Sunsara Taylor stands up to EHSC! Cameraman arrested!

Sapient's picture

I feel the need to highlight the recent trials and tribulations of Sunsara Taylor with the Ethical Society of Chicago as she is a friend of mine, and this issue is of obvious importance to her.  Sunsara has given me the fuel to give brief mention to a past issue I feel that the Ethical Society of Philadelphia helped hinder the advancement of non-believer unity in Philadelphia.  If you can believe it Sunsara is even more of a rabble rouser than I am, while she staged a scene, I quietly backed away and just pretended it never happened.  Today I speak up, because of Sunsara.

About two years ago a group was formed called PhillyCor, I'm close with quite a few people involved in the forming of the group.  The group was formed to connect local freethought and humanist groups, and RRS is based out of Philadelphia. Being that we had the largest global presence of any of the groups in Philadelphia it made sense for us to be involved, and we would've embraced the role.  We would've adapted to fit within the groups model, we would've helped raise money, and most importantly spread the word on a much larger scale than the group was capable of.  In fact this is the first time I ever link to the group, because when the opportunity arose for RRS to be in the group, the Ethical Society essentially stated it's us or them.  

If you're from the Philadelphia area you'd know well that the Ethical Society of Philly owns a gorgeous building in the center of town that is frequently used for freethought gatherings by the groups currently in PhillyCor, and this was considered to be an important piece of the puzzle.  In fairness, this wasn't the only issue, there were also some rumors that muddied that waters, the point is I didn't find their ethics to be those I'd share.  While it may seem understandable to exclude a confrontational group, it's not understandable that they never asked us to address their concerns which I believe were based on lies and misrepresentations made about us.  Their action spits in the face of the inclusive nature that the group was designed for.  It's hard to have a coalition when you exclude the largest and most recognized group from your target area.  Today I'm actually glad I'm not part of the COR considering the recent acceptance of money and connection to Greg Epstein that is permeating COR groups.  If you don't know about Greg see here: Humanist chaplain Greg Epstein wants you to join him, asshole - Greg Epstein ≠ humanism - Greg Epstein seeking further embarrassment?

Now with that little story out of the way, I bring you Sunsara's most recent blog on her issues with the Ethical Humanist Society of Chicago.  

Cameraman brutally arrested while filming Sunsara Taylor making a statement Sunday 10:30 a.m. at Ethical Humanist Society of Chicago 

 

On Sunday, November 1st, plainclothes and uniformed police who had been called in earlier by officials of the Ethical Humanist Society of Chicago (EHSC) dragged out, maced and arrested a man for videotaping Sunsara Taylor as she stood near her seat and made a statement before the start of that morning’s program about the shameful cancellation of her long planned talk to EHSC that day on the topic “Morality without Gods.”

The shocking incident took place at the insistence of the president of EHSC. About 40 people witnessed the videographer being brutalized by the police in the foyer of the facility. An attorney demanded that the police stop brutalizing him when five officers piled on him as he lay face down on the floor. 6 police cars arrived within minutes.

The day before, during a workshop on the same premises which the president and other board members of the EHS were at, Sunsara explained very clearly that she would be attending the opening of the EHS's Sunday gathering and giving the EHS the opportunity to do the right thing and allow her talk to go forward, up until the last minute. If the EHS still refused to let her give her talk, she explained that she would leave and give her talk in “exile” at the nearby home of one of the EHS members.

The statement can be viewed here.

Also see Sunsara Taylor undeterred

In her brief statement at the EHS on Sunday morning, Sunsara Taylor challenged the very wrong decision to cancel her speaking engagement and pointed out how this is contributing to a chilling atmosphere in society as a whole and has happened all too frequently to people who challenge the dominant narrative (like Ward Churchill, Noman Finkelstein and the director of Milk who was recently “disinvited” from Hope College, etc.). Taylor stated that while the group had the “bureaucratic right” to disinvite her, it didn’t make it any more “right” than the voters in California passing Prop 8. She also invited those who wanted to hear her speak to come to her “talk in exile” at the home of a member of the EHSC.

At no point during her brief statement was Sunsara asked to stop speaking or to leave the premises. And at no point was anyone who was there to support her, including the photographer, asked to leave. It is telling that the only person singled out by the police, at the request of the president of the Society, was the man documenting what Sunsara was saying.

The videographer was simply trying to document and guard the truth of what Sunsara was saying in her brief statement. Sunsara’s words had been grossly distorted and taken out of context by some members of the EHSC who were the driving forces behind canceling her speech.

What kind of ethics and morals is the EHSC upholding and modeling through the great lengths it has gone to in suppressing Sunsara Taylor’s talk on Morality without Gods? A number of their own members expressed disagreement with the cancellation and a number of prominent people from around the country wrote statements in support of Sunsara’s speaking and called on EHSC to rectify its wrong-headed decision. Instead, the board fortified and increasingly defended its decision and created an atmosphere of anti-communist hysteria, fear and rumor-mongering that had no relationship to reality.

The EHS had no legitimate basis to feel the police needed to be there in the first place, except for the rumors and hysteria that they themselves had created. Then, by choosing to set the police upon the person filming they went after the one person who was documenting the truth of Sunsara's words and the fact that Sunsara and others there to support her were acting in no way to disrupt the replacement talk the EHS had planned.

