Who Are We?

We are not scientists. We are science-based skeptics.

A skeptic is one who prefers beliefs and conclusions that are reliable and valid to ones that are comforting or convenient, and therefore rigorously and openly applies the methods of science and reason to all empirical claims, especially their own. A skeptic provisionally proportions acceptance of any claim to valid logic and a fair and thorough assessment of available evidence, and studies the pitfalls of human reason and the mechanisms of deception so as to avoid being deceived by others or themselves. Skepticism values method over any particular conclusion.*

The purpose of this parenting site is to promote quality science and refute different types of speculative claims such as the supernatural, pseudoscience, alternative medicine, and any other extraordinary claim that contradicts facts established by science and/or reasoning.

We’re happy to have differing opinions here, so long as the language is mild and the arguments aren’t entirely ad hominems.  We have opinions about various beliefs, and those opinions, by their very nature, might offend some people. That being said, we reserve the right to delete any nonconstructive comments from trolls.

Other than that, we welcome debate and discussion, and in the spirit of the blog, we’re happy to make corrections to any factual errors.

Thanks for checking out the blog.  Please send questions and/or suggestions for future topics to ticktock(dot)colin(at)gmail(dot)com.

Responses

  1. Dear Colin,

    This is an excellent website!! Congratulations. I’m a geologist, that is always getting into arguments with people while patiently trying to explain why the meteorite impact “theory” explaining mass extinctions is nonsense. I am in complete agreement with you regarding homeopathy and other “non-western” and so-called “traditional” forms of medicine, as well. May I recommend a page about “global warming”, too? For more about this topic, visit . There is an excllent book for sale there, called “A Primer on C02 and Climate” or something to that effect. It would be an excellent reference.

    Keep up the good work!

    Yours truly,

    Avrom Howard

  2. Hey Skeptic Dad,

    I found your blog via the SGU forums and enjoyed reading. Thanks!

  3. Dear Skeptic Dad, I am so completely and utterly thrilled to have just stumbled onto your blog!

    I’ve been a long time reader of the Parenting Beyond Belief blog and finally posted on his forum an entry called “parenting beyond quackery” and asked for recommendations of like-minded online resources. I didn’t get any then, but today found two (you and domestic dad). This is what happens when a working mommy takes a sick day off from work. And they say there is no such thing as coincidence :-)

    I look forward to reading your blog. I also look forward to checking out websites that you recommend.

    Last but not least, my husband has stayed home w/our boys for 7 years (the older of the two is 7). It’s a no-brainer that the qualify of life of the entire family and of each of its members improves when one parent is willing and able to hold down the home-front (excuse the military metaphor). Good for you for making the choice to do the same for your family.

    Now, we need a skeptical mom blog!

    Best regards,

    Svetlana

  4. Hey Ho, nice blog Colin. I too am a SAHD in Cincinnati with two girls (3.5 AND 1.5) and a third (oops) spawn on the way. I’m also an atheist/skeptic. Now, if you also play disc golf, D&D, cook and photograph I’d hafta recommend that we not actually meet in person because one of is obviously an anti-matter duplicate and the resulting explosion would make the Large Hadron Collider black hole look like a firecracker.

  5. Colin, I love this site! Even though we don’t have kids yet, it’s awesome, and will come in helpful if we do. i’m always a fan of evidence based stuff, probably has something to do with my chosen career.

  6. [...] Who Am I?   [...]

  7. To the Author:

    What are your views on the fact that new infectious disease are currently emerging at a much higher rate than ever before, due to various factors such as globalization and cheap air travel; mass urbanization, which brings people to live more and more crowed cities, and into much closer contact with each other; economic migration; human incursion into untouched environments and habitats which brings humans into contact with previously unknown tropical viruses, parasites and other pathogens.

    If you accept this scientifically documented situation of a huge rise in new infectious diseases, it does not take all that much intelligence realize that many weird and medically unclassified new diseases are going to appear in future. Rather than throw doubt and disbelief on any new clusters of unusual disease symptoms, we should really be taking huge interest and pro-active action, and fully examine them.

    I am not just talking about Morgellon’s. This may be the first of many. And the next one may be far more communicable, and /or far more pathogenic, meaning it will affect a much greater percentage of the world population and cause great harm.

    It is much better to be open-minded and accepting of new mystery symptoms, with the possibility be proven wrong and misguided later, than to ignore or cast doubt on such symptoms, only to discover that it really was a new dangerous pathogen, and one that you could have contained, but instead as a result of inaction and laziness, let spread to the world because you were too slow to respond to it.

    Thus my view is not whether the skeptical thinkers are right or wrong, but that as a safeguard, we should be biased towards open-mindedness in such critical issued. In these circumstances, skepticism may actually bring calamity.

  8. Thanks for the question. I totally agree that new diseases should not be ignored and that they deserve scientific investigation.

    I don’t think that my doubts about morgellons really change the fact that infectious diseases should be taken seriously. Morgellons, however, is not a new disease; it’s delusional parasitosis repackaged as something mysterious. Until doctors and scientists agree that it is a new phenomenon, I will not change my mind. But, I would change my mind if confronted with adequate evidence, so I believe that fact defines my disposition as “open minded”. Many sufferers of delusional parasitosis can not say the same thing about their belief in morgellons; they would NEVER change their mind, no matter what the evidence. I can understand why a mysterious illness is preferred to psychological delusion, so I don’t blame them, but ultimately it doesn’t matter given that they are suffering either way.

  9. [...] first blog I’d like to draw your attention to is called Science-Based Parenting by the Skeptic Dad.  No guesses why I like this blog…  In a day and age where we are bombarded by so much [...]

  10. Hi!

    I just found your website while making up a list of good reading for my friends newly parents and afraid of vaccinations. What a wonderful source of good, scientific info on such an important subject. I’ll be recommending you on my blog as well. Thank you – as a mother and a scientist.

  11. Hi, I just found your website on Randi.org! it is great! I live in Mexico, I am also a Skeptic Dad and my blog has the same name as yours but in Spanish “Papa Esceptico” but I have only 1 kid and thats more than enough for me!!! my son is almost 6 Y/O, he takes all my time, I wonder what would be like with 4 children :) I will add this blog to my blog roll! keep up the good work

  12. This blog should be required reading for all parents – well, not just parents but grandparents and basically – everyone.


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