heard her make the mistake on the SGU. It was corrected on the SGU the following week. She made the mistake.
I don’t know David Jones at all, nor do I know his apparent pseudonym Metaburbia (I can’t be expected to keep track of these losers), so I can’t say for sure whether this is an example of him blatantly and knowingly lying or simply repeating someone else’s lie so often that he believes it actually happened to him, but in either case, it’s absolutely fascinating.
I did in fact once say that Galileo was executed by the Catholic Church, but I didn’t say it on my podcast, SGU. I said it in the midst of this rant I put on YouTube:
A few minutes after uploading it, a friend of mine pinged me to point out that I was thinking of Giordano Bruno, and that Galileo had been condemned to house arrest for life. Whoops! I immediately hopped back on YouTube and edited the video to include an annotation pointing out and correcting my mistake:
When a few people kept Tweeting me to point it out, I Tweeted to make sure everyone saw the correction:
As you can see, that Tweet came just 20 minutes after the one announcing the new video:
Please don't vote for Rick Perry. Please. http://t.co/HVMZHYR
I’ve never removed a video from YouTube, and I believe that if I make a mistake, the best thing to do is not to hide it but to acknowledge it, correct it, and move on. That’s not what my haters believe, though. They’ve turned this incident into a major talking point to support their primary thesis that I’m a stupid, uneducated slut who no one should ever listen to. Seriously: here’s a blog post from noted misogynist Franc Hoggle (aka Victor Ivanoff), written 17 days after my video went live, and at least 16 days, 23 hours, and 40 minutes after my correction was made:
Here we are, 1.75 years later, and this is still one of the best points against me that they’ve got. Look how gleeful they are in the comments on the video, slapping their hands together and chuckling over how stupid I am:
“Galileo was not executed”
Yes, but Rebecca isn’t going to let something as silly as facts get in the? way of a good story.
Oh, the irony!
The male supremacists desperately try and fail to convince the world that I’m not worth listening to, and to do it they’ll happily sacrifice two of the best things skepticism has going for it: the idea that you don’t need to be highly educated to be a critical thinker, and the idea that it’s okay to admit mistakes and change your mind as you learn more. What a shame.