Why politicians think they know better than scientists – and why that’s so dangerous

Making a point at a Washington, D.C. protest in January. stephenmelkisethian/flickrCC BY-NC-ND

One of the most unexpected political developments in recent months has been the political awakening of scientists in the United States.

A normally reticent group (at least when it comes to politics), scientists are speaking out, organizing a major march and planning to run for public office. There is a growing sense that the danger posed by the Trump administration to evidence-based policy, and perhaps science itself, is unprecedented. I share this concern. The Trump administration’s actions and rhetoric appear to signal an acceleration of Republican skepticism toward scientific research carried out in the public interest


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