“Science Not Silence”

July 6, 2017

From the July-August 2017 issue of News & Letters

Pasadena, Calif.—On April 22 at 9:00 AM, about 1,000 people rallied at the campus of Cal Tech under the banner of “Science Not Silence,” and made ready to march in defense of science and of rational thought itself. The marchers paraded toward downtown and arrived an hour later at Memorial Park.

Participants in “Science Not Silence” march in Washington, D.C. (Photo: Riccardo Savi)

Participants in “Science Not Silence” march in Washington, D.C. (Photo: Riccardo Savi)

One demonstrator told us, “We will fall behind other countries if Trump cuts funds for science.” Another said, “They even want to erase data that helps predict the weather!” Some creative signs carried by the science defenders included: “Resist, so that bacteria won’t,” “Evidence of electron fraud: currently negative,” “Make the Earth cool again,” “Grab them by the data,” and “I’m with her” pointing to a picture of the earth. One man felt his sign summed it all up: “More science, less Trump.”

The American Association of University Women, which advocates a fair chance and encouragement for women and girls to explore STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) fields was visible at the march and represented among the various speakers. We were buoyed by people driving by and honking their horns in support.

In this city where Albert Einstein briefly lived and where his archives are kept, another marcher’s sign invoked his wise counsel: “Blind belief in authority is the greatest enemy of truth.” By extension, it is also one of the greatest threats to human survival on planet Earth.

—Buddy Bell and Mannel

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