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What's The Deal With Skeptics?


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MNskeptic

Look, part of me is skeptical about the big guy. I have to be for the sake of my sanity, not having seen the creature myself. Call me a Doubting Thomas. However, the greater part of me believes that something is out there, after considering the evidence that exists. While there is no smoking gun, there is a lot of evidence that points to the fact that this creature may exist. Again, forgive me, for unlike some on this forum, and most everyone else in the world, I have not myself seen this thing. At least, I am open to the possibility of BF and willing to consider any and all information that would convince the skeptical side of me once and for all.

Here's what is so maddening. Why are most other skeptics, doubters, and non-believers so closed off to the possibility that BF may exist? What drives them to dismiss ALL evidence, however thought provoking or compelling, without so much as a shred of objective consideration? They don't give the possibility of BF existence or any of the evidence a second of their time. Their energy is invariably spent denying, diverting, and diminishing any notion of the big guy. What are they protecting so strongly? Why can they not open their minds to the evidence? There is some strong psychological defenses going on in most people that I find very fascinating...and even more frustrating.

So, what's the deal with skeptics? Why the extreme close-mindedness?

MNSkeptic

Edited by MNskeptic
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Incorrigible1
BFF Donor

From the Rules and Guidelines:

 

Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. On the BFF we accept very little at face value. We may have a tendency to over-analyze claims and be more skeptical than some other forums dedicated to this topic, but we think that is preferable to the alternative.

Skeptics welcome! Assuming you don't come in with preconceived and immovable notions regarding Bigfoot and those who discuss the phenomenon, you'll find a spirited and thought-provoking debate waiting for you here. But keep in mind, this is a Bigfoot forum. You must accept the proponents point of view if you expect yours to be considered. This is by nature a “Bigfoot House†and is intended to foster intelligent discussion of the subject. This is not “The Anti-Bigfoot Forumâ€.

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Guest JiggyPotamus

I had written out an extremely long post but I decided to take a completely different approach to my argument. I was going to focus on arguing about the available evidence, but I realized that I was wasting my time because none of that matters when strictly discussing a possibility.

 

I don't believe in black-clad super sea monkey assassins with throwing stars, but how can I say that they do not exist with any certainty? I could never say that with 100% certainty, and I think it is quite foolish to claim so much knowledge when obviously such knowledge cannot be possessed. Of course it is highly improbable that such creatures would exist, but the only logical approach to take is that there is a difference in possibility and probability, and that they have two different meanings.

 

If we address the question in a logical form I could say something like "bigfoot exists." Someone could reply by saying "bigfoot does not exist." I could not in turn say "well if bigfoot doesn't exist, prove it" That would be fallacious, because you cannot prove the negative in this instance. The burden of proof is definitely on the person making the claim. Likewise however, the person I am arguing with would also be supporting a fallacy if they stated that "bigfoot cannot exist, therefore it does not exist," or even simply "bigfoot cannot exist," again because no matter how improbable the idea may seem to some that probability is not proof. This is exactly the same breed of argument skeptics use when they claim that all the circumstantial evidence in the world does not prove the existence of sasquatch, and they are correct. And those who believe in that argument yet who also believe that bigfoot could not possibly exist are being hypocritical, as they are utilizing two different rule sets based on whether they are claiming to be right or someone else is claiming them to be wrong.

 

Rather than attempting to argue how good the evidence is for the existence of bigfoot, and whether it proves his existence, one needs only to point out that saying he cannot exist is fallacious. Now if we were arguing whether bigfoot does exist, rather than whether it is possible for bigfoot to exist, then obviously the arguments would have to be different, yet no one will ever be logically justified in claiming that bigfoot does not or cannot exist. They may only go so far as to state that they do not believe there is enough evidence to prove the existence of the animal.

Edited by JiggyPotamus
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norseman
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It's a big claim........

We are not talking about a new species of salamander. We are talking about a 8' tall bipedal ape or primitive man depending on who you talk too.

