(Drawing by Minty Sainsbury)

Have you ever believed a compelling story that turned out not to be true?

It’s a problem that we keep referring to “conspiracy theorists” as a distinct group of people. They are not “other” to us; they are a part of our whole.

We have evolved to believe compelling stories, and when good stories have been bouncing around the internet, being tweaked, perfected, elaborated upon and developed into ever-more compelling narratives, we are even more likely to believe them.

We should start viewing conspiracy theories for what they are — informational viruses that mutate and spread.

We are all potential conspiracy theorists.

Just as diseases can be weaponised for biological warfare, conspiracy theories will be (and already are being) weaponised too.

I wrote more about this here.

Of course, some conspiracy theories are true, making this all the more complicated.

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(Drawing by Minty Sainsbury)

You’re curious and smart and you always seek to understand and learn once you’ve been given a proper chance to be interested.

Your school rebuffs curiosity and interest by teaching in a formulaic way that you, understandably, find boring.

Your school mostly rewards discipline and those who’ve been lucky to find some interest through same way other than through their lessons.

You’re hard working and you’re smart. The fact that your grades aren’t high isn’t a reflection of your intelligence — it’s a consequence of your lack of inspiration.

Remember that there are many kinds of intelligence. Curiosity is one of the most important of all of them.

You don’t have to succeed in a broken school system to be a success in life and to be an important part of society.

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Matthew J Shribman

Matthew J Shribman

Science Storyteller, Environmentalist, Teacher, Normal Guy // MChem (Oxon) // co-founder of AimHi