Benjamin Barrett gogaku at IX.NETCOM.COM
Tue Nov 24 23:20:15 UTC 2009

Well, I don't like it and I think a lot of others will agree with me that it does not seem a good fit.

Your mention of chiropractics and other issues brings this word even further outside of the realm of a good fit. I think there's a reasonable place for witchcraft, chiropractics, lomi lomi and a lot of other such beliefs.

Benjamin Barrett
Seattle, WA

On Nov 24, 2009, at 2:40 PM, Dave Wilton wrote:

> But whether you like it or not, "skeptic" is the non-religious term most
> commonly used within the community of "non-believers" for those who demand
> evidence for statements of belief. Skepticism goes beyond religion, to
> include such diverse topics as opposition to the anti-vaccine movement,
> homeopathy, chiropractic, holocaust denial, creationism, and all sorts of
> new-agey faith-based philosophies to name a few. Basically, skeptics are
> anti-woo. ("Woo" is a great term that hasn't gotten its due by dictionaries
> either.)  I haven't seen any dictionaries catch up to this sense of
> "skeptic" yet, but it is by far the most commonly used term in the so-called
> "skeptical community." (It's impossible to avoid self-referential terms when
> discussing this.)
> And no one doubts that religion is not a force within society. The
> skepticism is over the validity of religions' doctrinal beliefs, not the
> existence and social power of those beliefs. If they weren't powerful ideas,
> no one would care.
> -----Original Message-----
> From: American Dialect Society [mailto:ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU] On Behalf Of
> Alison Murie
> Sent: Tuesday, November 24, 2009 1:03 PM
> Subject: Re: amonokerism
> On Nov 24, 2009, at 2:46 PM, Benjamin Barrett wrote:
>> ---------------------- Information from the mail header
>> -----------------------
>> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
>> Poster:       Benjamin Barrett <gogaku at IX.NETCOM.COM>
>> Subject:      Re: amonokerism
> ----------------------------------------------------------------------------
> ---
>> Skeptic is another term I considered, but "I'm a skeptic" sounds to
>> me as though I'm skeptical about everything. Also, about "skeptic,"
>> my Mac dictionary says,
>> a person inclined to question or doubt all accepted opinions.
>> a person who doubts the truth of Christianity and other religions;
>> an atheist or agnostic.
>> I am not inclined to question or doubt the truth of religions. To
>> me, they seem so outrageously improbable, they aren't worth
>> considering. (They may be interesting to investigate as complexes of
>> thought or orientations of society, etc., but not plausible.)
>> BB
> ~~~~~~~~~~~~
> I also have trouble accepting any of these terms for myself, but while
> I do not believe in the objective, supernatural existence of a god, I
> certainly believe in the force of the idea of god in society.  In that
> sense religions merit some attention.  Religious beliefs animate some
> of the best as well as some of the very worst activities of mankind.
> The pernicious effects of some of these we can hardly deny the
> existence of.
> AM

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