The Guardian newspaper reports that “the March for Science, a demonstration modeled in part on January’s huge Women’s March, will inundate Washington DC’s national mall with [scientists and others] enraged” by Trump’s “ assault upon evidence-based thinking and scientists themselves.”
There will also be marches in all 50 states. Search here for the march near you.
The Guardian says, “The march is a visceral response to a presidency that has set about the evisceration of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and many of its science-based rules, the dismissal of basic climate change tenets by the president and his appointees and a proposed budget that would remove around $7 billion from science programs, ranging from cancer research to oceanography to NASA’s monitoring of the Earth.”
Trump’s budget proposal calls for cutting the EPA by 31 percent. Trump’s EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt – a climate-change denier — has, in effect, taken steps to turn the EPA into a pollution-enabler agency and a front for the oil industry. See People’s World story here.
Congress has not even begun consideration of Trump’s budget, but last month the House passed two bills that would, if approved by the Senate, make it more difficult for EPA scientists to conduct research.
On the other hand, polls show that the public supports scientists and the work they do.
The March for Science website says, “We [as scientists] unite as a diverse, nonpartisan group to call for science that upholds the common good and for political leaders and policy makers to enact evidence based policies in the public interest.
“… the march has generated a great deal of conversation around whether or not scientists should involve themselves in politics. In the face of an alarming trend toward discrediting scientific consensus and restricting scientific discovery, we might ask instead: can we afford not to speak out in its defense?”
In Washington, the march will feature speakers such as TV personality Bill Nye “the science guy,” Mona Hanna-Attisha, a pediatrician who helped blow the whistle on the water crisis in Flint, Michigan and Christiana Figueres, one of the architects of the Paris climate agreement.
Jeffrey Anderson, an associate professor of radiology and bioengineering at the University of Utah, told the New York Times that he “planned to fly from Salt Lake City to the march in Washington with his partner and four teenage children.
“The wholesale disregard of truth and fact by the president and his close advisers, their devaluing evidence and the scientific method, is so extreme that I can’t be silent,” he said.
Furthermore, on May 1, tens of thousands of people are expected to hold protest demonstrations in virtually every city in the U.S. Demonstrators will call for an end to Trump’s harassment of immigrants and for a halt to tax cuts for the super rich. Also, they will demand that “billions not be spent on a wall, but on strengthening public schools to educate all our children regardless of immigration status,” according to the American Federation of Teachers, one of the many unions supporting actions on that day.
And for the first time in decades, huge numbers of people in the U.S. will celebrate May 1 as International Workers’ Day the same as workers do in other countries around the world.