So, next time you find yourself tempted to ask why there aren’t more women in movement atheism, remember that the answer is that there is organized political resistance to including them. Then remember that you’re actively making choices that support that political resistance and defending your “right” to make those choices.
Why aren’t there more women in movement atheism? Because of you.
–Stephanie Zvan knows where the women went.
Zvan’s post is specifically about the organised atheist movement, but the quotes and experiences are pretty universal, whether you’re talking this or STEM fields or video games or comic books or, like, punk rock or whatever. There’s a pattern here, and it happens over and over and over again.
Because, really, I think when people (read: men) ask “why aren’t there more women in atheism/STEM/video games/comic books/whatever?” they really do just want someone to come along and reaffirm what they think they already know, which is that women have some kind of Magical Anti-[Atheism/STEM/Gaming/Comics/Whatever] Gene so the lack of their presence is just the Way Things Are as part of the Natural Order.1
These guys don’t actually want to listen to what women have to say, particularly when those things are all basically, “Guys were creepy patronizing douchebags so I left.”
It’s much easier to throw up your hands and say “oh, it’s natural, the wimminz just aren’t made for this, what can you do amirite?” than to actually have to look at–and potentially change–your own behaviour.
- See also: white people asking it about people of colour; straight people asking it about gay people; cis people asking it about trans people; able bodied and/or neurotypical people asking it about people with disabilities and/or the neurodiverse… On and on and on and on. [↩]