Mainly what happened is that the credibility of science was stolen to bolster rationalizing prior bigotries.
Wow. What an apt summation for so much of the rationalist movement.
they instead learned that bastardized evolutionary theories could be weaponized to justify all kinds of abuses
Yep. The near absolute ignorance of neurodiversity and disability studies from folks preoccupied with neuroscience and evolutionary psychology particularly galled me.
now a group of people who may initially have rejected the pious stupidity of the Republicans found themselves being told that we ought to support Republican militarism.
I remember those times. The whole article offers a good survey of why I parted ways with New Atheism and rationalist communities.
From my perspective, though, the deepest of the rifts was the emerging anti-feminist wing and the active neglect of social justice issues.
I realized it’s destination was where it is now: a shambles of alt-right memes and dishonest hucksters mangling science to promote racism, sexism, and bloody regressive politics.