Five Popular Myths You Should Not Believe

Five Popular Myths You Should Not BelieveIllustrated by Edwin Fotheringham

1. Showman P. T. Barnum said, “There’s a sucker born every minute.”
No, he didn’t. Here’s how we fell for this misconception, according to the Barnum Museum: In 1868, a man named George Hull, of Binghamton, New York, arranged for a slab of gypsum to be carved in the shape of a huge human being, then had it treated to resemble an ossified corpse and buried it on a farm near Cardiff, New York. About a year later, the artifact was “discovered” when the owner of the farm engaged some friends to help dig a well. Newspapers everywhere picked up the story of the “Cardiff Giant,” and soon thousands of the curious were paying 50 cents apiece to view it. Hull sold part ownership to a group of investors led
by a man named Hannum, who moved the giant to Syracuse and doubled the admission fee.

Plus: 10 Food Cure Myths Put to the Test

Barnum made an offer to buy the giant but was turned down. Not to be outdone, he had a duplicate giant carved, which he exhibited, claiming Hannum had sold the original to him and had replaced it with a fake. Newspapers picked up Barnum’s version, and the crowds started coming to see his giant. It was then that Hannum—not Barnum—was quoted as saying, “There’s a sucker born every minute,” assuming his giant was real and the thousands paying to see Barnum’s fake were being ripped off. Hannum sued Barnum for calling his giant a fake. In court, the original hoax was revealed, and the judge ruled for Barnum, finding that Hull’s Cardiff Giant was a fake and Barnum was thus not guilty of anything.

Hannum and Hull have long since been forgotten, but the “sucker” quote has stuck to Barnum—who was nobody’s fool.

PLUS: 20 Secrets Your Waiter Won’t Tell You and 15 Foods You Should Never Buy Again

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140 thoughts on “Five Popular Myths You Should Not Believe

  1. GW’s dentures weren’t wood but they were still very uncomfortable and did likely contribute to the dour expression we see in his portrait. Imagine what he would look like if he left the dentures out! Lips and cheeks caved in, like an old homeless man.

  2. Protestant churches have also carried out inquisitions and killed those found guilty. St. Paul warned that there would be ravenous wolves among Church leaders. The Inquisition shows that evil men some disguise themselves to carry out their heinous deeds.

  3. It was Saint Bridget and Saint Columbine who spread Christianity in Ireland. St Patrick had a better PR person

  4. How about the myth of Christianity itself? If you’re going to invent a religion & all the hocus-pocus-dominocus that goes with it, at least create some compelling fairy tales. The Virgin Mary …you’re kidding, right? And my favorite is that ‘God’ is all-powerful, all-knowing, HE’S EVERYWHERE! So why doesn’t he just kill off that ol’ Devil, SATAN? I’ll tell you why, because it would be bad for the god business.

    1. “And my favorite is that ‘God’ is all-powerful, all-knowing, HE’S EVERYWHERE!”

      As a mythbuster, you’ve failed miserably. Apparently God is “everywhere,” but just not where you are, which is no where, or now-here.

  5. Yes, Church and State were closely linked in almost all of pre-20th-century Europe.  But DC’s original concern is valid.  There is no basis for this article’s “500,000 deaths” figure, which is ironic given that it is supposedly trying to dispel “myths.”  The largest and most consistently active inquisition was the Spanish Inquisition, and historians estimated that the Spanish Inquisition executed a total of several thousand individuals over the course of its existence.  There were other inquisitions in Catholic countries, notably the Papacy’s own Roman Inquisition, but the cumulative number of executions conducted by all inquisitions did not even come close to the figure cited by this article.

  6. How about the myth of Christianity itself? If you’re going to invent a religion & all the hocus-pocus-dominocus that goes with it, at least create some compelling fairy tales. The Virgin Mary …you’re kidding, right? And my favorite is that ‘God’ is all-powerful, all-knowing, HE’S EVERYWHERE! So why doesn’t he just kill off that ol’ Devil, SATAN? I’ll tell you why, because it would be bad for the god business.

