Last night we sat around the dinner table discussing the science march. The date has yet to be determined, but my husband is convinced it will be as carefully planned as a grant submission.
Much to my disappointment, my husband immediately shot down my angriest ideas for poster display:
“Trump Makes Me Gag”
“GOP Proofs: Trump’s Mandate and Saddam’s Weapons of Mass Destruction”
Instead, he made me read an Op-Ed piece from the New York Times by a geologist who argues that the Science March is a bad idea. I was ready for another scientist ‘head in the sand’, dodge your civic obligation argument, but it was nothing like that.
I disagreed with one of the geologist’s conclusions, I don’t think the developers would have changed their course of action because they ‘knew’ him as a person and scientist. Look at all those mafioso types who always say, “It’s not personal, it’s business” just before they shoot their friend in the head. Money interests want their own way above any other consideration.
However, the article did bring up a very important point: what is the point of the Science March? Who is the target audience? Are scientists doing this for themselves, to show they have solidarity with like-minded people (ala the Women’s March)? Do they want Trump to pay attention to them (and what is the likelihood that he would)?
My husband, after reading the New York Times Op-Ed, wants the march to be non-partisan. He wants the scientists to show the world that science does not have to ‘take a side’, that either political party can and should use science to form good policy decisions for the country.
I said that if the scientists want to reach out to the Trump voters, then they need to show them that some scientists believe in God. They need scientists out there holding signs that say they are Christians, Jewish, Muslim, Hindu, etc. My Evangelical Christian, Trump-voting neighbor always feels much more at ease with me knowing that I, too, believe in God. She is fine that we are from different religions, she respects the differences and likes that we are honest that there are differences. If the marching scientists only proclaim they are angry atheists, then that parks the march back in the Echo Chamber lot.
The kids agreed that if the scientists want to get apathetic people interested in science, then the scientists who are marching need to be diverse. They can’t be a bunch old, white men. We need women, minorities, LGBTQ- the whole rainbow out there showing that the common goal of science allows tolerance for all. Maybe if Americans can see scientists being tolerant, then they can be less divisive with their fellow citizens.
The protest posters that did pass the new standards are:
“Proud Muslim American Molecular Biologist”
“Proud German Scientist”
“Grrrl Science Power!”
When the march gets finalized, I will let you know and also as much as I can about which cities will be sponsoring marches of their own.