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Zico Graziano writes that denialism persists even with advances in science

Zico Graziano writes that denialism persists even with advances in science

What makes some deny the progress of science and despise the technological community?

It has become fashionable these days to associate “denial” with those who despise the tough fight against COVID-19. It seems reasonable. However, scientific knowledge has come under attack since the Age of Enlightenment cleared the darkness of knowledge in the Middle Ages. I quote 3 examples.

The first denials were religious. Just look at the Catholic Church’s reaction to the astronomical discoveries of Galileo Galilei, who was condemned and convicted for heresy. The Inquisition declared, in 1616, that heliocentrism “foolish and absurd”. The idea of ​​the circular motion of the Earth was judged ‘A mistake in faith’.

Those who study technological development are familiar with “ludism”, a political movement of workers that occurred in England at the beginning of the nineteenth century. Led by craftsmen, they destroyed mechanical looms, and responded violently to the new machines that threatened them. handwork.

In 1998, Dr. Andrew Wakefield, in London, presented preliminary research linking the triple MMR vaccine — rubella, rubella, and mumps — to autism in children. Posted in reputable scalpelIt caused unrest all over the world.

Years later, the supposed scientific article was discovered to be a forgery. The data provided was wrong. Investigations showed that Wakefield obtained money from a law firm interested in collecting compensation for those suffering from childhood illness. It is worth knowing this sad story through the words of the world Natalia Pasternak.

As can be seen, there are several dimensions to the attitude of denial. But the worst of it is the ideological reason. Nazi groups deny Hitler’s Jewish Holocaust; The communists hide the atrocities committed by Stalin against the Russian peasants.

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Times have changed, but unscientific attitudes remain, driven by a mixture of conservatism, ideology and politics, and religion and beliefs, always laden with madness. It’s curious, though tragic.

Previously, scientific infidelity preferred to be accepted by ignorance. But how, in the twenty-first century, with so much information available, are there still people who doubt the efficacy of vaccines, whether against the new coronavirus or against other diseases?

Politically, it is complicated. In the covid-19 pandemic, the position of denial is linked to the political position of the “right”, putting the “left” in favor of science. Suitable, in this case. Because in other cases, the political equation is inverted: leftist groups, for example, reject the technological advances of agriculture, and advocate a model of food production similar to that of the medieval peasantry.

Pseudoscience is affecting medicine today like never before. In the SUS (Unified Health System), the so-called “Integrative and complementary practicesIt adds up to 29 treatments, including aromatherapy, acupuncture, homeopathy, Bach flower treatments, ozone therapy, and Reiki. Pay with public money.

More qualified people, who do not use SUS, enjoy expensive “molecular” medicine. Others, more alternatives, prefer treating cancer with holistic diets; Those, the most famous, decided to eat the placenta of their children. No science has discovered the cause of all this.

The doctrine of denial must be separated from scientific controversies. These are common in the early stages of knowledge about the phenomena of reality, until the theory is validated and prevails over other explanations. Environmental protection for climate change seems to be living in the moment.

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In science, truth is always the ultimate truth. Scientific knowledge can be denied, despised, and even distorted, but none of this affects the course of civilization. We live much better today than we did in the past.

Does anyone deny that?

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