Have you ever had one of those moments when you’ve been taught something in, say a school that you know to be untrue? It worries me when these events occur because we rely on these sorts of institutions to provide us with the service of education, and when we put that trust into it, most of us expect the same level of oversight that we used to expect in journalism (something that’s also been draining away in recent years, unfortunately).
Most mistakes are thankfully minor, although the lamarckian view of evolution does seem to bounce around a lot in the biology textbooks. Perhaps because some people think that it’s easier to explain a giraffe’s neck stretching because of physical strain than the truth of it, or perhaps some people who are tasked with writing very general textbooks don’t know enough about every field to do a great job in each one.
But then they probably shouldn’t be doing it.
And I’d argue that the truth is easier to explain, mainly because you can actually see it in nature, and it makes more sense.
These publications are many steps above what’s happening to some television stations at the moment. In that case, I’d like to propose that once your channel is filled with a certain percentage of bullshit you have to change your name from say… history, or… national geographic… you have to rename yourself, because otherwise it’s just misleading. I suppose there aren’t enough synonyms for crap to rename all of them so we might have to move into the territory of other defamatory words. Look out for the new arsehole channel for arseholes; where nothing is true and everything is permitted. Wait, I’m thinking of something else that’s actually good.