March for Science to stand up for reason

by Fredrick Graves April 22, 2017, 1:51
March for Science to stand up for reason

After the worldwide "Women's March", it was obvious to Caroline Weinberg, a health researcher and science journalist from NY, that she wouldn't remain silent when the Trump administration started forcing scientists to keep their mouths shut.

The main march in Washington will feature speakers including Mona Hanna-Attisha, the pediatrician who blew the whistle on the water crisis in Flint, Mich., science educator Bill Nye, as well as hosts and performers like Questlove from the Roots. This time around, people are protesting the rise of anti-science attitudes in US politics, and rallying in support of scientists and their research.

For example, the proposed budget removed around US$7 billion from science programs and in January the Trump administration instituted a media blackout at the Environmental Protection Agency and barred staff from awarding any new contracts or grants.

"Politics are not necessarily the point here", says Garner. A March for Science will be taking place in Washington DC on 22 April, with solidarity marches in more than 500 other locations around the world. These "March for Science" events are similar to the Women's March earlier this year, except all vagina hats will be anatomically correct and properly labeled.

"I feel this will hurt the reputation of scientists as honest brokers", said Mr. Pielke in an email. In fact, there are marches on every continent except Antarctica! Writing recently in an opinion article for the Bay Area News Group, Monterey Bay Aquarium Executive Director Julie Packard noted that for the aquarium "science is in our DNA. The Peoples Climate March is about scientists and citizens uniting to protect the people and places we love by demanding that evidence, not ideology, inform policy". Fifty-nine percent said it inspired them to "discuss science with people you know". "The March for Science calls for science-based policymaking, and the Peoples Climate March puts this value into practice by opposing Trump's reckless anti-climate agenda, defending the integrity of climate science and democracy, and standing up for justice". "Scientists coming together to fight for all of the progress we have made, and will make, is absolutely worth a couple of hours of your time". Many scientists have opted not to participate. If you think that policy is too often governed by following the loudest voice in the room or by poll data -- instead of being founded on hard data and rigorous studies -- you should join us.

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Mr. Holt acknowledged that using the march as a vehicle to increase support for scientific research could backfire by making the field appear even more politicized, but he also said he hoped the event would help bridge the gap between scientists and non-scientists. "We can't expect any other sector of society to stand up for science if we as scientists fail to do so".

"Recent policy changes have caused heightened worry among scientists, and the incredible and immediate outpouring of support has made clear that these concerns are also shared by hundreds of thousands of people around the world", organizers posted in an online announcement of the Modesto event.

"I don't think we're going to be labeling ourselves as being on one side or the other, just as in the Women's March, I don't think that that necessarily labeled all women as being on one side or the other", she said.

The march is a response to the "perceived exclusivity of science", as scientists want the general public to understand that everyone is part of the scientific endeavour, Alexander said. Scientists and supporters in Berlin, Vienna, London, Amsterdam, Melbourne or Hong Kong will take to the streets. "This moment is bigger than the scientific community". "The evidence for what works in the classroom comes from social and behavioral science research; the evidence for how to prepare for the inevitable natural disaster comes from Earth science and engineering studies".

The People's Climate March is one event in a broader political movement that extends beyond the issue of basic climate science, according to Getsos.


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