The introductory episode features Beth Presswood, Tracie Harris and Jen Peeples. Topics include feminism, sex education and reproductive rights.

NOTE: Episode 1.1 is no longer available, due to space limitations. We'll be archiving old episodes on the ACA site, soon.

  • Chris Pierce

    Nice! It’s good to hear all of you discussing subjects that only generally get discussed briefly or not at all in most male dominated conversations. Also, I forwarded the link to my wife. :)

    Aug 16, 2011 at 4:28 pm
  • Robert Satterthwaite

    At last, the female prospective without a bunch of guys hogging the mic.

    Aug 16, 2011 at 5:39 pm
  • Aj00200

    Very interesting show. It is quite unlikely I would have sat down and listened to a one hour show about feminism if it wasn’t for the atheist perspective which is also included.

    Great job and I hope you keep up the good work.

    P.S. Ahhh! The pink is blinding! I think a lot of men (aka, some the people who should be hearing this) will be turned off by all the pink. You might want to tone it down a little bit.

    Aug 16, 2011 at 9:31 pm
  • AbnormalWrench

    MOAR!

    Tracie could be doing a 1 hour podcast about knitting, and I’d hunt it down and love it. Although I’d definitely rather hear her talk about atheism and feminism :)

    Aug 16, 2011 at 10:57 pm
  • norelpref

    Whenever I listen to the Non-Prophets and the Atheist Experience I find myself wanting to hear more from the ladies (don’t get me wrong - the guys are awesome, nothing against them at all).

    Now I get to savor a whole podcast of articulate, witty and charming (plus with a bit of attitude of course) female freethinkers. Very very cool.

    Aug 17, 2011 at 12:23 am
  • Summer Seale

    @Aj00200 I say this as an Atheist, mind you: Pink is completely legitimate and useful religion to some of us. =)

    Or, if you like, a way of life. =)

    Aug 17, 2011 at 2:16 am
  • Steven

    Very informative! I wasn’t expecting the strict definition of feminism to be what it was, by that definition a lot of men I know are also feminists, of course I consider myself one too. Anyway keep up the good work, I look forward too episode 2.

    Aug 17, 2011 at 2:57 am
  • Wasder

    The lineup for this podcast is extremely promising, I can’t wait to download it!

    Aug 17, 2011 at 5:45 am
  • Laura

    Loved the podcast! I always enjoy hearing from you on Atheist Experience and Non Prophets, and it’s great to have a whole hour of feminist/atheist goodness.

    Regarding anti choice arguments, I have a Christian friend who is devoutly anti choice, and the argument he uses to support his position that a women should not have the right to choose because she is too emotionally involved in the pregnancy to make a choice.

    To me it would seem that seeing as the woman is the one who actually has to carry the foetus for nine months and deliver a baby, she should be the person who decides whether she wants to do that or not. However, my friend disagrees and says that, in the same way we do not let victims of crimes decide on the punishment of those who have wronged them because their emotions would get in the way of a rational decision, we should not allow women to choose to abort a foetus because she is not able to see the situation objectively and rationally.

    I responded to the point (there is so much wrong with that arguement it’s hard to know where to begin) , but probably not as thoroughly and eloquently as you could, and I was just wondering if you had any thoughts.

    I live in the UK where we have pretty good reproductive rights compared to may other places, but we still have our fair share of challenges. Recently in my sixth form center (I don’t know what the equivalent to this is in the USA, but it’s for student age 16-18 sitting their A levels) there were a group of (Christian, of course) students supported by one of the Religious Education teachers who wanted to put up a permanent display on abortion which featured a lot of misinformation and a very graphic picture of an aborted foetus. I wasn’t sure how to react as I didn’t feel it was appropriate to go tearing down their posters, so instead I wrote out some post-it notes correcting the information on the display, and helpfully posted them on top of the misinformation.

    Anyway, love the new podcast. Hope you keep it up.

    Aug 17, 2011 at 6:19 am
  • Stephan Goodwin

    Jen and Tracie, you are two of my favorite voices on the Atheist Experience, and I’ve long wondered why you haven’t wondered over to the Non-Prophets as well. I’m ecstatic to see you’ve started your own podcast!

    Beth, I barely know you from the other shows, but so far I’ve liked what I’ve heard. Hopefully you can bring some strong hitting science commentary

    I look forward to all of you and all your shows. Best of luck!

    Aug 17, 2011 at 6:50 am
  • Taylor

    My sex ed class was fairly good, it wasn’t separated by sex. They didn’t teach abstinence. They showed how to put on a condom. But they did show the very graphic std pictures to scare us.

    Aug 17, 2011 at 12:44 pm
  • NoApologetics

    Hey gals, as a long time listener of the Atheist Experience/non-phrophets let me say you hit this one out of the ballpark. Your natural rapport, effervescent personalities, and clear critical analysis led to a very informative and enjoyable podcast.

    Let me add that you’re views of the Bachman-Corndog controversy were as refreshingly humorous as they were insightful unlike over at the comments section on Pharyngula where such sex negative gems like regardless of gender “in our society placing a phallus in one’s mouth is an act of humiliation and degradation” and that “crazy eyes” is a form of historical gender based hate speech and you should not use it and anyone who didn’t tow the official “unofficial” party line was subject to contempable browbeating and ridicule so much so that it lead to a climate of fear in which a female poster who wanted to post a link of Rick Perry chomping on a wiener for comparison thought it better otherwise and suggested that people just google it instead. I was floored that an atheist women on an atheist website felt she couldn’t openly express her opinion fully on a comment thread that’s focus was feminism. Sorry, I had to get that off my chest in a safe and sane environment.

    Keep up the good work, looking forward to future podcasts. You are reasonable rational godless bitches!

    Aug 17, 2011 at 4:12 pm
  • TheDudeDiogenes

    Loved the first episode!

