Sunday, July 12, 2009

Thinking critically...

We know that when it comes to discussing diseases and many other health concerns, students are more apt to believe someone from the medical community instead of their teacher.

However, this is disturbing: There have been many celebrities and parents groups denouncing the use of vaccines and their role in the "outbreak" of autism. without getting into the controversy of what causes autism (though honestly, as we learn more about it, the definitions get broader leading to an increase in defined cases of it.) Because of the refusal of parents to vaccinate their children, there have been outbreaks of measles, mumps, and meningitis that are significant and are discussed in this article.

The article also goes on to discuss the failure of scientists to hit these other sources of information head on. Why is it this way? Why does the American public not look at scientific information differently?

Is it because
  1. For the last 10 years, scientific information has been twisted and denounced by the government and non-scientific agencies?
  2. Do most people not understand the most basic principals of science that would cause one to think more critically about issues?
  3. Many people are easily swayed by others they identify with and most do not identify themselves with the scientific community?
It is disturbing as there are many important issues that affect our personal and global futures.

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