The March for Science is Set to Happen on Earth Day

Feb 3, 2017


Scientists officially have a date where they’ll be taking to the streets.

The March for Science has been scheduled for Saturday, April 22 in Washington, D.C. A growing constellation of marches are also scheduled for that day in cities across the U.S.

What began as a Reddit conversation has grown into a movement of scientists and science lovers standing up for evidenced-based policy making and inclusivity in the science community.

The date of the march isn’t just an average Saturday. April 22 is Earth Day, first celebrated in 1970.

The original Earth Day is seen by many as a turning point in the environmental movement. The year itself also marks a major turning point for the U.S. government and environmental policy. In 1970, Richard Nixon signed the Environmental Protection Agency into existence and it began operating that December.

The circumstances from the March for Science are a bit different in 2017. For one, it isn’t focused solely on environmental science but all disciplines from astronomy to zoology. There’s also not a swell of support for science in the federal government. In fact, the march was inspired by a Congress and president that appear hostile to science, particularly in regards to climate change.

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6 comments on “The March for Science is Set to Happen on Earth Day

  • Hey, how about about getting all the RDF crowd (members, comments contributors, sympathizers etc.) together for the March for Science @ Washington DC on April 22?

    Can you imagine? You could at last have a beer with phil (is he still around, btw?), ask crookedshoes why and how his shoes got crooked, ask Dan if he can really play the guitar and read Schopenhauer at the same time… I’d join in in a heartbeat!

    Just a crazy thought…

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    The head of the world’s largest scientific membership organisation has given his backing for a planned protest by researchers in Washington DC.

    Rush Holt, of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), said that people were “standing up for science”.

    His remarks reflect growing concern among researchers that science is disregarded by President Trump

    Scientists across the US plan to march in DC on 22 April.

    “I’ve never seen anything like it in my entire career,” the former Democratic congressman told BBC News.
    Image caption A letter of concern was drawn up at MIT

    “To see young scientists, older scientists, the general public speaking up for the idea of science. We are going to work with our members and affiliated organisations to see that this march for science is a success.”

    Mr Holt made his comments at the AAAS annual meting in Boston as President Trump appointed a fierce critic of the Environmental Protection Agency as its head. Scott Pruitt has spent years fighting the role and reach of the EPA.

    Campaigners accuse him of being too close to the oil and gas industry, and allege that he is “lukewarm” on the threat posed by climate change.

    Rush Holt says that the concern among US scientists has gone well beyond the usual uncertainty that comes with a change in the Oval Office.

    “It is partly because of the previous statements of the president and his appointees on issues such as climate change and vaccination for children which have not been in keeping with good science,” the AAAS CEO told BBC News.

    “But mostly by what we have seen since the new administration has come in, [which] is silence about science. Very few appointments to positions are filled by people who understand science, very few comments about the importance of science; there is no science advisor in the White House now and we don’t know whether there will be one.

    “And so the silence is beginning to sound ominous.”

    There has been unease among researchers ever since Mr Trump was elected in November. More than 600 professors from one of the country’s leading research Universities, MIT, signed an open letter before his inauguration expressing their concerns.

    It stated: “The president-elect has appointed individuals to positions of power who have endorsed racism, misogyny and religious bigotry, and denied the widespread scientific consensus on climate change… Science is not a special interest; it is not optional. Science is a foundational ingredient in how we as a society analyse, understand, and solve the most difficult challenges that we face.”

    Among the signatories’ worries are the president’s statement that climate change is a hoax, his alleged muzzling of environmental agencies and his apparent interest in setting up a commission to investigate whether vaccines cause autism.

    Prof Nancy Kanwisher, who is a brain researcher at MIT, explained why she helped organise the petition.

    “This is the most frightening and serious threat we have faced in my lifetime,” she told BBC News.

    “The political tactic of denying scientific fact is a huge threat to the health of our people. It is also a huge threat to our planet from climate deniers.”

    But President Trumps supporters, such as Myron Ebell, who is a director at a libertarian advocacy group, Competitive Enterprise Institute, accuses the academics of being an out-of-touch elite – and says they should listen to the electorate.

    “The people in the heartland of America who make stuff, dig up stuff and grow stuff for a living voted for Donald J Trump as president,” he told BBC News.

    “The people living in New York City and working in the university towns across America did not vote for him. They lost the election and they are going to have to get used to it.”

    There is little sign of that happening. All across the country many scientists are preparing for their march for science on Washington. They are in a battle to win the hearts and minds of their countrymen.

    As I recall, a majority of the electorate dis not vote for Trump – but real evidenced facts, pass by the ideological brains of twittering Trumpists!

    “Scientists should listen to the “alternative facts” attributed to the baying orchestrated ignorant by manipulative propagandists , rather than than using their research results!” – according to these scientifically illiterate Trump cheerleading muppets!

    “The people in the heartland of America who make stuff, dig up stuff and grow stuff for a living voted for Donald J Trump as president,” he told BBC News.

    This reminds me of the Red Guards put in charge of doctors, Teachers, and professors – on the grounds of their “superior” proletariat qualifications as ignorant uneducated labourers!

    Mao was not in charge of The Cultural Revolution. He started the movement to retain power then put his wife in charge. While she was busy dismantling the nation, Mao was hanging out inside the walls of The Forbidden City.

    His wife put students in charge of the schools and made teachers victims. (

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  • Geez, no takers but Alf and I?

    Alf, no worry. I’m in S. Carolina; I’ll take the wheels off one of the fake civil war cannons on display nearly everywhere here and bring them as spares for your chair.

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