We do have evidence in the fossil record of similar creatures existing in the past. But no fossils have been found to exist in North America. Nor do we have any recent physical evidence supporting the existence of the creature.

We have plaster casts, anecdotal reports, photos, audio and video. Nothing thus far is compelling enough for the scientific community as a whole to invest time and energy looking for a hairy wild man in North America.

We need a body or a portion there of for science to sit up and take notice, but for most at this point and time? It's a fairy tale.

I find some of the evidence compelling, as well as my own experience . But Iam not most.....

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Look, part of me is skeptical about the big guy. I have to be for the sake of my sanity, not having seen the creature myself. Call me a Doubting Thomas. However, the greater part of me believes that something is out there, after considering the evidence that exists. While there is no smoking gun, there is a lot of evidence that points to the fact that this creature may exist. Again, forgive me, for unlike some on this forum, and most everyone else in the world, I have not myself seen this thing. At least, I am open to the possibility of BF and willing to consider any and all information that would convince the skeptical side of me once and for all.

Here's what is so maddening. Why are most other skeptics, doubters, and non-believers so closed off to the possibility that BF may exist? What drives them to dismiss ALL evidence, however thought provoking or compelling, without so much as a shred of objective consideration? They don't give the possibility of BF existence or any of the evidence a second of their time. Their energy is invariably spent denying, diverting, and diminishing any notion of the big guy. What are they protecting so strongly? Why can they not open their minds to the evidence? There is some strong psychological defenses going on in most people that I find very fascinating...and even more frustrating.

So, what's the deal with skeptics? Why the extreme close-mindedness?

MNSkeptic

Because that is how science works. Look at the story of Gene Shoemaker, the geologist who first proposed that Earth had a long history of being bombarded by meteors. It took him several decades and lots of scientific evidence to 'convince' his peers.

 

Look up the story of the Channeled Scablands in Washington. Geologists had long believed that it took millions of years for them to be developed. But J. Harlen Bretz was the first geologist to suggest they were created by a megaflood that was occurred when a huge ice dam burst that was located in Glacial Lake Montana. He was ridiculed for this idea. And as usual, it took years to convince his peers.

 

Then there are more modern, pioneering scientists such as Dr. Robert Schoch who believe that the Great Sphinx in Egypt is thousands of years older than what everyone else thinks, and is collecting evidence of that. He gets ridiculed by his peers but I actually think he is right.

 

My point is that this is how science works. You have to have evidence and even when you do, it still takes years, even decades, to get other scientists to agree. It's just humans being human.

 

I am not bothered that Bigfootdom still has skeptics. After all, nobody has clear evidence of one, a skeleton, or a live specimen. Just footprints and stories for the most part, peppered with hoaxers and skeptics.

 

Isn't it fun?

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It's the people with the outlandish claims (more and more on this forum it seems) that I'm skeptical about.  There's even a guy who's claiming now that they come to his camp to watch movies!  If it wasn't for one or two investigators who are the real deal that I admire I'd say no way.  The fact that they think there are bf animals out there keeps my antenna up and my interest peaked.  

 

t.

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Bonehead74

Because that is how science works. Look at the story of Gene Shoemaker, the geologist who first proposed that Earth had a long history of being bombarded by meteors. It took him several decades and lots of scientific evidence to 'convince' his peers.

Look up the story of the Channeled Scablands in Washington. Geologists had long believed that it took millions of years for them to be developed. But J. Harlen Bretz was the first geologist to suggest they were created by a megaflood that was occurred when a huge ice dam burst that was located in Glacial Lake Montana. He was ridiculed for this idea. And as usual, it took years to convince his peers.

Then there are more modern, pioneering scientists such as Dr. Robert Schoch who believe that the Great Sphinx in Egypt is thousands of years older than what everyone else thinks, and is collecting evidence of that. He gets ridiculed by his peers but I actually think he is right.

