I’d like to take a moment to talk about a recent subject that came up on an article I shared on my Facebook account. The article provided a quick summary of supposed benefits from using coconut oil for various things. It was bragging excessively on it. To me, it was obviously an unscientific, overly enthusiastic article, but I think that in articles like this there are bits of interesting truth amongst the over-statements. I posted it with a comment that it would be great if coconut oil did all this. 

A comment was made on my post that the article wasn’t completely true and that the person was tired of the double standard of requiring doctors to provide evidence while others could write any article like this. Now, a double standard is defined as being a rule or principle that is unfairly applied in different ways to different people or groups. Even Wikipedia defines it as being the application of different sets of principles for similar situations. Does this really apply here?

Let me explain my reasoning behind questioning this complaint. Doctors go through lots of school and medical training. They learn all of the inside the box teachings that all of the doctors before them have passed down. Many of these branch out (thank goodness) and many are becoming well versed in natural treatments. All of this leads up to others placing a higher value on these doctors’ opinions than others because of their education. Our society has been taught to follow these doctors’ orders like sheep, agreeing to whatever they deem fit. This is why doctors need to provide evidence that they know what they are talking about. If they want the higher authority they expect to receive with the addition of that education, than they must accept the burden of proving their opinion and treatments. 

Now, if someone like me passes along health information such as natural remedies, how much weight does that carry? I’m not posing as a doctor or expert. You can plainly see that I am only giving an unprofessional suggestion. It might have worked for me, but that doesn’t mean that it will work for everyone else. People should be able to tell if an article is written by an authority on the subject or not. If someone is posing as a doctor, that is another subject all together. In my opinion, no matter who the author is, check for corroborating information. Don’t base a decision about your health or your family’s on one random article. 

Expecting doctors to provide evidence and not unprofessionals isn’t a double standard because their situations and social standings are completely different. Doctors are not all knowing even though people act like they are. They shouldn’t be given the opportunity of using their influence without facts to back them up. Requiring evidence is merely a check and balance to this influence. 

In closing, just don’t be ignorant. In this nation, we are still free to make our own choices. Being informed is the only way to make sure we are making the right ones.