The Fallacy of the Single Cause

Black infant mortality rate (BIMR) is a public health crisis in the United States. It is a burden that we either are unable or unwilling to see. We must look at the problem through a different lens.
In chapter 97 of a book called The Art of Thinking Clearly by Rolf Dobelli, the author introduces a compelling paradigm. It is called “The fallacy of the single cause.”

He illustrates the paradigm through a story from Tolstoy: Does the apple fall from the tree because the fruit is ripe or because of gravity or because the wind shakes the tree or because the ground is calling the apple to the earth. So, is there just one reason the apple falls, or is there a blending of reasons.

I assert we must study (BIMR) applying a comparable frame. Are the BIMR metrics so disturbing because of preterm births, lack of consistent prenatal care, lack of health insurance, environmental toxins in the air and water, low birth weight babies, smoking or something else— or, perhaps, is it a blending of some (or all) of these. There is no ‘single cause.’

The goal of our series (The_Gap) is to ‘UN-SILO’ the contributing factors influencing BIMR.  We want to determine how these problems are connected instead of how they are separate. Our series will explore these inter- locking narratives. If you haven’t taken a moment to watch the sizzle reel, please take a look.

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