Science is a required subject from kindergarten through 12th grade. It is not only a set of facts, it’s a way of thinking that has served as the engine for change. Yet, in the political landscape of the U.S., science has somehow become a controversial, and even divisive topic. How have we arrived at this reality wherein some people actively oppose the systematic search for knowledge? This week on Sea Change Radio, we check in with science communicator Aaron Huertas about his advocacy work. We discuss the fight for science justice, talk about the intersection of religion, science and politics, and look at some examples of how political divisions in this country damage the science community, and ultimately, all of us.
Disinformation. It sometimes manifests in theatrical shows of ignorance, like Senior Republican Senator James Inhoffe bringing a snowball to the Senate floor as “evidence” that global warming is a hoax, or the persistent denial coming out of the ill-informed head of the current president that Harvey and Irma are unrelated to climate change. But where does the disinformation start? Sometimes the seeds of willfully inaccurate right-wing talking points are planted by more mainstream conservative thinkers like George Will, Rich Lowry, Peggy Noonan, or the latest star of the right wing elite, NY Times opinion columnist, Bret Stephens. Under cloak of sophisticated language, these opinion columnists bury grains in the fertile right-wing psyche that grow into dangerously thorny vines of falsehood. This week on Sea Change Radio, we speak with DC-based science communicator, Aaron Huertas, to discuss what disinformation Bret Stephens has sown lately regarding the climate. We talk about Stephens’s disregard for solutions that could fight climate change, examine the weaknesses in his research, and ponder what motivates him to reach his simplistic and misleading conclusions.