Wednesday, August 18, 2010

? What is Killing the Seals Thread on JREF

Now why is this thread on the JREF (James Randi Educational Forum), which is a skeptical (actually a uber-skeptoid pathological rationalist front) organization, appearing in the "General Skepticism and Paranormal" category?!

The thread is What is Killing the Seals?, about the horrible "corkscrew" deaths of seals. Does the poster think this is simply not happening, despite the horrific photographs? At no point does anyone quoted in any of the news items suggest anything remotely paranormal, although the cause is a mystery. A mystery does not equate supernatural, or tin foil hat wearing conspiracy loon.

I find this disturbing because, the obvious fact that it's a skeptic organization to begin with aside, placing a thread about the very real deaths of animals in a so-called "woo" category trivializes and marginalizes this tragedy. Animal deaths due to humankind's actions are too often not considered seriously enough; actions like this perpetuate the mind set that it's not all that serious an issue.

The forum has other categories; social issues, etc. that have nothing to do with the paranormal. This thread could have been placed in one of those, but instead, for whatever reasons, the OP felt it merited inclusion in the paranormal section.

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