From Catherine Rudder at PNAS:
Opinion: Let’s march to stress the value of science for the public good, not to engage in partisan politics
If the March for Science were meant as a partisan enterprise or an objection to President Trump’s policies in general, scientists would have reason to be reluctant to participate. In their statement of purpose, the organizers issue a “call to support and safeguard the scientific community” (https://www.marchforscience.com), a somewhat nebulous phrase that could be interpreted in a variety of ways. The statement goes on to lament the “mischaracterization of science as a partisan issue, which has given policymakers permission to reject overwhelming evidence” (https://www.marchforscience.com). In other words, the event is meant to underscore that scientific findings should not be ignored by policy makers, not to favor one political party or another.
Scientists’ findings deserve respect specifically because they emanate from procedures that ensure neutrality. Even if researchers would prefer a specific outcome, those adhering to the scientific method do not alter the results to fit their preferences. Their ethical commitments, rigorous training, and professional standards all suggest they have well-earned credibility in their chosen field. (PDF) More.
Rudder, you are doubtless one smart cookie (Schar School of Policy and Government, George Mason University). But at street level, it’s possible to miss something critical: Science has little value for many of these people except as a weapon in partisan politics. That’s evident not only from their rhetoric (see Gorayshi’s Buzzfeed story for Steve Pinker’s response to that) but also from the step-up in attacks on the basic principles of science as somehow excluding their grievance clientele.
They don’t so much care what the reality is as they want to police your and my interpretation of it.
You can have them or science. And they are forcing you to choose.
See also: Bill Nye too “white” for March for Science figurehead Good news and bad news: Staging a debate with Ken Ham wasn’t the reason Nye got sidelined. The bad news is that the reason he got sidelined shows how little these marchers have to add to science’s future. Any barrel of foaming rage will soon have the right to be a scientist!
Marchin’, marchin’ for Science (Hint: the problems are back at your desk, not out in the streets)
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