Clearly many opinions are considered heavily more reasonable by society than others. Often these opinions are backed by a level of objectivity. Most of us agree that certain behaviours such as Racism, Sexism, many forms of discrimination, and various criminal activities are unhealthy, uneconomically productive and do not enhance the general utility of society.
Presumably these widely held beliefs have formed because of an objective basis that can be drawn upon to support such conclusions. People of every race have made extremely valuable contributions to human development. Millions and millions of Women exist that are more talented than me e.t.c.
The vast majority of people would accept the statements ascribed above. Even though no ‘exact’ mathematical model exists.
What I am interested in is when a large number of people or a significant minority of people seem to accept beliefs that are clearly either dysfunctional or lacking on logical examination. An explanation could, sadly, be that we are governed to a greater degree by social conditioning to an extent that it is able to manipulate our innate feelings of utility. Our beliefs in which behaviours will produce the greatest good or happiness become distorted if we are fed incorrect information. Naturally we are easy to manipulate in this regard because as per “Thnking fast and Slow,” humans struggle to think statistically because human life does not easily ascribe to any mathematical model - Hence why no opinion is truly objective.
Therefore the inability to reason life events with a clear mathematical model leaves the human being vulnerable in situations where: -
I) The flow of information is easily controlled in support of an unhealthy viewpoint, and
II) The significant information contrary to the viewpoint is withheld. Hence it is far easier to accept a belief than search for any information that might question it.
III) The subsequent snowball effect where a belief becomes more popular due to a human’s tendency to mirror social normatives or others, presumably as an evolutionary prerequisite to survival.
Kind Regards and have a really good evening,