What kind of Ethical Humanist group would create a situation that led directly to the brutal arrest of someone simply for filming Sunsara giving a statement at that point with simply a cell phone? In their zeal to suppress Taylor they went repeatedly against the stated purpose of the Ethical Humanist Society of Chicago which includes “the supreme aim of human life is working to create a more humane society...Our commitment is to the worth and dignity of the individual and to treating each human being so as to bring out the best in her or him.”

This attack was in stark contrast to the day before at the EHSC where Sunsara led a well-attended and lively discussion with much audience participation on "Women’s Liberation and the Emancipation of Humanity." This whole program was videotaped by the same volunteer photographer.

To call upon the EHSC to drop charges against the photographer and to continue to express their disagreement with their decision to dis-invite Sunsara Taylor contact:  847-677-3334

To find out how to make contributions to the legal defense, contact:

 

- Brian Sapient


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theTwelve's picture

Sapient wrote:..... I don't

Sapient wrote:
..... 

I don't get it? why don't they like her. She's cute, i like her.

And that arrest, was far from "brutal", from what i can tell from the pictures.

Vastet's picture

What are the charges?

What are the charges?

Proud Canadian, Enlightened Atheist, Gaming God.

Taylor not Rational or Ethical

I am a member of the Ethical Humanist Society of Chicago and one of the members who initially supported Sunsara Taylor. It is now clear to me that from the moment she was dis-invited Sunsara saw an opportunity for a confrontation she could blog about.

The program committees decision to change speakers for the November 1st platform was, at worst, ill informed and rude but hardly unethical. We are a society, not a public speakers corner and the decision to change speakers, at any time, is well within our rights both legally and ethically.

Did you happen catch where Sunsara made her statement in the video? It’s at the EHSC. The society sponsored a workshop with Sunsara on Saturday; and yes, another member did host an alternate Sunday lecture at her own home. And what unreasonable demand did the EHSC ask in return? That Sunsara and her group not disrupt the Sunday program.

Even after an apology letter was sent to Sunsara, the Saturday workshop confirmed and held, and the alternate lecture planned, there were members in the society that were afraid that Sunsara and her group would disrupt the Sunday program. That’s why the Sunday school children were moved off site for the day and the Skokie police department was asked to have an officer at the society.

Fools like me thought this was unnecessary and defended Sunsara up until Saturday evening. Why? Because just like she did at minute 9:27 of the video, Sunsara said she was only going to come to the society on Sunday prepared to give her talk and if she wasn’t given the podium she would leave to give her talk at the private home. But that’s not what she did. Instead, as I suspect was always her intention, she caused a disruption until it became an altercation, and I say better with the police than one of our members.

The man who was arrested resisted the police officer when he was asked to leave private property. He was not kicked, beaten, clubbed or tazered; he was subdued with mace, handcuffed and taken into custody. The police officer that the man resisted was however bloodied in the altercation. Calling this an act of police brutality is not only unfair to the Skokie police department but is offensive to people who have actually suffered police brutality.

Even though the path to this unfortunate event was long and complicated in the end had Sunsara decided to not disrupt our event inside our building or even if she had just left when she was asked, there would have been no mace, no arrests and no blood.

Sunsara Taylor should take a hard, introspective look at her own actions before continuing to lecture others on morality.

 

Sapient's picture

 Evan thanks for taking the

 Evan thanks for taking the time to write and giving us another piece of the puzzle to help sort this mess.  I'd now be curious to know how it could make sense that this would be chosen by Sunsara as an opportunity of something to blog about.  Sending her down a road in which her photographer friend was maced and arrested.  That doesn't make much sense, nor would it have been her intent when she initially decided to accept an invitation to speak. 

Additionally what is the specific reason that you decided to change speakers?  Why was she invited to begin with, what made you change your mind?

Also will the Ethical Humanist Society of Chicago be dropping the charges?   

 

 

- Brian Sapient


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Sunsara Taylor stands up to EHSC! Cameraman arrested!

First, it is my understanding that the Ethical Humanist Society has not pressed any charges. The photographer was arrested for assaulting a police officer.  I think most intelligent people understand that if you hit a police officer you are going to be arrested.  There were many angry people at the society on Sunday, only one decided to get physical with a police officer and only one was arrested.  That man is responsible for his own actions and the consequences of those actions.

There were many, including myself, that felt it was wrong to dis-invite Sunsara but it is important to understand that the EHSC is lay lead.  We operate with committees and elected board members.  The members of the program committee all had different reason for voting to let the invitation stand or to rescind the invitation, but those who wanted to rescind outnumbered those who did not.  That's how a democratic organization works,  maybe not in Sunsara's world, but at least in ours.  The simplest explanation of this outcome is that the committe members who voted to dis-invite her felt that the synopsis Sunsara gave to the committee did not match what was promised by the committee member who initially suggested she be invited.

I am not suggesting that Sunsara accepted the initial invitation with the intent to be disruptive.  However it is now apparent that as soon as she felt wronged her path was clear, the society would give in to all of her demands or there would be hell to pay.

