I was mostly trying to just outline the back and forth between PZ Myers and people he felt like disagreeing with.
Phil Plait asks how I parsed that he said skeptics ought to “step aside,” and I’ll admit that is a misreading (so I’ve adjusted my post), but his post seems to tend on the verbose side (not that anything is wrong with that, but his points do seem to get lost in this case – although perhaps that’s just me). He does say:
Skepticism deals with issues of the paranormal, issues with faith, issues where scientific evidence can be used to test a claim. In this case, I don’t see skeptics needing to be involved more than any other interest group.
Fine, I guess, I just disagree with flying the “skepticism” flag sometimes, perhaps this is a humanist issue and a freethought issue. The fact that the church has been knowingly shuffling pedophiles around and using their power and intimidation (which they claim to be divinely given) is more serious to me than just the laws they broke, it’s that they broke them knowingly and continuously. It’s that the workers of God had more right to keep abusing society’s most vulnerable than the children to not be raped.
It’s the arrogance that gets me riled as a human-being (which Phil points out), so perhaps its not a “skepticism” issue but then I guess I’m hoping that we can all be more than a mere skeptic.
Next, I attracted Massimo Pigliucci’s attention. I’d like to clear up that I do not consider him a post-modernist, and I likely ought to have just left that second-to-last paragraph out of the discussion. And I think ADHR responds nicely to Massimo’s concern about PZ “simply hurling insults” by stating:
I don’t think Myers is trying to engage in an intellectual debate, so how is his failure to do good science or good philosophy even relevant? It’s like castigating Sidney Crosby for his inability to score touchdowns.
PZ keeps his science in the lab and classroom and uses his blog to vent, and he apparently found quite the market for those ventings.
So in summary: Sorry Phil Plait, I mischaracterized your article, but still disagree. Sorry Massimo, you’re not a postmodernist.