The page Spirit Science has over eight million likes on Facebook. Each vacuous post of theirs gets thousands of likes, or shares, or both, and is seen by hundreds of thousands of people, if not millions. Many of their YouTube videos obtain hundreds of thousands of views. And some of their content gets me mad as hell.
You might think, “You’re just jealous.” You’re damn right, I am. The nonsense they peddle that amounts to little more than a new age rebranding of The Secret with covered in a thin veneer of word salad. I am jealous of the attraction that this pseudoscience gets! But what gets me from jealousy to anger is this:
Wowing parents of children with Autism with a series of impressive sounding chemical names and processes, the people promoting this solution claim it’s a miracle cure. The fact that it’s a miracle is in the name: Miracle Mineral Solution. But wait, there’s more!
It cures H1N1, it cures hepatitis, it cures AIDS, and it cures cancer. But most of all, it cures that unsatisfying feeling of an intact digestive tract. It does that because this miracle cure is bleach. Drink enough, and you’ll be cured of any disease. It’s a toxic solution that parents make for their kids that causes them to expel parts of their intestines in their stool. And SpiritScience.net, a site which is expressly disinterested in obtaining answers to questions by real, non-spirit science, will happily encourage you to purchase MMS.
I am jealous of the captivating power of new age, spiritual nonsense. The scientific method, and the slow, plodding success of medical science is not very interesting, but there is a reason we have such an exacting standard in our country for medical claims. Unproven medicines have killed and harmed so many people that the bar had to be set very high, and even then, mistakes still occur. They are corrected, slowly, by a system that is anything but exciting.
There are no miracle cures, and bleach doesn’t cure autism. It’s exciting to believe in chakras and higher planes of existence. It would be a wonderful world to live in if it were true that we were on the precipice of a new phase of human existence, free of physical constraint. While that might seem harmless to believe in, it is supported by a fundamental belief in a conspiracy theory: scientists, experts, teachers, and your professors are lying to you about how the world works. That belief undermines trust and encourages the proliferation of miracle cures. Only if you believe that the doctors are keeping real cures like “Miracle Mineral Solution” from you would ideas like this take hold. That it does is deeply disturbing.
I’d sleep better tonight if I knew Spirit Science was peddling literal snake oil. Instead, they’re asking parents to feed their autistic children bleach.
Support real science, not spirit science. Real science is boring and slow, but it eventually finds the right answers, not quick fixes.