People prefer reassurance to research

  • ANR

Dear Editor:
I applaud Mr. Gilliland for citing his sources for his claims that the recent presidential election was fraudulent and I partially agree with him on one of his statements which I will address later. However, citing sources is not the only requirement to proving or disproving assertions. Now that we have the sources of Mr. Gilliland’s claims, we still have to prove that they are based in fact, not lies or misinterpretations. The claim that common sense and logic support this evidence of fraud is seriously compromised by the fact that the sources cited and the examples of how some of the election results defy previous historical outcomes are flawed because of “confirmation bias.” Two articles I would recommend on this subject are: Psychology Today -- “Cognitive Biases vs. Common Sense,” Jim Taylor Ph.D. July 18, 2011 and -- “Confirmation Bias and the Power of Disconfirming Evidence.” Humans tend to seek only information that confirms their previously held worldview, and ignore or refute any information that might tend to contradict those worldviews.
While voting numbers and outcomes do follow discernible trends over time, this past election was an outlier in that a significantly higher number of eligible number of citizens actually voted this time and just because certain counties or certain states have typically gone one particular way in previous elections, there is no guarantee that this should be the outcome in every election.
Epoch Times, MacIver News and Townhall are all examples of extremely conservative think tanks, and as such, those that limit their reading to this narrow of a view are again, falling under the comfortable spell of the confirmation bias trap. Comparing the size of rally crowds is meaningless because it has no bearing on who actually votes in the election. Biden chose not to schedule large crowd events because of the virus situation and Trump ignored the threat of the pandemic because he needed large crowds to feed his ego.
For brevity, I have chosen not to expand on my contention on each and every point in Mr. Gilliland’s article. That in no way indicates that I believe there was any validity in any of his assertions. Regardless of how you want to play with semantics, if any of the courts that were presented cases arguing that Trump should be the valid winner of the recent election had believed there were valid arguments presented to them, they would have decided in that direction and Mr. Trump would still be president today. That didn’t happen because none of these assertions can survive scrutiny.
I didn’t address the point raised about Article II, Section 2 in Mr. Gilliland’s article because the sentence didn’t have a conclusion that could be addressed.
Finally, two things: I do agree with Mr. Gilliland’s statement about Hitler’s “The Big Lie.” I just disagree with him about which side of the political spectrum more closely resembles the Fascist philosophy in recent events.
And I want to end with this quote from Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson: “One of the biggest problems with the world today is that we have large groups of people who will accept whatever they hear on the grapevine, just because it suits their worldview, not because it is actually true or because they have evidence to support it. The striking thing is that it would not take much effort to establish validity in most of these cases... but people prefer reassurance to research.”
Monte Burger,

News Register Front Bottom Tile Photo Contest  East Park Villa