Wednesday, February 07, 2007


My Take on Amanda Marcotte --
In response to this post on Street Prophets:


She is the kind of person that Barack Obama was talking about when he mentioned people uncomfortable with religion, who want faith left at the doorstep to the public square.

This isn't a sentiment that I came up with in reaction to this brouhaha. This is something that I said last year.

In the past, I criticized the shameful way in which Saddam Hussein was executed, saying that a lynching of a guilty man is still a lynching.

However, the other side is true. A guilty person who is being lynched is still a guilty person. Because of where the criticism is coming from and because Amanda Marcotte is a blogger (or "one of us"), the temptation on the left is to circle the wagons and defend her. In cognitive psychology, there is confirmation bias, the tendency to be more accepting of arguments supporting one's own side, and disconfirmation bias, the tendency to be more critical of arguments opposing one's own side.

I'm not 100% convinced that these accusations are totally without merit, but I haven't gone through a comprehensive reading of Pandagon (and I might never, but I am considering it). I am a bit doubtful that anyone on the left has bothered with a thorough reading in the way that they would if there was a controversy concerning a conservative blogger. From my casual reading of the blog, I have come away with a negative impression of her because of her views on religion, and I should have a few comments on the blog that prove that I have read some posts in the past.
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