Update: I’ve made available a longer excerpt of the original talk to provide better context. Also a transcription has been added.
Jen McCreight wrote about something that was said by author David Eller during his second talk at the West Coast Rapture RAM this past weekend in Oakland, CA. Eller has offered an apology following that posting.
The controversy? While presenting a slide listing different various atheist groups and contributors including Laci Green and Cristina Rad, Eller made the tongue-in-cheek comment, “Nobody minds pretty Romanian blondes… I watch a lot of her blogs to learn.” This moment in his 50-minute speech was met with laughter, but some in the audience were apparently not laughing.
In her blog, Greta Christina also raised issue with a subsequent suggestion by Eller to have a repeat of “Boobquake“, an event that McCreight created last year. One audience member is heard saying “Boobs are good” in response. (This can be heard in the longer excerpt below.)
Having been there for the event, I captured the audio of what was said, both Eller’s comment in context of his talk and McCreight’s question/comment followed by Eller’s response. I present it below so you may hear and judge it for yourself. Do you think there is sexism here?
- David Eller Discusses Atheist Media (mp3) – longer excerpt
- David Eller References Pretty YouTubers (mp3) – short clip from the above
- Jen McCreight Comments And Eller Responds (mp3)
Transcriptions as best as can be determined are below (thanks to Jesse for helping out):
Please watch the following Special Comment and know that we all ultimately want the same thing for all.
Health Care Reform: The Fight Against Death
I have just a few comments on today’s “strange, bizarre, and rambling” resignation announcement from Sarah Palin. I’m happy to see her ostensibly leave politics, but this speech had too many strange moments for me not to comment.
Her reasoning for stepping down early, rather than fulfilling the remainder of her term, included an explanation that some lame duck governors have a lot of fun traveling while continuing to draw paychecks. Instead of avoiding responsibility like these “others”, she’s going to save the taxpayers millions of dollars by stepping down early. Even if being a leech is the case for other lame duck politicians, why does she behave like she has no other choice but to step down? Is there someone forcing her to “milk it” for a paycheck until it’s over? Can she do nothing beneficial in office before the term is up?
In reference to some alleged media attacks on her one-year old son, she said, “The world needs more Trigs, not fewer.” Nothing against Trig, but why exactly would we prefer more kids with Down syndrome? Remind me again how that would be beneficial. I would just assume that, like any disorder, it is something that parents and society can manage, but also not something you’d prefer more of. If I had written the speech, I might have simply said the world needs to be more empathetic.
And, of course, the number of times that prayer and God were mentioned is cringe-worthy. But that’s nothing new.