    1. “Another popular myth you should not believe is that gun control saves lives.”

      And we know this, too: When guns weren’t controlled, lives were still lost.

  7. Instead of saying “western Britain” can you just say Wales? St Patrick was welsh!!

  8. According to the below listed article from U.S. NEWS, George Washington used the teeth of Black slaves. This is not unknown history and I wonder why Reader’s Digest neglected to include this fact!

    The Sorry Legacy of the Founders

    By Ulrich Boser

    Posted 1/4/04

    In 1784, five years before he became president of the United States,
    George Washington, 52, was nearly toothless. So he hired a dentist to
    transplant nine teeth into his jaw–having extracted them from the
    mouths of his slaves.

    1. Uh, not possible. You cannot pull a tooth from one person and just stuff it in the gums of another person. We can’t do it now, and they certainly couldn’t do it then.

  9. Hanging was also the most common method of execution in Europe.  For a long time, the Catholic church refused to even acknowledge whether witchcraft existed, so “witches” were tried as heretics.  Witches who were hanged, however, were frequently cremated (thus adding to the confustion) because the prevailing superstition was that cremation prevented resurrection on the last day.  Apparently, the Christian deity was omnipotent and clever enough to make Adam out of mud, but too stupid figure out how to re-animate a pile of ashes.

  10. Where is the “Read this article on a single page” option?
    Arggh, it is so so so so annoying that you force us to reload the page five times to read — what — a 700 word article? Please, please put everything on one page.

  11. I was in Salem a few years ago, went on a tour and that is exactly what I was told no burning at the stake & to this day it still haunts me about the elderly gentleman. He would not confess to being a witch and died from the weight of the rocks they piles on him.  It all began due to young girls making up a story and it spread like wildfire.

  12. This article must have been invented by an editor who said to a novice writer:,”we’ve got some empty space to fill. Look up five historical facts in Wikipedia, think of some unifying device, pick the most interesting or sensational fact to be your lead paragraph, and go with it.  

    1. DC,
      you need to go read some history–preferably not written by religious fanatics. Look up a history of the Catholic Inquisition in Wikipedia or one of the better known encyclopedias.
       

  13. All of these are harmless myths.

    Why not go with some meaningful myths that need to be corrected?

    Like the one that “Roosevelt’s New Deal Ended the Depression” or “Herbert Hoover was a laissez-faire capitalist”; actual damaging myths that lead people to draw false conclusions today.

  14. All of these are harmless myths.

    Why not go with some meaningful myths that need to be corrected?

    Like the one that “Roosevelt’s New Deal Ended the Depression” or “Herbert Hoover was a laissez-faire capitalist”; actual damaging myths that lead people to draw false conclusions today.

  15. All of these are harmless myths.

    Why not go with some meaningful myths that need to be corrected?

    Like the one that “Roosevelt’s New Deal Ended the Depression” or “Herbert Hoover was a laissez-faire capitalist”; actual damaging myths that lead people to draw false conclusions today.

  16. All of these are harmless myths.

    Why not go with some meaningful myths that need to be corrected?

    Like the one that “Roosevelt’s New Deal Ended the Depression” or “Herbert Hoover was a laissez-faire capitalist”; actual damaging myths that lead people to draw false conclusions today.

  17. All of these are harmless myths.

    Why not go with some meaningful myths that need to be corrected?

    Like the one that “Roosevelt’s New Deal Ended the Depression” or “Herbert Hoover was a laissez-faire capitalist”; actual damaging myths that lead people to draw false conclusions today.

  18. All of these are harmless myths.

    Why not go with some meaningful myths that need to be corrected?

    Like the one that “Roosevelt’s New Deal Ended the Depression” or “Herbert Hoover was a laissez-faire capitalist”; actual damaging myths that lead people to draw false conclusions today.

  19. All of these are harmless myths.

    Why not go with some meaningful myths that need to be corrected?

    Like the one that “Roosevelt’s New Deal Ended the Depression” or “Herbert Hoover was a laissez-faire capitalist”; actual damaging myths that lead people to draw false conclusions today.

