Fundies Say The Darndest Things
"It's easy to be mean when you're Unknown Author."— Brendan Dooling, American actor
Fundies Say The Darndest Things (FSTDT for short) is a blogging Website and message board forum whose self-stated purpose is to serve as "an archive of the most hilarious, bizarre, ignorant, bigoted, and terrifying quotes from fundies all over the Internet".
Originally launched in 2003 as "Christians Say The Darndest Things" (CSTDT for short), it has since been renamed to include negative sentiment against fundamentalists or extremists from all religions. It once had a division called "Republicans Say The Darndest Things" (RSTDT for short) before this division was absorbed by its parent site.
Users register at FSTDT without email addresses, allowing them to remain completely anonymous if they choose. Once registered, they submit quotes copied from many different Websites which they deem to be overly religious and/or not scientific enough, too far to the political right, too far to the political left, racist, sexist, ableist, homophobic, transphobic, elitist, pedophilic, psychopathic, or generally insane. These quotes are almost always labeled with searchable hashtags, and users are encouraged to comment on them with a mocking, ridiculing, even libelous tone.
Why It Sucks
- Overall, FSTDT is similar to RationalWiki in that it's a left-leaning, mostly atheist and agnostic echo chamber where members more often act like petulant jerks who, by their own admission, love mocking and "calling out" people for saying things they don't like to hear instead of defeating others' arguments rationally. The key difference is that, unlike RW, FSTDT does not masquerade as an encyclopedia.
- With that said, they are serial cyberstalkers who don’t seem to have a shred of human morality with the things they say and do. Additionally, they embody the very basic problem with the Internet and social media: a lot of times, we think we know someone we've never met in the real world, but we don't.
- In 2014, the site caught the attention of a former 40-year atheist named Stan, the author of the blog Atheism Analyzed, wherein he criticizes atheism without using theistic arguments. Having been ironically labelled as a "#fundie", he described the site as a place "…where Atheists and skeptics can have a safe harbor in which to ridicule that which they take out of context. Actually there is a link to context, but no one seems to have used it in my case. It's the sort of snake pit where the target du jour is countered with comments like 'asshole', and the standard logic errors which they insist are the logical answers to the 'idiot' they are trashing".
- The fact that many users choose to remain anonymous proves that they know what they're doing, while not illegal per se, is unethical or even cowardly enough that they don't want to get caught doing it, especially by their targets or the religious friends that many members claim to have in real life.
- Their whole business model is flawed because, if there were no more writings they don’t like for them to quote on the Internet, the enterprise would lose its purpose and collapse.
- Some of their activities can be considered unethical or even criminal behavior such as stalking, vandalism, slander, hate plagiarism, and other hate crimes.
- They once doxxed a person in hopes of having other users harass him.
- Sometimes, their remarks can be degrading for young teenagers or can make the situation worse for those who may be struggling emotionally in real life. These can easily lead to adverse psychological impacts.
- Despite claiming to be against bigotry, there are overwhelming amounts of instances that point to hypocrisy; the most obvious examples being that the users on the website deliberately go after anyone they disagree with, as well as the site not allowing dissenting views on their forums. And this is for a website that claims to be against hate speech, which is again contradicted by the derogatory language and sometimes even rape wishes they use to degrade their targets.
- Their arguments against whatever quotes they find are generally one-sided and full of logical fallacies, often as extremely ideologically biased towards the left as are those on RationalWiki or SJWiki, especially since quotes are taken out of context.
- They tend to give tags to quotes that do not reflect the quote authors' original intentions, including giving the tag "#fundie" to quotes that have only minimal to no religious connotations. This makes it clear that they want their interpretations of anything they quote to be the only true and correct interpretations.
- Although they aim to provide links to context for every one of their quotes, users don't always seem to reference or pay attention to that context.
- While their site's title suggests that they target extremists, people get quoted by FSTDT for merely espousing ordinary conservative views not intended to harm anyone.
- They appear to have a weak grasp of hyperbole and tend to submit quotes intended as jokes or lighthearted satire.
