Happy Thanksgiving and Giving Thanks
This is just a short note to you, my Substack readers, for joining this little community. There is no doubt it’s been a very weird year for me, a kind of awakening and a realignment that has caused me to rethink my own beliefs.
This isn’t a popular Substack. Usually, people come here to figure out more about this crazy lady they encountered on Twitter. She’s saying what? She’s talking about what?
Whatever I’m doing on Twitter generally drives people here, for better or worse. Half of the people admire my courage. Half of them want to convince me I’m wrong. But I’ll take either of those over a mob chasing after me and trying to get me declared a witch. That isn’t fun.
I feel compelled, somehow, to put stuff out there. Probably the way to survive right now is to lay low, to keep my head down and shut up. I’m not very good at that, it turns out. Part of it is just my own nature. When I was a kid I remember driving around with stepdad and I was asking questions. He stopped the car and turned around and said, “if you ask one more question I’m going to punch you in the mouth.”
I did stop asking HIM questions that day. But I never stopped asking questions. They just pop up in my mind. A lifetime of my brain saying WHY. It has taken me down endless rabbit holes, from the Salem Witch trials to World War II, to Joseph McCarthy, to female homesteaders, to people who climb Mount Everest to the best way to bake bread, to how to take photos with a DSLR camera, to climate change, and yes, sadly, to politics. WHY WHY WHY. Always with the why.
I remember being a teenager and my own being, or consciousness popped in my head. One day, I just went from living my life as a slightly fretful and worried kid who grew up all over Southern California to being a stoner in my youth, to being a drama geek in high school — and it hit me. I just said to myself, “me.” What is that? What is “me”? Why am I here? What am I doing here? And that would eventually lead me to a human evolution class at UCLA which really did change my life. And down the rabbit hole I went. Science, and especially evolutionary science, scratched a deep itch to answer, or come closer to answering, questions I had.
How have we gotten to a place in 2021 where we are pressuring scientists to mute their findings so as not to offend the religious doctrine? Didn’t we already learn this lesson?
But the desire to maintain their status as “good people doing good things,” has, for the first time in my lifetime, put scientists in a place where they have to start pandering to a generation that appears to have been coddled from birth and now expects every major institution to coddle them rather than teach them. Science can’t go down that road, and yet here we are.
I can’t really go along with it. I know that I’m preaching to the choir here. I guess I hope to give some relief and camaraderie to those who are struggling with the way things are going.
I just wanted to send out a message of goodwill and gratitude for those who have subscribed to this substack. I hope that your Thanksgiving is full of joy and life and love and light.
And some recommendations.
Belfast, The Last Duel, and King Richard are two very good movies to see. They aren’t agonizing lectures on how to “be better.” They’re just good.
Author of Galileo’s Middle Finger, Alice Dreger’s Keynote Address to Foundation for Individual Rights in Education
Thanksgiving is Awesome by Matt Taibbi [Substack]
This Thanksgiving Give Thanks to King Richard [Planned Man]
Falsifying Consensus by Kathrine Brodsky [Substack]
Why are We So Hooked on Narratives by Jeff Maurer [Substack]