Dealing with conspiracy “theorists” is hard
Of course, it is! Everyone knows how exhausting it is to drag them back to earth. When I say “hard”, I am referring to something else.
Studies show we can change their minds by being empathetic. While I don’t have the means to question their validity, my own anecdotes have said something similar: even if you fail to change minds, your diplomacy can encourage people to consider your viewpoints and reconsider their own.
If the “theorists” simply believe in wacky beliefs, then I am willing to be kind towards them. I would not pander to their irrationality. But, I would try to not be a dick.
If the “theorists” believe in debunked medical misinformation and extremely bigoted conspiracies about the “others”, then I have a problem.
Those people are dangerous not because of their beliefs, but because they feel obliged to do something about them. They don’t see themselves as dangerous, they see themselves as truth-exposing heroes. Worse, they believe it is our moral obligations to incite violent against our fellow human beings and let them infected with preventable diseases because suffering from permanent bodily damages is better than being vaccinated.
And you expect us to believe we owe them compassion?
Until they have proven themselves to be decent human beings, the only thing they are worthy of is to be put in their places. Considering how horrible of human beings they are, I believe it is acceptable if the scolding turns verbally abusive. If ugliness is the only thing you can offer, then ugliness is the only thing you deserve.
Yes, I am willing to accept that niceness is the most effective way to go. But, its proponents should realise it is fucking easier said than done.
Oh, and I used to be one of those conspiracy “theorists”. While I certainly was not on a Qanon level, I was also on my way to religious zealotry, a destination which I never arrived at. If I did, I would definitely be on that level.
If I have the chance to go back in time, I would beat the shit out of my past self for many reasons and believing conspiracies is one. I would not empathise with him. It is humiliating to even reminisce that aspect of my past.
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