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Why Take Science Seriously?

Why Take Science Seriously?

Beyond being fun and intellectually stimulating, why take science seriously? I’ve been thinking a lot about what Steve Jobs has given the world. Like Einstein and Galileo, Jobs gave us cutting-edge science, but he also elevated design to a new level in the way we communicate with each other.

A recent NPR article outlines, Why the US Needs To Learn More Science:

“Much of the way we understand reality and live our lives comes from technological applications of scientific discoveries, driven by engineers and designers…To close our eyes to science is to buy a one-way ticket back to the obscurantism of the early Middle Ages.”

Close Our Eyes To Science?

As I watch the Republican presidential debates, it’s clear that attitudes are shifting. Anti-science rhetoric has some of our political leaders spouting ideas that go directly against proven science. Why are we being asked not to think and understand the why, what and where of important scientific issues? Will putting our faith (and votes) into irrational fears make the issues disappear?

Open Our Children’s Eyes To Science

As a teacher and parent, this worries me. The scientific process has always been a reliable generator of knowledge. Science demands the gathering of evidence, the testing and re-testing, and peer review of findings until results are consistent. Science advances when weak theories are disproved and strong theories are replicated over and over. For children, science helps them understand the world around them. It also gives them a solid foundation for solving many of the earth’s problems. Science is freedom. Science is worth teaching and fighting for.

Can We Take Climate Science Seriously?

One such problem our children will be handed down is climate change. To ridicule climate science in the face of definitive scientific consensus: the U.S. National Academy of Sciences and every other scientific academy around the world, not to mention the unpaid global work of thousands of scientists for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, is heartbreaking. We’ve seen the science of the greenhouse effect for 200 years. Use of fossil fuels for the past 150 years has been proven to produce greenhouse gases that are warming the planet to disastrous levels. This is an unequivocal scientific fact. We must look to science for the difficult answers to this situation and take action. Working against the tides of science deniers, many of which have been shown to be compensated to question the scientific facts, makes this task so much harder.

Let’s not shortchange the value of science and our children’s future. Only a well-informed society can make educated choices. How can we encourage our school children to love science, care for the planet, and clean up our water, land and air, if our future leaders don’t take science seriously?

Read more: Children, Community, Community Service, EcoNesting, Environment, Healthy Schools, Life, Make a Difference, News & Issues, , , , , , , ,

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Ronnie Citron-Fink

Ronnie Citron-Fink is a writer, editor and educator. She has written hundreds of articles about sustainable living, the environment, design, and family life for websites, books and magazines. Ronnie is the creator of Econesting, and the managing editor of Moms Clean Air Force. Ronnie was named one of the Top Ten Living Green Experts by Yahoo. Ronnie lives in New York with her family.

88 comments

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4:06AM PST on Jan 23, 2014

thank you

10:45AM PST on Dec 24, 2013

What's strange about it is that science doesn't have to be seen as irreligious, and many of the classic scientists had strong beliefs in a higher power. You can have both, if that's what you want. Our kids need science to understand the world around them. Thanks.

11:14AM PDT on Jun 30, 2013

The earth is not square - nuff said :-)

1:23PM PST on Dec 14, 2012

because we live on an earth and in universe that follows the laws of science!

12:50AM PST on Nov 15, 2012

Thank you for great article!

7:43PM PST on Nov 10, 2012

fun doesn't have to mean ridicule

1:10PM PDT on Aug 24, 2012

Recommended remedies to reduce the use of fossil fuels include stopping leaks, enjoying parks and sidewalks, building more solar and wind generation facilities, and leaving mountains standing. These are good things for all creatures.

4:36PM PDT on Aug 2, 2012

Thank you for article.

4:34PM PDT on Aug 2, 2012

Thank you for article.

1:52AM PDT on Jun 10, 2012

Nicely written article, the content of which I agree wholeheartedly!!

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
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