Facts Don't Change People's Minds - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 5 Old 09-19-2017, 08:12 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Facts Don't Change People's Minds

I think this is very appropriate for our discussion. Facts are important and they guide decisions we make. However, we are are also emotional beings which also influences thoughts and opinions. I think there are very few of us who make decisions completely based just on facts or just on emotions without the inclusion of each other.



https://heleo.com/facts-dont-change-...n=sumome_share
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#2 of 5 Old 09-19-2017, 08:25 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Kelleybug View Post
I think this is very appropriate for our discussion. Facts are important and they guide decisions we make. However, we are are also emotional beings which also influences thoughts and opinions. I think there are very few of us who make decisions completely based just on facts or just on emotions without the inclusion of each other.



https://heleo.com/facts-dont-change-...n=sumome_share
I agree that facts alone do not change peoples minds - and that we are emotional beings.

I do not love the article because it talks quite a bit about trying to change other peoples mind - which still relates back to the narcissistic belief that your opinion is right.
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#3 of 5 Old 09-19-2017, 08:37 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I do not love the article because it talks quite a bit about trying to change other peoples mind - which still relates back to the narcissistic belief that your opinion is right.

I absolutely agree with you. My first thought when I read this really goes back to name calling and how that entrenches people even more, mostly because now you are challenging the person, not necessarily the belief or idea. I read it with the hope that instead of changing someone's mind, one can find a way to be empathetic to a different viewpoint instead of challenging it in a way that creates increased animosity. And maybe some self reflection on my own beliefs, I suppose. While I am willing to bet that most people in society are somewhere in the middle, the schism of people on the spectrum of the vaccine debate feels larger than ever right now .
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#4 of 5 Old 09-19-2017, 09:02 AM
 
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I absolutely agree with you. My first thought when I read this really goes back to name calling and how that entrenches people even more, mostly because now you are challenging the person, not necessarily the belief or idea. I read it with the hope that instead of changing someone's mind, one can find a way to be empathetic to a different viewpoint instead of challenging it in a way that creates increased animosity. And maybe some self reflection on my own beliefs, I suppose. While I am willing to bet that most people in society are somewhere in the middle, the schism of people on the spectrum of the vaccine debate feels larger than ever right now .
The whole thing is a mess.

Pro-vaxxers are not interested in converting non-vaxxers. Most think that ship has sailed. They are interested in making non-vaxxers look as ridiculous as possible so that that fence sitters and those who are new to vaccine-decision making won't consider our POV.

The schism in the vaccine debate will not go away until all parents have the right to make coersion free choices for their children. Why would it? It is an assault on parental rights - and that is huge for parents. So much energy is devoted to it - and that needs to be resolved before we can even attempt to resolve if people should get a flu vaccines, for example. It reminds me a bit of the abortion debate. I find in abortion discussion people are not interested in talking about how to reduce the unwanted pregnancy rate - and are more interested in discussing if they have the right or not to an abortion. I think the issue of rights and domaine have to be settled before one can really look at an issue.

People come with baggage and biases and these will be weighed in decision mode. People often know what risks they can and cannot live with.

Facts and proofs are pretty high barometer stuff - people suspected cigarette were bad for you a long time before it was a "fact".
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#5 of 5 Old 09-19-2017, 06:23 PM
 
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The other piece that I keep hitting is that facts are a lot more squishy than appears at first glance. I've even got an example.

Many years back people observed that folks who worked in lead foundries tended to have health problems. So doctors started testing them, for, among other things, lead levels in their bodies. As a "control" group, they used the office staff at those same lead foundries, assuming that they wouldn't be exposed to significant levels of lead. In reality, everyone living within a certain boundary around the lead foundry had elevated levels of lead, not as high as the workers, but high enough to be dangerous. In fact, it turned out to be hard to find anyone who didn't show signs of lead exposure in the US population. The "fact" that the doctors and scientists landed on was that lead in the body was normal. It wasn't until someone tracked some people down who were living in a very remote area that they discovered that lead isn't normally part of the human body.

Everyone in this little dance was working with factual information, but the conclusions arising from the data, although reasonable, were wrong.

I suspect that this sort of thing happens often. Sometimes by accident (I don't think the original doctors set out to demonstrate that lead is a normal part of the human body) and sometimes on purpose when hazards are ignored, buried, covered up or even dismissed using faked science.

Hence the popularity of accusations of conspiracy beliefs. Once you discover that someone has misused power or science to protect their reputation and profits it isn't a giant step to start wondering about all sorts of other stuff that looks a bit weird.
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