My theory, which is mine: it shows why Einstein was wrong! The earth is flat! Vaccines cause autism! Creationism is true and dinosaurs walked the earth with humans because the geological record is a lie! There is no climate change and if there is it is not caused by humans and if it is, it would be fantastic to warm things up a little - who doesn't love the beach!?! You and your sciency science will never convince me otherwise!
Who in the science blogosphere has not had a close encounter of a bothersome kind with cranks of one variety or another? Many of us dedicate our time to debunking these cranks and trying to insure that legitimate and helpful scientific information is readily available and accessible to the general public. Our esteemed repositories of scientific knowledge do not give air time to these cranks. You won't see Nature allocating precious coverage to a flat-earther and their ramblings. You won't find creationism featured in a blog post on the SciAm blog network.
But the privilege cranks. Oh, the privilege cranks! How tenderly do we suffer the little privilege cranks to come unto us! We forbid them not, for such is the kingdom of science.
They write their screeds, and screech their nonpologies, using the mouthpiece of Glamour Mags. They present their mind-numbingly boring nattering condescension as if a compilation of every bit of debunked privilege defense were a brilliant, flawless diamond they just unearthed - and they do it in an exclusive blog network!
They crank, and they crank, and they crank, and they crank. And no matter how much goddam debunking time and effort one part of the scientific community expends, still the cranks are able to spin their fables in the most highly regarded scientific circles. They even crank journal articles - that are then used to support the crank commentary.
Don't bla to me about freedom of speech. The Discovery Institute wants "freedom of speech" in the scientific community too, but we don't have any problem telling them they are WRONG and are NOT doing science.
Scientific American, you loaned your imprimatur to a crank. Was it an accident? Or are the cranks running the show there?
I shouldn't have to fight the center. Stop treating privilege cranks like what they say is worth listening to. Let's at least agree to stop treating them like they are in a conversation about gender equity or affirmative action. You don't have a science conversation with anti-vaxxers or climate change denialists. You try to work against the damage they do. We work with each other to achieve an equitable world, and against the nutjobs to try and undo, block, or mitigate the damage they cause.
So let's call these nutjobs what they are: privilege cranks.