  20. All of these are harmless myths.

    Why not go with some meaningful myths that need to be corrected?

    Like the one that “Roosevelt’s New Deal Ended the Depression” or “Herbert Hoover was a laissez-faire capitalist”; actual damaging myths that lead people to draw false conclusions today.

  21. WELL..what about the people who already knew all this?
    this mag must write for sub 75 iqs.

  22. St. Patrick drove the “serpent race” out of Ireland. These people are direct descendants of Cain, the ones who Christ outed in John 8:44.

  23. The Inquisition was not about seeking “witches,” it was used by the Spanish Crown as a fundraiser, by identifying converted Jews who secretly still practiced their ancestral faith, it enabled the Crown to seize their money. It was the Protestants, not the Catholic faith, who made witchhunting a hobby for a couple of centuries. Oh, and by the way, more people died on average EVERY WEEK under national and international socialism from 1917 to 1993 than died in the ENTIRE HISTORY OF THE INQUISITION.

    1. Oh and by the way, more people were alive in the last century to die than there were in the ENTIRE HISTORY OF THE SPANISH INQUISITION

      Whoop-dee-f***ing-doo. Misrepresentation of facts, taking things out of context, and making ignorant comparisons does nothing to prove your point. Just because that guy was worse doesn’t make what you did less bad. Didn’t your mother/society/wolves who raised you teach you that two wrongs don’t make a right?

  24. Terrible article. I’ve learned my lesson quickly, and will never refer to RD again.
    Tacky and awful.

  25. Here’s a sixth myth that you should not believe: Jesus of Nazareth was born of a virgin and resurrected from the grave after being dead three days. The entire New Testament is an elaborate attempt to explain away the obvious: Jesus wasn’t what he and his followers said he was. He started life as a gleam in his father’s eye, just like everyone else. 

    1. “Jesus wasn’t what he and his followers said he was.”

      Don’t bet your eternity on it!

  26. Yeah, OK so the Game was “invented” by an Englishmen and the biggest sport in England is……”Football” or Tennis, Hey you can even throw in Cheese baking and Lawn Bowling!!!   So they invented the game and then what? Gave it up? *Hack Spit*  If ANYTHING, Baseball can be traced back to Cricket….Sheesh!  Who is this clown?

    1. This is hilarious, rounders is an extremely common game in England, if you’re not British you won’t know of the game but don’t question it’s existence whenever it is way closer to baseball than cricket. Plus ‘lawn bowling’ is called Bowles and cheese is not baked…

  27. What a CROC!….Who is this Clown?  I’ve been reading all his crap and EVERYTHING and I mean EVERYTHING – is a “anti-American” show of “new facts”…What Bull$h1T!!!

    1. “How Betsy Ross Became Famous: Oral Tradition, Nationalism, and the Invention of History.”[20] Ross biographer Marla Miller points out, however, that even if one accepts Canby’s presentation, Betsy Ross was merely one of several flag makers in Philadelphia, and her only contribution to the design was to change the 6-pointed stars to the easier 5-pointed stars.[21]”
      This country was BASED on a lie. Why shouldn’t its most revered and treasured beliefs be nothing more than myths?

  28. well knock me over with a feather the scams and myths are still going strong even in this day and age…….On Sunday you’ll still find lots of people attending the liers club meetings where the fleece flocker in black tells tall tales which many people truly believe as fact. The flock really should read the book of holy lies with their head outta that place that never sees sunshine. There are so many provable lies in that book yet so many thinks its total truth.

  29.  shoot yourself before you breed and bring down the whole human race with your virulent dumb gene Jobu;  Seriously Jesus wrote the constitution?????  Then he sent us the ten commandments?????????

  30.  shoot yourself before you breed and bring down the whole human race with your virulent dumb gene Jobu;  Seriously Jesus wrote the constitution?????  Then he sent us the ten commandments?????????