- Many of their arguments amount to nothing more than argumentum ad hominems, or personal attacks, with childish insults and name-calling as well as lazy, unimaginative sex jokes solely to get a rise out of people.
- This is often the case with their comments on many quotes under their tag "#dunning-krueger", which refers to people that they believe are "not nearly as smart as they think they are". It's another way of saying, "You're dumb because we said so!" and renders them guilty of the same sense of elitism that they condemn various quoting targets for showing.
- The same principle applies to their tag "#pratt", an acronym for "Point Refuted A Thousand Times", which indicates a sense of laziness and unwillingness to have a civil debate and basically says, "We’re right, you're wrong, so shut up already!".
- The people running and/or contributing to it do a terrible job at sourcing for their quotes: many links to context are dead (happens a lot with links aged 10 years or older); image only; and unarchived social media posts that can be easily forged, deleted, or modified.
- They hate U.S. President Donald Trump so much that they normally avoid saying "Trump" like the Bubonic Plague and do not offer any impartial criticism or say anything forgiving about him, believing that anyone who shows any sympathy or forgiveness towards him is a racist, neo-Nazi, or "wingnut" by association. In other words, as sites like Conservapedia deny Trump's flaws, FSTDT denies his redeeming qualities.
- They like to whitewash originally well-intentioned but nowadays corrupt and violent groups such as Antifa, Black Lives Matter, and the feminist movement.
- They deny that feminism in history has come in waves and that, in the recent past with third-wave feminism/feminazism, the feminist movement is now a shell of its former self. They even accuse anti-feminist women of being "hypocrites".
- Anyone who does not support toxic modern feminism is automatically a "#sexist" in their eyes.
- Anyone who does not support BLM's violent behavior is automatically a "#racist" in their eyes.
- They mislabel people guilty of ethnic hatred or xenophobia as "racist" even though individual human races/skin colors are not one and the same as ethnicities or national identities.
- Like any social justice warrior, they promote minority groups in ways that even minorities themselves might find offensive. For example, they support LGBTQ2+ characters being inserted casually into entertainment regardless of quality or consequences, force everyone to accept them and condemn anyone who doesn’t accept them or care about their activism, and suggest that anyone who isn’t pro-LGBTQ2+ is automatically a homophobe. All of this essentially gives LGBTQ2+ people in the real world a bad name.
- They give credence to the idea that there are more than two genders.
- As their Website's title implies, they have no qualms in using Christophobic (anti-Christian) language. For example, when discussing matters of Nazism and religion, they often go on screeds about how Adolf Hitler and the Nazi party were (allegedly) Christian. In reality, while Hitler was raised Catholic, he grew to be staunchly opposed to mainstream Christianity, according to his Propaganda Minister Joseph Goebbels, and saw it as a branch of Judaism, which he of course hated even more. He thus invented the false religion of "positive Christianity" to deceive German Christians of the day into thinking that they were doing "God's work" by serving the führer since he knew that mainstream Christianity teaches against Nazi-like ideology. What makes this argument even logically nonsensical is that Jesus was born and raised Jewish and Hitler hated Jews. This goes to show that the website tries too hard to be in the right when in reality they end up making fools of themselves.
- Though one of their tags is "#moonbat" for quotes composed by "left-wing nutjobs", this tag is used not nearly as often as "#wingnut" for quotes written by "right-wing nutjobs". Moreover, when it is used, it is often used for right-wing comments despite its supposed intentions. This makes it even clearer that they are biased towards the left.
- They like to present readers with crudely-made conclusions instead of letting the evidence speak for itself. This is more of an act of insecurity as they fear that people will not see things the way they do and expect every argument they make to be taken seriously.
- Many of its members act toxically and intolerantly towards anyone who so much as disagrees with them.
- Although they claim to have Christian users, hardly anyone ever comments on quotes to offer a Christian perspective nowadays.
- They deny that LGBTQ2 can be violent and bigoted as the far-right. And anyone who says otherwise is labeled a homophobe.
