Lee McIntyre, author of “How to Talk to a Science Denier,” outlines 5 traits of all science deniers that help in talking with people who struggle with science.
Five Characteristic Tropes of Science Deniers
- Cherry pick evidence
- Believe in conspiracy theories
- Rely on fake experts and denigrate real experts
- Engage in illogical reasoning
- Insist that science has to be perfect
A good video summary (of 35 minutes, unfortunately) stands here
How to Talk to a Science Denier - with Lee McIntyre - YouTube
If you get a chance to listen to or watch it, I think you will find it helpful. The characteristics of a false teacher posted on another thread made me think of these.
- All who changed their mind did so when they developed a one-to-one, trusting relationship.
a. Example: Jim Bridenstine, a climate change denier, apparently learned from NASA that it does
- Context matters. Avoid yelling or insulting. Stay calm, patient, and respectful. Eventually, they will ask you what you think, and you can respond with questions.
- Graphs often help
- Conservatives tend to respond to scientific consensus
- By listening, you will affirm them and allow them to create the conditions to change their own mind
- Take your time and allow them to develop trust.
- Consider asking what evidence would convince them to change their minds.
- Remember that the Internet has given a lot of power to science disinformation. As a result, many science deniers are actually victims of those who originate them.
I would be interested in your thoughts.