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Re: [skeptical] Digest Number 228

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  • Ari
    ... The number of people who believe in homeopathy or acupuncture is irrelevant. For it to be scientifically factual, there has to be a clincal trial. To the
    Message 1 of 1 , Aug 4, 2004
      >
      > Not in some places. Take India. They have homeopathy as part of the
      > state-funded health system. In Britain (my country of residence), we
      > have homeopathy and acupuncture on the National Health Service (a
      > socially funded health service that we all pay for via taxes).

      The number of people who believe in homeopathy or acupuncture is
      irrelevant. For it to be scientifically factual, there has to be a
      clincal trial. To the best of my knowledge, homeopathy has been proven
      ineffective.

      At one time, everyone in Europe believed the world was flat. Thousands or
      millions of people believed this, or that rats spontaneously arose from
      rags. That does not make it true.

      >
      >> Sure, lobby to keep religion out of the classroom, and out of
      >> government, but save your energy that is wasted on one dumb
      >> individual and save it for activism.
      >>
      >> Life is just to short to be arguing with idiots. Who cares about
      >> the "Shroud of Turin" anyway?
      >
      > Often skeptics will argue with people who aren't "true believers" but
      > "fence sitters" (to use Michael Shermer's terminology). In that case,
      > you are trying to convince the audience not just the individuals.

      Having been in many waste of time arguments, I found that I was not
      convincing any group, though I deluded myself that I was. What it really
      boiled down to, in an argument with an individual is that "I'm right and
      you're wrong". It as all ego.

      If I wanted to change the minds of people I could have done many things,
      including writing articles, going to the legislature or some other
      activist outlets. That is much more logical than arguing with a single
      person.

      People over the age of 30, who have extreme beliefs, like the Shroud of
      Tourin or creation science are not going to change their minds. They are
      powered by the "Lord" and there's just no logic in an argument like that.

      I'm not an atheist, though I don't believe in a "Lord" of any type. People
      have the right to believe what they want to believe. My problem is when
      people try to use science to bolster their faith.

      My very best friend and my now deceased mother were very into alternative
      health care. My best friend is a big believer in homeopathy. In a case
      like this, I feel the friendship is much more important than to inform her
      of the facts of homeopathy. I keep my mouth zipped.

      Isn't there some notion like a social IQ?

      Ari
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