A while back, I did a post titled “There is Hope for the World” talking about how I’d seen a show which, for once, instead of presenting a bunch of pseudoscientific bull was actually debunking the tricks psychics had used to fool people. I had begun that post talking about how I was annoyed with the pseudoscience shows on the Sci-Fi channel which had ruined my enjoyment of Doctor Who every time they advertised that they were searching for the Yeti or something during the commercial breaks because I would have to cover my eyes and say “teh stoopid! it hurts!”
At least this wasn’t during Doctor Who.
Skeptics argue that ghosts do not exist and that all paranormal activity can be explained scientifically. However, TAPS has proven otherwise. TAPS has gathered scientific evidence of the paranormal, and the TV show has helped bring ghost hunting into the mainstream.
Er… wrong. Skepticism is not presuppositionalist like that. I don’t know, maybe there are ghosts. The possibility is very slim, though, and random static which sounds like people talking (an inconvenient effect of our brains being programmed for language) and lens flares and electro-magnetic fields (which can be generated by light bulbs) and whatever else they present on that show certainly isn’t evidence for the existence of ghosts.
Who decided that ghosts generate electro-magnetic fields anyway?
As for “helping” to bring ghost hunting into the mainstream, I point to one of the comments left on the blog.
I feel the mother’s concern for her daughter, but seriously… Problems sleeping therefore ghosts? My mum tells me all the time that when she passes by my room at night she hears me talking in my sleep, and I, of course, don’t remember any of it. Sleepwalking isn’t unheard of. 18% of people in the world are prone to it.
No, I most certainly don’t think that the Ghost Hunters are “helping” us with their crummy evidence. The only thing that it’s “helping” with is to get people to make huge leaps of logic and see ghosts everywhere before fully investigating all possibilities with healthy skepticism.
There isn’t hope for the world.
But, wait. I just got back from the Denver Museum of Nature and Science. We were watching live video from NASA as we waited for Phoenix to land.
I was hanging around in Space Odyssey when I saw a boy looking bored. I asked him if he was having fun and he said that he was upset that he was stuck there. So, I started teaching him about the sun spots and he learned some real science about magnetic fields. Then I showed him a picture of the sun in infrared and I decided to take him over to the infrared camera to teach him some more about that. He learned some real science about infrared cameras. The boy thanked me about three times before he left. I think I turned his evening around.
It’s miraculous that we even do science at all and I just got back from a place that was built as a celebration of nature and science!
There is hope for the world.
Sorry to those of you who will read this by title only.