    Here’s an equal opportunity offender picture: Bachmann and Perry both eating corn dogs! http://www.indecisionforever.com/2011/08/17/michele-bachmann-and-rick-perry-around-and-around-back-and-forth-forever/

    Aug 17, 2011 at 5:34 pm
  • Sam Salerno

    I am pro-choice. But I have a problem if a women is in a situation where she has the financial ability to raise a child that she has an abortion. Not that it’s my choice. But I think if a woman is in a situation where she can raise a child in comfort that she should. I don’t think a child should be aborted just because the woman doesn’t want the kid. I am an atheist. But that person is taking away another human beings chance at life. I know it’s not alive as a zygote. But that’s not what I am saying. It will grow into a human being, one of the most amazing life forms ever to walk this earth. Why kill it if you can support it?

    Aug 17, 2011 at 7:18 pm
  • Karen Winter

    Great idea Beth. I just listened to the first episode and loved it, you were all wonderful!

    Cheers to all godless bitches!

    Aug 17, 2011 at 8:38 pm
  • Darrell

    Very nice first podcast. I especially liked the links to the way religious folks tend to try to disguise the fact that they are really pushing an agenda based on religion. Sane arguments for pro-choice are so nice to hear. I moved to Texas two years ago from Northern California which has a far more sane secular society. So nice to hear voices of reason here. :)

    Aug 17, 2011 at 8:52 pm
  • KarenL

    @Sam Salerno:

    Really?? The only acceptable reason for choosing abortion is financial?

    What about a woman who does not want to subject her body to the pain and strain (not inconsequential for many women) of pregnancy and childbirth? Giving a kidney to someone who needs one can save his or her life, and has moderately low risks for the donor. Should someone who is a match be required to donate, if they can afford the time off work?

    What about a woman who doesn’t want to spend 18+ years doing the extremely time-and-energy-intensive labor of raising a child? Having a child is extremely life altering, and not just a hit on the pocketbook. Someone may reasonably determine that having a child will have a negative effect on her quality of life (or that of her existing children). You don’t think that’s a good enough reason to terminate a pregnancy?

    An extension of your logic (since you acknowledge that a zygote is not ‘alive’) would be that women shouldn’t use birth control because they might prevent a life from happening (if they can financially afford that life).

    Aug 17, 2011 at 9:15 pm
  • David

    Great show.

    @Sam Salerno #14: Overpopulation. The world’s resources have been well into the red trying to support the already existing 7 billion people for quite a while now. The least horrific way to address it is to reduce births. Having kids just because one can is irresponsible.

    Each human being IS an amazing life form. Each locust is amazing too. Really. http://www.asknature.org/strategy/33ba1618fc358f29f0be63a19ee36050

    Aug 17, 2011 at 9:30 pm
  • David

    * Forgot to add a live population clock for good measure… http://www.worldometers.info/

    It’s sobering to hear a metronome tick that quickly.

    Aug 17, 2011 at 9:49 pm
  • Leigh

    Excellent start! I will definitely be subscribing to see what’s to come.

    I never actually had true sex ed - I was sick the one day we had it in my elementary school, and I didn’t have biology until 10th grade. Which I vaguely remember had a human reproduction unit, but was just “here’s the names of the parts, here’s how a baby develops.” Nothing on preventing pregnancy or disease or even abstinence.

    It’s a good thing my parents didn’t care/pay attention/were easily duped about what books I read!

    Aug 17, 2011 at 10:02 pm
  • Sam Salerno

    Financially is only one reason that a woman should not abort. It just sounds to me like some women of pro-choice will use any excuse to have an abortion. I posit that a woman of health and ability who choose to have sex, should choose to raise a child if they get pregnant. As I said it’s their choice, but I disagree in that case. I feel it’s inhumane to not grant that child a life. And I’m allowed my choice.

    Aug 17, 2011 at 10:19 pm
  • KarenL

    @Sam Salerno #21

    “It just sounds to me like some women of pro-choice will use any excuse to have an abortion.”

    How little respect you have for women! And how little it sounds like you know of women who do opt for an abortion. It’s quite patronizing of you to assume you know better than the women who are actually dealing with an unwanted pregnancy do about the reasons for and morality of their decisions.

    “I posit that a woman of health and ability who choose to have sex, should choose to raise a child if they get pregnant.”

    So now you’re using the ‘do the crime, do the time’ argument. Pregnancy as just ‘punishment’ for women who have sex. (What about men who choose to have sex?)

    “And I’m allowed my choice.”

    You’re allowed your opinion, certainly. You are not allowed a ‘choice’ on anyone’s abortion other than your own.

    Aug 17, 2011 at 10:39 pm
  • m6wg4bxw

    Currently listening… definitely a fan of Tracie and Jen, though I fear this podcast will have more Beth than I can tolerate. I strongly dislike her southern accent.

    Aug 17, 2011 at 10:41 pm
  • CS

    Those are not corn dogs!

    They are fried butter logs!

    I defecate you not:

    http://www.herald-review.com/app/blogs/blogs/?p=6388

    snip:

    “Looks like a corn dog, doesn’t it? Essentially what they do to make this thing is take a stick of butter and dip it into a sugary, cinnamon-flavored batter before it goes to the fryer. Then it’s finished with some sort of glaze before you eat it, because eating a stick of deep fried butter without the proper glazing smacks of barbarism.”

    Aug 17, 2011 at 11:06 pm
  • m6wg4bxw

    Very enjoyable.

    Aug 17, 2011 at 11:49 pm
  • Amber

    The whole discussion on masturbation had me in stitches. I am really looking forward to more of these podcasts. You three are just too great.

    Aug 18, 2011 at 12:14 am
  • Mike

    The podcast isn’t working over itunes subscription atm. Dunno if you noticed. It keeps coming up with the error code 410 which google tells me means “resource is gone”. The file that itunes is trying to download is not at the location it is supposed to be at. Missing.

    Just a heads up.

    Aug 18, 2011 at 1:46 am
  • David

    Tracy: “We wouldn’t be torturing our babies any more than any other social animal is torturing its babies as a matter of social policy.”

    I thought this was a GREAT argument until I woke up this morning and remembered runts. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Siblicide http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eurasian_Coot#Breeding

    Yeah. That argument might fail spectacularly if the theist has seen “The Problems of Parenthood” episode 9 of Attenborough’s “The Life of Birds”.

