Many people would bet that I would go to the March for Science in a heartbeat, well they’re not wrong. Yet I didn’t go to this march for science, my reasons aren’t as holistic as I wish them to be, I’ll get to that later. There were many people battling with reasons to not attend the march these people were battling with deeper issues. The question lies with, should scientists be integrating themselves into government protests as they are with this march? Still others question other reasons of why they should protest, I’ll discuss a few of these possibilities here. Check out this article from the NYTimes to get a feel for what occurred this past Earth Day.
1.Staying Out of Partisan Politics and Relaying Information
Many scientists love the idea of this March, protesting against the president who doesn’t seem to be on our side! How dare he call climate change a hoax! I agree. Yet scientist’s jobs are rooted more in displaying facts not focused on working within a political system.
2. Afraid of the Backlash from the Political World
Other scientists are worried how the funding for their program will come if the president does not believe in their research. This becomes concerning and people are moreso concerned that Trump believes they are “getting paid”. This worry stems from a need for these scientists to make a living and not piss of the people signing their checks. Yet this is less of a concern than many others that believe science is not objective but done purely for science’s sake, there is more of that thought in this article.
3. Left Leaning Marchers
Still others are concerned that despite not agreeing with all of Trump’s policies that this march is more of a liberal ploy and will not actually change many American’s minds about the science or the alternative facts used. Many of the signs at the march revolved around hatred of Trump or from a certain political ideology, this turned off many scientists because they may identify with this ideology. These signs poked fun at many people and may even turn them off from public discourse surrounding science because the signs made fun of them. This article shows a few of the more pointed signs that are out there.
4. Going to a Baseball Game
All of these are great reasons why scientists didn’t make the march and some are as simple as people were busy. It was earth day and people may have been connecting with the earth in a different way rather than marching for science. Still others likely already had plans or a tradition for that day and therefore couldn’t make the march. This is the boat I was in. My friends have a tradition of going to a Brewers game every spring and I wasn’t going to miss that this year so I watched baseball instead of fighting for science. This doesn’t mean I don’t care, moreso that I prefer to my fighting every day of the year.