Hands up if you were called a sheep for wearing a mask or getting vaccinated during this pandemic? Excuse me while I put both of mine up. Serves me right for arguing with COVID-19 nonbelievers on Facebook.
But here’s the irony in their calling us sheep: they, too, are sheep. While we follow science and actual epidemiologists, they follow non-medical quacks on social media. Or their friend of a friend. Whatever side of the fence you’re on, you’re following someone.
We are all sheep in some standard or another. The only difference between us supposed “sheeple” and them is that we are better at choosing who we follow. We are skeptical enough discern truth, knowing that certain people will have better access to truth than others.
As I’ve said before: if we can’t trust scientists with sciency stuff, how can we trust an influencer who’s clearly in it for money and with no credentials or credible sources to back themselves up?
But more than that, we, the sheeple, are open to changing our minds. And that’s because science is always reconfirming its mind. We allow ourselves the opportunity to understand new ideas, to decide if we should reconsider our points of view. So it’s kind of a stretch to call us sheep. At least, of the domesticated kind…
We’re more like wild sheep
Some may find this surprising, but many sheep are wild and undomesticated. You can find them from the Middle East to North America. Which kind of defeats the purpose behind the insult “sheep”.
In any case, it’s a good analogy for my argument here: COVID-19 conspiracists are more like domesticated sheep, and the rest of us are wild.
Conspiracists are domesticated because they allow themselves to be homed in particular paddocks. They are too afraid to leave their field, lest they be ostracized from their fellow conspiracists. Or do they fear the unknown?
In the same land, us sheeple are free to roam between paddocks. We don’t follow one farmer, we follow many. And we ask for farmers credentials to know if they are worth following.