    Basically there’s an extra egg in case there’s plenty of food. Otherwise the mother or siblings test all the chicks until the weak one is determined, then it gets tortured until it dies/starves to save food for the rest. Or lay multiple eggs in case of routine sterility, but cull when too many eggs successfully hatch. Nature’s family planning is clever if brutal sometimes.

    That’s too much of a downer to end on. For an amusing chaser, here’s Douglas Adams talking about the Kakapo, which takes a different route. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9b49eT0qni4&t=0m28s

    Aug 18, 2011 at 7:47 am
  • David

    A heads-up in case comment moderation isn’t paid attention: I had a critique of Tracy’s animal social policy argument that got held up.

    Aug 18, 2011 at 7:57 am
  • Mike

    k its working on itunes now.

    I can’t be the only one who noticed the funny contrast of you girls introducing yourselves as “bitches” who are then very nice and thoughtful and who are patient to let each other have their full say.

    Aug 18, 2011 at 10:58 am
  • George From NY

    This was the best episode of Car Talk yet.

    Keep up the good work!

    Aug 18, 2011 at 1:12 pm
  • InvincibleIronyMan

    As I’m sure has been pretty obvious of late, we so needed a podcast like this! Love it!

    Aug 18, 2011 at 4:22 pm
  • Kes

    Okay, first off, loooooved this podcast. Feminism and Atheism, my two favorite isms, together at last!

    Also, this: “Like Ma Bell, I got the Ill Indoctrination!”

    That is all.

    Aug 18, 2011 at 7:56 pm
  • Mark Plus

    “Empowered women” (EW’s) in the U.S. have made lives better for the alpha male cads they prefer as inseminators. It hasn’t made lives better for the beta male chumps and cuckolds who have to work and pay the taxes for the EW’s preferred lifestyle which includes a generous welfare state to eliminate the need for provider husbands.

    I can see why Peter Thiel complains about this system, especially because he doesn’t value women as sex objects.

    Aug 19, 2011 at 10:14 am
  • Howard

    “Wellness” class

    You can just tell that’s going to be a load of bullshit.

    Aug 19, 2011 at 11:07 am
  • Mark Plus

    If I taught sex ed, I would tell the kids that the natural process shows that we get here through random chance, except for the ones conceived in vitro in fertility clinics. Those kids get here through something like intelligent design.

    Aug 19, 2011 at 11:40 am
  • Philip

    Great start to a new podcast!

    I’m still in the process of listening (30% done), but had to comment on the first topic (abortion): I definitely do some of the re-framing of the language used just like you do (anti-choice rather than pro-life since the language they use sets up a horribly inaccurate false-dichotomy). Depending on who I’m talking to, I also tend to try and further re-frame the conversation by trying to both more accurately label their position and make more obvious some of the final consequences by calling their position pro-criminalization.

    Having been an escort for Planned Parenthood I’ve seen so many situations where the act of an abortion is actually in itself saving life far more effectively than carrying to term (from ones where the woman cannot carry to term without dying, to some where a husband is already on record with religious-based threats of relocation and physical abuse if pregnant and kept or death if the 7th pregnancy is learned of and known to be aborted). There are _so_ many more situations that the pro-criminalization crowd has never thought of and will dismiss out of hand if you try and bring them up and I’m just appalled at the complete lack of compassion for the already existant people and that those people might have life situations that differ greatly from their own.

    Aug 19, 2011 at 12:12 pm
  • David

    –I’ll just repost and improve the critique I mentioned in #28 with fewer links–

    Tracy: “We wouldn’t be torturing our babies any more than any other social animal is torturing its babies as a matter of social policy.”

    I thought this was a GREAT argument, until I remembered runts.

    See Wikipedia: “Siblicide” and “Eurasian Coot#Breeding”.

    Some birds lay an extra egg in case food is plentiful (then everybody’s happy). When it isn’t, the mother or siblings test for the weakest chick and torture it until it dies, to save food for the rest. Or if sterility is routine for the species, the extra egg is to compensate for that; surplus chick is killed if too many eggs hatched. Nature is clever in family planning, if brutal sometimes.

    So this argument can get awkward if the theist has seen Attenborough’s “Life of Birds - 9 The Problems of Parenthood” if you’re not ready to clarify that they only get ugly when circumstances are desperate.

    Then there’s competitive infanticide, which usually gurantees paternity by killing a newly partnered female’s existing children.

    So it’s not that animals wouldn’t. They do. And so have humans, as policy, for similar reasons. Of course this opens up child sacrifice to religion/culture as something to make humans worse.

    See wikipedia: “Infanticide”

    That’s a downer to end on, so here’s Douglas Adams talking about Kakapos, which have a different strategy.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9b49eT0qni4&t=0m28s

    Aug 19, 2011 at 2:49 pm
  • David

    To be fair to animals: When they fight to resolve a dispute, it’s rarely to the death. That’s wasteful. One party gives up and peacefully cuts the losses.

    Aug 19, 2011 at 2:55 pm
  • Lance

    Love the show! Keep it up. Please don’t add audience calls, your viewpoints and easygoing banter are what makes this work.

    Aug 19, 2011 at 8:06 pm
  • DagoRed

    As a man who describes himself as a feminist - I loved this podcast both in concept and in execution. There really is no one, other than women, who can represent more people negatively impacted by the evils of religion. The dust storm of “elevatorgate” hilighted some of the strong parallels between secularism and feminism and how both of these “isms” share many of the same goals. I hope that this podcast can take that seed and nurture it into full-bloom, re-enforcing these shared goals more explicitly for all the atheist community to see and finally acknowledge.

    Not only are more women’s voices needed for the sake of diversity, but the under-representation of women perspectives in the atheist community — given that women historically and currently shoulder most of the harm dished-out by religion — makes an atheist community seem quite hypocritical at times without at least an equal voice, and support, for women’s issues within it. The specter of hypocrisy has been made against the skeptical community for its lack of support for a stronger atheist voice within it. In many ways, the relationship of feminism to atheism is not unlike the relationship of atheism to skepticism. Both of these former topics are the elephants in the rooms of the latter that tend to be avoided. Thus, by transitivity, feminism is one of the main keys, in my mind, to the success of both of these other movements. It’s awesome to finally hear more voices for feminism within the godless community.

