One scientist can always be relied on to tell us the truth about what is reality and what is science fiction, and he's done just that once again. Neil DeGrasse Tyson slammed Florida's ban on saying "climate change" and "global warming," which is allegedly an "unwritten" policy instituted by Gov. Rick Scott, at a lecture series on Monday. In Sarasota, Florida, Tyson told a crowd at Ringling College that we can't "cherrypick" science — the facts are the facts, and it is both irresponsible and dishonest to avoid global warming for political reasons.
Tyson told the audience that the National Academy of Sciences, created by Abraham Lincoln in 1763, was "conceived to advise the executive branch and Congress on scientific matters so that they can make informed policy decisions." What the NAS was not created to do, Tyson said, was make room for questions about whether scientific facts were reliable.
They weren't established so that politicians could debate whether what they say is true. My concern is that if you have huge political swaths of people who are in denial over emerging scientific truths, then they're not at the table to influence policy that could serve their political interests later on.
Tyson said it is "healthy" that America has disagreement about politics and religion. "That's why America exists," he said. But he said when these conflicts create debate about whether humans are influencing climate change, politicians are wasting their time.
You are losing time that you could be debating what to do in the face of that fact. ...Whatever is your policy that would derive from it, that's, in my opinion, the kinds of conversations that should be going on in Congress right now.
Tyson said he knew of no historical precedent for political debate over "emerging scientific truths," and that political debate over science "astonished and disappointed" him.
I thought as a nation we were above this.
Now we have a time where people are cherry picking science. The science is not political. That’s like repealing gravity because you gained 10 pounds last week.
But instead of placing the blame on Scott or any other individuals, Tyson was quick to clarify that America's voters are those who truly influence policy and create those "swaths of people" in denial over global warming.
I no longer blame politicians for a damn thing because we vote for the politicians. So who's ultimately accountable here?
Though Florida is the state most vulnerable to the impending problems stemming from global warming, in 2011, governor Scott allegedly ordered the Department of Environmental Protection not to use the words "climate change" or "global warming" in any official communication or reports. A former staff member told The Miami Herald she was not allowed to use the language because "we were told that we were not allowed to discuss anything that was not a true fact."
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