September 16, 2010

What Is Educational and Why Ideas Can't be Immune to Evaluation

"Respect my views," I often hear people saying. By now my reaction is, why ?

Let's not confuse the right of everyone to believe and say anything they want. It's called free expression. But, as much as people need rights, ideas don't. I don't think I have to respect any idea without examining it--including applying critical thinking. Of course, this makes people uncomfortable having to discuss something that they haven't really thought about or something that is part of their identity.

Yet, by discussion, inquiry, rational thinking, and the ability to revise, we can learn.

It's upsetting to hear that the superstitious, the invalid, and the fictitious are promoted by so many Americans nowadays. I have no patience for willful ignorance and for the peddlers of it.