Sunday, July 05, 2020

Changing your beliefs

I used to think people could change their beliefs.

I thought if people were presented with better information which showed the flaw in their belief, they would change their belief to fit the new information. I thought the process would be almost automatic.

After all, I've done it many times over the course of my life. I've also seen it happen in people I know. I know from personal experience that it can be done.

Sadly, it seems this isn't as common as I had assumed.

In spite of overwhelming evidence, people still believe cops (and political government) are good and necessary-- or, at least a "necessary evil" [sic]. They fear or hate anarchy without even understanding what it is. They imagine there's such a thing as "too much liberty" and see it as a threat.

No amount of information, logic, or evidence to the contrary will budge them from their belief. They believe it, and that's the end of it.

I realized the problem: even flawed beliefs based on bad information can still "work". It's not as dangerous to hold an erroneous belief as it seems it should be. So, as long as the belief isn't causing them immediate agony or death, it's less painful to hold onto it than to change it.

Therefore, I no longer expect better information to influence anyone, but I still put it out there so they'll have no excuse. And I'll still make fun of them for believing such ridiculous things.

Writing to promote liberty is my job.
YOU get to decide if I get paid.
I hope I add something you find valuable enough to support.


  1. "They believe it, and that's the end of it."

    Yes, to a point. Take religion as an example; there are still plenty of believers out there, 250 years after the Enlightenment, 400 after Galileo and 100 after the Scopes trial. But do the believers really believe?

    Some do, for sure. But observers of Christmas... are they all truly convinced of the virgin birth, that the creator of the universe became a man? It makes a nice fairy tale, but do they articulate it as true, any more than that of Santa Claus?

    Progress is slow, but steady. As evidence mounts up massively against the religion of government, there comes a tipping point. Hang in there!