    Aug 19, 2011 at 9:44 pm
  • Mike

    In school they taught us to use condoms and stuff LONG before they taught us how babies were made or how STIs work. Years infact. In nz, they’ll teach you in school when you’re 11/12 you need to use contraception if you have sex. Then 13/14 they go into much greater detail about sex and its role in reproduction along with that awful disgusting video of a woman giving birth.

    HOWEVER!! On the later point I didn’t need to hear any of the reproduction stuff because I learnt that on my own when I was about 5 or 6 from a children’s How-does-it-work book. They showed the mechanisms of reproduction with almost robot-like human analogues.

    I’m really glad that I knew about that because it meant 1) there was no need for that awkward discussion with parents or teachers. 2) I took the matter of contraception sensibly. 3) I can stand as proud proof that learning about sex at a young age does no harm.

    When my kids ask about babies, I’ll give them that book and they likely wont feel any weirdness asking me further questions.

    Aug 19, 2011 at 10:07 pm
  • Catherine

    @Sam - I agree there are aspects of abortion that are legitimately debatable on the philosophical front. But the whole point of reproductive rights is that it’s no one else to decide but for the individual woman. There is no way to individually legislate who has a “worthy reason” for aborting. That is the whole point–it’s not for you or me to say what is going on in her life both externally and internally.

    You’re saying “she has the financial means to do so in comfort”. But what is she is nowhere near emotionally competent and raises a royally abused child?

    Exactly. Not for you or me to say.

    Aug 20, 2011 at 5:08 pm
  • Catherine

    @Mike - I gotta say this is completely ironic:

    “I can’t be the only one who noticed the funny contrast of you girls introducing yourselves as “bitches” who are then very nice and thoughtful and who are patient to let each other have their full say. ”

    You probably don’t realize it, but you’re saying these “girls” are being “good girls” for not being catty like you usually expect, but are instead very “pleasant young ladies” as is–as you imply–the most acceptable behavior of women–as opposed to Non-Prophets where the guys routinely butt in and hash out topics with great, edgy enthusiasm. :\

    That’s not a compliment.

    Aug 20, 2011 at 5:17 pm
  • Catherine

    @Mark - Empowered women don’t use men (”alpha” or otherwise) because they don’t have to–they are empowered. The definition of empowered is to be enabled or possessing the power to do something and then doing it on your own or with the people/person of your choosing.

    What you are referring to are people (men and women) who still subscribe to the notion that he does one thing, she does another–to each his or her “place”. Neither he or she is empowered in such an organized relationship, but just confused and trying to keep artificial gender roles while also being modern. Cracks will develop and we are seeing that as we progressively grow more modern while also keeping hold of religiously tainted gender roles.

    I think perhaps you are angry at and therefore judging the wrong people (men and women). How about choosing to surround yourself with a different sort of crowd?

    Aug 20, 2011 at 5:40 pm
  • David

    @Catherine #43: *Sigh* Mike was contrasting “bitches” with polite behavior. Not impossibly saintly expectations for women of his own.

    Wikipedia: “It often refers to someone who is belligerent, unreasonable, rudely intrusive or aggressive.”

    It’s difficult to not suspect you deliberately misread his comment to provide an excuse to rebuke someone.

    Kudos on juxtaposing “catty” though.

    Sam and Mark on the other hand were creepy.

    Aug 20, 2011 at 6:54 pm
  • David

    * er @Catherine #44: ^^^

    Aug 20, 2011 at 6:55 pm
  • Catherine

    Nice, David. Tell me how I got it all messed up in my pretty little head and that my perspective is clearly not legitimate. *Sigh*.

    Aug 20, 2011 at 7:00 pm
  • David

    @Catherine #44 cotd: In other words, mentioning the presence of a word for antisocial behavior doesn’t imply one endorses using the word as part of a Madonna / Nurse Ratched dichotomy to slur assertive women with hyperbolic insults to keep them passive.

    Aug 20, 2011 at 7:47 pm
  • David

    @Catherine #48: “Tell me how I got it all messed up in my pretty little head and that my perspective is clearly not legitimate.”

    Now you’re trolling.

    Aug 20, 2011 at 7:52 pm
  • Catherine

    I was rushing out the door to Home Depot when I last replied and while I was there I thought more about how I’d like to reply more thoroughly.

    Without hesitation, you questioned my integrity in my posting (willful misreading = manipulator (yep, that’s right) = liar (yep, that’s right). If you thought I misunderstood, you might have replied with a disinterested explanation of what you *think* Mike meant (since you’re not Mike–you’re David, therefore you’ve nominated yourself to speak on his behalf).

    All I gave was an interpretation of what I read and the comment that it wasn’t a compliment. That’s all–no questioning of his integrity or his motives. And instead of a reply-in-kind, I got an attempt at shaming, second guessing of my motives and telling me I could not possibly have gotten what I did out of Mike’s posting.

    I won’t apologize for what I interpreted, but I will thank you for your explanation while recasting it (in my mind) as a reasonable attempt to add a new perspective.

    Good day.

    ps. Now I’m the official first person on this brand new site to be accused of trolling simply for disagreeing (in a matter of two postings, no less).

    I wear that last vestige of someone not willing to discuss something as a badge with honor.

    Aug 20, 2011 at 8:35 pm
  • David

    Ah, now closer to the mix-up.

    When I read #44, I read that as you suggesting the original poster’s character as having an undesirable bias. “That’s not a compliment.” being an additional clarification that your interpretation was not a compliment of him.

    Based on that, I responded “It’s difficult to not suspect you deliberately misread his comment to provide an excuse to rebuke someone.” Given that you entered late with a triple post rebuking several posters. My innocuous interpretation of the original Mike post left me with the impression that one of the three was being shoehorned in. I had difficulty dispelling that hypothesis. I didn’t shout “Liar!”, but granted any way the possibility is written it can be read as a vailed insult. I did make a point of agreeing you were justified in the other two criticisms.

    “I got an attempt at shaming, second guessing of my motives and telling me I could not possibly have gotten what I did” You tripled, charged the language, and turned “I have difficulty” into “It’s impossible to read any other way than have”.

