Since September 2016, I watched quite a few videos on a YouTube channel à-bas-le-ciel by Eisel Mazard. I started with his critique on Durianrider and Freelee the Banana Girl, but then switched somehow to his older videos on veganism, and liked many of them. Even though I disagree with many of his views and his style of argumentation, I find it is good to have a channel like this in the vegan online world.
Later I had a period of watching his videos solely in attempt to find the way to understand what went wrong - the public image of this speaker was puzzling to me: some of the scenes seemed to be staged, and some to reflect his unexamined blind spots.
The author of the channel is a well read, articulate speaker, and raises some controversial topics. I have also noticed, that a number of people dislike his public persona, and sometimes his quite interesting videos receive inadequate amount of dislikes.
In 2016, several other youtubers spread some false information about this video author, in part obviously unsubstantiated, which damaged his public image. Regretfully, he fought back not quite elegantly, using intense personal attacks.
I am still not sure, how much of his content is created to gain some scandalous fame, purposefully utilizing logical fallacies, and what part is sincere (may be a big one).
Today I watched Eisel Mazard's talk on Unnatural Vegan vs. Ethical Vegans, and left a comment:
No self-reflection on this topic? :) Will you some day be willing to realize that calling opponents "stupid" or implying their inferior morals, which disqualifies them to continue participating in a conversation with you, are ad hominem reactions - your fallacies? I disagree with Unnatural Vegan often, but I tend to see her as someone able of participating in a honest debate. Your former responses to her and to others were worse than this one in terms of proper argumentation. This is just a critical remark, BTW, not an unfriendly one. Even though I did not have a pleasure in communicating with you (yet?) and often, too often, dislike your manner of treating people, I still find some of your content important, and I do agree with the main idea in this video.
A few days ago I was going to comment on another recent video on this channel, Veganism is NOT a Social Justice Movement, even typed it in the text below, but decided not to publish it, because I heard how disrespectfully Eisel talked with another vegan online, before I finished the comment. I am glad I did not post my response, but here it is anyway, unfinished:
This talk addresses the weakest side of veganism, a hole in its philosophical foundation as advocated by many vegans - treating all varieties of living beings, which were assigned to Animal Kingdom, with animal types of cells, as homogeneous. I wish this topic will be addressed by many more vegans. I do not agree with every word in this video, but the main points are excellent.
I tried to approach this issue from fruitarian perspective, but my writing became more popular among non-vegans for some reason.
For me personally, because I learned about veganism already being fruitarian, calling myself an ethical vegan is a social statement and a personal protest against cruel animal industries and other questionable treatment of animals (primarily from the Phylum Chordata) by human beings.
The links to the videos are below the article.
Previously, I commented only once on the channel, once it was something insignificant and short I cannot find anymore, and the other one was in German, I replied to other critical commenters. If you read German, follow the whole conversation by the third link below.
Fruitarian's Network (my 4 comments)
- Thank you, Tierethik und Veganismus. I hope you'll start to make videos someday: I am searching for smart vegans to follow (subscribing).
- Thank you, Skeptic Acid! I would add something, but at least now I don't need to comment on the video.
- "Sein Deutsch ist gut genug, um deutsche philosophische Texte zu lesen." - Nein.
- Sorry, I missed your response, ich habe dich lieb :D
- Er hat mir selbst gesagt, dass er nicht mehr sogar einfache Sätze lesen könne. Ich habe ihm einen Satz angeboten um zumindest ein paar Wörter zu erkennen nachdem er gesagt hat, dass er ein Genie sei (younow), und ich habe nicht geglaubt, dass man zu kaum Sprachkenntnissen in wenigen Jahren kommen könnte: von Deutsche Philosophie lesen zu nicht mal einen Sinn in einem satz erkennen können.
II was referring to an incident when I asked Eisel Mazard in his online broadcast to look at a simple German sentence and tell us what it was about (the main verb was "to think. " He could not do it, and refused to read it. I did it because Eisel claimed that he was able to read German philosophical texts in original after studying the language for only three months, several years back - he described himself as a genius. When I asked, being a German language instructor, which methods he used, he talked about parallel text. The problem is, for all I know about language learning, it is practically impossible to forget a language entirely once one was able to understand in on such a deep level. And it is highly questionable that he was able to achieve this ability so quickly.
My first question to him was, why he call his opponents stupid instead of building a solid argument. First, he gave me a link to his video that supposedly demonstrated his ability to have a respectful debate. Second, after I discovered that the other person in the video was not his opponent, Eisel did not answer right away, but addressed it in his video, basically saying that some ideas are too stupid for an argument.
As soon as Eisel felt challenged by me with German, he switched from high praise of having people like us in the audience, to yelling at me ("what is your problem aside being fruitarian") and threatening to ridicule fruitarianism (and me) in his next video.
Maybe, episodes like this can illustrate why some people are not willing to communicate with him. I hope, this situation will change, and there are already signs for communication among popular vegans to get better.