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TheAmazingAtheist

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A man ravaged by "foot-in-mouth disease".
Their ass to your brain
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Thomas James "TJ" Kirk III (also known as TheAmazingAtheist) is an atheist vlogger known for his aggressive style and criticisms of feminism. Originally, he attacked creationist arguments — sometimes with a toxicity that people on both sides of the debate found objectionable. TJ has adopted an unremittingly anti-feminist stance in his social criticism over the years, seeing feminism as somehow being a great danger and harmful to society. Ironically, as a result of these views, TJ's views and character is often defended by cliques that he himself is not a member of — MRAs, NRxionaries and just generally the type of people who whine about "SJWs" — due to said groups percieving an overlap in opinion between TJ and themselves.

On politics[edit]

TJ previously espoused libertarian doctrines such as "personal responsibility"; however, after his father died in January 2008 and he saw people queuing for the emergency room, he began to make a shift to liberalism, believing that social programs are sometimes necessary to help the needy. The focus of his videos gradually expanded to address political and social issues. He has also deleted some of the older videos from his libertarian period because of YouTube's change in policy making was made easier for his videos to be flagged.[1]

TJ has spoken out virulently against the idea of white guilt as perpetrated by modern conservatives.[2] TJ also trashed the shitfest over Star Wars VII's featuring of a black character, which racists decried as white genocide.[3]

In 2012, TJ launched a campaign to raise funds for an organization that works to bring clean water to those who need it. [4]He set out to reach a goal of $10,000; in total, the campaign raised $12,765.[5]

TJ doesn't like "SJWs". He argues that they killed nuance,[6] which led to some humor.[7]

TJ supported Bernie Sanders during the 2016 Democratic Primary,[8] opposing Hillary Clinton as a corrupt insider who lies about everything. [9] In July of 2016, TJ announced his support of Gary Johnson,[10] hoping to see him run on the democratic ticket.[11] He confessed to actually preferring Jill Stein, yet still deciding to feel the Johnson anyways, as long as the more viable Johnson stayed ahead of Stein in the polls.[12] A few days later he backpedaled on Johnson, exclaiming "Fuck. Jill Stein 2016".[13]

In September of 2016, TJ produced a video in which he gave reasons why his viewers might want to consider voting for Trump.[14] This created confusion in those who believed he genuinely supported Trump. In November of 2016, TJ released a similar video — but this time, on Hillary — in which he clarified that both the Trump and Clinton videos were satirical in their endorsements of both candidates, his actual stance being that "[Trump and Hillary] are both symptoms of the same disease".[15]

On society[edit]

TJ really doesn't like otherkin or other people for that matter.[16][17]

Bullying[edit]

One controversial video is "Bullies," where he expressed the view that "being a bully doesn't make you a monster, and being bullied doesn't make you a victim," and called suicidal bullying victims "weak."[18] This led to a very mixed reaction amongst his audience; he responded to the intense criticism with a follow-up video, "Macho Trolling."[19]

This controversial attitude was again revealed in his view of the story of Amanda Todd, a teenage girl who committed suicide in October 2012, not long after posting a video on Youtube detailing her story of being subjected to a sustained campaign of blackmail, stalking and bullying.[20][21] Upon hearing of Amanda's suicide, TJ posted a picture on his Tumblr blog of him holding a sign, similar to the manner in which Amanda Todd did in her video, saying "I am the other hundreds of thousands of people who died today other than Amanda fucking Todd."[22] A subsequent post had him dismissing her in light of unnamed people who died in "far worse" situations:[23]

And unlike Amanda, ... these people died against their will. They fought with their last ounce of courage to survive, and they still died. I find their deaths more worthy of tribute than some spoiled teenage girl that offed herself at the first sign of adversity.

That said, in TJ posted a video in June 2013[24] in defense of Coy Mathis, a transgender girl who was being bullied online by conservative websites for having won a court case giving her the right to use the girl's bathroom. This suggest TJ's position is nuanced.

Vegetarianism[edit]

TJ dislikes vegetarianism and has devoted several videos to criticizing it.[25] He has stated that a morality that does not account for human nature is flawed,[26] and has expressed annoyance at "the way that a simple dietary choice is elevated to this great moral decision".[27] He has gone as far as to accuse most vegans of feigning their ideology in order to appear unique and holier-than-thou.[28]

Contrary to his previous beliefs, by June 16, 2015 he had became a vegetarian, in his own words, "to impress a girl".[29][30]

By 2016 he has announced that he is no longer a vegetarian, and that he didn't enjoy it.