    I actually spent that hour-long gap after #47 clarifying myself for #49 for your benefit.

    But in the interim, you posted, so I was greeted with a glib provocation: “my pretty little head” and “my perspective is clearly not legitimate”. This is why I said “Now you’re trolling.” Not for the disagreeing.

    Most often those are aimed at the endlessly tedious MRAs that haunt threads, usually with “perspective” meaning “female persepective”. I assume you’re well aware how vile they can be and how one might feel being compared to them.

    “I wear that last vestige of someone not willing to discuss something as a badge with honor.” If I’m parsing that correctly, you thought I was shutting down any possibility of conversation with a troll accusation. I hope this illustrates why that was premature on your part.

    To be clear: Your umbrage wasn’t baseless. I’m sorry I was oversensitive, and I hope my posts didn’t darken your day.

    Aug 20, 2011 at 10:06 pm
  • Catherine

    David, we’re now talking about things that came well after your very first reply to me.

    And I’m not exactly sure what I’m supposed to say at you doing anything for my benefit (thank you?) though it wasn’t clear at all until now.

    Look, you’re doing a whole lotta talking now. I don’t know why. And you gotta admit that this is pretty fucking (awesomely) epic on the irony scale: David shames Catherine, insinuates she’s a manipulator and then basically says she’s trolling because she simply spoke up about her POV–all on a site named Godless Bitches named for those very reasons.

    Maybe just refrain defending someone else’s comments that juxtapose “girls” with a commentary about grown, intelligent and known women’s ability to have an intelligent conversation without devolving into a gaggle of hens?

    I’m just glad this isn’t video and a comment about how it was great Tracie was smiling so much as the topic of bitch was being discussed. (I say that with guilty-pleasure humor).

    My day is not darkened. In fact, I’m honored for the first “troll” calling under said circumstances.

    Have a good Sunday.

    Aug 20, 2011 at 10:49 pm
  • Catherine

    By the way (as a side note). Plenty of people say things dripping in sarcasm in which the actual point is embedded. That’s all my second reply was.

    Without even knowing you, I’m fairly sure you do it, too. Just about everyone does. Interesting you instantly went to the internet oldie-but-goodie: “u b trollin’.”

    Good day.

    Aug 20, 2011 at 10:52 pm
  • David

    @Catherine #53/54: “says she’s trolling because she simply spoke up about her POV”

    “Plenty of people say things dripping in sarcasm in which the actual point is embedded. That’s all my second reply was.”

    From David #52: “I was greeted with a glib provocation […] This is why I said ‘Now you’re trolling.’ Not for the disagreeing.”

    I was explaining my POV of what happened, so we could both understand how we misunderstood each other’s actions/reactions and avoid similar hasty escalations in the future, when met with less cautious communicators.

    Aug 20, 2011 at 11:26 pm
  • Mike

    Goodness me, this is all gone over my head.

    I just like the fact that as much as atheist community people try to reclaim the nasty labels believers put on us (heathen, baby-eating satanists, hate-mongers, and in this case “Godless Bitches”), the more we own those terms the funnier it gets when we’re all nice and reasonable people. The contrast is especially jolting in the case of this podcast because the women are as lovely as can be.

    It’s like how any time someone accuses Richard Dawkins of being strident, it’s patently obvious they’re calling him that only because he disagrees with them and they don’t even realise that preposterous bias.

    Aug 21, 2011 at 8:27 am
  • Mike

    @Cat: “but you’re saying these “girls” are being “good girls” for not being catty like you usually expect, but are instead very “pleasant young ladies” as is–as you imply–the most acceptable behavior of women”

    Nonsense, I don’t imply that at all. The comment was entirely about contrast.

    Aug 21, 2011 at 8:33 am
  • David

    @Mike You should probably refrain from saying “girls” when you don’t personally know who might be reading; some people don’t mind, most would see it as referring to them as children.

    “Ladies” as Catherine introduced in her rephrasing can be read as the impossible standard for politeness used to chastise women for not meeting.

    “Gal” is less commonly taken as offensive, but explanations have implicated it in african american belittling or harkening back to a more sexist era.

    “Dame” - Dated and derogatory.

    “Femme” is a lesbian stereotype.

    “Chick” - see girl, or worse.

    “Female” - Clinical so it’s dehumanizing.

    “Fair sex” - Harkens to times so far back in every metric it shouldn’t even need to be on the list.

    “Woman” while formal, and possibly adversarial if used stupidly, I think is the safest gendered noun you can use if you want to avoid offense. It doesn’t matter how many people you cite who don’t mind a given word, the problem is thoughtless insult to any who disagree.

    Other than that, there are neuters like you/y’all/one.

    If someone misreads you, and your reply includes the word “nonsense”, it can be taken as a dismissal of them as a literate human being; rather than as a statement meant to distance yourself from the suggested thought as you would nonsense in general (difference: the idea was nonsense to you, hence you didn’t mean it / not: the idea was objectively nonsense and the reader was objectively wrong to infer that). Avoid that potential for conflict.

    Aug 21, 2011 at 11:21 am
  • Ran

    Turns out that atheism and feminism go together like chocolate and peanut butter. Can’t wait to hear more.

    Aug 21, 2011 at 10:21 pm
  • Mike

    @David: I was being dismissive.

    Aug 22, 2011 at 12:55 am
  • David

    @Mike #59: ENTIRELY denying legitimacy of someone’s inferrance (rather than the writer’s implication) moves the conversation into the reader’s mind, a territory where you can’t have authority or evidence, and you’re left arguing over what a ‘normal’ person should be expected to read (to show the dissenting reader an abnormal outlier). With a derailment of what ‘normal’ is, or should be.

    That always reads like a persecution narrative that no one wants to see played out on the internet for the zillionth time. It doesn’t take long before “who was right” gets overshadowed by “who’s in the villain role”. It’s depressing to see unaware people stumble into it as emotions get charged. And it doesn’t help that there are plenty of ugly people who play the role and ARE legitimate villains.

    Don’t go down that road, especially when you think you’re right.

