'Make America Smart Again': hundreds rally for US science

April 15, 2018
Demonstrators take part in the March for Science in Washington, DC on April 14, 2018; local scientists and supporters joined a global March for Science to fight back against what many see as an "assault on facts" by populist politicians

Gesturing towards the White House, home to President Donald Trump who has called himself "a very stable genius," Isaac Newton begged to differ.

"Knowing many geniuses, and being one myself, I would venture to say that was rather a boastful claim on his part," said "Newton," actually Dean Howarth, a Virginia high school physics teacher in period dress.

Howarth was among hundreds of people who turned out to a "March for Science" Saturday in Washington to "create tangible change and call for greater accountability of public officials to enact evidence-based policy," according to organizers.

That was the formal message of the rally, one of more than 200 events being carried out around the world.

But as keynote speaker Sheila Jasanoff said, the signs carried by people like Howarth told a more direct and simple story.

Many of those messages, while more restrained than Howarth's, carried implicit criticism of Trump, who withdrew from the global Paris Agreement on climate change, has defended , seeks to roll back environmental regulations, and has yet to name his top science advisor.

"Make America Smart Again," said a placard carried by one demonstrator, giving an alternative take on Trump's "Make America Great Again" pledge.

Many of the messages at the "March for Science" carried implicit criticism of Trump, who withdrew from the global Paris Agreement on climate change, has defended coal-fired power plants, seeks to roll back environmental regulations, and has yet to name his top science advisor

"We're here because no one wants to be led by the gut feelings of our elected officials," Jasanoff, a Professor of Science and Technology Studies at Harvard, said in her opening address without specifically referring to Trump's widely-reported tendency to govern by instinct rather than analysis.

"Good science depends on good democracy. Let me repeat: good science needs good democracy," she said.

David Titley, a retired rear admiral who led the US Navy's task force on climate change, told the crowd that science shows we need to "take actions now to avoid the worst of the risks we know are highly likely to appear."

Many in the crowd listened under the shade of cherry blossom trees beneath the Washington Monument on the first summer-like Saturday of the year.

"Science is what separates facts from fallacies, falsehoods and fanaticism," Titley said. "If we ignore and denigrate science we do so at our own peril."

Suzelle Fiedler, 44, a former laboratory worker, told AFP she attended the rally because of the administration's desire to cut research funding, and "they're dismissing a lot of scientific facts like ."

Steven Schrader's sign proclaimed that he is not a "mad scientist. I'm furious."

Schrader, 66, told AFP the administration "is trying to essentially take out of decision making."

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granville583762
2.3 / 5 (3) Apr 16, 2018
"Science is what separates facts from fallacies, falsehoods and fanaticism," Titley said. "If we ignore and denigrate science we do so at our own peril."

Science used to be logical until darkmatter and the like arrived, then looking into the quantum world which seemed chaotic and illogical, but instead of transposing it to the logical world were accustomed to, it is a haven of illogicality so we cannot complain of the consequences.
Doug_Nightmare
5 / 5 (3) Apr 16, 2018
If it ain't falsifiable then it ain't science.

Read, understand and practice what Karl Popper taught in his 'Logic of Scientific Discovery'. Eschew credentialism and authoritarianism.

No, it is not the be all and end all of epistemology, but if one cannot intelligently discuss 'Logic' then one is a typical American exercising his First Amendment Right via anile aspirants.
antialias_physorg
5 / 5 (4) Apr 16, 2018
This will probably require a restructuring of the education system: Away from regurgitating fact and fitting simple formulaic answers to simple questions towards *understanding* a subject matter on a deeper level (not just learning about it).

Of course, this doesn't lend itself to standardized testing, as the path to understanding is different from person to person. (and, of course, this costs a bit of money. But if you don't want to invest in your children - what do you want to invest in? More bombs?)
mqr
1.5 / 5 (4) Apr 16, 2018
Scientists lie, they are not angels, history is full of cases of scientists lying. Examples:

-The sugar industry has paid to scientists (from Harvard) to publish fake data that favors them
-The pharmaceutical industry has paid scientists so much that is almost the standard practice to pay to lie
-Feminism has put so much pressure for avoiding certain truths that are uncomfortable, like for example that women talk more than men or that the menstrual period has a strong impact on emotional states
-The politically correct movement has had a huge impact on science, check the research on the psychological aspects of obesity, where you can not say 'bad' things about people who are obese, the research 'discovered' that there are no differences between the obese and the skinny
-Racists has 'discovered' what they were looking for that was not out there...

and we can go on and on.