Many different members made an attempt to make the situation better.  An apology from the board was written, the Saturday workshop held, the Sunday alternative planned, but this was an all or nothing demand from Sunsara and nothing was not an option for her.  She wanted it all her way; she was not the slightest bit interested in compromise. 

 

theTwelve's picture

Anonymous wrote: However it

 I think the Ethical Society should part the ways with her, because that's not the sort of light we want to be representative of humanist. 

 

darth_josh's picture

Evan K wrote:I am a member

Evan K wrote:

I am a member of the Ethical Humanist Society of Chicago and one of the members who initially supported Sunsara Taylor. It is now clear to me that from the moment she was dis-invited Sunsara saw an opportunity for a confrontation she could blog about.

Yep. Is one to remain silent when disavowed by people they consider fellow ideologues?

Evan K wrote:
The program committees decision to change speakers for the November 1st platform was, at worst, ill informed and rude but hardly unethical. We are a society, not a public speakers corner and the decision to change speakers, at any time, is well within our rights both legally and ethically.

Hmmm. I'm trying hard to see it from your perspective. Is your 'society' ethical with regard to the society or everyone?

Evan K wrote:
Did you happen catch where Sunsara made her statement in the video? It’s at the EHSC. The society sponsored a workshop with Sunsara on Saturday; and yes, another member did host an alternate Sunday lecture at her own home. And what unreasonable demand did the EHSC ask in return? That Sunsara and her group not disrupt the Sunday program.

Wow. I didn't see a group. Did you see a group? Did you invite a group or just Sunsara?

How many people were in attendance at this Saturday meeting? I gather that more are present on Sunday. Correct?

Evan K wrote:
Even after an apology letter was sent to Sunsara, the Saturday workshop confirmed and held, and the alternate lecture planned, there were members in the society that were afraid that Sunsara and her group would disrupt the Sunday program.

Wait. Apology letter? You called it an apology letter. Does anyone write apology letters for ethical actions?

Here's that 'group' word again.

One begins to wonder if the society is afraid that its Sunday program might not meet with ethical standards. I'm pretty sure that the aforementioned 'group' only protests those things which merit protests such as they have engaged in the past.

 

Evan K wrote:
That’s why the Sunday school children were moved off site for the day and the Skokie police department was asked to have an officer at the society.

A dainty woman and a cameraman scared the children and warranted police presence. IN CHICAGO????!!!! Even Palantine housewives are strong-willed enough to tolerate a woman and a cameraman.

 

Evan K wrote:
Fools like me thought this was unnecessary and defended Sunsara up until Saturday evening. Why? Because just like she did at minute 9:27 of the video, Sunsara said she was only going to come to the society on Sunday prepared to give her talk and if she wasn’t given the podium she would leave to give her talk at the private home.

Don't incorrectly paraphrase here, fucker. 'giving the society up until the last minute' and 'ask for you to leave with me as I give my talk in exile' is apparently what you misconstrued as 'leave for the private home'.

What part of "Leave with me as I give my talk in exile" did you miss?

Evan K wrote:
But that’s not what she did. Instead, as I suspect was always her intention, she caused a disruption until it became an altercation, and I say better with the police than one of our members.

She did exactly as she said she would do. She gave the society until the last minute to do the right thing, 'the ethical thing'.

I find your callous observation of 'better with the police' to be reprehensible, nay disgusting.

Evan K wrote:
The man who was arrested resisted the police officer when he was asked to leave private property. He was not kicked, beaten, clubbed or tazered; he was subdued with mace, handcuffed and taken into custody. The police officer that the man resisted was however bloodied in the altercation. Calling this an act of police brutality is not only unfair to the Skokie police department but is offensive to people who have actually suffered police brutality.

You'll have to pardon my skepticism. I've watched people get maced, cuffed, and charged with resisting arrest because they tripped while being escorted from a place by police. Skokie police are not sui generis.

Evan K wrote:
Even though the path to this unfortunate event was long and complicated in the end had Sunsara decided to not disrupt our event inside our building or even if she had just left when she was asked, there would have been no mace, no arrests and no blood.

And if she had been permitted to give the presentation she was INVITED to give, I'm sure the outcome would have been as rosy.

 

 

Evan K wrote:
Sunsara Taylor should take a hard, introspective look at her own actions before continuing to lecture others on morality.

Oddly enough in my 37 years, the people that have said this are more in need of their own advice than anyone they speak to in public.

I must say you have my gratitude because this has piqued my curiosity about your 'ethical society'.

 

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darth_josh's picture

theTwelve wrote:I think the

theTwelve wrote:
I think the Ethical Society should part the ways with her, because that's not the sort of light we want to be representative of humanist.

Thanks, twelve. I appreciate it.

I was needing another reason to treat the 'humanist' label with disdain. How humanist is it to exclude? How humanist is it to almost revel in a situation where someone/ANYONE got hurt for ANY reason?

 

 

Anonymous???? Care to drop your name? Is it ethical to mask ones identity when conveying a firsthand account of an event?

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Sapient's picture

Anonymous wrote:First, it is

Anonymous wrote:

First, it is my understanding that the Ethical Humanist Society has not pressed any charges. The photographer was arrested for assaulting a police officer.  I think most intelligent people understand that if you hit a police officer you are going to be arrested.  There were many angry people at the society on Sunday, only one decided to get physical with a police officer and only one was arrested.  That man is responsible for his own actions and the consequences of those actions.