    Aug 22, 2011 at 10:56 am
  • David

    @Myself #61: Really Important: The person to blame for the narrative isn’t necessarily the same person who ends up in the victim role. MRA’s tend to jump to victim-blaming.

    Aug 22, 2011 at 11:15 am
  • David

    *On reflection, reaches personal threshold for continuing to hope “maybe in this case it’s ignorance not malice”.*

    Aug 22, 2011 at 6:23 pm
  • Mike

    Take a toke dude and take a step back. I made a fairly clear and subtextless comment with a positive attitude of the podcast hosts. My comment was then given a rubbish subtext making me sound like some sexist arse. Not gonna wast my time arguing my intent with that kind of reaction.

    Villain? K.

    Aug 23, 2011 at 2:08 am
  • JonelB

    r/atheism actually asked “Why should we be concerned with pro-choice/pro-life arguments?”

    I gave them a lovely reply, but the answer was along the lines of: This is important to everyone, reproductive choice and many, many religious people purposefully are trying to destroy the choice we -do- have. I’ve read a lot about the Crisis Pregnancy Centers that are working very hard to spread malignant information, from how abortions look(all the photos are grossly misrepresented on multiple levels), to what contraceptives do(they claim that they cause breast cancer).

    Reproductive rights&Women is cliche, but it’s honestly one of the major hot-button issues that has regular updates to it. Much like the recent Planned Parenthood funding issues.

    The anti-choicers are also downplaying the amount of people who get ectopic pregnancies and/or have fetuses that are anecephalic or similarly unable to live, ever. It’s much less damaging to the mother’s body to abort early on, rather than force her to bring it to term, and for ectopic pregnancies–deal with internal bleeding, or for an anecephalic fetus–force her to bring it to term, only to watch the born fetus die slowly from the inability to breath properly.

    Another thing is that people assume all pro-choicers are pro-abortion. I am not pro-abortion at *all*, I am pro-contraceptive and pro-anyone-who-needs-an-abortion-can-get-one. Am I *happy* that women get ectopic pregnancies or have 3rd trimester complications and need abortions to not have serious health complications? No, no, not at all. But I wouldn’t keep a single medical procedure from ANYONE who wants it.

    I went to a super-conservative South Alabama highschool, and we got abstinence-only sex education from the school, but in Home Ec Class and with cosmo mags during free periods, most of the girls learned about more than just ‘don’t have sex ever or you will be miserable and die’. We were told that having sexual relationships of any type made you miserable and that it wasn’t worth it, because you’d get into a deep depression and want to kill yourself. We got zero useful information. As much as I hate Cosmo, the magazine would regularly mention things like IUD’s, the Today Sponge, Diaphragms and Female Condoms, that most girls had no clue existed. And for someone like me who can’t take hormonal birth control due to it making me a bit nutty….having options is important.

    I once had a christian complain that “Abortion is just convenience.” I replied “Well contraceptives are convenient but christiants aren’t going to foot the bill for those, so we need abortion.”

    Also, the “unrestricted sex partners” quote is really inconsiderate towards Polyamorous people. ;D There’s plenty of people with healthy relationships with multiple partners. Maturity means you know how to handle it, and I still don’t think I can, but I’m not about to tell anyone what they should or shouldn’t do when it comes to sex. Religion really is all about the punishment and self-hate when it comes to restricting others to what they want them to do. Much like the “if you don’t marry someone within our sect, you can’t be part of the church anymore. I think the Car analogy is brilliant. Car accidents are among some leading causes of death–not sure where it stands, but car driving is dangerous–but we do it every day. We get in a car without thinking “oh my god this is so dangerous” every single time, because we take precautions, and the car has saftey precautions as well to keep you from dying if you do get in an accident or something happens.

    Public policy being dictated by religion: Blue Laws, about liquor. I used to live in Tuscaloosa where you weren’t allowed booze on Sundays. Also lived next to what used to be a dry county. Everyone agreed that both things sucked. So when people say “well having abortion outlawed won’t be so bad” they fail to take into account that abortion will still happen, it just won’t be safe anymore.

    Future ideas: Patriarchy, as dictated by religion and how this is reflected in the secular community sometimes. Beauty Standards–unrealistic and double standards between the two genders. Culture expectations when it comes to Men vs. Women, and perhaps why women are less obvious in the athiest community. Also privilege, and why we see a lot of white, well-to-do, educated men as the main players in atheism, and not many minorities, women, or poorer people.

    Aug 23, 2011 at 3:01 am
  • THE FREE HUMANIST

    I am glad to hear the ladies stepping out of the male shadow in Austin with this podcast. Going to dive in to the podcasts now I need to hear a female perspective on Atheism unfortunately the men tend to dominate the other shows that I have watched / listened to. It is essential for a male to hear the female perspective good on you bitches! With solidarity The Free Humanist.

    Aug 23, 2011 at 6:21 am
  • THE FREE HUMANIST

    Question about reproductive choice:

    1. How do you square a humanist life stance, if you have one, with choosing an abortion or making a choice for an abortion?

    2. What if any role should a male partner have in a woman’s reproductive choice. Should males have any rights on a woman’s reproductive choice?

    Great show I really do enjoy the clarity of the positions presented it is nice to hear what Atheist women think about reproductive rights especially.

    Aug 23, 2011 at 6:43 am
  • THE FREE HUMANIST

    Love the fact you ‘ladies’ lost your train of thought as masturbation was discussed. I couldn’t imagine men talking about this in any detail on a pod cast.

    Aug 23, 2011 at 7:19 am
  • David

    @Mike #64: In my self-flagellating, I guess I was starting to see hints of sarcastic things that weren’t there and tried to redeem myself by taking the “imagining, calm down, overreacting” bullet by pretty much ensuring I was. Apologies all. Finally shutting up.

    Aug 23, 2011 at 8:53 am
  • Trent

    What a great podcast! Here’s to many more to come!

    Aug 24, 2011 at 2:47 am
  • Sika77

    Great show! Glad we’re talking about feminist issues in the atheist community.

