A short and sweet defense of science

With Earth Day and the Atlanta March for Science tomorrow, a GSU administrator and researcher says science and scientific research are critical and worth defending. (Karen Schiely/Akron Beacon Journal/TNS)

James Weyhenmeyer, vice president for research and economic development at Georgia State University, offers a concise summary of the importance of science as Atlanta prepares for a March for Science Saturday. The noon event at Candler Park is a sister event to the big march being held in Washington, D.C.

By James Weyhenmeyer

People across the country will participate tomorrow in the March for Science, a display of public support for the value of research and the need for a continuing strong investment in it by the federal government.

Many words will be said and written to make the case for the importance of the vital work being done across the country by brilliant women and men who are daily making new discoveries, solving problems and building a brighter future for all of us.

But the case for scientific research is quite simple and really comes down to a few fundamental facts.

•Research has saved millions and millions of lives.

•Research has improved the quality of life for millions of people and extended the lives of millions more.

•Research has identified the fundamental elements of life on Earth, enabling innumerable discoveries that have affected everyone on the planet.

•Research has been the starting point for millions of new products, such as mobile phones, refrigerators, airplanes and automobiles that have dramatically changed our world and driven our economy.

That’s it. Case closed.

Reader Comments 0

14 comments
BobtheBiker
BobtheBiker

They think their rhetoric and marches will re-educate me. That's it! They want to send me to re-education camps. That sounds like something I studied long ago..... the Soviet Union, Red China, North Korea, etc.

We used to joke that these guys being a bunch of commie-pinkos. Now its a reality. Thank God we're armed.

Astropig
Astropig

I'd just like to point out that every totalitarian regime in history has used its funding and control over research to create "scientific" findings that served its political ends.Some of the results have been pure evil (Soviet agriculture,Chinese famine,Nazi racial theories,etc) Reading some of the comments below is thus not very surprising to me.Real science should not be influenced by governmental action or lack thereof.It is simply impossible over the long term for science-real science- to not fall under the sway of the regime that controls its funding.I wonder how these same commenters would respond if President Trump quadrupled funding for atmospheric research...But stipulated that the money would go to scientific institutes that were hostile to climate change theories?What if a bare majority of congress agreed and checks were cut?



Still think that science should be politicized?

redweather
redweather

The Republican Party's war on science didn't begin with Trump, he's just the latest poster child for science-denyers. 

Astropig
Astropig

@EdJohnson @Astropig @redweather


Are you seriously suggesting that if enough people vote for something,that it becomes a scientific fact? 


Are you and Red that divorced from reality?

EdJohnson
EdJohnson

@Astropig @EdJohnson @redweather

Here it is again and be sure this time to catch to politics connection.

By the way, I went out yesterday and hugged some trees to celebrate Earth Day 2017.  How about you?

Astropig
Astropig

@EdJohnson @Astropig @redweather


Didn't hug any trees. I did go to Chestnut Mountain Shooting Range in Whitfield County and celebrated by exercising a constitutional right or two.

#FakeNews
#FakeNews

Everyone's for science. 

But this march isn't about that. What it's about is giving the Trump haters out there yet another stage from which to attack the President and Congress, while intimidating any who might question the theory of man-made global warming.

But mostly it's about hating the President and November's election results.

Starik
Starik

@#FakeNews No, it's about hating what the president is doing. Everybody should agree.

#FakeNews
#FakeNews

@Starik 

Or else you'll hate them, too? The President's pursuing the policies Georgians elected him to follow.

Astropig
Astropig

@Starik @#FakeNews


" Everybody should agree"


Ja! Mein fuhrer! 


Minus the SS runes on your collar tabs,you people are indistinguishable from the Nazi party of 1936.

Ralph-43
Ralph-43

Truth is Beauty, Beauty Truth.  Science needs no defense, it would be impossible to eliminate truth.  However, funding new research and teaching the unenlightened does require attention now, because power to block progress has been transferred to a vicious cadre of destructors hoping for short term profits.

EdJohnson
EdJohnson

Atlanta’s M. A. Jones Elementary School recently earned STEM Certification from Georgia Department of Education.Following is my second email to the school’s principal and GoTeam in that regard.

21 April 2017

Dear M. A. Jones Elementary School:

Kindly pardon my intruding again but, within the context of STEM, it occurs to me to also mention 1) the four-minute Facebook video posted by Astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson passionately talking up the nature and importance of Science, and 2) that tomorrow, April 22, marks celebrating Earth Day 2017 as well as the first day of Climate Education Week.

Speaking of talking up, perhaps APS administration will publish several Talk Up APS special editions letting civil society Atlanta know about its children’s participation in and celebration of Earth Day 2017 and Climate Education Week, hopefully without having had the children in any contests or competitions.

It seems that teaching and learning about and from especially natural systems might help children restore, keep, and sustain their inborn empathic, cooperative, and interdependent humanity as basic aspects of their natural social and emotional development and well-being.  Personally, conjoined trees I call “The Three Sisters” standing with impressive beauty and scale out in the extended backyard of Beecher Hills Elementary School hold my attention. 

Again, congratulation on earning STEM Certification from Georgia Department of Education.

Ed Johnson

Advocate for Quality in Public Education