RIP Cracker

The cracker is no more. It’s gone to heaven, or it’s still alive, or whatever. The post is only a few hours old, and there are already over 1000 comments.

I’ve seen plenty of comments over P.Z.’s cracker controversy, with lots of generally sensible people adopting disapproving tones. I think Rebecca Watson gets it right (as ever):

A percentage of the omgrude crowd is upset because they do not think PZ’s words help further the skeptical movement because he won’t convince any of the hardcore group that they are crazy. I agree that he probably won’t convince many true believers, but I disagree that he doesn’t help rational people. Just about any time someone dares to point out the absurdity of irrational thinking, he does a great service to many other rational thinkers who were too scared or unsure to say so themselves.

Did Trey Parker and Matt Stone convince any true believers when they called John Edward the Biggest Douche in the Universe? Probably not many, but I bet they influenced a lot of young people who might have been on the fence. There’s no one right way to communicate skepticism, and for every Trey & Matt we need a Carl Sagan. For every PZ, we need a Julia Sweeney or a Hemant. If one isn’t to your taste, you’re free to ignore him, but it’s short-sighted to claim that person is hindering the “skeptical movement” just because he’s not your bag.

I’d only add that it was the church who initially tried to impose their fantasies on the real world. That the real world pointed and laughed is only to be expected.

Maybe, just maybe, this will put an end to the whole thing. Heck, even Jesus has had enough.