March for Science

In my other life I'm a scientist and I'm speaking at our little rally for our satellite march to the DC March for Science. All the conventional wisdom says that politics are kryptonite for romance writers. That may be true, but I've never been particularly conventional.

I thought I'd share a bit of my speech with you. I won't bore you with the whole thing, but here's the ending just so you know where I stand. Cheers - Dev

Today as we march in support of science, it’s important to remember that science is simply an investigative tool with which we seek to figure out how the natural world works. Scientists are in search of the truth – which is complicated and nuanced and impossible to know completely -but which exists. I think we do ourselves and the world a disservice when we talk about your truth or my truth when what we mean is belief. Facts are real whether I believe in them or not. The earth was round before we discovered that. And think of where we’d be now if we still believed that the earth was flat and that monsters lived at the edges. I doubt we’d have made it to the moon and beyond.

Climate change, which really should be called climate chaos since that’s what it is—unpredictable and uncontrollable—will continue whether I believe in it or not. No matter how much I may wish that I’ could float above the ground, the truth is that gravity doesn’t care if I believe in it or not. I can’t wish away cancer or invasive species or the threats to our drinking water that the crisis in Flint made clear. But I can study how those things work and develop strategies for coping with them, and then test those strategies against actual data and improve the plan and make a real difference. We’ve solved impossible problems in the past, from curing small pox to making heavy airplanes fly through the air. But we need money and training and skeptical minds to make that happen.

Thank you for coming out to support science on this forty-seventh earth day. Here are a few things you can do to keep this momentum going in the coming days:

Stay informed.

Fight for your constitutional right to vote and the right of every other citizen. And vote in each and every election, no matter how small. Think globally but act locally.

Write and call your representatives, even if you know they don’t agree with you. Let them know your thoughts.

Work on your own ecological footprint – recycle, reduce your energy use, clean your boat so you don’t carry invasive species from lake to lake and pick up trash (let’s leave this place cleaner than when we came).

Stay active. We can work together to end the war on science.

Ask questions. If science is about anything, it’s that. Don’t just believe. Look for the evidence.

And make noise. Science not silence.