So you're saying the cameraman hit the police officer and that act is what drew blood?

 

Quote:
The simplest explanation of this outcome is that the committe members who voted to dis-invite her felt that the synopsis Sunsara gave to the committee did not match what was promised by the committee member who initially suggested she be invited.

Well that would be an irony considering my problems in the past with the Ethical Society of Philadelphia involve their lack of research. 

 

Quote:
I am not suggesting that Sunsara accepted the initial invitation with the intent to be disruptive.  However it is now apparent that as soon as she felt wronged her path was clear, the society would give in to all of her demands or there would be hell to pay.

It would seem allowing her to speak would've been a much smarter course of action, at this point.  What's the worst that would've happened?  Some ethicists would have vocalized opinions against Sunsara?  They would've stated they were mad she had the chance to speak?  Would it not have allowed EHSC an opportunity for an open discussion as to what they disagreed with, what they agreed with?  What's wrong with open dialogue about what you disagree with, especially if it avoids a "hell to pay" scenario?   

And maybe in the future ethical society members shouldn't put so much blind faith in the views of other ethical society members.  It would seem with less faith your situation would've been avoided, and I'm fairly certain my negative experience in Philadelphia would've been avoided as well.

 

With all that said, I suppose I should be a big man here and admit that after reading your account I don't feel exactly the same way I felt about this as I did before.  And I did in fact use rabble rouser terminology in my opening post, I recognized she was trying to stir the pot, that's how she does things.  Had I never had the bad experience with other ethicists, I might've not even posted it.  I will remove this story from the homepage shortly (as was always the intent) and return to our regularly scheduled broadcast.  

 

 

- Brian Sapient


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Sapient's picture

darth_josh wrote:theTwelve

Darth Josh, I love you.

 

 

 

 

 

 

____________

- Brian Sapient


Buy popular atheist books and support the Rational Response Squad at the same time on Amazon.

darth_josh's picture

Sapient wrote:Darth Josh, I

Sapient wrote:

Darth Josh, I love you.

 

Shhh. Not in front of the humanists. It might disrupt their ethical analysis. They'll have to get the other kids out of the room first.

Love you too.

 

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Answers in Gene Simmons's picture

Well, I am left wanting to

Well, I am left wanting to know the details here.

 

Sure, the woman was “disinvited” to speak. Sure, there were people who wanted this and other people who wanted other things to happen. What I most want to know right now is not concerned with how the camera guy chose to behave. That is a smoke screen to the central question:

 

Why did the invitation get pulled back?

 

Seriously, the group who issued the invitation presumably knows of her and what she is likely to do in a presentation. For the record, state clearly what the reason was for the group action. Then state what the opposition said was the reason to allow her to speak despite whatever the hell went on.

NoMoreCrazyPeople wrote:
Never ever did I say enything about free, I said "free."

=

Sapient's picture

darth_josh

darth_josh wrote:

Anonymous???? Care to drop your name? Is it ethical to mask ones identity when conveying a firsthand account of an event?

http://www.facebook.com/evan.kane1 he posted a carbon copy of his first post on facebook in response to a link to this post.  

Although I'm not sure if he was the "anonymous" poster.  I do know he posted his first post once as "anonymous" and once as "Evan Kane" on our site, he posted it twice, I approved only the one with his name.  I don't know who approved the next comment posted anonymously, it wasn't me.

 

- Brian Sapient


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aiia's picture

At about 1:25 she claims it

At about 1:25 she claims "the motivations of the cancellation were overtly and hysterically anticommunist".

 

People who think there is something they refer to as god don't ask enough questions.

darth_josh's picture

Sapient wrote:darth_josh

Sapient wrote:

darth_josh wrote:

Anonymous???? Care to drop your name? Is it ethical to mask ones identity when conveying a firsthand account of an event?

http://www.facebook.com/evan.kane1 he posted a carbon copy of his first post on facebook in response to a link to this post.  

Although I'm not sure if he was the "anonymous" poster.  I do know he posted his first post once as "anonymous" and once as "Evan Kane" on our site, he posted it twice, I approved only the one with his name.  I don't know who approved the next comment posted anonymously, it wasn't me.

 

I didn't go to the queue. I know I see everything before approval too. Could my response have automatically moved it?

Anyway. Did you see that they produce a newsletter? I found these gems in the July/August issue:

EHSC newsletter wrote:
The Ethical Humanist Society of Chicago is a democratic fellowship and spiritual home for those who seek a rational, compassionate philosophy of life without regard to belief in a supreme being. We value the importance of living an ethical, responsible, and joyful life.

Like traditional religious communities, we celebrate births, conduct wedding ceremonies, host memorial services, and provide for the caring, ethical education of our children. We cherish human diversity and focus on what we have in common, not on what keeps us apart. We believe in deed beyond creed and in working for a better world.

 

Now, call me crazy, but stating "We believe in deed beyond creed..." is a creed right?

 

 

And then there's this one:

EHSC newsletter wrote:
Recent Sunday Program

Dick Whitaker, a member of the Society and recent graduate of the Humanist Institute, spoke at our summer opening program on June 14th. His topic was “The Future of Religion.” The meeting was moderated by Alan Kimmel.

