[edit at bottom]
Yes, the title is Greek to me too!
This post will not be amusing, and you're welcome for that. It's easy to parody someone who so readily provides an endless stream of fodder. But this is a significant issue which requires--at least in my estimation--resolution.
Until recently, I have somehow or another managed to remain perfectly ignorant of the existence of one Rebecca Watson of skepchick notoriety. Why? I don't particularly notice talking heads of no consequence. If I have before the last month or so happened across her, she's apparently managed to be sufficiently useless to leave with me a memory. My specific and explicit purpose is to start a campaign to have Rebecca Twatson excluded from the selection of people who are paid to speak at our events. Her presence is a net drain in time and money. To make it clear: to have her at any event speaking by invitation entails the expenditure of her speaking fee, and the reduction in my attendance fee.
Skip to the end to see what I need from people who've long-known of Rebecca Twatson (to where the screen captures are located); the intervening text is explanation of why I consider this imperative - of course, it'll all be reduced to the fact that I'm white. And male. And hate all women. Let me be patent: I do not hate women. I am not attacking women. I am attacking you, Rebecca Twatson, for things you say and do, not because you exist and have a vagina.
To be clear, she is unimportant. She is, after all is said and done, just an unlettered charlatan who pretends to speak on behalf of people who do important work. Her only reason for notoriety is because of James Randi. I suppose that, without more, is unimportant and perhaps even perfectly ok. Every group needs entertainment; were she content to play the jester for our amusement, we'd have a different situation.
But thousands of people are listening to her. I can only surmise that a substantial proportion of these people take what she says as though her thoughts on science are of the slightest importance. Further, she hijacks a noble endeavor (well, several) to advance her own particular social and political goals. Not abjectly abhorrent I suppose. But she's a tactician of the lowest caliber.
Now we are met with a high school popularity contest where emotional exploitation has replaced conversation and progress. She is, of course, free to attend and speak in the same way anyone else is free to attend and speak: wait in line and maybe you'll get called on to ask a question to learn - you are not in a position to teach. Whatever reason there may have once been to give her a microphone and a billed slot evaporated in an instant when she abused that position to repress a dissident opinion. And this was in the basest fashion possible: to label her not only wrong, but wrong because of a hatred of women.
Stef McGraw has responded not in kind; her reaction at the event is the exemplar of decorum, professionalism, courtesy and maturity. Instead of being commended for being a thoughtful participant in a very important issue, she was labeled a woman hating cause of damage to her sisters the world over. And Rebecca Twatson hijacked a stacked audience to send a message: your thoughts are not welcome, and you better learn your place. To take what's she's been dealt with the poise and dignity she's demonstrated through this whole ordeal is the kind of character we should like to point to and say, "There. Be like that." Stef McGraw, you do credit to yourself, and though I'm happy to see people now know who you are, I'm saddened that it came about through an affront to the whole of our society.
Oppression of the free exchange of ideas is inexcusable. Not that it would matter since Twatson makes no attempt to ameliorate the situation; whatever might have been forgiven weeks ago has past its expiry. The symptoms she displays are the unfailing signs of a diseased sense of entitlement, and a corrupted society. It is never permissible to chill the exchange of ideas, let alone while standing in the guise of someone who's actually qualified to warrant attention as a thinker of any import.
This not a "feminist" issue. This is a human issue. People are being silenced because Rebecca Twatson's goal is to keep Rebecca Twatson in the spotlight; it butters her bread. Remember, her livelihood varies in direct proportion to her ability to remain publicly known and liked.
Remember, Rebecca Twatson is a communications major. This implies, presumably, she understands the methods of effectively persuading people to think exactly what she wants to them to think. Further, do not forget her job description: public figure. To be a public figure is no crime. To be invited to talk is similarly no crime. But to earn a seat at the table of invited speakers in an event like this is to ascend the ranks of a meritocracy. She does not meet that burden - being a dramatic attention seeking self-promoter is simply not good enough.
I am currently working on researching everything she's written and publicly said. This is a long process, so anyone who has long-known of her who might have some recommendations for good reading to help tear her asunder, please e-mail me.
I'm in the process of trying to verify her history on the JREF message boards, and the alleged fact that she was therefrom banned for, again, an abuse of power with respect to silencing people. I do not know this for certain, and I am not stating it as a fact; I am trying to determine its veracity. If you have information on that, please contact me.
In particular, consider her recitation of elevator guy who spoke to her, which was a no-no. Then consider this post from the JREF message board (if it is indeed her):
Compare this in relation to a man touching her on a train with his leg. She is demanding here a respect for her bubble (not touching, and she was in an enclosed space there too, cornered between him and the train's window). So, in that case, he was free to chat her up while she was cornered so long as he didn't touch her. Now, in the elevator incident, the gentleman did not touch her, did not corner her, and stayed out her bubble. And she doesn't seem generally opposed to being chatted up if this is anything to go by.
Now, if this was indeed her as I have some reason to think it is (but I'm not positive; the research isn't fully finished) I am absolutely convinced that Rebecca Twatson is trolling for attention since, apparently, this isn't a case of *a* man not knowing how to approach a woman in various situations. This is a situation of *a* man never knowing how to even approach Rebecca Twatson since she talks out of both sides of her ass as to what she demands in terms of being "propositioned".
Rebecca Twatson: you're a two bit ersatz charlatan; your fifteen minutes have expired and your hubris will shred you asunder like the cheap piñata you are.
You like kicking around from your bully pulpit. Well, howdy there; let's see how well you do kicking me around.
Rebecca Twatson delenda est!
[Edit: research continues. But I'm loving that she posed semi-nude in a calendar she created, refers to herself as the sexy skeptic and has no problem sexualizing and objectifying men]
[Edit 2: for an analysis of the actual event, please see this post which is related to this comment which in turn has a picture of the men in the bar. So, Rebecca Twatson, if you can manage, can either exculpate or inculpate which, if any, among these gentlemen is/was your attacker?