I am really impatient with science deniers, so I saw something that will allow me to mash up two of my favorite subjects – the Walking Dead and science denialism – and it makes me happy. I know, you want to know how I can possibly combine the Walking Dead and science denialism – you’re just going to have to read on!
I know it’s shocking, but I find it difficult to be really civil towards science deniers. Partially, it’s because no matter how much evidence you present, science deniers rely on logical fallacies like strawman arguments, arguments from ignorance, post hoc ergo propter hoc fallacies, and so many others.
Or they rely upon all of their biases. Confirmation bias, yes. Selection bias, yes. Cognitive biases, yes. And that logical fallacy that’s also a form of bias – cherry picking. The denialist’s favorite fruit has got to be cherries, because they’re picking them all day long.
Then toss in a big dollop of Dunning-Kruger effect, and it’s really difficult to take any science deniers very seriously. They take themselves seriously, despite their total lack of affirmative or negative evidence.
The only thing that matters in science is evidence. That’s it, that’s the beginning and the end of the story. I don’t care if you’re a man, woman, alien, immigrant, liberal, conservative, a janitor, a professor, black, white, or a Nobel Prize winner. If you lack evidence, you have nothing.
If you think there are debates to be made in settled science, that means you get the denialism card, no matter who you are. If you are an MD, and think that vaccines don’t work, then why should I consider your opinion on anything in medicine to be valid, when you’re denying some of the basic principles of medicine – the Germ Theory, for example.
Denying the science denialism
Evolution is a scientific fact. There were no magical beings in the sky that started life (not officially a part of evolution for the picky amongst us), or that directed the massive diversity of life.
The earth is 4.5 billion years old, another scientific fact. This is established by a veritable mountain of scientific evidence from a vast number of independent researchers using a huge number of techniques across several decades of research.
The safety and effectiveness of vaccines are a scientific fact. This is also supported by a literal mountain of evidence. All the vaccine deniers have is a molehill of logical fallacies, biases, and that Dunning-Kruger effect.
As a corollary, for the deniers, vaccines do not cause autism. Period. End of discussion. Shut up now.
Anthropogenic (human-caused) climate change is a scientific fact. Once again, this is supported by a vast ocean of scientific research.
GMOs are safe to humans and to the environment. This scientific fact is supported by a vast amount of evidence, published in real journals, reviewed by real researchers, and accepted as scientific consensus by major scientific organizations across the world.
AIDS is caused by HIV. This is a scientific fact.
I’m sure there are several other science denying, ignorant nonsense being foisted upon humans, but I’d like to keep this to less than 1 million words. More or less.
To those of you who deny science.
To those of you who think their 15 minutes of Google research is worth more than actually spending years upon years in real science research.
To those who waste their education to lie or misinform people, then deny science.
To all of you: