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Silas comments on Avoiding Your Belief's Real Weak Points - Less Wrong

50 Post author: Eliezer_Yudkowsky 05 October 2007 01:59AM

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Comment author: Silas 05 October 2007 05:06:20PM -1 points [-]

Eliezer_Yudkowsky: This seems to contradict your previous trivialization of the "9/11 hijackers are cowardly" claim. If indeed probing our beliefs at their weak points is painful, backing away from this is a sign of cowardice. Blowing yourself up in an attempt to kill off the people who disagree with you, instead of intellectually confronting this, and exposing yourself to that pain of being wrong, is indeed cowardly, even if you are sacrificing something precious in the process.

Americans may feel unjustifiably comfortable in retreating to "9/11 terrorists were cowards". They may endorse this purely because of pro-American bias. However, the claim is fundamentally correct, even if people support it for the wrong reasons.