Valerie Tarico on The Thinking Atheist – Purity Cults in the Struggle for Justice

The Thinking Atheist – The Righteous and the Woke: Purity Cults in the Struggle for Justice (1 hr, 7 min. audio)

In this crazy world, how often has a passionate desire for justice caused us to oversimplify complex problems, ignore details that don’t validate us, and vilify all who dare to disagree? Has “Woke Culture” sometimes exhibited a dogmatic, even religious, attitude toward the worthy and the unworthy? And is it even possible to have a reasonable conversation about this in the Era Of Online Outrage? Valerie Tarico joins Seth Andrews for just such a conversation.

About Valerie Tarico

Seattle psychologist and writer. Author - Trusting Doubt and Deas and Other Imaginings. Founder -
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6 Responses to Valerie Tarico on The Thinking Atheist – Purity Cults in the Struggle for Justice

  1. thesseli says:

    Reblogged this on Thesseli.


  2. I think that in the frustration about Woke excesses, sometimes these real substantive difference between left and right get lost.

    What Seth and I didn’t address on this show is why, despite these discouraging social and ideological dynamics, we both continue to lean left. Here is some of my list: The best evidence available tells us climate change is human-caused and urgent. Market failures are real. Trickle-down economics has produced greater inequality, which has been growing for decades. Inequality is a factor in social instability. Social democracy (the combination of capitalist enterprise with a strong social safety net) appears to have produced greater average wellbeing than other economic systems. Investments in diplomacy reduce war. Reproductive empowerment is fundamental to individual political and economic participation. The Religious Right more so than classical liberals control social policy on the Right. Government, when functioning properly, is the way we do things that we can’t very well do alone.

    Liked by 1 person

    • bscritic says:

      Great discussion with Seth Andrews. As you mention above, there is much more that could have been said. That is further evidence of your point that most issues are complex. And yet, some issues are already backed by plenty of evidence, and that is why I, also, am on the left. An argument without evidence, or, worse yet, an argument based on false, inaccurate, or deliberately misleading “facts” harms all of us. Faith and superstitious beliefs are not reasonable grounds for knowledge and sound decisions.

      Thanks for your reasonable articles.


  3. Warm winter greetings, dear lady. I’d be interested in seeing this topic approached as a panel discussion at a future Wisdom Commons Conference which I am now proposing for your consideration. The dialogue at present is fascinating and long overdue, don’t you agree? Having the skill and ability to impart clarity where what very well should be simple and harmonious, rather than complex and convoluted, is the call of our age. I’ll be brief. I believe humanity itself is the innocent victim of a recurring and unprovoked attack; an assault which noted philosophers, theologians, orators and the like have reasoned is a condition of suffering we are to accept as a normal state of affairs. I’ve respectfully disagreed, and my reaction to disturbing world news reports has been to quietly cocoon for reflection. I’ve emerged as a strategist; I now integrate short stories with logistics to move minds comfortable residing in denial into the harsh reality we must be willing to face to arrive at resolution. Independent research and time-intensive studies have enabled me to determine the root cause of the issues that continuously plague mankind. I began with a daring evaluation of political & religious ideology I‘d never thought to question. The evidence in support of the theory I’ve tested is as strong and conclusive as the cup of coffee I now sip: The standards presided over by warring men, and the temperamental god in whose name they’d warred, have proved failed today. The challenge we are facing is a stubborn and immoral persistence in that perceived failure and its impact on humanity as a whole. I am made uncomfortable by thoughts of the graves, the goods, and the garbage of over seven billion people—as well as past and future generations of billions—creeping toward my doorstep. There is a more responsible way to live. Isn’t it time we begin to Define the Era of Resolution? A computer module open to worldwide input to house known problems and recommended solutions has been advised. ~In kindness, LTW

    P.S. I am personally far from being an atheist. I would be pleased if you would permit the following excerpt from my writings to be shared with you: “Ah! But, does the god whose contested leadership you have called into question exist?” a doubting reader asks. “He lives,” I reply. “With certainty, he resides in the minds of his followers, and there is where I introduce myself and my intent.” I approach cautiously with the biblical passage “Thou shalt not kill” marked for reference. This basic principle follows the god’s torment of a loving father whom he asks to kill his son as a sacrificial
    offering. Abraham is stopped in the midst of the murderous act by an angel, and the cruel deity accepts the bizarre offering of a dead animal instead of young Isaac. I have read more. The tale of Job, in which an entire family is lost in one of several sadistic acts the god authorizes as a test of faith, leaves me perplexed and opposed; as does the approval of the pain and torment of his own son—murdered for the wrongdoing of others—again, as a sacrifice unto himself.


  4. Following the thread. Great topic.


  5. Well aren’t you a most gracious host? I have thoroughly enjoyed my visit. I’ve a few other sites on my list which seem to be open to healthy dialogue and engagement, and so I must bid you a fond farewell. As regards your interview with Seth, we agree: As is often said, “When persons representing a culture—including religious culture—begin to hold conversations with one another as opposed to speaking at one another” … I, too, see the offense … A certain persona has become detrimentally comfortable righteously opining without possessing an ounce of respect, humility or understanding. The conscientious decision to take a position of defense when his/her mind is introduced to a truth not found in a bible (be that a religious work or a text book selection from their chosen field of study) is an all too common fallback. We must engage with those able to grasp logic—which does not necessitate holdings in a Library of Congress busting at the seams with reams of justification—and leave staid minds behind for now. We do not just set a course on tables. Food for thought? Not only has the course been set as an offering for discussion; the course has been set in the direction of a harmonious future all should be excited to witness manifest itself. Where we are headed cannot be predicted based upon the standards we’ve been taught to accept as our only recourse. ~LTW

    “We wondered why it was so inconceivable: Our ancestors, innocents warred against in an unprovoked attack, have birthed descendants who in the natural order continue to advise and counsel a more proper and correct future.”


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