Response 2. Part 2
A. Response Paper 2. Part 2.
Even though Credo begins his argument with a fallacy or an appeal of the emotions by stating everyone believes that knowledge is subjective I still agree with Credo’s claim. Credo’s argument is valid if you consider the premise and conclusion to be true. After analyzing the premise of which Credo explains the belief that Knowledge is subjective you can’t help but recognize the truth behind that statement. According to Merriam Webster dictionary the definition of knowledge is “information, understanding, or skill that you get from experience or education”. Let us break that definition down. Information can be subjective, you gain access to information from many sources like social media and peer to peer. What makes the information true? How do you know that your source is true? Without that confirmation you cannot know what an absolute truth is and what is false. Now consider this, everyone’s understanding varies from person to person. An understanding can be based on an individual’s belief or emotions which would make it subjective. Finally, a skill that you can obtain from an experience or education can also be subjective. You have to expand on the idea that we all have been taught or influenced by knowledge that might be false or may have never been proven true. Like the influence that any type of media has on our community, for example how the radio broadcast of War of the Worlds narrated by Orson Welles caused a mass panic because it was simply heard on a reputable media source and became to everyone’s knowledge that the world was being attacked by alien invaders. Just because it is a popular belief doesn’t mean it is true. I think we commonly confuse what a reliable source is with a reputable one. Credo’s conclusion states this idea clearly that we should be skeptical of all knowledge since we are unable to justify its origin or absolute truth. Can we really dismiss the idea of Descartes hypothesis that we are ruled and governed by an evil demon? Can we dismiss the idea that everything we know of may be falsified in some way and knowledge is only true by matter of opinion? I think this may be difficult to prove wrong, which makes me think knowledge is positively and only subjective.
B. Response Paper 2. Part 2.
Knowledge is facts acquired by a person through experience or education. Ok, so what is a fact? A fact is a truth known by actual experience or observation? So I could say that I know for a fact I am seeing the words on the computer screen as I type, right? But how am I seeing the words, am I seeing it with my eyes? Does the eyes really see?
No, they do not. Rays of light enter our eyes, awakes the nerves, who in turn send that message to our brain. So we "see" with our brain. A brain that is made up of our own personal reality built through our individual emotions, experiences, and education. Who's to say that the "fact" I am so certain of is even a fact at all? Maybe the words on the screen are actually dancing monkeys to another person. My fact then, which I believe wholeheartedly, becomes a myth to that other person.
Using the ad populum, some may say "everyone knows the difference between dancing monkeys and letters, how absurd to confuse the two." Is it really that farfetched? We learned from Descartes to "withhold assent from former beliefs just as carefully as we withhold it from obvious falsehoods" because this is the only way to discover any certainty.
Consider too just how powerful the brain is at creating its own reality of things aside from any tangible agent. You might have heard of the Phantom Limb Syndrome, where a person believes that an amputated body part is still attached to them. What about how a person with Anorexia sees their body as fat? It is clear to everyone else
that the "facts" these people assume are not facts at all, but you'll be hard pressed to convince them otherwise.
So it can be concluded that facts are subjective and since knowledge is made up of facts, then it is as Credo states: knowledge is subjective.
C. Response Paper 2. Part 2.
The question as to whether or not knowledge is subjective is indeed a difficult argument to counter when certain situations are presented to one. Take for instance, the disagreement amongst physicians concerning vaccinations for children. Usually there will be a discrepancy regarding vaccines given to children, and that can be attributed to one’s background or life experiences. A physician in the Philippines might argue that a child will fare much better by not getting a vaccine, but another physician from across the globe may argue the exact opposite. These two physicians may have evidence to support both of their claims, making it difficult to counter argue the original proposal . That is just one example supporting Credo’s position. However, one cannot easily refute the facts associated with knowledge.
Of course you could say that there is a demon responsible for the fabrication we might perceive, but what about the opposing side? Certainly there must be an angel or good spirit that exists, if in fact a demon exists. Just like a belief of God, people typically also believe that there is a devil if God exists right? Often times there are many claims that evil and good spirits exists, but the justification aspects never seem to be strong. If the demon did exists, why not call him or her out and see if another perception is given, but then again you could have zero knowledge that you found out about the deception and therefore unaware and incapable. One could argue that God is responsible for the outcomes and for our perception, but again you would be back to square one. I do not agree with Credo’s assertions that all knowledge is subjective, as perceptions can change, but knowledge is certain (Watson 134 www.allen-watson.com/page134/page134.html).