On upskirt photography[edit]

The "Sex" segment of TJ's book Scumbag: Musings of a Subhuman closes with the chapter "Tits vs. Ass: The Final Showdown," which features a helpful comparison chart of pros and cons, with such charming observations as tits being "hard to stare at without the girl noticing," while "you can take a picture [of her ass] and she won't be any the wiser."[31] We can only hope that this was indeed the final showdown of this subject.

Feminism[edit]

TJ "believe[s] in equality between men and women legally and in all ways. Every opportunity a man has a woman should have."[32] That said, he really really doesn't like feminism.[33][34][35][36][37][38] Examples:

  • He argued that female supremacy is feminism's real agenda,[39] which stems from the recent wave of new-age feminism that many have found to focus more on playing the role of a victim and aggressive attacks towards those who challenge them.
  • He once compared feminism to the KKK, suggesting that it had regressed into something pitiable, much like the KKK, and then proceeded to apologize... to the KKK.[40] In this, he falls into the predictable MRA trap of decrying feminism as a big, scary movement which is simultaneously (and paradoxically) ineffectual and lame.
  • TJ characterizes the feminist movement as being overly politically correct, insensitive to men, and seems to believe that Tumblr represents some gigantic central hub of the feminist hivemind.[41]
  • TJ uploaded a video called "There's No Rape Culture"[42], where he did a point-by-point "rebuttal" of RationalWiki's rape culture article. Said rebuttal consisted entirely of personal anecdotes, insults against feminists as a group, and the MRA strawman of false rape accusers. Ironically, he described how rape culture actually works almost perfectly in his follow-up video, but damn if he's ever going to let those hairy feminists be right.[43]
  • He also did exact duplicates of Thunderf00t's criticisms of Anita Sarkeesian, complete with the same overtone of "women really are weak".[44]
  • TJ also believes that women are less funny than men, because Christopher Hitchens.[45]

TJ instead claims to support egalitarianism. He has made numerous videos claiming much of modern society is biased against men, often via tenuous-at-best examples.[46][47] TJ was a frequent commenter on the MensRights subreddit for years and was lined up to speak at A Voice for Men's 2014 conference, though it fell through at the last moment.[48]

Rape isn't fatal[edit]

As an example of his respect and care for his fellow humans, in his pompous and self-indulgent e-book Scumbag: Musings of a Subhuman (2007), TJ writes:[49]

Rape isn't fatal. So imagine my indignation when I saw a chatroom called "Rape Survivors." Is this supposed to impress me? Someone fucked you when you didn't want to be fucked and you're amazed that you survived? Unless he used a chainsaw instead of his dick, what's the big deal? I don’t mean to be horrendously offensive and insensitive here, but everyone survives rape. The word survivor applies to people who are alive after being stabbed 73 times with an ice pick or mauled by rabid wolverines, not to a woman who gets dick when she doesn't want it. Just because you got raped, you have to rape the English language? You vindictive bitch! Also, don't you ever get tired of being the victim? How many failed relationships are you going to blame on a single violation of your personal space?

In his video "Rape, Feminism, and the Amazing Atheist" TJ attempts to explain his rationale behind writing this:[50]

This was a piece designed to motivate rape victims to not allow their victimhood to oppress them - to encourage them not to dwell on past events and move on with their lives. Why is it worded so offensively? Because when I wrote it I was a stupid twenty-two year old who had at this point only ever socialized with other people on online message boards, where this was simply how we talked. Not to mention it's supposed to be a humorous piece, in the same vein of shock humor as Bill Maher's party costume. In retrospect, I too find the piece overly callous and I would not write it today. But I did write it, and I don't apologize for it. It was how I felt at the time, and I really don't think the message of moving on from trauma is a negative one. I've been told by several rape victims that this piece actually motivated them to move on with their lives. I have yet to be told by one victim that it increased their trauma.

In the following section, TJ recalls a female acquaintance who rejected and mocked a guy for his small penis size. The anecdote culminates in TJ's hilarious punchline:[51]

I told her, "You’re lucky it wasn't me. I’d have busted your fucking nose and raped you."