Dick said a study group he led on the subject at Northwestern University’s Osher Lifelong Learning Institute concluded that a variety of religions will be with us far into the future, contrary to predictions of recent “angry atheist” authors such as Richard Dawkins, Sam Harris, and Christopher Hitchens. He said he was inspired rather by biologist David Sloan Wilson, who “argues that religion is evolution at work” and that “religious groups are products of cultural group selection.”

Dick borrowed Anglican priest Keith Ward’s definition of religion as “a set of practices for establishing a relationship to a supernatural or transcendent reality, for the sake of obtaining human good or avoiding harm.”

Dick concluded, “Ethical Humanism is best prepared to develop the moral codes that will bring our society together.”

 

Didn't they just call themselves a religious group in that mission statement thingy I just posted from the same newsletter?

 

This might be Godwin's Law, but all I can say to that last line is:

When is the rally and which arm do you put the humanist swastika on if you're part of the EHSC?

 

 

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Sapient's picture

It would be nice to see one

It would be nice to see one of the ethical humanist folks weigh back in here.  

Do they have a response to these follow-up questions, or merely an interest in hurting Sunsara even more than already has been done?  

 

- Brian Sapient


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Facts matter

First, the camera man was NOT violent in any way.  He was simply filming.  Silently.  He was piled on by five police, cuffed and THEN maced.

 

Read that again: he was cuffed and THEN maced.

 

Second, if you actually take a look at how much Sunsara's words have been intentionally distorted by some members of the EHSC (which she documents in her Open Letters to the EHSC -- which, by the way, they NEVER addressed the substance of), and if you consider that despite Sunsara's clear statement that if the EHSC did not reverse their decision to dis-invite her, that she would leave and give her talk elsewhere and YET THE EHSC STILL called the police before she even arrived and moved their Sunday school and had whipped themselves into a self-created frenzy... Then it makes PERFECT SENSE that Sunsara would want what she actually did (and what she didn't) say at the EHSC that morning to be documented.  SO NO ONE COULD DISTORT IT.

 

But, in what is actually quite revealing a move, the President of the EHSC never asked Sunsara to leave or to stop speaking, nor did he ask the camera-man to leave.  He simply told the police to go after him and then they did.

 

 

Even just judging from the EHSC President's actions, what Sunsara was doing was not a big problem.  BUT, having a clear record of what she was doing, that proved that what she was saying was well-reasoned and exposed a LOT of dishonesty and political censorship on the part of the EHSC Board, WOULD BE A PROBLEM for the image of the EHSC.  So, he singled out the camera man.  If he didn't have anything to hide or distort, if Sunsara had actually been doing something that was out of keeping with reasonable and ethical behavior in the face of such a shameful and dishonest and politically driven dis-invitation, then he would have been eager to get Sunsara out of there and keep the camera-man documenting every second of it -- not the other way around.

Sapient's picture

 Would someone please tell

 Would someone please tell me, maybe with some proof as to how the cop got his own blood on him?  Is that even true?

 

 

- Brian Sapient


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not true

No one hit any police.  The camera man didn't hit anyone.  The "ethical" humanists didn't hit anyone.  If any cop was bleeding this was something I certainly saw no sign of nor did I hear ANYONE (again, not even any of the "ethical" humanists or the police themselves) suggest while they were present on Sunday.  The first I heard of any such thing was in the comments posted above.

 

Sapient's picture

Carla states nobody hit

Carla states nobody hit anyone.

 

Ethical Evan stated in his first post that "The police officer that the man resisted was however bloodied in the altercation"

And anonymous (who is likely Evan) stated in his second post: "I think most intelligent people understand that if you hit a police officer you are going to be arrested."

Hmmmmmmm.  If it is the same person you'd think he would've mentioned the hitting in the first post instead of being vague by saying the officer was bloodied.  

 

And for the record, cuffing then macing is brutal. 

 

 

 

 

 

- Brian Sapient


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Sapient's picture

By the way for those

By the way for those interested, you can find videos of Sunsara putting the Faux news team in their place here:

http://video.google.com/videosearch?q=sunsara+taylor&hl=en&emb=0&aq=0&oq=sunsar#

spoiler alert: she was against the war and they weren't 

- Brian Sapient


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  Anonymous wrote:" First,

 

 

Anonymous wrote:" First, it is my understanding that the Ethical Humanist Society has not pressed any charges."

Wrong. The only reason the cameraman was arrested at all was because the president of the society told the police to arrest him, and the police grabbed him. The president of the society is named as pressing charges of criminal trespass against the cameraman. Ask the Skokie police if you doubt this. Yet, the cameraman was never asked to leave before being grabbed by police -- police who were already at EHSC, by the way.  

Sapient's picture

 Wow... it's starting to

 Wow... it's starting to feel like Ethical Society members think it's ethical to lie.

 

 

- Brian Sapient


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brutal is the new ethical

"rude but hardly unethical. We are a society, not a public speakers corner and the decision to change speakers, at any time, is well within our rights both legally and ethically."

 

You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.

"The police officer that the man resisted was however bloodied in the altercation."

Obviously not by the videographer or you would have said so.