  31. Every time I think I’ve seen the dumbest comment thread ever, I run across one that is even worse.

  32. @john smith, you are entitled to your own opinion but not to your own facts.  How is it that Obama is on the one hand an idiot and on the other hand an evil genius leading us towards a communist state?  Get an education sir.

    1. A communist state HA.  More like a facist state the political climate right now is the same as 1930’s germany when Hitler made his followers commit terrorizing acts then said
      LOOK LOOK the communist fear for lives
      you need to grant me special powers and BLAMO there goes freedom cause your never getting those rights back without bloodshed

  33. Oh, the irony of myth #2.  In truth, the Catholic Church only sought to find false converts who were pretending to be Catholic because the secular authority required it in that country.  Witches were actually treated with great compassion and mercy by the Catholic inquisitors.  It was the Protestants who treated them harshly, not the Catholic Church.

  34. Oh, the irony of myth #2.  In truth, the Catholic Church only sought to find false converts who were pretending to be Catholic because the secular authority required it in that country.  Witches were actually treated with great compassion and mercy by the Catholic inquisitors.  It was the Protestants who treated them harshly, not the Catholic Church.

  35. Oh, the irony of myth #2.  In truth, the Catholic Church only sought to find false converts who were pretending to be Catholic because the secular authority required it in that country.  Witches were actually treated with great compassion and mercy by the Catholic inquisitors.  It was the Protestants who treated them harshly, not the Catholic Church.

    1. Sure.
      And the Earth is supported by “pillars” and has “four corners”.

      1. It is actually people like you who can’t read in context nor understand what that means. If you think that at any time the Bible or Christians actually said or believed that, then you education truly was lost on you.

    2. Boy; you really-really believe that?  Pagan Rome (early Roman Church) which later became Papal Rome, was the conduit through which the book of Revelations says is the Whore that sleeps with the Kings of the Earth. Rome was so intertwined with Civil Authority is the same group of people who crucified Christ.  Put some history into your back ground !

      1. Why do you trust the Bible if “Pagan Rome” was the authority that decided what books went into the New Testament? 

      2. Why do you trust the Bible if “Pagan Rome” was the authority that decided what books went into the New Testament? 

        1. because the Bible is the MOST scrutinized book in history and we have found EVERYTHING they left out.  The original manuscripts were not destroyed.

          1. Just for the sane people here. Their are NO original manuscripts to any books of the Bible. None. And some people are very confused about history. I’d check with a reputable source before believing anything claimed on a comment section. 

  36. Oh, the irony of myth #2.  In truth, the Catholic Church only sought to find false converts who were pretending to be Catholic because the secular authority required it in that country.  Witches were actually treated with great compassion and mercy by the Catholic inquisitors.  It was the Protestants who treated them harshly, not the Catholic Church.

  37. Considering Ron Paul is in a virtual tie for first place in Iowa, and a close second in New Hampshire, they should have included “Ron Paul is unelectable”.

    1. If the elections weren’t already fixed, they wouldn’t, they only give us the illusion that are votes count…It’s been that way for a long time.

      1. And the “real” unemployment is 20-21%…. More American businesses have left the US in the last three years than EVER before… More people on Food Stamps than ever before…. More poor than EVER recorded… And the list goes on! What a President… NOT!

        1. Uh, Remember 2007-208? After ten years of Republican rule the economy crashed. We lost around 2 million jobs. Noe we’ve had almost two years of job growth, Despite the Rebiblicans doing everything they can to stop it.

          Of course Bush isn’t all to blame, Clinton and Gingrich started shipping job overseas in the 90’s. 

          You have to be pretty ill informed to blame this situation on Obama. 

