It’s Earth Day, which means that, like every Saturday, there are widespread protests planned, only this time they’re on behalf of science, rather than taxes or women, both odious to our president as well.
The “March for Science” was deemed necessary this year largely because the United States elected Donald Trump, who thinks global warming is “bullshit” and has filled his cabinet with people who will do whatever they can to dismantle environmental protections and promote extraction industries. The Huffington Post just published a comprehensive list of actions the Trump administration has already taken against the environment, if you want to learn more.
The New York Times reported that the march originated as a response to the new U.S. regime, in an article published on Saturday:
“The March for Science evolved from a social media campaign into an effort to get people on the streets for the cause of science. Its organizers were motivated by Mr. Trump, who as a presidential candidate disparaged climate change as a hoax and cast suspicions on the safety of vaccines. Their resolve deepened, they said, when the president appointed cabinet members who seemed hostile to the sciences and then proposed a budget that would cut funding for research across the federal government.”
The Washington Post reported on Saturday that protests are taking place on six continents (nearly 600 distinct marches, according to organizers) and was acknowledged by scientists on Antarctica, though they didn’t march, I imagine because of the snowpants. CNN reported that scientist at Germany’s Neumayer Station, a research institute in Antarctica braved 27°F temperatures (that’s…not as cold as I’d hope) to express their support for the action.
In D.C., a huge crowd of beautiful nerds danced to the ’80s classic “She Blinded Me With Science,” before embarking on the official march toward Capitol Hill at 2 p.m..
Other highlights from the protests so far come from Minnesota:
The animal kingdom:
Also, while I am generally a huge fan of science (I don’t like when studies come out which show empirically that the things I enjoy are bad for me, but still respect the craft, even in these moments), I’m finding that the combination of science and protest signs do not always have chemistry. For instance, there are signs that say “In peer review we trust,” and “If you’re not part of the solution you’re part of the precipitate,” and “Empirical Data Trumps Imperial Alt-Facts.” There are also a bunch that read “I’m With Her” and point to a picture of the globe. If you are noticing better signs, then I would love to see them.