MD, PhD, FMedSci, FRSB, FRCP, FRCPEd.

Yesterday was the 80th anniversary of the Kristallnacht, the infamous start of the Nazi holocaust. For Cristian Becker, a German PR man who is currently spending much of his time promoting homeopathy and attacking critics of homeopathy, it was the occasion to publish this tweet:

I will try to translate it for you:

Today, on 9 November, all fundamentalist GWUP-sceptics such as Natalie Grams and Edzard Ernst reflect on what hate can bring about. First, one hates homeopathy, then advocates of homeopathy, and then it can seem as though one tolerates violence.

I struggle to respond to such vitriolic stupidity.

What makes this even more shocking is the fact that, as far as I see, none of the professional bodies of German homeopathy have distanced themselves for it.

I know Dr Grams a little, and can honestly say that neither of us ‘hates’ homeopathy nor homeopaths. And crucially, we both detest violence.

If such pseudo-arguments are now being used by the defenders of homeopathy, it mainly shows, I think, two things:

  1. They clearly have run out of real arguments which, in turn, suggests that the end of publicly funded homeopathy is imminent.
  2. Homeopathic remedies are not an effective therapy against feeble-mindedness.

15 Responses to A new and despicable low for homeopathy

  • An unparalleled repulsiveness – but a sign of decay.

  • Desperate men will take desperate action.
    Every best wish to you and your colleagues who are trying to get homeopathy to move forward on the path of enlightened care.
    I am prepared to believe many homeopaths do care, and can provide beneficial counselling.
    I know no one who hates them for being deluded as to how their ministrations have their effects.

  • In philosophical analytic terms, as sometimes employed in academic medical ethics, albeit using less rhetorical terms (than eg ‘hate’), Becker’s argument can be described thus:
    Premise 1: the skeptics (Prof Ernst & Dr Grams) strongly object to homeopathy (a true premise);
    Premise 2: the skeptics strongly object to homeopaths (a questionable premise – only true in terms of the homeopaths’ behaviour and, perhaps, character);
    Conclusion: the skeptics tolerate violence.
    Even to say an undergraduate student of ethics or philosophy, Becker’s jump from premises to conclusion can be seen clearly for what it is: an embarrassing affront to logical reasoning, not to mention being utterly offensive.

  • The only slippery slope on display here is the one that leads from irrationally seeing connections where none exist in somewhat complicated matters like physiology and medicine, to equating criticism with hate, and hate with Nazi genocide.

    I’ve been involved with spirituality for about three decades and am fairly used to seeing extraordinarily stupid claims, but this is right up there in the top three or four.

  • Yes, it’s a classic ‘reductio ad Hitlerum’ argument.

  • Becker has moved from being just another deluded idiot, to being a deranged idiot.

  • What I hate is ignorance, lies and stupidity, which indeed is the essence of this blog.

    On a different note, this tweet is clearly libellous and verging on hate crime, though I am sure that you have better things to do than pursue Herr Becker through the Courts.

  • Becker should consider: First, one has diluted arguments, then diluted moral reasoning, and then it can seem as though one tolerates violence.

  • Stunningly off-target leap of logic.

    I suspect his goal is not to influence people—especially skeptics—but to get people—especially skeptics—to talk about him.

    It worked. Stunningly.

  • A few ‘hate’ comments do slip though on this blog. I have seen posts about ‘punching homeopaths’ and’ grinding homeopaths up and feeding them to pigs’.If posts about punching sceptics and grinding up sceptics and feeding them to pigs werw posted on a homeopathic blog then how would you react Edzard?

    • you know how I would react:
      https://edzardernst.com/2013/12/ad-hominem-attacks-my-life-would-be-so-dull-without-them/
      I would laugh it off.
      I would certainly not link it to the holocaust.

    • Oh dear, you’re the Swiftest, are you? Pretty much to be expected, alas.

      Still, there is a deadly serious point behind the obvious hyperbole. I suffer severe chronic clinical depression, so, yes, the thought that homeopaths are proactively killing vulnerable people like me for their own narcissistic glory does indeed fill me with a burning rage and great desire to see them pay for the evil they do. You know what I don’t do? I don’t actually go out and physically hurt them, because hurting people is wrong. Though I realize that’s not a consideration that ever bothered amoral parasites like you. Be glad I possess the ethical checks that you so horrifically lack.

      Now crawl away, you mendacious ass. You aren’t fooling anyone here but yourself.

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