Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Denial is just a river in Egypt

Frank Furedi has a new essay on the Spiked website. Billed as the first in a series on "Really Bad Ideas", it looks at the current popularity of the concept of "denial".

As he writes:
Disbelief in today’s received wisdom is described as ‘Denial’, which is branded by some as a crime that must be punished. It began with Holocaust denial, before moving on to the denial of other genocides. Then came the condemnation of ‘AIDS denial’, followed by accusations of ‘climate change denial’. This targeting of denial has little to do with the specifics of the highly-charged emotional issues involved in discussions of the Holocaust or AIDS or pollution. Rather, it is driven by a wider mood of intolerance towards free thinking
Good stuff.

2 comments:

Mike said...

But free thinking doesn't include the right to make up your own facts.

Someone suggesting that courses of nutrients and vitamins, to make up for any dietary deficts, can help delay the onset of full-blown HIV in an AIDS patient is free thinking and may be right (probably is). Someone who claims that a course of nutrients and vitamins will cure someone of being HIV positive and AIDS is only caused by the drugs currently used to fight it is claiming things directly in contrast to the widely proven and easily verified facts.

Some may suggest that pushing a clearly flawed belief that profits yourself but leads to the early death of thousands might be considered at least immoral.

Anonymous said...

*This* is what they mean by denial:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/frontpage/story/0,,2004399,00.html

If you don't have the facts, try to buy them.