- They are extremely pro-social justice: they are primarily interested in attempting to correct people and being right, aggressively attacking all who disagree. At best, they quote people to get others' attention, whether it's their targets or generic passersby; at worst, they do what they do to frighten and intimidate people into letting them "win", or emotionally blackmail people into making them feel guilty for saying things FSTDT doesn't like to hear. They claim that this is for their own self-amusement when they write like they would establish dictatorial power and control over what people say on the Internet if they could, believing that what they do to their targets is somehow "needed". They admit that the only reason they support free speech is so they can have someone to attack!
- This bigoted attitude makes people afraid of expressing their viewpoints online due to the fear of being quoted, though one can tell that this is apparently what FSTDT wants. Any sane person would agree that this is a matter of thought control even if they are conservatives who are POC or LGBT; this is proven true as they shame women and minorities for "going against their interests". This is because these groups destroy their stereotyped narrative that all conservatives must be religious nutjobs no matter how sane they are.
- They deny that Canada has become a totalitarian state with the laws they have been passing to appease the far-left ideology.
- It underwent a major revamp in 2019, but its basic, blocky, blandly-colored GUI without any modern graphics or features make it look like it's from the late 1990s-early 2000s era.
- That said, it suffers from a poor Website design overall because it lacks many features and technical conveniences that would be normally present on a message board. For example:
- There is no menu to select how many quotes/comments can be viewed per page, including in search results.
- Search engine filters/results sorters are not always as accurate as they could be.
- The search engine only works with finding quotes, not comments, nor does it list the number of results per search query.
- Sometimes, the last page of a search results list, for whatever reason, turns up completely blank.
- There is no option to report comments (probably intentional, given how the site encourages people to be mean-spirited).
- User pages are nothing more than lists of quotes users have found and comments they've made (probably to preserve their anonymity).
- Its painfully unprofessional and outright immature logo features a "sexy flying Jesus penis," a crudely-photoshopped devil version of pop singer/songwriter Taylor Swift practicing martial arts, devils in flying saucers, a reptilian alien-type creature with devil horns, a NyQuil bottle with devil horns surrounded by fire, and what appears to be a Biblical leviathan in a bathtub (in reference to one of their more popular and infamous quotes from 2009) eating fast food from McDonald's. These images were likely chosen to be as offensive to FSTDT's targets as possible, aiming to be funny but instead only proving their trollish determination to get a rise out of everyone they oppose.
- If anyone dares to object to the 2020 Coronavirus quarantine or criticizes how governments handle it or how the media misrepresents data and statistics surrounding it, FSTDT will go on a witch hunt after them.
- At their absolute worst, FSTDT will prioritize spreading left-wing extremism over expressing basic human empathy. For instance, they once accused Mary Ann Mendoza, a grieving mother and an associate of Donald Trump, of racism after she condemned illegal Mexican immigrants for killing her son Sergeant Brandon. This is made much more problematic by their not outwardly caring about the fact that Mendoza is herself of Hispanic ethnic origin.
- They do not take responsibility for their actions: they blame others for getting themselves quoted by FSTDT, even if they are aware that they have the power and choice not to quote people they don't like and not to let things people write online offend them so much. Moreover, no self-respecting FSTDT user will ever admit to SJW-type behavior: they don't seem to care that copious comments made by regular users could be classified as "#fundie" (or perhaps the nonreligious equivalent of that) themselves.
- Likewise, in their FAQ section under "But You're Defaming Me!" they try to rationalize their efforts to defame people by arguing that their targets are sabotaging themselves, not considering the possibility that the quotes they find might have different intended meanings than what they read. This means that they want their targets to feel ashamed for speaking their minds.
- Despite one of their tags being "#conspiracy", regular FSTDT users (and leftists in general) believe in conspiracy theories of their own. Some believe that anyone who does not support Black Lives Matter secretly hates the black race, or believe that Adolf Hitler was Christian (as discussed above), while others believe that anyone who objects to homosexuality is secretly homosexual themselves.