          1. well lets see thats because our economy our government and ourselves are being bought and sold by big business.  The economic collapse was engineered by The Bilderberg group and Bush Obama clinton all pawns.  When you are playing chess you look for the king you take out the controlling power.  Stop kidding yourself that we are free, ever since the Federal reserve act we havent been free.  “…centralized banks our more dangerous than standing armies…” Thomas Jefferson

          2. Oops, Didn’t know I was talking to a conspiracy nut.
            Have a nice day   

          3. Well, as a mililtant atheist, you are a conspiracy nut.

          4. Isn’t mommie call you for your bath? This time last we moved our 2 plants out of Western PA leaving just 1 remaining in Eastern Ohio. We are now in the planning stage of packing up that plant and moving it out too. Why? Because 400+ pages of government regs… Ink is now dangerous! Massive increases in taxes… Our plant was just reassessed at 3X more but not ONE property around here that is up for sale has sold. Nor has the old plant property sold either. Our healthcare costs just in the last year went up 32% so now our employees are dropped into a POS plan that only covers them. No more family coverage. County taxes just increased 21% on top of a reassessment so it looks as if our school taxes will double if not increase by 3 or 4 times. Or big problem! Not enough room to move our last plant into the area of the others… So many American businesses are leaving they can’t keep up with the building. Here…. All you see is “For Sale” and “For Rent” signs. Sad but come mid Jan. 327 people will be added to the unemployment rolls and they can thank Bobo and his thugs.

          5. Their has been no increase in corporate taxes since the 80,s
            Heck, most corporations don’t pay any tax at all. Federal regulations have been reduced of the last decade. The problem is workers in China will work for a dollar a day. They work in unsafe squalid conditions until they can’t work anymore then live on the street as beggars. I don’t think that’s what Americans want, not patriotic, Christian Americans. Maybe greedy immoral pigs hiding behind the label of Conservative.  Of course you are complaining about county and local taxes, perhaps you should run for office. 

          6.  Dear liar the economy crashed under the super majority democrat congress that then senator Obama was part of.  

    1. you mean sarah palin, right, wasilla? because preswident obama went to harvard law and on his own merit, unlike g.w. bush who was “bought” into the iv league by his rich daddy.

      1. Yeah, Obama went to Harvard, but thinks that US has 57 states not including Alaska and Hawaii.
        He did not have a “rich daddy”, after all his dad was in Kenya, and he was born there, but somehow you all bought into his fake birth certificate.

        1. Again with the 57 states slip, the guy makes one slip of the tongue and that’s all you can focus on. You have Palin and Bachmann and Perry and Newt and Glen Beck and O’Reilly and Rush making up their own facts and history every single day, virtually every time they speak, but it’s the 57 states that really matters. I won’t even dignify your birther nonsense, except to say that when Jesus wrote the constitution he forgot some stuff which is why he gave us the ten commandments. . . , thou shall have the right to free speech and make up your own facts, and thou shall have the right to bear arms so you can defend your twisted view of reality, etc.

          1. Never mind the 57 states and the many other idiotic comments Obama’s made.  His record as president speaks for itself the man is a moron.

          2. Hallelujah, People are seeing the truth. The man is a moron and a fake. He is not even considered a citizen of the US, he refuses to pledge allegiance to our flag, and many other  facts I find disturbing….

          3. well also he has lied about EVERYTHING he said he was going to do in office.  Vote against the patriot act(quote unquote filibuster it) when it came up for being voted on he passed it through with flying colors.  How about the National Defense Authorization act abolishing the Bill of Rights that has been fought for by millions of lives.  Oh and wait theres more he said he wouldnt have a lobbyist run administration he has more wall street lobbyists in his cabinet then ANY other president.

          4. and Christ didnt write the Ten Commandments god did on mount sinai idiot.  Nor did he write the constitution.  God forgive him he knows not what he does.

  38. What about the popular myth that there’s a benevolent, all-knowing, all-powerful force that created the universe?

    1. So, what do you know about the formation of the universe, one way or another?

    2. So, what do you know about the formation of the universe, one way or another?

    3. It’s true, sometimes I’m not benevolent.  But I am all-knowing and I know Pg is an idiot.  See? I’m not always benevolent…

    4. How about the myth that atheists are more (pick one) moral, inteligent, or logical then theists?

      1. How about the study that shows that the average American atheist knows more about the bible than any other group of Americans (especially mainstream Christians) other than the Mormons of course. But they also produce a great many bible educated atheists, so it all evens out.

