I was a volunteer for the Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science (RDF), and a moderator for the forum part of the website leaving before everything imploded. I attended the American Atheist Conference 2008 and the Atheist Alliance International Conference of 2007.
I am also a writer for Ask The Atheists. My user name there and in the Dawkin forums of old was Homo economicus (a homage to both economics and biology). The name kind of stuck for the blog because it symbolises my interest in economics as a social science and natural science. I read Economics and Politics at University, have run for office as a councillor, and now look after my disabled brother full time.
As of June 2013 my articles here are cross posted on occasion to Harry’s Place. Also this year my apostasy story was reposted by the Rational Association and an article also reposted by The Commentator month before on Syria and Palestinians.
My politics are around centre but I do not write party politics. More social politics in the broad sense of the word with a particular emphasis on secularism.
My childhood experiences in the Jehovah’s Witnesses has made me particularly concerned about the labelling and indoctrinating of children. Hence one of the reasons why I write this blog, not least because a false view of science is promoted, and reason is effectively butchered in an attempt to allow dogma to reign supreme. Free thinking in such an organisation is not encouraged.
It really annoys when how someone feels is allowed to invalidate what we know, answer what we do not know for certain, and trump any facts we might bring to the discussion. When feelings as belief are coercively put on those that disagree, it is time to use reason and when that is not allowed by the self elected champions of decency the only thing left – ridicule and contempt.
If you want to know more (a narrative of what made me become involved with Richard Dawkins) my introduction on RDF is included in this blog here.
At the AAI conference I have met so many people, both academics, writers and activists, that have encouraged me in the writing of this blog and in my posts on the forum as well as activism. This includes giving blood against Jehovah’s Witness dogma which would refuse a blood transfusion for an infant with critical blood loss – basically labelling a child with a parent’s belief and unnecessarily putting a child’s life at further risk. For more read this post here.
I rarely stray into party politics, except during elections. I have turned my backs on Labour and the Liberal Democrats (tuition fees both the issue). I identify as a Rawlsian with even strong er anti-authoritarian sentiments. In terms of left and right my politics is “Twister” in the middle ground balance. Issues and principles matter more and I will lobby all, and be heard where I can.
For me social institutions exist for one reason – to empower citizens to greater liberty. As such education, health care and national social security insurance are important means for such things. Freedom is hollow if your life is subsistence.
I am not so active now in the secular movement due to family commitments, but do follow me on twitter @JPSargeant78 or subscribe to the blog so you will be notified when a new post comes along. Facebook: John Sargeant.
Be a free thinker. It might drive others crazy but it is what keeps me sane.