Sunday, May 7, 2017

The Politicalization of Science

Written by: Sean Hannon
Our current political climate is extremely tense, with massive amounts of misinformation being released to the public by both the left and the right wing. Both ideologies claim that their own ideas are correct and all the others are made up or flawed. Politics clearly isn't a place for objective truth, which lead me to assume that the 2017 March for Science will be a non-partisan protest. Simply looking at social media sites and left leaning outlets I knew I was wrong, the pictures of the science march being about race, gender, immigration, and other non-science related issues was a huge eye opener for me. There I discovered the disturbing politicization of science - why are two total separate fields suddenly in the same melting pot?
To start, we need to address the Science March. It may seem like a relatively scientific event after some Google searches, but when you dig in deeper to the event, you unravel its liberal stance. Granted, you could argue that the plethora of anti-Trump signs where justified due to his stance on climate change, but there is no feasible reason for the race, gender, and immigration signs I mentioned earlier at this event in particular. Those signs are simply partisan talking points and when associated with science, hurts sciences credibility to Centrists and Republicans.

Of course, these are the acts of individuals and we can't paint the whole organization as partisan because of a few outliers. To see if the organizers are partisan you would have to get a direct connection to them, which makes their Twitter account a great source of information.

I personally find these 2 tweets from the verified account most interesting. The first one is referring the United States Air Force dropping the so called ”mother of all bombs" in Afghanistan. Not only is it a horrible thing to do, but has nothing to do with science in any way.
The second tweet honestly baffles me. At least this tweet had something to do with science, but if you read the tweet it implies a negative connotation about science. This sounds exactly what some fanatic traditionalist would say to stop scientific progress. Even then, it would still be a condescending tweet towards a statement arguably taken out of context by Sean Spicer.
Finally, there's a tweet by a different March for Science account that showcases a staple leftist tactic, Identity Politics. Identity Politics is marketing a political ideology towards a specific group of people(for the Democrats, minorities and women). Otherwise the claim that colonization, racism, immigration, etc are scientific issues is objectively wrong, so the only message they sent was “we are good people because we care for others” instead of digging into the true manner they claim to advocate for: science. This is akin to a politician using kids in his campaign to look like a nice person.
Any Republican or science skeptic who sees these non-scientific tweets may lose faith in science as a medium, which will hurt us all, considering that climate change is a pressing issue that many still deny. These idiotic tweets are just going to reaffirm their beliefs that climate change is leftist propaganda, and has no base in reality. With leaders like Bill Nye selling out to non-facts, the climate change argument is in more danger than ever.

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