Reddit meltdown[edit]

On February 2012, in a thread on the MensRights subreddit about a distasteful username on a feminist board, he made a "joke" about how he wanted to violently rape one of its users. When he was informed the person in question was an actual rape victim and called out by said person for his abusive language and lack of respect for people with post-traumatic stress disorder, he complained about the very concept of trigger warnings and posted further graphic descriptions of how he would rape her again in a deliberate attempt to make her relive her trauma.

Choice statements include "I will make you a rape victim if you don't fuck off." and "I think we should give the guy who raped you a medal. I hope you fucking drown in rape semen, you ugly, mean-spirited cow."[52][53]

Supposedly this was some sort of clever satire of... something.[54] He was taken to task by PZ Myers and others for his misogyny.[55][56][57]

TJ made the following private apology (emphasis added).[58] However, he returned to a belittling tone when asked to apologize publicly. He did this on YouTube much later.[59]

TJ: My comments to you were wrong and I regret them, not just because I’m getting shit for them but because they were genuinely out of line. I was angry and I said stupid things, thinking I was making a point. I realize now that the point I was trying to make was totally overridden by the crudeness and the cruelty with which I expressed myself. For my behavior, I apologize. I realize that you probably will not believe the sincerity of my, or will not accept it, but I apologize nonetheless.

To TJ: I’d be more willing to accept your apology if you were willing to post it in a public space, on your tumblr or on your Facebook page or as a response to the video you made complaining about us. I do not, at this point, forgive you in any way, shape or form. If you are truly remorseful I would encourage you to make a public apology not only to me, but to the others that you might have hurt with your graphic descriptions of rape. Your comments were cruel, it’s true, but you have a chance to make things a little bit better by pointing out to your fanbase that what you did was unacceptable.

TJ: I don’t normally let other people bully me into doing what they want. Sorry, but a private apology is the best I’m willing to do. I have already publicly stated that what I said was wrong.

Anti-misogyny[edit]

All that said, TJ has also produced several videos criticizing misogynists Jefferson Bethke,[60] Jesse Lee Peterson,[61] and Todd Akin.[62]

He has also started a fundraiser for The International Women's Health Coalition which has raised over $120K, though the wording of fundraiser page (such as "daring to actually help women" and "bringing true feminism to woman [sic] and girls who suffer actual oppression and inequality") suggests this was at least partially motivated by spite towards feminists such as Anita Sarkeesian who focus on gender within culture.[63]

Nutpicking victim[edit]

See the main article on this topic: Nutpicking

TheAmazingAtheist is perceived as the walking embodiment of an impacted tooth, both by the atheist community and by religious conservatives looking for convenient examples of famous atheists being assholes.[64][65] In addition to the gaffes quoted above, he is equally tactless toward his debate opponents: other notable cases include his attacks on DonExodus2, a then-Christian who defended the theory of evolution, and Coughlan666, who said the atheists might "come around" to NightVisionPhantom while he was having a difficult time of his life, which TJ misinterpreted as an attempt to use NightVisionPhantom's vulnerability to deconvert him to atheism.[citation needed]

For a while, TJ made videos on Internet commentary site That Guy With the Glasses under the name of "Distressed Watcher." He wasn't exactly welcomed by the community with open arms, who petitioned to have him removed as soon as he was announced. He caused some in-fighting over the promotion of his videos, where he publicly claimed that his videos were usually at the bottom of the new videos list if even listed at all. After his video "The Top Ten Gayest Music Videos" was rejected for publication on the site, he half-assed his content and missed a couple deadlines until he was ultimately let go.[66] The site has since erased all his content and none of its contributors have maintained any ties with him.

E-begging and scams[edit]

TJ is an e-beggar[67] and some of his e-begging campaigns have been widely deemed scams.[68] TJ's scams include:

