• Julia Burke wrote a new post, “First World Problems” versus Checking Your Blind Spots, on the site Skepchick 5 years, 1 month ago

    I’ve written a few posts in recent months for which I received the common logical fallacy response that we at the Skepchick Network not-so-fondly refer to as “Dear Muslima.” It goes something like this: “Stop […]

    • Great piece. Thanks for bringing more nuance to this discussion.

    • I think the FWP meme can actually be quite humorous, but only when used in fun. When my wife points out that the stir stick doesn’t reach the bottom of her extra large coffee cup and points out it’s a “first world problem” we share a laugh.

      When you start to take apart someone’s concern over a real problem because there are “bigger problems” is when it stops being witty and becomes a lazy way to attack that concern without addressing the problem.

      • Here with an illustration is Weird Al.

      • “My Magic Shoes are Too Tight” is a fine joke for us to share. The problem is that the people invoking FWP aren’t interested in sharing a joke, they are interested in making a point and using those less fortunate as props for their argument.

    • Julie,
      This is a great piece that really got me thinking! Everyone does have their own problems in life, and it is all about perspective. There is a definite difference when you take FWP into account, and life becomes more superficial if that is what you focus on. I just hope that people look outside themselves and find something they care about and do what they can (little or big) to help make a difference!

      I watched the Weird Al Video and just laughed when he sang “I can’t remember what car I drove to the mall!”

    • Made me think. Thanks.

      (Or, #MMTT, is that a thing?)

    • I remember being annoyed when PZ Myers was complaining about how everyone was supposedly caring more about Robin Williams’ suicide than they were about the Michael Brown shooting as though it was impossible to care about both and in fact it turned out there was quite a lot of people who ended up caring about the Michael Brown shooting after all.

    • Thanks, Julia! Another great piece. When FWP is used to silence an argument, it’s often made by someone who enjoys the status quo. The problem with this is that it’s essentially saying, “It is more important to me that I enjoy this thing without it being criticized than for you to enjoy it in a way that feels safe and welcoming to you.” I really can’t think of any other way to see these FWP criticisms.