Here’s a newsflash for you: There are 7 billion or so people on this planet and most of us, have done or said something monumentally stupid. Like dating my ex-girlfriend or watching Long Island Medium, thinking it would be funny. Or that time I decided chocolate and spaghetti were really meant to be together, or that time I decided to drink a bottle of wine and woke up 2 hours away from home, on a train holding a bunch of roses with the roots still attached.
Life is full of dumb decisions. Our brains are against us. Why?
Cognitive bias. Cognitive bias is an error or glitch in thinking where people make decisions based on their emotions, beliefs systems, hormones, likes and dislikes rather than through critical evaluation and the scientific method.
Bias does exist for a reason. Every day, we are required to make decisions – often at a moment’s notice. We need a way to filter through the vast volumes of information we’re constantly bombarded with and bias is the brain's way of simplifying the decision-making process. And yet, if we aren’t aware of these cognitive bias we’re more prone to make poor decisions, believing in conspiracy theories and get ourselves kicked out of that gay bar in town because Vodka makes bad decisions for me.
We're going to look at ways our brains trick us into making poor life choices, in particular, I’m going to pick on anti-vaxxers because, well - their choices are monumentally f*cking stupid. We'll follow Heather Dexter, the woman who chose her ego over her children and left them to suffer through whooping-cough for 6 months so we can see how cognitive bias can f*ck up everyone's day.