Wednesday, December 13, 2006

The danger of stupid beliefs…

So, I was at the gym this afternoon and my timing stunk because right before me a TV was showing the Montel show. His guest was some kind of “spiritualist” or “psychic”… what we used to call full of shit. You see her job was to make you believe that, regardless of any lack of proof, she could speak to the dead and then get gullible people to believe that her intentionally vague answers were really meaningful, even though they weren’t.

Calling John Edward!

These charlatans, frauds, crooks, what have you have been around forever but have only recently gained celebrity status. We live in a society that is, more and more, abandoning reason and logic for threads of desperation and these people feast on that. It’s not just a waste of time; it’s dangerous to any attempt at reasonable thought.

A woman on the treadmill beside me, speaking to another person, said, “I don’t really believe in that but I love to watch it ‘cause it’s fun.”

To encapsulate: She find this completely irrational behavior… “fun”.

I wanted to punch her.

After all, how many other irrational beliefs have we been tolerating lately that seem harmless on the surface but end up soiling any attempt at a reasonable society? How about giving tax cuts to the ultra-rich in order to create jobs for the poor? How about torturing the innocent to win a war on terror? How about brutalizing a country so that it might have “freedom”? How about Exxon’s newest attempt at donning the corporate image of an environmentally friendly benefactor? Or underfunding public schools? Or letting corporations monitor their own pollution?

When I get upset at the sickness of irrationality in our society, its recoil from reason, I am often told not to worry. That it’s harmless. To me, that example is like saying that gangrene is fine if left to the feet.

People don’t talk to the dead, folks. Just accept it. It might be a good start.

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