    5. From a scientific standpoint, I look at such facts as the fine tuning of the fundamental forces of the universe that, if they had been out of whack one iota, would have resulted in no stars or planets, or for that matter, no atoms. I look at the many things unique about Earth that makes it a habitable planet, while places like Mars and Venus have little more than microbes, if anything at all. I look at the complexity of one strand of DNA in which the computer code (literally) to build and maintain a complex living organism is contained. I also look at the complex and fragile interdependencies of life forms in various ecosystems on Earth. I look at the complex human intellect, emotion, and a variety of other “extras” that make little contribution to our ability to survive, but that we nonetheless have.

      I think it is a myth that all of this could have come about by pure chance. A myth concocted in the 19th century by those who, legitimately, were tired of the hypocrisy of religion. They found the concept of a deity, as taught by the religions of that time, to be distasteful. So, the entire concept was thrown out in favor of the new social chic – undirected evolution. Over the course of the next 150 years, as science progressed making all of the fantastic discoveries, such as a universe with a beginning, DNA, etc., the evidence pointed more toward an intelligent designer, but as scientists found this idea uncomfortable, an entire mythology sprung up to explain away these things without a deity being involved.

      However, the concept of an intelligent first cause is not unscientific in of itself. Religion has been a great source of violence, confusion, and hypocrisy, so it is no wonder than people have turned away from it. However, I still do not dismiss the concept of a deity due to an emotional distaste of religion.

      1. The only problem with intelligent design is coming up with an explanation for the origin of this intelligent creator.

        1. And what was the origin of that origin, and the origin of that origin, etc, etc?

          What happened before the big bang? Was this the first big bang? Are there new big bangs happening every day? What lies outside of our universe? Is it perhaps many billions of other universes? Do they make up some larger structure that itself had a beginning? Or is the concept of a beginning perhaps meaningless outside of this realm where space-time exists?

          Is the architect of the universe perhaps a research scientists who is one of many of his kind? Where do they live? What was their origin?

          Whatever your world view, and no matter how you look at it, we eventually run into questions beyond the scope of our understanding.

  39. DC, No YOU check out your facts. Quit reading Chriarian fundemeniats web-sites that make claims like that. You’re being brainwashed.

    1. Victoryrider, go seek help for your anti Christian issues and hate.It is a known fact that while the Church made the accusations the civil authorities were the ones carrying out the execuions/burning.

      1. The truth is a bit closer to the middle. No the Church did not execute people they just tried them convicted them ,sentenced them and turned them over to the civil authorities to actually do the dirty work.  So technically yes the Church didn’t burn people at the stake in the same sense that a mob boss that orders a hit doesn’t actually kill someone.

        1. Actually, most of the witchcraft hysteria, witch trials, and burnings occurred in Northern Europe, which had become Protestant by the late 1600s.  While the Inquisition did many horrible things, they were not behind the witchcraft hysteria.  By the late 1600s, the power of the Church, and of the Inquisition had been greatly reduced

      2. I happen to be a Christian. But I’m also not afraid of the truth. The Civil authorities GOT their authority from the church. It was the Church that committed these crimes.

         “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. 22 Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ 23 Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’

        Read some actual history.

        1. Please cite some factual document and numbers of deaths.  This article is bogus since they cannot factually confirm 50,000.  How did they come up with that number?

          1. I didn’t say anything about the numbers, I just pointed out that blaming the “secular” officials is BS. The only way you could get to the 50,000 is to include all inquisitions and witch burning. It still could be to high. Why don’t you ask them how they came up with that number?    

          2. So is the persecution done by totally secular countries like Mexico (1920-1927), Cambodia (under Pol Pot), Russia (under Lenin and Stalin), Germany, (under Nazis), Russia (under Mao) also a lot of BS or were these countries led by religious people.

          3. You’re an idiot if you think that’s a relevant response to the comment.

            But keep taking things out of context. Maybe someday, you’ll be taken out of context and the rest of society will cheer.

