Science-based Hippies? « She Thought

July 25, 2010 § 1 Comment

What? Oh, OK now I get it. I must admit I only clicked on this story by Deb Hodgkin because of the interesting title. I have in the past been accused of being a “Hippy” by people who did not know me. Of course once they got to know me they changed their opinion. I am not sure whether they changed their opinion about me or about hippies though. When I saw it was a post about breast-feeding, my first instinct was to move along. After all, my husband and  I have no children and never will. Why do I care how long women breast feed. Then I realized that wasn’t really what the story was about. It is more about how we ‘skeptics’ deal with people we think are wrong, in online discussions. I think it builds nicely on Phil Plait‘s ‘Don’t be a Dick’ campaign. Has that become a campaign yet? I should work on a campaign poster. Damn AADD, Where was I? Oh yes. Please Read Deb’s Article.

“I’ve noticed an interesting pattern in discussions – it is almost always skeptics asking crunchies to prove their point of view. And why not, you may think, skepticism is about using evidence. But where is the evidence that shows kidneys are better than dialysis? What paper shows walking is better than wheelchairs? In other words, surely the natural option should be the starting point, and formula, cots, prams etc represent the intervention that has to prove itself. I’m not into living naturally – I’m very fond of my mattress and will happily believe anecdotes that electricity is a good thing – so I’m not assuming natural is best. But for true skepticism we need to look at the biases of the evidence, and they can be hard to detect if they match your own baggage. Don’t we need to step back and examine our own position, and question whether it is evidence or culture guiding us?  For me, skepticism is about questioning, and the basis of that must be questioning my own position and beliefs. My skepticism must come from a place of humility.” Read full article on She Thought.

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