"Calling this an act of police brutality is not only unfair to the Skokie police department but is offensive to people who have actually suffered police brutality."

 

Another word the meaning of which you seem unaware of.

 

Unless and until I can cuff, then mace Evan Kane

I think his vaporing over the use of the word brutality is more self-defeating for his PR mission than he thinks.

darth_josh's picture

The person I'm responding to

The person I'm responding to in this post is no longer a member of this site due to the fact he was lying to us and it was discovered. Don't do it or don't get caught.

However, I wanted to respond to his last post in this thread because I feel it is relevant to the situation and illustrates the level which some people are willing to ignore their reason in favor of their beliefs, including my stereotypical categorizations of humanists as a general class of believers.

 

theTwelve wrote:

darth_josh wrote:

I was needing another reason to treat the 'humanist' label with disdain.

Ah, we probably have something in common, so you treat the "humanist" label with disdain huh? What you got against it

We're all humanists(with the exception of PDW and Doomy. lol.). Empathy is intrinsic in our species.

The AHA and the 'new' humanists profess to be caring of humanity and its future yet enables aberrant behavior by simply excluding people rather than confronting them. Or more precisely, they see those of us who confront unethical behavior by the religious with reasoned disdain as being a more pressing issue.

When we respond to you or anyone else with our snide remarks or we speak about our views concerning religion, we are anathema. Seemingly, people who lovingly accept this 'humanist' label run around with their heads turned only toward each other while we look into the world with both eyes and squared shoulders. Not all who accept the label, but the ones we see most often.

theTwelve wrote:

Quote:
How humanist is it to exclude? How humanist is it to almost revel in a situation where someone/ANYONE got hurt for ANY reason?

It's bizarre that a girl who protested against Alberto Gonzalez speaking at some university, is now crying about being excluded?

Surely, if someone wanted to come into this forum to talk about the personal lives of members, he'd be excluded, censored, and banned, there's nothing unethical about that.

And yet it happens and it is dealt with, but never before it is read as in the case of Sunsara's censure at EHSC. Wholly different set of parameters involved. Sunsara wasn't going to verbally attack anyone at the EHSC.

theTwelve wrote:
If the ethical society decided to rescind their invitation to Sansara, because they found a better or more appropriate speaker for the night, there's nothing unethical about that. When a member of the society decided to give Sansara an opportunity to speak at their home, I didn't hear anyone cry fowl?

That is an 'if'. Can we be sure that the disinvitation motion was even brought before a council at all?

You're right. You didn't hear anyone cry 'foul'. However, and I'm going to say this again, Sunsara asked the members of the society who wanted to protest the actions of the EHSC to 'leave with her and hear her speech in exile'.

The visit to the home of one of the members was already planned, I do believe. I will check again; so should you.

theTwelve wrote:
The looney chick just needs to stop whining, she's a nut who believes in the power of the communist revolution, I wouldn't really care to listen to that crack pop shit either, or give her a venue where she gets some modicum of respectability for her bat-shit-crazy views. There's nothing unethical about the members of the society who voted to hear someone else, they wouldn't mind listening to, speak that night.

This doesn't help any facet of your argument with me. It's an extension of the 'if' from earlier.

I ask you to look at this from a different perspective. I'll even phrase it in a conditional format to correlate with your 'if'.

I've been responding to 'crackpots' online since AOL offered chat. I've been actively seeking 'crackpots' in public for over 9 years.

If I invite someone to talk to my 'associates' and I find out that they are going to give a completely different speech than I thought they were, I don't disinvite them or even treat them as uninvited. I respond to them. I reason with them. I meet them directly on the contentious points between us. The 'audience' will decide for themselves which of the opposing sides they agree with. I do not try to hide their message or subvert their other actions against me. THAT, my little dozen, is ethical behavior.

theTwelve wrote:
Am I the only one here admitting the obvious about Sansara? She's not Margert Downey, she's wack a job, who believes in revolutionary communism, as the means to some utopian society, led by hairy hippies. And I applaud the Ethicist Society members who agree with me.

Yeah. Ummmm. I'm a democratic socialist(evolved communist. lol.) and while I am hairy, I am no hippie. I marvel at the level of compartmentalization present in the minds of some people when they think ethical behavior and capitalism can go hand-in-hand. BUT THAT is in a different thread somewhere else and let's try to keep it there.

 

 

 

Unfortunately, this individual trolled out long ago. However, he wasn't banned until he issued threats and proof was found that he in fact was lying about his ideology. Honestly, that's more than three strikes and I feel it shows just exactly how much can/have/will be tolerated on the RRS forums.

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the central question

The central question seems to revolve around why she was dis-invited. A post claiming to be from an EHS representative says:

To my knowledge and to the knowledge of every member I know, we have never “dis-invited any proposed speaker.

So why was Sunsara dis-invited at the last minute (an event planned months in advance is not canceled 2 weeks ahead of time).

What's so freakin' scary that they had to pull this at the last minute?

She's a COMMUNIST, that's what... and that's supposed to be ruled totally out of order. We're just supposed to keep singing cumbaya, drinking the Obama-Ade, and feeling all snuggly about our wonderful "peace corps" while half the planet starves to death on less than $2 a day?

