Welcome back to "Doggerel," where I ramble on about words and phrases that are misused, abused, or just plain meaningless. Forgive me if this entry is extra-rambly.
One of the most bizarre, yet still strangely common, accusations against skeptics is that we're trying to disprove love, joy, art, or some similar good thing completely unrelated to whatever we're arguing about.
First, skepticism is one of the cardinal virtues of science. Without it, we'd only be milling over possibilities, rather than solving mysteries and using that newfound knowledge to discover and unravel new mysteries. Without skepticism, life would be full of stale, meaningless sophistry. It'd also be much shorter.
Second, woos who use this doggerel implicitly or explicitly claim that skeptics can't experience the abstract item in question. This is nothing more than a base attempt to dehumanize skeptics.
One of the recent videogames I've played was Okami for the PS2. It is a truly rare experience to see a game that has such beautiful imagery, stirring music, creative spirit, driving story, and innovative play style. Another experience of mine is with the last episode of Futurama before its cancellation: The last line of dialog simply makes my heart ache from the beauty and sorrow (soon to be turned to joy) of it: "Don't stop playing, Fry... I want to hear how it ends."
I'm on the verge of tears just thinking about some of this stuff. The fact that countless woo trolls would deny my capacity for such things is appalling, and leaves me wondering if they're at all capable of the things they pretend to revere. After all, I've noticed a tendency for the people who talk about art while bashing science to come across as hacks with no creative impulse.
Among the skeptical community, I've noticed it's exceedingly common for us to be fans of science fiction. Science fiction is a truly special genre, since it allows us to think about the implications of our hopes, dreams, and even fears coming true. Star Trek, even though it features a lot of dodgy "science," is built on a sentiment that many skeptics share: With the knowledge and wisdom that comes from science, we can solve many of the problems that plague us and rise above many of the petty disputes that divide us. I doubt it'll be nearly as easy in the real world as it was in Star Trek, but I think mankind can achieve something roughly like that.
Woos, however, seem to go by the motto of "ignorance is bliss," are content to live in a stale world, and vehemently attack anyone who seeks to expand their horizons.