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Breaking News: Michael Shermer issues cease and desist order against PZ Myers

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[I’m not taking sides, but merely pointing out the infighting going on.]

PZ has till 2pm Pacific Standard Time today to comply with the letter sent from Shermer’s lawyers. A countdown clock has been established:

P.Z. Myers Happy Rape Accusation Humiliation Countdown Clock

In fine witch-hunting style, Myers then broadly solicited more anonymous rumors to back up his anonymous rumor, resulting in more people coming forward claiming Shermer raped them, tried to rape them, or filled their wine glass for nefarious purposes, including a fat LARP-y guy named Dallas Haugh who was fairly sure Michael Shermer raped him.

Shermer Sends Cease and Desist letter

PZ Myers received a cease and desist letter from Michael Shermer’s attorney asking him to remove the post containing the accusations and issue a retraction and apology. PZ initially posted this letter at http://freethoughtblogs.com/pharyngula/files/2013/08/shermerslawyerletter.pdf but removed it soon after posting it. Not surprisingly, the letter was downloaded and is now available for your perusal in many locations.

Read more: http://www.atheistrev.com/2013/08/shermer-sends-cease-and-desist-letter.html#ixzz2bxenT6c6

With due respect to victims of real sexual assault, I nevertheless filed this post under humor because of the behavior in the internet landscape in the aftermath of PZ’s original post.

HT: anonymous ID proponent

A little late here, I attend church because in addition to a desire to worship God, I get support for my faith from others. I get encouragement, and if there are disputes and disagreements, there are abundant apologies and debts forgiven. Nothing really surprising about that when all are inclined to receive their behavioral direction directly from a benevolent Creator Himself. If the church of Darwin ever gets institutionalized outside of (well... the educational institutions), we have here a glimpse of how it's going to get along. The Christian church has got along for two millennia - and the gates of hell have not defeated it, despite its many schisms. Any predictions here for the Organized Church of Darwin? CannuckianYankee
Thanks, bornagain, and anyway who would prefer to be the drunk driving his beater into a lamp post rather than the Nobelist even IF the drunk steals that particular show? News
correction: nothing EVER counts for anything ever. bornagain77
Well I appreciate your work News. And remember in God's world everything counts for something eventually, whereas in the atheistic world nothing every counts for anything ever. bornagain77
IS the ad money pouring in, Sal? Some of us would like to add one of those blog apps that show similar stories at the bottom. Saves work. But it probably costs money. Know what you mean, though. You sweat late at night/early in the morning over science stories and then atheists send legal letters to each other or other shenanigans - and steal the show. But what's new? A Nobelist could be explaining his big new discovery in your upstairs room and everyone would suddenly turn their attention to a drunk down on the street driving his beater into a lamp post. Just life. We press on. - O'Leary for News News
Wow, this terse, substance-free thread is getting more views than anything I've written over the last year! I guess tabloid stuff like this draws in readers. Note to self: sprinkle UD with news of PZ mischief from time to time just to keep things light, the web traffic flowing, and the ad money pouring in... scordova
PZ Myers just flushed himself down the toilet. He's looking at some serious legal entanglements. It looks like blogging can be dangerous to your mental health... Daniel King
Meh. If Shermer did what you think he did, P.Z., what's the big deal? After all, he was just following The Great Imperative of Survival of My Genes. What could possibly be wrong with that, and sez who? The law? Yeah well, you may feel differently, should you end up paying out the nose for a defamation judgment. I know it will be shocking, given your status as a veritable Internet demigod, to find out that the law's boundaries of right and wrong and truth fail to comport with your own, so widely admired. Uh. That said, a dollar to a doughnut Shermer actually did it... jstanley01
I'll say this much: rape is a horrible crime, and anyone who rapes another person should be sent to prison. However, one caveat: falsely accusing someone of rape and getting them sent to prison and possibly listed on a sexual offender registry (in the US, at least) is also a horrible crime, worthy of punishment including fines, public apology, and (potentially) jail time for slander and/or libel. A man who claims to be highly educated like Myers should know better than to pass along second- and third-hand information (in legalese, "hearsay") without verifying the facts. Barb
Not only does any care or concern about justice or truth only make sense if one is a theist, but whenever one presents an atheist with a rigorous and logical argument for that claim, they just shrug their shoulders and continue caring about justice and truth anyway!
Thank God for that. He looks after them even their stupidity! Better that, than being consistent. Ian Thompson
Wow -- those atheists are just pathetically deluded, aren't they? Not only does any care or concern about justice or truth only make sense if one is a theist, but whenever one presents an atheist with a rigorous and logical argument for that claim, they just shrug their shoulders and continue caring about justice and truth anyway! How utterly ridiculous they all are -- completely and utterly oblivious to their own irrationality! Kantian Naturalist
Sal, it sounds like the Sherm didn't understand Billski's advice. He was supposed to start a row with Billski (a fistfight in the bar might do it ... ?) He WASN'T supposed to start ... well, whatever it was he started. And NOW look ... Anyway, we don't even know if he did any of the things described, but he did start something ... - O'Leary for News News
The current drama reminded me of this (not that it applies):
A few years back, well-known skeptic Michael Shermer and I were speakers at Baylor’s The Nature of Nature conference. During evening refreshments, we discussed how we could generate funds for our respective causes—... We agreed that we should start a highly visible campaign against each other....Having escalated the conflict between us, we could then go to our natural constituencies and urge them to fund each of us against the other. Bill Dembski http://www.designinference.com/documents/2003.11.Gross_Response.htm
Now more news regarding one of Shermer's alleged victims Dallas Haugh https://uncommondesc.wpengine.com/news/happy-atheist-pz-myers-rescues-creative-pooper-from-suicide/ scordova
He'd have to go some to beat the humour of you lot! Axel
Watching these two Giants of ...(ahem)...Reason flail away at each other for ultimately no apparent reason in blind amoral outrage is all the proof any honest skeptic might need to conclude that there is, indeed, a God (with a delicious sense of humor.)_ Tom Graffagnino
The coming atheist movement crack-up? The first split seemed to be between angry feminists and, er, lonely atheist males. Seems that other large fault lines are appearing. It's all very distressing I'm sure, now excuse me while I go make some more popcorn. steveO
This feels like an episode of the Twilight Zone! Without taking sides or even commenting on what may or may not be true here, it is a bit odd to see these two well-known atheists in a snit at each other over a matter of justice. Clearly each thinks the other guilty of some moral wrong. But why? PZ thinks some notion of moral justice is served by calling out Shermer on these allegations/rumors (again, not at all commenting on whether they are true or false); Shermer thinks some moral justice is served by getting Myers to cease and desist his postings about it. So where we stand is: both believe there is no God or gods of any sort. Both accept that the cosmos and everything in it is the end result of the blind, purposeless forces of matter and energy interacting over eons of time through chance and necessity. That would include each of their thought that the other is guilty of a moral wrong. But since their notion of that moral wrong is itself the end result of the aforementioned blind, purposeless process, on what basis do either them stake a claim for justice? The cognitive dissonance here is so thick you could stand a spoon in it! DonaldM
A fine example of how lacking belief in a sky fairy would lead to a better, more moral world. May the Flying Spaghetti Monster shower these two leading Brights with blessings and more. lpadron

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