Un-Skepchick: More Mean Girls of Skepticism

I suppose my last post hit a nerve with Skepchick founder, Rebecca Watson, with her response as a post titled “Sara Mayhew Returns to Spread More Lies” (I’m not sure where I’ve returned from). Wow, got my name right in the headline. The post is pretty vitriolic. She goes as far as to use the old “she’s just jealous” trope, implying I want to become like her:

“I’m a bit torn, because I do worry that giving Mayhew attention will only encourage her obsession with me until we reach a Single White Female-situation where she dyes her hair red, buys a pair of Warby Parkers, and develops a cutting sense of humor in an attempt to kill and replace me”

This is simply another example of the negative attitude Skepchicks like Watson, Anders, Roth, and the other faux-feminist, faux-skeptic bloggers included in their group (they scooped up some women who are actually talented and have real careers and accomplishments, like Nicole Gugliucci and Debbie Goddard).

The Mean Girl bullying appears in their supporters as well.


“The SWF thing, ha! Sadly it seems like an apt prediction, she really seems to need help. It’s like she’s the Lindsay Lohan of skepticism, complete with enablers apparently.”

What Katie is doing is reducing me to a character (Lindsay Lohan) so that it’s easy to dehumanize me. She’s using the “she’s crazy” trope, using the common disingenuous concern that I “need help”. This are common tactics used by women against other women. We’ve seen it from Rebecca Watson, Amy Roth, Elyse Anders, and Melody Hensley; Founder of Skepchick, Mad Art Lab founder, founder of Women Thinking Free, and CFI DC Director. They call women “chill girls”, “sister punishers”, “Stepford wives”, and use sexist tropes like “she’s obsessed with me”, “she’s just jealous”, “she’s crazy/needs help”, “she just wants attention from men”.

Watson tries to point out that Dr. Hall and Carol Tavris do indeed have work focused on women’s issues, in response to my comment that they are examples of women in secularism/skepticism who rarely focus on speaking about women’s issues. Perhaps, I was simply unclear about the difference; Dr. Hall and Tavris are accomplished professionals who talk about broader topics that relate to gender studies and the science related to it. They don’t spend their time on anonymous trolls, talking about MRA boogeymen, or rage tweeting. What Skepchick does is neither skepticism nor feminism; it’s manufactroversy and blog posts that are little more than glorified comments.

So continue supporting the work of real role models, who do real work, and don’t focus on mean girl drama:

Sharon Hill

Barbara Drescher

Harriett Hall

Carol Tavris

Rachael Dunlop

Cherry Teresa

Wendy Hughes

Bridget Gaudette

Emily Dietle

Miranda Celeste Hale

Deborah Feldman

Kylie Sturgess

Robynn McCarthy

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