The skeptics agenda, first and foremost is to have homeopathy banned. The basis of which is not sound evidence, but an aversion to ‘homeopathy’, a prejudice, by definition.
The impression a skeptic, or indeed pseudoskeptic gives, is that they are right and you are wrong. They are wise and learned and you are not. They are the group that should decide whether you have access to homeopathy and not you. The ultimate result is a denial of your choice. If homeopathy was as insignificant as it’s made out to be, do you think they’d be gunning for it? The problem is, it’s viable ‘competition’.
For some, it’s really important to know ‘how’ something works, and for others it’s more important to see it work. My job, as a homeopathic practitioner, or ‘homeopath’ is actually to make homeopathy work, rather than to find out how it works. For example, the mechanism of action of the painkiller, paracetamol is still poorly understood, yet we know and accept that it works. However, you can analyse a paracetamol tablet and find ‘active’ chemical constituents in it. How about electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) though? No tablets, no chemistry, poorly understood, and still used in some circumstances to manage mental illness, with effect, yet we have little understanding how it works. I’m sure that if this fell under the banner of ‘homeopathy’, the skeptics' opinion of it would differ.
Summary of The Skeptics Agenda
Part 1 - Skeptics claim homeopathy is unscientific
Some elements of homeopathy are scientific, Samuel Hahnemann, the founder of homeopathy was a scientist. Some elements of homeopathy are ‘artistic’. Medicine is not based purely on science. Many practices in medicine are based on inference, theory, the fact that it’s always been done that way and the knowledge of observable favourable reaction without fully understanding the mechanism of action.
Medicine ≠ science.
Solution – Do patients / clients derive benefit from it? Focus on the results.
Part 2 - Skeptics claim homeopathy is dangerous
Homeopathy isn’t dangerous but homeopaths can be. The lack of integration and animosity between medical disciplines and pride is a stumbling block.
Solution – Train homeopaths well, and regulate appropriately.
Part 3 - Skeptics claim homeopathy is merely placebo
The placebo ‘effect’, is still an effect. Understanding placebo is science. Conventional and non-conventional medical methodologies utilise placebo. There is no significant difference between the beneficial interventions of conventional medical treatments compared to the positive evidence for homeopathy. Animals respond to homeopathic medicines.
Solution – Focus on the word ‘effect’ and not ‘placebo’.
Part 4 - Skeptics claim homeopaths are bare-faced lying snake-oil sales people
Within the realms of homeopathic practice, we don’t have sales reps promoting their medicines to homeopaths. Homeopaths are not ‘incentivised’ to prescribe particular homeopathic medicines over another homeopathic medicine and when a new homeopathic medicine is formulated, it costs the same as one that’s been available for 200 years. Furthermore, the information about new discoveries in homeopathy is shared amongst homeopathic pharmacies freely.
Solution – Understand how homeopaths make a living and how the pharmaceutical industry and medical profession works.
Part 5 - Skeptics claim homeopathy is witchcraft
'Homeopathy is witchcraft' is a statement based on observing that homeopathy works but having no idea how.
Solution – Accept homeopathy works and that we have a limited understanding of how.
Be a skeptic, but be a real skeptic, not a pseudo-skeptic. Base your understanding of the world on what you actually see, feel, hear, smell, touch and taste for real; not what you read in the news or what someone tells you, but what you experience. Question everything. Never accept anything as unquestionable since that is where dogma starts, and progress stops.
Who actually benefits if homeopathy is banned? It's unlikely to be you.