If you ask me, living in an era where robot "drone" bombs killing penniless people in Afghanistan is bought and sold by GOOD people as the only "realistic" option to a world wracked with war, poverty, and other terrible things, I want to see more chaos, rabble rousing, and people foaming at the mouth to stop it! Given the problems she discusses, I'm amazed Sunsara is able to keep such a reasoned, respectful tone as she does!

Sapient's picture

darth_josh

darth_josh wrote:

Unfortunately, this individual trolled out long ago. However, he wasn't banned until he issued threats and proof was found that he in fact was lying about his ideology. Honestly, that's more than three strikes and I feel it shows just exactly how much can/have/will be tolerated on the RRS forums.

I'm glad you responded to him Darth and obviously your post will remain, should someone wonder why they don't see the original it is because we here at RRS hope that people accurately represent themselves when arguing points.  Thetwelve railed against prominent atheists and atheism for a year here however he claimed maybe once or twice that he was an agnostic. After a bit of research on him today I was able to come to conclusive proof that he was a Christian, and attempting to infiltrate this site by posing as someone who agreed with us, but generally disagreed.  Since the Sunsara issue is a hot button issue right now and most of the users reading this thread wouldn't have been aware of the dishonesty thetwelve was posting under, I thought best to remove his comments completely.  If you notice his post above pretending to be considered with how "us humanists" are perceived, you can put that into context... he's a very vocal and god fearing Christian, and no humanist.  

Oh how dishonest Christians are willing to be for Jesus.  When he was found out, he proceeded to threaten my life and the life of my family members, posting my address, real name, and other personal details.

 

- Brian Sapient


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Sapient's picture

From Massimo Pigliucci

From Massimo Pigliucci

Professor of Ecology and Evolution at State University of NY Stonybrook

“I have had formal and informal debates with Sunsara Taylor, and — despite our disagreements on politics and philosophy – I have always found her a thoughtful voice of reason and an engaging public presence. She brings a different point of view to the conversation, and we need desperately different points of view to have a vibrant democracy.”

 

From Paul Eckstein, MA Assistant Professor of Philosophy and Religion, Bergen Community College, Paramus, NJ*

“I expect better behavior from those one would ordinarily consider either natural allies or at least reasonable persons. This would be amusing if the crisis we are facing today weren’t so serious. I can’t help but suggest that you reflect on the history of mistakes like this carried out by organizations with otherwise respectable track-records (for example, see the historical example of what the ACLU did to Elizabeth Gurley Flynn). Whatever the motivations for your actions, appearances count for a whole lot. This cancellation has a ‘bad odor’ about it; now is the time to reverse the error, and allow Ms. Taylor to speak as scheduled.”

 

 

- Brian Sapient


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Why did they uninvite her?

Why did they uninvite her? Very bizarre, and it's not helping that the EHSC hasn't spoken up yet. It's not like Ms. Taylor was going to say anything new or revolutionary - you can have morals without god. No surprise there. I hope it wasn't because she's communist. Communism isn't technically a bad thing since the basic tenets are everyone sharing in everything, it's just that it requires a 'perfect' society where everyone is actually willing to share equally and unfortunately humans in general are far from perfect, which explains why communism has yet to work properly, let alone if it ever will.

This just goes to show that even atheists and secular humanists can act as fucking stupid as fundamentalist religious groups can when they put their idiotic minds to it.

shelley's picture

Sapient wrote:If you're from

Sapient wrote:

If you're from the Philadelphia area you'd know well that the Ethical Society of Philly owns a gorgeous building in the center of town that is frequently used for freethought gatherings by the groups currently in Philly... part of the COR considering the recent acceptance of money and connection to Greg Epstein that is permeating COR groups.

Brian, Thanks for the links to Flemming's Blog on Epstein.  I was wondering if you know of any more recent articles on Epstein's actions (specifically thoughts from others in the atheist community.)

Also by "acceptance of money" are you referring to Greg's fees for visiting groups in various local CORs?  Finally, what do you mean by recent.  It's always be my understanding that UnitedCOR was always tied to Epstein's book tour.

Why did they uninvite her?

bugmenot wrote:

Why did they uninvite her? Very bizarre, and it's not helping that the EHSC hasn't spoken up yet.

   Now someone has spoken.  Go to PZ Myers' blog and see comment #282 from "Proud Member of the Ethical Humanist Society" who was part of  making the decision to dis-invite Sunsara.

Proud Member says “Our speakers should and do represent a broad range of diverse viewpoints. However, what we hope for is that they offer insight into the challenges of our time and at least attempt to address them with rational, evidence-based and well thought-out arguments. Ms. Taylor’s talk would have been an ideological rant.”

So there it is in his own words. [read the whole post].  This is the first time that someone from the Ethical Humanist Society of Chicago who made this decision has publically revealed why. Yes, it is anti-communism that is at the core of the Program committee’s dis-invitation. “Proud Member” wanted to keep others from hearing Sunsara Taylor's presentation because he didn’t like what she was going to say.

 

 

 

Sapient's picture

Diane Keen wrote:Proud

Diane Keen wrote:

Proud Member says “Our speakers should and do represent a broad range of diverse viewpoints. However, what we hope for is that they offer insight into the challenges of our time and at least attempt to address them with rational, evidence-based and well thought-out arguments. Ms. Taylor’s talk would have been an ideological rant.”