  • Creationist Roadtrip: In 2008, TJ made many YouTube videos in which he asked for money for a roadtrip, during which he would meet and interview famous atheists and creationists and produce a documentary.[69] TJ took thousands of dollars in donations over several months. The trip never materialized. TJ has outright denied memory of plans for this road-trip.[70] The old version (visible through the Wayback Machine) includes now-deleted embedded videos about the roadtrip, a manifesto, donation buttons, a photoshoot, and various banners.[71]
  • FreeSpeechVids: In 2009, TJ proposed a website called FreeSpeechVids -- supposed to compete with YouTube, albeit with more lax restrictions. TJ ran a BlogTV session, in which he and friends asked for donations, and received thousands of dollars. In the session, people were kicked out of the room for donating but not quite donating "enough"; more problematically, one of TJ's friends threatened to shoot himself (unless they got more donations), threatened to cut himself with a knife (unless they got more donations), and actually cut himself on camera (unless they got more donations). Yes, really.[72] TJ did not know his friend was being serious (he had suicidal tendencies), and thought it was a stunt to get money. FSV did materialize, and was online for 16 months. However, it fell far short due to low bandwidth, lack of a dedicated server, and a lack of sufficient security. Upon the closure of the site, TJ called all its members "fags"[73] and made no attempt to refund donation money. Both LodeRunner, a developer of the site,[74] and TJ's best friend accused TJ of misappropriating the donations.[75] TJ later stated:[76]
    I don’t know how this notion began that Free Speech Vids never happened. Free Speech Vids was an active and fully operational website for more than a year. It closed down because we just couldn’t make it work. It failed because it simply wasn’t a good business model. Instead of focusing on entertaining content and a high quality website, it was focused on free expression. Unfortunately, most of the people who freely expressed themselves on it just weren’t very much fun to watch.
  • Not Productive: In August 2011, TJ reported he had started work on "Not Productive", another video hosting site, due to launch later that month.[77] In early 2012 TJ started a big donation drive, explaining that the idea was to showcase quality videomakers that get "buried under all the YouTube crap". NP was to host its videos on Blip or YouTube and the comments on Facebook.[78] TJ set a donation goal of $20,000; in the end, it received over $17,000.[76] In January 2013, 1.5 years after the planned launch date, the site became publicly accessible for approximately 2 weeks. However, it was plagued with various glitches, was very basic in design, and all of its videomakers were already popular. As of June 2013, almost 2 years past the planned launch date, the site was not up in any official capacity. The webpage now redirects to a a YouTube channel,[79] which TJ claimed was the first phase of the plan all along.[80][81][82] It is extremely doubtful that TJ spent more than $17,000 on a website that was up for less than a month.

MGTOW[edit]

On Jan 10, 2016 TJ made a video where he answered several questions from his audience including his opinion on MGTOW. While in a typical TJ fashion, using the opportunity to decry feminism which he claimed largely "hates men", TJ condemned the MGTOW movement as "dumb", "silly" and "stupid". TJ announced that most women were okay and declared that MGTOW baselessly saw women as a threat.[83]

On this very article[edit]

In 2012, TJ wrote:[84]

[Q:] "Why is your 'RationalWiki' article so vile and slanderous towards you?" [A:] Because it used to be really nice and complimentary, so some trolls found it and trashed it. Henceforth, they’ve prevented anyone from fixing it, and because trolls tend to have twice the dedication of fans, they win all such encounters.

See also[edit]

External links[edit]

References[edit]

