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(Assessing Claims and Credibility in Raw and Alternative Diets--continued, Part F)

Raw vegan extremist behavior patterns:
the darker side of rawism (cont.)

Note: If you've just surfed in and jumped directly to this segment, please be aware of the notice provided to readers in the first two paragraphs of the previous page regarding this section (that it involves discussion of some unfortunate realities in the raw vegan movement, which some may find unpleasant or unwelcome).

In Bad Faith: dishonest information and debate tactics in raw foods--personal experiences.

Let's now consider a raw diet promoter who decides to attack some writings that he/she disagrees with, let's say, for instance, some of the writings on this site, which such individuals almost certainly will be likely to dispute. If an "expert" challenges statements made here via the debate tactic of repeatedly demanding "proof" (implicitly meaning published scientific evidence) for specific claims for which only anecdotal evidence is available, then one must question the credibility of said "expert." After all, a real expert would have knowledge of at least part of the scientific evidence relevant to raw diets, and should recognize that for many issues in raw, only anecdotal evidence is available.

Like it or not, the reality is that anecdotal evidence is all that is available for some questions, and those who are credible acknowledge reality. A chronic lack of such acknowledgment, therefore, suggests that the alleged "expert" is using (whether deliberately or more unconsciously) deceptive tactics as a debate strategy, hence may be intellectually dishonest. But this is only one tactic among several others. As it happens, these sorts of tactics have already become familiar to a couple of contributors to this website from direct experience.

That such dietary extremists are willing to stoop to such tactics in defense of the dogma they promote merely underscores that they are not interested in reality or decency. Instead, they have the "one true religion and science of the 100% raw fruit/vegan lunch" to promote; and dishonest debate tactics, hostility, and blatant hypocrisy are standard operating procedure for certain of these so-called raw/fruitarian "experts." What credibility can they be given on other issues, when they so blatantly disregard any standard of truthful disclosure in instances such as this? The obvious answer for any thinking person is that such "experts" forfeit any claim to credibility they might otherwise have had.

Rationalizations of extremist behavior.

No doubt some will try to rationalize their negative behavior via the tired, old excuse that they are merely "passionate" (about their lunch, no less). Ask yourself whether disagreements over lunch philosophy can justify the above aggressive, dishonest acts. The extremists call it "passion"; however, most other people would regard such behavior as reflecting intense hatred and mental toxicity.

Note the emphasis here on emotional and mental balance/health. There is a reason for such emphasis--the inability to function in a civil manner when one's dietary dogma is challenged is a common condition among such individuals, and is a sign they may be mentally UNhealthy, and hence have little credibility.

Mainstream rawists are usually not extremists.

Implicit in the usage of the word "extreme" is that it denotes unusual, not-so-common circumstances. Here this means that although the raw and veg*n movements are infested with extremists, especially the fruitarian wing, it is not the case that every rawist is an extremist. Although it may be redundant, the preceding should be stated explicitly, as follows.

Having asserted that most rawists are not extremists, it should be noted that in my opinion, at least some of the self-appointed "experts" or "diet gurus" are, and the raw and veg*n movements suffer from the burden of their negative influence. While extremists themselves may not be common in raw, unfortunately they do tend to comprise its most visible element--and the extremist attitudes, myths, and misconceptions they promote have filtered out into the movement and are very commonly reflected in various rawist beliefs, myths, etc. Do such factors help the raw community to grow, or do such fanatical attitudes and behavior patterns simply relegate raw diets to the "lunatic fringe" of the alternative health world?

Extremist behavior: humor.

Finally, readers might find the site article (a humor piece) The Raw Vegan Pledge of Extremism, Ignorance and Denial to be relevant and of interest, as it provides a brief (albeit very sarcastic) summary of actual attitudes and behavior patterns that can be observed among raw vegan extremists.


(Skepticism in Raw Foods vs. the "Golden Cage" of Dietary Dogma)

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