My point is that this is how science works. You have to have evidence and even when you do, it still takes years, even decades, to get other scientists to agree. It's just humans being human.

I am not bothered that Bigfootdom still has skeptics. After all, nobody has clear evidence of one, a skeleton, or a live specimen. Just footprints and stories for the most part, peppered with hoaxers and skeptics.

Isn't it fun?

The OP is lamenting, not skeptics or a lack of scientific evidence, or even the skeptic's unwillingness to accept the proffered evidence, but instead the refusal of some skeptics to admit even the slightest chance that bigfoot exist. It has nothing to do with whether or not they accept any particular evidence, and has more to do with a denial of possibilities and a dogmatic acceptance of nonexistence almost by rote.

Why they take this stance is open to speculation, but it leads me to believe they are not (at least not primarily) interested in new knowledge and possibilities.

Edited by Bonehead74
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Meh....you'll never get a satisfactory answer to that one, I'm predicting. It is rooted deep in the self-identity of the particular skeptic, and that is proven to be a no-go zone for most. The same reluctance to examine the evidence on an engaged level is the same thing that drives the aversion to any analysis of why they feel that strongly. I've learned (for me at least) my interest in the question of BF is a nice academic diversion on which my sense of identity doesn't depend. Judging from the positions of some others here, they may be just a tad too invested in this field of inquiry and egos can be rubbed wrong very quickly because of it.

 

If I had one wish to be granted, it would be that we all try to enjoy ourselves a little more here. This is not life or death as far as I can tell. Sure seems that way at times though, and I don't just mean the skeptics. Of course, if I saw something I couldn't explain, and was greeted with a giant rasberry from others who had never seen such a thing, or would even admit to the possibility/probability of that being true, I might get a little miffed too.     

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MNskeptic

WSA, that's what I find so fascinating. There is something within a lot of mankind that just won't even allow the notion that this thing may exist. It's probably more of a psychoanalytic question than a rhetoric one. Though maybe both. And, my question isn't intended to troll-up users of this forum with a skeptical side, but more speaking to people in my own life that think I'm nuts for even being open-minded to the evidence of BFs existence. Guess I'm just tired of getting laughed at or humiliated because I'm even seriously and intelligently exploring the question of BF. My most recent conversation with a new non-believer started - and ended - with their first question to me: "I suppose you also believe in fairies and unicorns?" Heck, my wife won't even allow a conversation to start on this subject. Buddies of mine laugh uncontrollably when evidence is presented. Like I said, some deep-seated psychological defenses seem to be at play, but what do I know of those things...

MNSkeptic

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Incorrigible1
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Why did you chose to align your user name as a skeptic?

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Look, part of me is skeptical about the big guy. I have to be for the sake of my sanity, not having seen the creature myself. Call me a Doubting Thomas. However, the greater part of me believes that something is out there, after considering the evidence that exists. While there is no smoking gun, there is a lot of evidence that points to the fact that this creature may exist. Again, forgive me, for unlike some on this forum, and most everyone else in the world, I have not myself seen this thing. At least, I am open to the possibility of BF and willing to consider any and all information that would convince the skeptical side of me once and for all.

Here's what is so maddening. Why are most other skeptics, doubters, and non-believers so closed off to the possibility that BF may exist? What drives them to dismiss ALL evidence, however thought provoking or compelling, without so much as a shred of objective consideration? They don't give the possibility of BF existence or any of the evidence a second of their time. Their energy is invariably spent denying, diverting, and diminishing any notion of the big guy. What are they protecting so strongly? Why can they not open their minds to the evidence? There is some strong psychological defenses going on in most people that I find very fascinating...and even more frustrating.

So, what's the deal with skeptics? Why the extreme close-mindedness?

MNSkeptic

In some it is simply intellectual arrogance.  

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I really can't see anyone being a skeptic if they take the time to view the reports and evidence (I am not saying PROOF) that has been collected over the last 60 years and for a skeptic to say "everyone" is lying would not seem real smart at this point either.

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