        2. Whatever the case back then, it was certainly the negative influence and bigotry of the church that led to these things happening to begin with. I have to believe that if the church had been teaching a message of “love thy neighbor” rather than “burn the witches”, many of the tragedies of Medieval times would not have happened. “By their fruits you will know them.”

      3. Oh, well then if it was only accusations made by the Church than it’s hands are bloodless.

      4. by order of the Church dumba$$!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  fact is you Christians have been drinking the koolaid for too long, most of your ceremonies and even the bible was plagiarized from earlier civilizations……………..BTW you are worshiping a Jew who has been dead for 2000 years!!!!!!!!!!!!!

        1.  He died 2000 years ago. That much is known.

          Where’s His body? The Romans couldn’t come up with it; neither could the Jewish rulers. That’s all it would have taken to put this issue to rest.

          Instead, 500+ people saw Him alive later. Many of them died, rather than recant. Strange to die for something they knew was a lie…or was it?

          1. how many died for Jim Jones? 
            In the year 33 or so, do you really think they couldn’t hide a body?
            Maybe he wasn’t really dead?
            Why is your myth set any moe relevant than muslims, jews or bhuddists?
            It still comes down to believing in something that you CANNOT prove!
            thats why its called faith
            I will stick to my agnostic/ leaning atheist set that lets me look at any situation with a critical eye and my own free will intact
             

          2. LOL, your own free will? You know free will is a supernatural concept right? You know that there is no such thing as free will in science or nature, right? You know that when retards like you talk about free will, human rights, justice, etc. you’re just plagiarizing various religions of the world, right?

      5. Yeah, the civil authorities carried out the executions with the avid insitance on doing so from the church authorities, who could threaten to excommunicate any civil authorities, including kings and emperors, who declined to do as the popes and their ministers insisted.  If the church had opposed the wanton slaughter of supposed witches and heretics, the popes and ministers of the church would have vigorously expressed that opposition and they had sufficient power to have convinced state authorities to stop it.  Instead, they convinced state authorities that their salvation depended on carrying out the slaughter, thus the church has as much blood on its hand as the state in this regard.

      6.  crusaders worked for the church! duh! This is the catholic church here! Crusader were christian killers

        1. This too is incomplete information. The crusades were actually led by the kings of England, Spain and France. Many of these kings were in direct opposition to Rome on many issues. The civil authorities (kings and nobles) used religion to garnish support for their selfish campaigns. The real reason for it was to acquire more land, the measure of wealth in its time. Furthermore, they were having more and more faithful soldiers. THe custom was to hand out a land grant as a reward for fealty. That is how feudalism was exercised.

          Also another little known fact about the crusades, the crusader knights tended to be from the ORder of the Templars. These, although they posed as Christian, they were anything but, Christian. They had their own little cult going where they worshipped Baphomet. The church declared them an illegal organization. Its founder had a nickname which translates from French as “the pagan”.

    2. You sir, need to go back and check your facts. We have had medieval historians here supporting DC.

      1. Any one can say, “I’m an expert” just as anyone can pay an institution for a piece of paper that says “I’m an expert”

        Greg House once said “Everybody Lies”

        To add to that, everybody’s opinion is slanted, and everything is opinion. If you doubt that, why don’t you take any beam of sunlight, and tell us and for all the world to see it’s exact position and momentum. Do it, you won’t.

  40. DC, No YOU check out your facts. Quit reading Chriarian fundemeniats web-sites that make claims like that. You’re being brainwashed.

  41. What a terrible article — in the very first “myth”, they never do say who (if anyone) actually said the phrase, or how it got credited to PT Barnum.  This is why I quit subscribing to RD — too many idiotic, simplified, dummified articles.  Like all of their “10 things _______ won’t tell you” stories.

      1. Thank you, “Guest … in reply to Joe.” Really. Did you stop reading the article after the first paragraph??


    1. It was then that Hannum—not Barnum—was quoted as saying, “There’s a sucker born every minute,””

      Nope, they never did say who said i–oh.  Wait.