- Similar to RationalWiki, FSTDT mocks people's beliefs in UFOs and has an entire tag dedicated to such ridicule. This clashes with Wikipedia's neutral, informative, and well-sourced article on the subject.
- As expected, they cannot take criticism. When people on other Websites criticize or counter-mock them, they do not usually take the criticism or counter-mockery well.
- Regular user Niam2020/Niam2023 exemplifies FSTDT at its worst: he admits to suffering from antisocial personality disorder (ASPD), and his weak conscience compels him to act like a sociopath entirely for the sake of it. From August-September of 2020, he played an elaborate prank on DeviantArt user Colonel-Knight-Rider, whom he frequently stalks and targets simply for sharing mainstream conservative views, that copied the plot of the obscure 1989 horror film Society, in which he played multiple roles named for characters appearing in the film. He also deceived CKR into giving him his email address so he could sign him up for various pornography Website accounts to impersonate him and mischaracterize him as a homosexual pornography addict (likely to get petty revenge on him for alleged homophobic commentary). CKR did not previously know that Society existed until a friend informed him, causing the entire scheme to unravel. Afterwards, Niam tried to gaslight him into questioning his conservative family values based on what he wanted CKR to learn from their interactions. A few weeks later, CKR learned to his surprise that Niam is actually a sociopathic bully from his high school graduation day.
- Overall, they give people a reason to (further) hate the left-wing.
- FSTDT's targets include people towards whom even sensible Christians, conservatives, and Republicans are opposed, among them far- or alt-rightists, Obsessive Anti-SJWs, neo-Nazis, Holocaust deniers, pedophiles, the Westboro Baptist Church, plus general racists, sexists, homophobes, xenophobes, conspiracy theorists, and believers in magic or paranormal activity.
- Some of their snarky writings can be humorous to the point where liberals, conservatives, and centrists all agree on the subject being discussed.
- Some members' serious attempts to angrily assert their extremist points of view or intimidate their targets can be unintentionally and ironically funny.
- They occasionally call out RationalWiki users, plus users of other far left-wing Websites, when said users lean too far to the left for their tastes. This is somewhat ironic because they consider themselves friends with RW.
- They will agree with points their targets make once in a while.
- They are against rotten right-wing fundamentalist websites like Jesus-is-savior.com and Conservapedia, whose teachings contradict or reject what mainstream Christianity teaches.
- When they do make a substantive, non-mean-spirited argument, it is normally more evidence-based than are the arguments on the aforementioned far right-wing websites.
- They can correct and have corrected mistakes they’ve made in tagging quotes.
- They are not cripplingly incapable of civil discussion and positively encourage people they quote to speak to them politely on Discord if their quoting targets wish to be de-quoted (they had an administrative email for this, too, that was shut down years ago). However, when their quoting targets try to negotiate peace, FSTDT’s users are not always open to differing viewpoints because of their site-wide determination to be right about every topic that interests them. Therefore, special caution should be taken when talking to them so as to be respectful of their right to their point of view.
- Although the site exclusively accepts English-language quotes, it has an internationally inclusive user base. Coincidentally, their international users write English very well.
- "Fundie" is a derogatory slur word for religious fundamentalists regardless of faith, especially those who appear to reject one or more established fields of science. FSTDT's user base mainly applies the tag "#fundie" to any expression of religion that does not line up with their views, no matter how openly religious vs. subtly religious vs. not intentionally religious at all that expression is. That said, users like to use the word to refer to anyone they don't like: each quote is rated with a "fundie index" based on how many users click a "WTF?!" button next to it, which further encourages users to react with outrage and spite and fuel their hatred.
- Their emblem features the Latin tagline "Talis est pulchritudo in caelum, ut nos relinquere cerebro ante portas!" Google Translate literally translates this to: "That is the beauty is in the sky, so we have to leave their brains at the gates!" It's likely that the actual meaning is, "There is beauty in the sky, so we leave our brains at the door!"