Scientists are people, science is a human institution that is not beyond good and evil
mqr
1 / 5 (4) Apr 16, 2018
It would be nice to have falsifiable examples of the theory of evolution as proposed by Darwin. Because everytime it appears in intellectual conversations on the origin of life and complexity in nature, they act as if it is beyond any questioning and quickly it turns in name calling with 'creationist' equivalent with stupid and evolutionist made equal to 'smart'. When I had asked them, for example, what is the evidence for the weakest points like the emergence of fully functional complete organs like the heart, they burst in emotions and the name calling starts. I had been called a net troll for asking: how is possible that a functioning circulatory system emerges 'randomly', because it is required a minimum of conditions such as a group of cells that beat simultaneously, liquid tissue that feeds them and regulates other processes, and so on. Someone sent me a link to the discovery of a fossil with a rudimentary circulatory system. but obviously that was not the first or the simpler.
TheGhostofOtto1923
3 / 5 (2) Apr 16, 2018
This will probably require a restructuring of the education system: Away from regurgitating fact and fitting simple formulaic answers to simple questions towards *understanding* a subject matter on a deeper level (not just learning about it
Yeah. As I recall, this is the kind of progressive mindset that prompted all the changes to the US educational system back in the 70s, which directly led to the decline in performance of students in comparison to countries which continued to teach the traditional way such as China and japan and india.

The US has since recovered somewhat but a new gen of snowflakes, ignorant if the past and hungry for political fodder, fall for the same old bankrupt ideas.

Old progressives love to teach new dogs old tricks. No biscuits needed.
TheGhostofOtto1923
3 / 5 (2) Apr 16, 2018
Of course, this doesn't lend itself to standardized testing, as the path to understanding is different from person to person. (and, of course, this costs a bit of money. But if you don't want to invest in your children - what do you want to invest in? More bombs?)
Sloganeers are so easy to spot... even when their tired old slogans are made to appear as thoughtful discourse.
TheGhostofOtto1923
not rated yet Apr 16, 2018
When I had asked them, for example, what is the evidence for the weakest points like the emergence of fully functional complete organs like the heart, they burst in emotions and the name calling starts
What name calling? The question is a lie. That's not how hearts 'emerged' and anyone who knows anything about the subject understands this.

But godders, like progressives, delight in repeating old discredited lies for innocent new audiences.

Returns them to those thrilling days of yesteryear I suppose.
https://youtu.be/p9lf76xOA5k

- You know, when ethnic sidekicks and nannies were in vogue?

I stand corrected.
https://youtu.be/duGqrYw4usE
IwinUlose
3.3 / 5 (7) Apr 16, 2018
Start with a nice introduction, make it nice, and worded to sound reasonable;

It would be nice to have falsifiable examples of the theory of evolution as proposed by Darwin.


Now immediately begin defense of unfalsifiable belief;

Because everytime it appears in intellectual conversations on the origin of life and complexity in nature, they act as if it is beyond any questioning and quickly it turns in name calling with 'creationist' equivalent with stupid and evolutionist made equal to 'smart'.


This is because creationism is itself not falsifiable in any way.
IwinUlose
3.3 / 5 (7) Apr 16, 2018
When I had asked them, for example, what is the evidence for the weakest points like the emergence of fully functional complete organs like the heart, they burst in emotions and the name calling starts. I had been called a net troll for asking: how is possible that a functioning circulatory system emerges 'randomly', because it is required a minimum of conditions such as a group of cells that beat simultaneously, liquid tissue that feeds them and regulates other processes, and so on. Someone sent me a link to the discovery of a fossil with a rudimentary circulatory system. [b][u]but obviously that was not the first or the simpler.[/b][/u]


You may have been called a troll because you claim to have used the phrasing "circulatory system emerges randomly." Anyone who invested the time and effort to gain even a basic understanding of the underlying concepts would see that as either : lazy-minded or trolling. It sounds like they only accused you of the lesser evil.
mqr
1 / 5 (2) Apr 16, 2018
Still missing the falsifiable examples of evolution by natural selection..... I had read Popper´s....

And the name calling started as predicted.

So enlight us, how did the organs appeared in the first place? Be specific, do not insinuate a solution.... So how cells got together and started to act in coordination? how many cells formed the first heart? or the first pancreas?

Darwin knew clearly that one weakness of his theory was the emergence of organs.

What about scientists lying? is not true? are scientists perfect beings? lol..... almost half of psychology publications are plainly false.
TheGhostofOtto1923
not rated yet Apr 16, 2018
So enlight us, how did the organs appeared in the first place? Be specific, do not insinuate a solution...
Godders think that everything in gods creation should be describable in the space of a single bible chapter. After all that's how god does it, doesnt he?

Godders resent that there are people on this earth who can understand things they can't and never will. They can't admit that even though these things have been explained to them over and over again ad infinitum, they don't understand and refuse to try.

But they're welcome to take a science course or 2 if they're so inclined, and get an inkling of the extent of all the things they don't know.

Mqr should ask his god why it is that he created people with such a wide range of intellectual capacity and emotional restraint.

There's something to be resentful about.
Da Schneib
5 / 5 (1) Apr 16, 2018
@mqr: why should anyone bother even attempting to answer you when your own assertions violate your own criteria?

That's not name calling, it's pointing out you're inconsistent.

Don't mind @TheGOO, he's nasty to everyone.
TheGhostofOtto1923
not rated yet Apr 17, 2018
Only pinheads. Not my fault if thats pretty much everyone.

Is it?

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