Conflicting Viewpoints on the March for Science

With the March for Science coming up in April, scientists are debating the pros and cons of getting political.

A new story from NPR explores the nuances of politicizing science, with some scientists supporting the upcoming march to protect science from potential governmental threats, while others believe the March for Science will damage scientists’ reputations for being unbiased.

The idea for the March for Science was initiated by Jacquelyn Gill, a paleoecologist at the University of Main, who spread the message of defending science via Twitter. The march quickly gained the attention of thousands of scientists and science advocates alike, but also came under some criticism.

According to Jerry Coyne, a biologist at the University of Chicago, marching for the commonalities of scientists – such as peer review or hypothesis-driven experiments – is nearly impossible.

“How do you march for something like that? A march for science itself is just simply a march for the mechanisms that find truth,” Coyne told NPR. “And who is going to pay attention to that?”

Scientists opposed to the march fear that it will be partisan. However, others propose now more than ever, it is vital for scientists to become involved in political. Some are even ready to run for political office.


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