Experts Advise, We Decide – Or We Used To

By | April 16, 2021 | 0 Comments

Experts are experts in one field. They often know little of other subjects, and don’t care to know. They spent their lives learning and working in their field. That’s why we call them experts. We value their advice. But should we follow it?

• If I take the advice of epidemiologists like Dr. Fauci, I will wear a mask, practice social distancing, avoid crowds, and never eat in restaurants, visit amusement parks or sports events, or go to movies or concerts for the rest of my life.

• If I take the advice of social psychologists, on the contrary, I will take off the mask and enjoy all the interactions with other people that I can.

• If I take the advice of clergy, I will stop to help if I see a car accident, an altercation, or a person lying on the sidewalk.

• If I take the advice of lawyers, on the contrary, I will pass by and avoid contact with any situation that might result in a lawsuit or being called as a witness.

Experts give advice from the viewpoint of their area of expertise. So their advice often conflicts with the advice of experts in other fields. That’s the key word: advice. Experts advise us. It’s always up to us to consider the advice, to hear different opinions, and then to make up our own minds according to our best judgment.

We used to know that. Presidents used to have science advisors, not science ayatollahs. No one thought of the CDC as the Supreme Leadership Council. We thought of science as a method of seeking truth.

We knew there is no such thing as “settled science.” Science is never settled but always advancing. No one tried to censor opinions that disputed what leading scientists said – that’s what happened to Galileo. Science isn’t a set of beliefs we are required to hold – that’s religion. Since many of us were religious, we could tell the difference.

Things have changed, and not for the better.

Categories: health, Political, science

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