Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Science Debate 2008

I have just finished adding my name to this petition and I look forward to watching the Science Debate 2008. I am a big fan of science. I'm not a scientist by any stretch of the imagination, but I do have a tremendous amount of respect for what the scientific method has taught us about our world. I get very irritated when I see people basing their actions on non-science, pseudo-science and in some cases downright fantasy. Many of this issues that are facing our country and our world are inseparably linked with science. With that in mind I think it is completely in bounds to ask politicians questions that are directly related to science policy. Mike Huckabee's comments that he’s running for president and not writing an eighth grade science textbook is a total sidestep of the issue. As head of the Executive branch he would be in a position to do much more than just write a science textbook. He would be able to appoint the Secretary of Education. So it is a completely fair question to ask candidates if they accept the theory of evolution. Yes, it's not a perfect theory but at least it is a theory. Creationism, intelligent design or whatever else you'd like to call it isn't even a theory; it's just theology in disguise.

Global warming, stem cell research, alternative energy, etc, etc. So many of today's critical policy issues are inseparably linked to science. I don't expect candidates to be scientist but I do expect them to appoint scientists who will give them factual information and not just partisan political spin that hints at scientific legitimacy. I still reserve the right to disagree with their policy but I will be more tolerant if that policy is at least based or credible science. The current administration treats science with such distain that nearly anything would be an improvement. See my previous posts on this subject here, here and here.

So if you agree that our elected officials should be making policy decisions based on sound science please join me and sign this petition to get our presidential candidates to share with us, the voters, their opinions and their views on the role of science in public policy.

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