Fresh approaches to skepticism

It's good to see the skeptic movement adopting modern and updated perspectives.

The skeptic social movement has been a big part of my social and intellectual world. In a world full of bullshit and liars I appreciate the posture of “show me the evidence.”

But sometimes skepticism can be alienating, abnoxious, and toxic. Especially when white cis men are the ones doing it. Many famous skeptics have jumped the shark due to their lack of understanding of power.1 2

And sometimes skepticism can be a little dated. People in the movement, for example, too often talk about astrology, ghosts, and the Loch Ness monster. This is fine but somewhat weary.

Enter, Mallory, aka This is Mallory. I love her sense of humour and also her understanding of power and privilege. And her areas of focus are modern. Multilevel marketing, the wellness industry, self-help, and social media influencer culture are all domains of commerce and social power that actually affect my life and the lives of those in my social circle. I mean, don’t get me wrong, I know people who care about astrology way too much. But in terms of scope and power, and despite my own allergic reaction to astrology, Mallory’s interests and chosen topics are a way higher priority.

A version of this article was first published at www.sherwinarnott.org.

Notes

  1. Especially wealthy, white, cis men.
  2. See for example the career arc of Richard Dawkins who has had interesting things to say on atheism and gods but became cringe and toxic on the topics of Islam, sexual ethics (so called “mild pedophilia”), and sexism.

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