The Myth of Equal Sides
The vaccine “debate” has been heating up lately due, I think, to the outbreak of Measles at Disneyland. As many people have pointed out the fallacious reasoning that makes up the anti-vaxx position, others have righteously defended their right to make health decisions for their own children. Even when those health decisions fly in the face of scientific evidence.
I’ve seen far too many friends getting upset over the debate and trying to play the peacemaker middle sibling. Can’t we respect “both sides” of the argument they ask? Can we all play nice?
The problem with this position is the simple fact that the sides are not equal. Just as the vast majority of scientists agree on global climate change and evolution, the vast majority of medical professionals and scientists agree on vaccines.
Shit that Pissed me Off This Week – 9/27
Popular Science Shuts off Their Comments
Hey, I don’t really care if anybody comments on a Popular Science article ever again. Comment threads on the internet are typically the realm of madness.
Which is precisely the point. Popular Science shut off comments on their science articles because people are more likely to believe the comments than they are to believe the article.
Yeah. That’s right. People read an article with citations and evidence and they are less likely to believe that than a one paragraph rebuttal that is basically nothing more than someone saying “oh yeah? I know you but what am I?”
We benefit from scientific research every day of our lives but somehow, in spite of everything science does for us, we are more inclined to believe FrankNFurther2098 than someone who is publishing a researched and peer reviewed article. The practical result is that Popular Science is turning off their comments so people will pay attention to the science and not the bullshit.
Shit that Pissed me off This Week – 11/23
Conservative Christian Commenter Shows Remarkable Lack of Knowledge about Nature
We haven’t gotten a lot of comments from right-wing Christians over at Geeks Without God yet. I guess we haven’t quite hit the big time. I’m sure that we may eventually be awash in commenters telling us we are going to hell but we’ll need to have patience for that. Someday we will be truly famous on the internet!
We did get a comment this week and what annoys me is not the comment, but the tremendous level of ignorance that it contains while being only a paragraph long.
If you are going to argue that homosexuality is unnatural, don’t start by arguing that it doesn’t happen in nature. Because it does.
Now as a whacked out conservative Christian, you have all sorts of articles that will try to make the argument that sure, homosexuality occurs in other animals, but it doesn’t count. So why deny homosexual behavior exists in wild animals when you can just make excuses for it?
Please note that last link takes you to Coservapedia so beware: that way lies madness.
The point here is that the argument is useless obfuscation. Who cares if homosexuality occurs in other species? Birds can fly. Fish can breathe underwater. Humans can’t. Different species do different things that are completely natural. The presumption that homosexuality is a behavior that is somehow the only thing an animal species does that is counter to the natural order defies logic.
Humans, in fact, do a ton of stuff other animals don’t or can’t do. There is no presumption that most of those things are unnatural. Homosexuality gets special attention because one passage in a very long book has been given far too much relevance.