It’s depressing any way you look at it. 40% of Americans don’t think evolution is real, 53% that global warming isn’t conclusively proven to be (overwhelmingly) caused by people. Once you start tearing it alongside party lines, it gets worse, only 35% of conservatives have a great deal of trust in science to begin with, a decrease of ten percent from 30 years ago (the fact that no political affiliation reaches 50% is also pretty abysmal on its own). When people point out that we should be allowed to believe whatever we want without criticism, those above numbers are the ones I point out.
Recently, Tennessee passed a law allowing for the loosening of science standards by teachers who wish to question scientific tenets like evolution and global warming under the auspices of academic freedom. Proponents argue this would promote critical thinking, but in reality all it actually does is allow school educators to present their ideological beliefs as legitimate scientific criticism without fear of reprisal.
I’m not interested in arguing for the censorship or banning of unscientific ideas, but that doesn’t mean there should be any room for allowing those ideas to being presented as anything but unscientific. Once you get to the point where beliefs actively foster harm towards the greater good, like abandoning nearly half of America’s kids to sub-par science standards or leaving ourselves woefully unprepared for the inevitable consequences of a warming earth because you don’t like the word environmentalist, that’s the point where you have to step in and call them out on their bullshit. It hurts all of us when you don’t and I’m tired of seeing a fair and balanced approach to these sort of ideas.
Fuck balance, I want future generations to live on a planet that takes care of all of its inhabitants while encouraging and pumping out more and more talented scientists, engineers and doctors from elementary school on. Teach people the truth early on, not what’s comfortable. Why is that a controversial idea?
A new month, a new format. While I’ll obviously still be writing longer and more general pieces, as my schedule’s gotten increasingly busy, I realize that if I wanna keep writing, I need to make it shorter and to the point. So at least once, maybe twice a week. I’ll do a write-up of the most un-sciencey crap going on around the States and world-wide. Seeya guys around.