  1. https://youtu.be/23HppqkAZp4?t=4624
  2. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W0wI-4599k0
  3. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wmgp6fUrMAA
  4. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BTpbIfkICM0
  5. http://mycharitywater.org/p/campaign?campaign_id=32753
  6. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eFjndBbLDZc
  7. https://www.reddit.com/r/BestOfOutrageCulture/comments/47mfzg/we_apparently_killed_a_concept/
  8. Bernie or Bust
  9. A Plea to Hillary Voters.. Please Don't
  10. https://twitter.com/amazingatheist/status/757080515421896704
  11. https://twitter.com/amazingatheist/status/757082186310881280
  12. https://twitter.com/amazingatheist/status/757081752217280513
  13. https://twitter.com/amazingatheist/status/758204600495120384
  14. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MufUzn_xZH4
  15. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DNp19krSPr8
  16. Otherkin are fucking crazy
  17. WTF is an Otherkin?
  18. Bullies
  19. Macho Trolling
  20. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vOHXGNx-E7E&feature=plcp
  21. http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/world-news/amanda-todd-teenager-commits-suicide-1376976
  22. http://amazingatheist.tumblr.com/post/33484072757
  23. http://amazingatheist.tumblr.com/post/33499413430/why-do-you-suddenly-feel-more-important-than-amanda
  24. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DTxtYJrCOA8
  25. [1] playlist of TJ's vids on vegetarianism
  26. [2] Tumblr post on the morality of vegetarianism
  27. http://amazingatheist.tumblr.com/post/1269255070/why-does-vegetarianism-veganism-bother-you-so-much
  28. [3] Tumblr post on vegans
  29. http://amazingatheist.tumblr.com/post/121654540376/whyd-you-go-vegetarian
  30. http://amazingatheist.tumblr.com/post/121702551416/are-you-planning-on-being-vegetarian-forever-it
  31. Scumbag: Musings of a Subhuman, page 96.
  32. https://youtu.be/AVQfJKg4EIY?t=598
  33. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RPNumWFhxH8
  34. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sP2XTYQHdOY
  35. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nihBhgYHDVk
  36. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xlSh6wBXePM
  37. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1KQQ1bzQn0k
  38. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WOqXQ_MVXUo
  39. Some criticism of TJ's views on feminism
  40. TheAmazingAtheist compares feminists to the Ku Klux Klan
  41. A Q&A video from November 28th, 2013, where he explains his views on feminism. Further in, he talks a bit about misandry.
  42. There's No Rape Culture
  43. The End of Rape
  44. "Who's the Damsel Now?", where he somehow thinks YouTube comments count as reasoned debate, and "REFUTING ANITA SARKEESIAN's "Damsel in Distress: Part 2", where he even trots out ye olde "be thankful us MEN rescue your ungrateful ass".
  45. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w2NmbJ5iftM&t=213
  46. Sexism Against Men DOES Exist!, which is just an example of a legal oversight without specific oppressive intent.
  47. It's Only Sexist When Men Do It, where he claims men are not allowed to joke about violence against women while ignoring that men like Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck say horrifying things without even a token attempt at dark comedy. Context is important for any incident.
  48. [4]; screenshot.
  49. Scumbag: Musings of a Subhuman, page 90.
  50. [5]
  51. Scumbag: Musings of a Subhuman, page 93.
  52. I love how the whiny feminist morality brigade upvotes a user named "ICumWhenIKillMen." Screencap
  53. PZ Myers, "Not-So-Amazing Atheist Implodes"
  54. "PZ Liars", by that Fat Atheist.
  55. The not-so-Amazing Atheist self-immolates
  56. Horrible people don’t realize they’re horrible. This includes links to screen-caps of material that has been taken down in many places.
  57. TheAmazingAtheist’s Misogynist Meltdown
  58. We Don’t Need You as an Atheist Spokesperson, TJ, yetanotheratheist.com
  59. Youtube apology.
  60. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jv2SSGSJrB4
  61. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j8GM_OF_2ng
  62. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p6EcZGfSO98
  63. https://www.crowdrise.com/extraordinary-people-daring-to-actually-help-women-
  64. The “Amazing” Atheist Suicide Bombs Himself
  65. The Amazing Rape-Celebrating Atheist
  66. His video and this Tumblr post, which goes to show how much of a non-event this all was.
  67. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sgNHwHM3bhw#t=2m39
  68. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NQIK8tiCBsA
  69. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uAdc131dy7E&t=158
  70. http://www.reddit.com/r/IAmA/comments/kf9bc/im_theamazingatheist_ama/c2jxgcf
  71. http://web.archive.org/web/20090302095358/http://www.myspace.com/motherfuckermanifesto
  72. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VeiIpHPdgzc
  73. https://encyclopediadramatica.rs/File:ScreenShot003.gif
  74. tj is incompetent.... he takes all the money for himself. He doesn't know how to properly make a good video site for people, and he never bought enough bandwidth. He・ソ also never bought a dedicated server. He also never thought to get a security system from the beginning so he wouldn't be hacked....
  75. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ud4pV9roNJ8
  76. 76.0 76.1 https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/not-productive#/
  77. http://web.archive.org/web/20110807045254/http://thatfatatheist.com/bio/
  78. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OTdMZPLokIo
  79. notproductive.com
  80. http://amazingatheist.tumblr.com/post/53726425086/youre-the-only-person-ive-seen-who-does-these-videos]
  81. https://www.youtube.com/user/NotProductive
  82. https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/not-productive#/updates
  83. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jEl1U8D51O4
  84. http://amazingatheist.tumblr.com/post/25118662907/why-is-your-rationalwiki-article-so-vile-and