    Aug 24, 2011 at 12:16 pm
  • gwen

    I love the show, but I do have a couple of nits to pick. In talking about a woman’s right to choose, on one hand you say if a woman decides to have a child, since it IS her decision, she should be responsible for the financial repercussions. Well, actually, as you pointed out elsewhere in the same episode, it is often NOT her decision as to whether or not she will get pregnant. Beth went into a GYN office where they do not prescribe birth control (Holy 1960s, Batman!), there are STATES where a woman cannot get a LEGAL abortion, and lawmakers are attempting to pass laws to enable doctors to refuse to do an abortion even if not doing so, will absolutely cause the death of the mother. Many men refuse to wear condoms, and some women believe in their lovers pronouncements of utter devotion, until a pregnancy occurs. In some cases, there are married men who want to dump the children with the marriage. The one thing I do agree with is that male birth control is a priority.

    Aug 25, 2011 at 7:40 pm
  • gwen

    I remember a time when a husband had to sign consent for his wife’s birth control, and when a married woman had to have the husband’s consent to have an abortion. This gave abusive husbands an inordinate amount of power over their ‘loved ones’, and the laws were soon changed. You should have Annie Laurie Gaylor of FFRF’s mother on to talk about reproductive rights, she will knock your socks off.

    Aug 25, 2011 at 7:43 pm
  • Catherine

    @57 Mike

    “Nonsense, I don’t imply that at all. The comment was entirely about contrast. ”

    Fair enough, Mike. But that was for you to explain, not David to shut me up over and ensuing irony.

    Looks like a good discussion happened in the last week. See you people around. I’m off to listen to the next installment.

    Aug 26, 2011 at 1:08 am
  • Catherine

    @57 Mike

    ps. “girls” was nowhere near taken out of context. See ya.

    Aug 26, 2011 at 1:12 am
  • Chris

    As a former Atheist and no religion as a child I understand many perspectives talked about here in cast 1.1. Today I am a creationist and look to the bible as a book of natural law.

    I am married and practice NFP (natural family planning) a form of birth control that requires my wife to monitor her cervix, vaginal mucus and temperature to determine when we can avoid or have a baby. It cost Zero dollars and it has work for us over 2 years now.

    I am also pro choice. If a girl wants to pay for a doctor to kill her unborn babies, she can do that all day long. The problem is the subsidization of these services from the majority of the community through tax dollars to pay for free abortions in the form of health care is not pro choice.

    Tax, health care and insurance are the real problem in argument of “pro choice” all secular law by definition is anti-choice.

    It is not my responsibility to take care of other irresponsible boys and girls that want to practice sex and produce unwanted babies. Just like it’s not their responsibility to keep that unborn baby alive. If a person would like to pay 250-1000 for an abortion I believe they should have the choice to do so but I don’t want my tax dollars to pay for such a fiscally unsustainable service.

    Although abstinence is not very fun it is a solution that is 100% effective and I don’t have any problems with people who believe that they are mature and responsible enough to practice fornication.

    In my experience marriage is one business practice that alleviates the need for companionship and sex. It solve the issues of child care when a child is produced and is generally more profitable than unplanned/unmarried child production. Tho I did have to give up fornication to become married but that is also a choice I had to make.

    Aug 27, 2011 at 7:32 am
  • godlessbitches

    Chris,

    Your tax dollars don’t pay for abortions.

    Beth

    Aug 27, 2011 at 9:46 am
  • Chris

    Sorry, I forgot to mention I am in Canada…

    “Women living in Canada who have an abortion in a hospital will have the cost covered by provincial health care. Provincial health care plans will also cover the cost of an abortion done at a free-standing clinic for women who live in British Columbia, Alberta, Ontario or Newfoundland. Women living in Prince Edward Island will need to travel out of province to have an abortion. Additionally, some hospitals require parental consent depending on a woman’s age.”

    As a male, I think other males should think hard about sexual partners…Questions for example, If I have a baby with her, would I be OK with paying the child support for 18 years? Do I trust this woman? Should I ask her if she’s been checked for VD? Do I want to know this girl for 18+ years? Would she be a good mother? ect.

    If some of these kids can turn on their brains for a second an think about these questions for a few moments then maybe they can pick and choose their battles a little bit better.

    Marriage is a business contract by God. Common Law is also considered a similar business contract by our governments.

    The natural punishment for fornication and adultery is Death, VD and poverty so says the bible (old school law). Abortion = Death

    I don’t know if it was a coincidence or not but the God of Abraham was spot on here.

    The obvious problem in my opinion is the lack of sex education coming from the parents at home. We send our kids to school and blame the teachers for not educating our children properly and when the child comes home all they ever learn is how to watch TV, play Video Games and watch and learn from the pathetic habits of their mom’s and dad’s bickering helplessly over the state of provincial rules and regulations.

    Wouldn’t it be nice as a parent to teach a child more then how to eat McDonands and play baseball? Go for BBQ’s and buy a bunch of worthless consumer crap that we fill our lives with?

    Wouldn’t it be nice to teach a child about history, contacts, law, money, marriage, business, housing, health, sex, politics, drugs and yes, even religion in a mature home learning environment as a supplement to public school.

    Aug 28, 2011 at 12:09 pm
  • THE FREE HUMANIST

    When were you an Atheist Chris? Can you explain your conversion from reason and evidence to belief in ‘creation’.

    Aug 28, 2011 at 9:11 pm
  • Chris

    Hi Humanist,

    I started believing in the God once I realized that science is just another invention made by man.

    I believe that the creator of the universe speaks to us through the laws of his creation. Laws that exist independent of men but govern our lives.

    I started to figure some of this out about 4 years ago when I started to make better choices in my life. I also started reading the bible and have been doing my best to follow the laws of God. I assure you that it as been profitable in both money and health.

    The way I see it is that you only have two choices in this life. You can either follow the laws of God or you follow the laws of other men. The biggest joke about it all is that the power that your government has over you is from the authority of God anyways. So you might as well take out the middle man and get some biblical education.

    Have you ever wondered why a court room looks like a church? Why the judge is in a robe? why they have pews? and why the jury sits where the choir sits?

    The way i see it is that Science is just another religion and our government is our new god. But they are a false god to me, I have been reading the wisdom in the old testament and I think it’s a better program that paper money and corrupt leaders.

