According to Wikipedia, scientism is a term used to describe the universal applicability of the scientific method and approach, and the view that empirical science constitutes the most authoritative worldview or the most valuable part of human learning—to the exclusion of other viewpoints. Followers of scientism tend to be zealots, more devout even than the average followers of traditional religions. What makes them especially stubborn is that they tend to not think of their beliefs as their “religion;” instead, they think scientism is simply the default way of thinking for any person and so they cannot comprehend any argument made from a different point of view. To them, if something can't be examined scientifically, it can't be true.
Now, you would think that people who practically worship science would welcome scientific debate. They say they do. Actually, they brag that they do. In the new Cosmos series, Neil deGrass Tyson offered these five, simple rules for science:
(1) Question authority.
(2) Think for yourself.
(3) Test ideas by the evidence gained from observation and experiment.
(4) Follow the evidence wherever it leads.
(5) Remember: you could be wrong.
Ignore the self-contradiction going on here – like, how can someone test the idea that we should test ideas by evidence? My point in citing these “rules” is to show how skepticism is supposed to be at the heart of science. According to Tyson, I'm not supposed to accept a conclusion just because someone in authority says it's true. I'm supposed to think for myself. Right? I could be wrong but maybe it's the person making the claim who is wrong.
There are real scientists who are skeptics. At the risk of sounding cliché, scientific advancement often comes when people think outside of the box. Science Alert once published a list of 8 scientific papers that were rejected during peer review before going on to win a Nobel Prize. Obviously, these authors were on to something and the scientific establishment just couldn't see it. How often has one radical idea, one that other scientists may have thought sounded crazy, turned out to be true? Maybe we should ask Galileo.
Devout members of scientism aren't skeptics. They claim to be but they aren't. They blindly follow the majority opinion without question. You can often identify them by their frequent use of the phrase, “The science is settled.” To them, truth is whatever is accepted by a majority of scientists. Anyone who disagrees is considered a heretic. Actually, they don't call them heretics – they call them, “science deniers” but, in scientism, it means the same thing. Doubters of some scientific theory aren't ever called “skeptics” or “free thinkers;” they're “deniers.”
Let me give you a few examples of scientism's doctrine. The first is obviously evolution. I cannot tell you the number of times I've heard rabid evolutionists defend their theory by saying no credible scientist denies that evolution happened. Note the use of the word “credible,” but never mind blatant No True Scotsman fallacy. Truth is not decided by popular vote. Evolutionists often refuse to debate creationists on the grounds that “the science is settled,” “there is no debate among scientists whether evolution is true,” and debating the theory with a creationists gives the impression there is still doubt over the theory. Followers of scientism want to squelch any dissent over evolution by suing public schools who want to “teach the difficulties,” rejecting any creationist paper submitted for peer review, and even protesting a privately funded, religious organization like the Creation Museum.
Another long standing doctrine of this godless faith is climate change. Once upon a time, it was called “global warming” but after decades of no noticeable increase in the global, mean temperature, they had to replace “warming” with the much more ambiguous term, “change.” Actually, none of the dire predictions made by these alarmists have happened. In 2008, ABC aired a video montage showing all the terrible things that would happen by 2015 because of climate change: New York flooding, hundreds of miles of scorched earth, and skyrocketing food and fuel prices. I remember 2015. It was nothing like the predictions made by the video but followers of scientism aren't embarrassed by their failed predictions; The “science is settled” concerning climate change and bad things are going to happen unless we do something now. //RKBentley shakes his head//
Bill Nye was recently embarrassed by Tucker Carlson when he tried to pull that “the science is settled” crap. Carlson was asking basic questions about climate change and Nye was obviously making up the answers. Before we spend trillions of dollars on this “crisis,” we need to have some answers: the most fundamental question is, is there even any warming? The trend for the last few decades says no. If it is happening, to what extent are humans causing it? If we could stop warming, should we? What is the earth's temperature supposed to be? Every air-breathing animal produces carbon dioxide. Humans produce about 2 pounds of CO2 per day. Even if we converted the entire world to 100% emission-free energy, humans will still produce billions of pounds of CO2 every day just by breathing. How can that be bad? Plants require CO2. What will happen to our forests if we could reduce the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere? These are legitimate questions but they are heresy to dogma-driven zealots like Nye. A real scientist on CNN recently brought up some of these points and Nye scolded CNN for, “having one climate change skeptic, and not 97 or 98 scientists or engineers concerned about climate change.”
The most recent political discussion which followers of scientism have weighed in on is the transgender issue. Scientists now “know” that things like gender identity or even our biological sex aren't immutable but exist on a spectrum. You would think that after 6,000 years of human history, the science would at least be settled about who is a male and who is a female. Wrong! Now we're being told that doctors sometimes got it wrong when they checked “male” or “female” on a birth certificate. I'm a 51 year old white guy. Why can't I identify as a 65 year old person and start receiving social security? Why can't I say I'm a black guy and maybe qualify for affirmative action programs? But I can say I'm a woman and folks like Nye will rush to defend my delusion as being normal, usual, and healthy. Anyone who disagrees is a hate-filled, homophobic, bigot. Colleges are adopting strict policies requiring the use of gender-neutral pronouns. If I call a female, “she,” suddenly I'm the one who has the problem. Several years ago, I wrote about California's ban on gay-conversion therapy for minors. Really? So after little Johnny was abused by an uncle, he seeks help because he doesn't like the sexual feelings he now has toward men and the only acceptable response is, “You're gay, Johnny, you can't change it. You'd better learn to live with it!”
Bill Nye has said that being a creationist suppresses critical thinking. I believe Nye's religion of scientism is a far worse assault on critical thinking than being a creationist could ever be. He does not want debate. “Science deniers” must be ridiculed and insulted until they have lost all credibility. Maybe they should even be put in prison. Nye and folks like him have their minds are made up. Stop confusing them with facts. The science is settled.