DHMO – An Excercise In Skepticism


Yesterday’s post was brought to you by: April Fools!

I know the DHMO thing has been around for quite a while. but it IS an excellent example of an exercise in skepticism and critical thinking.

DHMO or Dihydrogen Monoxide, if you read the article linked at the bottom, is actually H2O or water. DHMO is the abbreviation of Dihydrogen Monoxide. Di – meaning two, hydrogen molecules and Mon – meaning one or singular oxygen molecule.

I first heard about the DHMO critical thinking exercise about 10 or 12 years ago when a talk radio show host Neal Boortz talked about the newest scare in chemical poisoning. He spoke about the lethality of Dihydrogen Monoxide and how it was running under our very streets. At one point in the show a city official called up and exclaimed vehemently that there was, in no uncertain terms, NO DHMO running under the streets of Atlanta. I’m sure she was highly embarrassed when she realized that, surprise, there IS water running under the streets.

I was highly impressed that banning DHMO was also the science project of a 14 year old boy. The purpose of his project was to find out how many people actually engage in critical thinking skills. When presented with the DHMO information used yesterday, 43 out of 50 people voted to ban DHMO.

This is an excellent example of why we should always engage in critical thinking. Not once did anyone calling in to the Boortz show ask exactly what DHMO was. He talked about all the things it did but never once did anyone ask what the substance actually was. Unfortunately I was unable to find information about the study itself that the 14 year old did. If anyone has more information, please post it for your fellow readers.

And remember: Always ask questions!

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1 Comment

  1. Sgerbic said,

    April 2, 2010 at 10:42 am

    Love it


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