    Aug 29, 2011 at 2:23 am
  • Chris

    It’s important to note, that I don’t look down on or think that non-creationists are bad or evil or anything like that, I just had to make a choice in my life and enjoy being the child of the creator of the universe over being a science experiment. It’s also important to note that Catholics and Christians don’t follow the rules that I’ve been reading so I guess I’m just a born again Hebrew… i might just end up joining a synagogue for all i know, who knows.

    Aug 29, 2011 at 2:37 am
  • Brandon

    lol, i’m technically a feminist then. And im a guy.

    Aug 29, 2011 at 11:30 am
  • Alina

    I know this podcast is already somewhat old, but I wanted to THANK you for mentioning the problem with abortions in communist Romania.

    I’m a Romanian and, although I was born after the fall of communism, I’ve seen and heard of plenty of people who lived in misery (including their children!) because they could not have an abortion. Many women died in horrible ways trying to end the pregnancy themselves. Many abandoned children are now living on the streets, except now they’re adults and criminals. I also personally know a doctor who is/was considered a hero because he performed illegal abortions, even though he could’ve ended up in jail for the rest of his life. Before communism, abortion was perfectly legal and quite cheap.

    My point is, do the antis really, TRULY know what kind of quality of life they’re advocating? They should’ve lived in Romania under Ceausescu and THEN they can talk… I bet they’d find it to be not quite the paradise they imagine.

    Also, @Chris: “I started believing in the God once I realized that science is just another invention made by man. ” I could make that exact same argument against the existence of God.

    Sep 13, 2011 at 9:54 am
  • Peter

    Just listened to the first episode - as I was out of episodes of the other two shows to listen to.

    Just FANTASTIC! Looks like I’ve got a few more episodes to listen to. Interesting topics and lively discussion.

    Sep 14, 2011 at 1:24 am
  • Matthew

    Isn’t there a problem with defining feminism as the belief in the social, politcal and economic equality of the sexes?

    By that definition I’m a feminist so is my Dad and most every polictical progressive I’ve ever met. Although, I doubt that’s what you mean.

    I’d suggest that a feminist also offers some sort of critique of the social, political and economic equality of the sexes. That would narrow it more to the set of people that would self identify as feminists.

    Sep 25, 2011 at 5:46 pm
  • Patrick

    Great show. How you will have many more.

    Sep 25, 2011 at 7:03 pm
  • David

    I just listened to your first podcast and was surprised by the definition given for feminisim. If you believe in equality then I would of thought that you would believe in abortion for an unplanned pregnancy, unless both parents agree to have the baby. I see no physical problem with aborting embryo’s unwanted by either parent, as abortion today is relatively safe and pregnancy also has risks. I don’t know how you can justify the “it’s the woman’s body” trump card and allowing the woman to have a baby unwanted by the father.

    Oct 4, 2011 at 2:01 pm
  • Microbiologychick

    What??

    A man cant force a woman to have an abortion. Its her body.

    Beth

    Oct 4, 2011 at 4:04 pm
  • Default

    Great show. I keep picturing Matt in the background, biting his tongue, trying to stay quiet. Good self-control man :)

    Oct 10, 2011 at 7:24 am
  • Gwen Finer

    Wonderful…a feminism I can get behind. As an aside, I can’t help but be riveted with Beth swears. It’s fabulous. I’ve already passed this link along to my husband and a friend of his in Germany.

    Oct 12, 2011 at 1:06 pm
  • Brian S

    Great perspective guys. It’s very refreshing to hear these topics discussed more deeply than is usually the norm from other sources (podcasts, news, conferences, etc). Looking forward to the rest of the podcasts!

    Oct 18, 2011 at 6:48 pm
  • Munashe The Cheetah

    By the definition given in this show, I should be calling myself a feminist as well, as I support equality in all aspects between men and women. Something seems not quite right about calling myself a feminist however, the word clearly has an attachment to one side more than the other and is a poor word to represent equality.

    Historically the gap in equality between men and women was so large as to justify a single minded focus on women’s issues and so feminism definitely had its place. I think feminism and other advances have been successful in closing that gap. We should probably start getting away from focusing on one gender issues and begin a both gender focus approach.

    Today feminism seems to me to be more divisive then anything else. Rather then let us all get on with life working side by side with our female co-workers. Instead we keep hearing about various feminist groups trying to create inequality issues where none exist, or blowing small things out of proportion. This type of behavior segregates the genders and brings to the forefront of every ones mind things like: “I better be careful she doesn’t take anything the wrong way, I don’t want to be labeled as sexist”.

    It constantly reminds us there is a difference, when otherwise we would have forgotten anyway.

    I work in IT at a university and I don’t remember a single instance where a project or a change order came up that I ever stopped to consider the gender of the employee when I was assigning it to them. It is just not a factor, until someone makes it one.

    I realize not every work environment may be like this, but I do think things have generally come far enough now that we should maybe consider merging mens right or womens rights into gender neutral equality rights that represents both genders issues.

    Nov 10, 2011 at 12:16 pm
  • Lucretius

    I’m an atheist granddad, and I agree with most of your discussion points. What could have been emphasized more in your discussion of sex education is the need to explain to teenagers some of the emotional reasons for, and emotional consequences of, a relationship that includes sex. It’s not just about enjoying your bodies.

    More could be made of the historical view of women and children as chattels in agrarian societies, where in most instances property passed through the male line. Explains the world of the Bible pretty well, and M. Bachmann’s subservient role. I’m sure you’ll get to this in later shows.

    Nov 12, 2011 at 2:11 pm
  • ullrich fischer

    Re: the Penn State fiasco. I quite agree, the admin there did exactly the right thing. This is part of the culture of bullying which seems to pervade Jock subcultures both in high school and in colleges. It is like the jocks are a distinct group within colleges. They are not expected to achieve anything academically and they are tacitly given the right to do whatever the hell they want as long as they win games. Hopefully Penn State will be the beginning of returning colleges to their stated purpose: Educating people, not fostering this culture of might makes right.

    Jan 6, 2012 at 1:28 pm

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