So there it is in his own words. [read the whole post].  This is the first time that someone from the Ethical Humanist Society of Chicago who made this decision has publically revealed why. Yes, it is anti-communism that is at the core of the Program committee’s dis-invitation. “Proud Member” wanted to keep others from hearing Sunsara Taylor's presentation because he didn’t like what she was going to say.

And I'm guessing it wouldn't be a stretch to assume the person making the statement was a rich white man, eh?

 

- Brian Sapient


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Sapient's picture

shelleymtjoy wrote:I was

shelleymtjoy wrote:

I was wondering if you know of any more recent articles on Epstein's actions (specifically thoughts from others in the atheist community.)

Next time you're on the phone with Darth Josh have him brief you on some more reasons one could choose to dislike Epstein, for me personally I just want to barf anytime I see "Humanist Chaplain."    

Here's another story on Greg Epstein.

 

Quote:
Also by "acceptance of money" are you referring to Greg's fees for visiting groups in various local CORs?  Finally, what do you mean by recent.  It's always be my understanding that UnitedCOR was always tied to Epstein's book tour.

UnitedCOR I believe was always tied to Epsteins book tour, however the original PhillyCOR was created two years ago, before UnitedCOR was conceived.  The UnitedCOR idea is a copycat idea, I believe to be worked on by the leading contributor to PhillyCOR who is now putting big bucks behind Greg Epstein... I wont out the guy who I think is the donor, but I happen to have a very personal story about him that I can never forgive him for. Nobody you would know, just some well off man who wants to remain anonymous.  That donor tied with Epstein is now putting money into COR groups via the payment of a billboard in those groups area, but as you know the billboard is basically an ad for Gregs book.  Essentially they're uniting atheist groups (who should have every reason to dislike Greg) and then putting money into those groups in the form of promotion for Greg.  

I can't find mention of it right now, maybe someone familiar will speak up, but there is currently a dispute going on in Washington.  I believe with atheists from Seattle who want to unite a group under a COR banner but don't want Greg Epstein to talk and are vehemently against any promotion of Epstein whatsoever.  The early reports are that UnitedCor and Seattle atheists can't come to an agreement because of a disagreement on tactics, and the COR lack of interest in putting any money into anything other than Epstein.  At the time I didn't pay much attention to it, so forgive me if the details are off.  I just left a message for Seattle Atheists asking them to call me.

This article talks briefly about Epstein and then segways to talk of the billboards that Seattle Atheists post.

- Brian Sapient


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shelley's picture

Quote:I wont out the guy who

Quote:

I wont out the guy who I think is the donor.

Steve Rade.

Sapient's picture

 So much for him being

 So much for him being anonymous.  And yes... the personal story... I'll never forgive him.  

 

 

 

 

 

___

- Brian Sapient


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darth_josh's picture

Apparently, EvanK has posted

Apparently, EvanK has posted the exact same thing he submitted here on at least a half dozen other blog posts.

Is he running for office in his 'society' or something? Do they have a Vice President in Charge of Spamming?

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Sapient's picture

darth_josh wrote:Apparently,

darth_josh wrote:

Apparently, EvanK has posted the exact same thing he submitted here on at least a half dozen other blog posts.

Is he running for office in his 'society' or something? Do they have a Vice President in Charge of Spamming?

I saw him post it in several places as well. 

 

- Brian Sapient


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Vastet's picture

So what's happening now?

So what's happening now?

Proud Canadian, Enlightened Atheist, Gaming God.

darth_josh's picture

Videographer out on bond. No

Videographer out on bond. No word yet if they'll drop charges. At least I haven't read if they will or not.

No return on the e-mails sent by me with questions. I may have to rewrite them with smaller words and throw in some grunts and chimpanzee vocalizations in order to receive a response.

Life goes on for Sunsara. She's dropping a blog a day.

darth_josh still is disgusted with religion and unhappy with the religious, including humanists. I'm working on sending out requests to the local churches and one mosque to see if they will allow me the use of their building for free to have a meet-up on christmyass eve.

US troops still mired in a desert, which the last man to claim victory over lived 2,330 years ago.

Canada is still allegedly its own country.

You know... same-o same-o.

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Vastet's picture

lol.

lol. Head Bash

Proud Canadian, Enlightened Atheist, Gaming God.

shelley's picture

Seattle Atheists?

Brian - I assume everyone in Washington was busy with the FFRF Conference this past weekend but I'm wondering if you're heard back from Seattle Atheists.

Sapient's picture

shelleymtjoy wrote:Brian - I

shelleymtjoy wrote:

Brian - I assume everyone in Washington was busy with the FFRF Conference this past weekend but I'm wondering if you're heard back from Seattle Atheists.

Nope.

 

 

____

- Brian Sapient


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shelley's picture

FWIW - I did talk to two

FWIW - I did talk to two members of the Seattle Atheists BOD and they are *not* the group that had an issue with UnitedCoR... just wanted to clear the air for them.

 

Those of you who are still interested in this topic, might like to read this: http://bjornisageek.blogspot.com/2009/11/disunitycor.html