    2. Umm…It says who said the comment at the END onf the story….I’m confused as to how you are confused on this one.

    3. Umm…It says who said the comment at the END onf the story….I’m confused as to how you are confused on this one.

    4. Umm…It says who said the comment at the END onf the story….I’m confused as to how you are confused on this one.

    5. Umm…It says who said the comment at the END onf the story….I’m confused as to how you are confused on this one.

    6. You sir are an idiot. if you read the article it DOES say who initially said the phrase, and if you have any imagination at all you can understand how it was credited to Barnum. (it was said ABOUT Barnum not BY Barnum, making the human error understandable.)

  42. What a terrible article — in the very first “myth”, they never do say who (if anyone) actually said the phrase, or how it got credited to PT Barnum.  This is why I quit subscribing to RD — too many idiotic, simplified, dummified articles.  Like all of their “10 things _______ won’t tell you” stories.

  43. Check your facts.  It is estimated that more like 5000 people were executed during the several centuries long history of the Inquisition.  Almost executions were carried out by, and 
    at the insistence of, civil authorities not by the church.

      1. Information such as that can be found in things called “books”…

        1.  but books are written by conquerors and often bias point of views.  history has a lot that should be questioned, even recent history of 20 years ago often ends up distorted depending on who is telling it.  The further back history goes i’d imagine the more flaws there are.

          1. With such flippant nihilistic reasoning as this, I weep for the future of the planet.  

            EVERYTHING IS WRONG, NOTHING IS RIGHT (except the stuff I agree with) 

          2. No, it’s really much more definite than that. Obviously you are not a history student. And it’s not just interpretations of what happened, we also have a great store of original documents written by many different people about these things. Sometimes people have interpreted things differently, but there is really very little that’s up for debate.
            Besides, even if history was as sketchy as you claim, what sources there are would be the best we have, wouldn’t they? In order to refute DC, you need to have a better list of sources. You can’t just make it up as you go along, or toss it out if you don’t like it. If you don’t have something concrete, you have nothing. What always amuses me about so-called “suppressed history” or any other scholarship is – oh yeah? If it’s suppressed how did anybody find out about it?

          3. Not all books are written by the victors. There are many books which are written by detractors, and these points of view often make it difficult for modern scholars to discern the truth about unpopular historical figures.

    1.  The church and the civil authorities generally operated hand-in-hand, don’t forget that the church had far more political power than it does now. It was also the largest landowner and employer, so it had financial resources that gave it enormous political influence.

      1. Actually there was a WHOLE lot of conflict. Read up about the investiture controversy, for starters. That’ll give you a place to start.

    2. You’re out of your mind, DC. Like the other poster suggested, read a book.  Oh, wait, don’t confuse you with facts.  We should burn all the books, like your predeccessors did.  There were no ‘civil’ authorities in those times… THE authority WAS the church.  ignorant person

      1. You don’t know your history. I’m one of those people who actually got a degree in Medieval and Renaissance studies. The trouble with nobody studying those subjects is that EVERYBODY thinks they know everything when they know nothing. Of COURSE there was civil authority. As as I recall from my Spanish Renaissance class, the Inquisition was really pushed by Ferdinand and Isabella (yes, the same ones), really as a way to persecute Jews (who had been forced to convert and, through the Inquisition were being accused of not meaning it) although I don’t know offhand how many were killed. Church and state authorities mainly argued about whether the church ought to have authority over its priests, etc. when they committed crimes rather than civil authorities and whether the pope or civil governments were in charge of crowning kings, but it’s just silly to make a claim like there was no civil authority.
        Oh, and the person who mentioned books was in support of DC, not against him/her.

        1. Oh Rebecca, stop wasting our time with your degrees and facts. I cut and paste all my ideas straight from atheist blogs, therefore you got nothing on that kind of authority!

          1. How very interesting. You get your ideas from atheists blogs and reject those with degrees and facts. How interesting. Just as I have always thought. Atheists are as blindly indoctrinated as those they oppose. ATHEISTS DON’T CARE FOR FACTS!!!!

      1. Ready? here it comes… NOOBODY expects the Spanish Inquisition. Into the comfy chair with you!

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