Thursday, 17 March 2011

Politics: And Science

I have recently encountered - first time directly - an argument that science cannot be split from politics...

As is usually the case, this came about via a discussion (or rather "discussion") about evolution, and the all too common accusation that it is "only a theory". Now, refuting this particular stupidity is best left to people much cleverer than I am. However, another "attack" was what really got me thinking about how difficult it is to argue with some allegedly educated and science-oriented people (of admittedly social sciences persuasion in this particular case). In this instance I have been told (and I'm paraphrasing here) that it is impossible to disengage science from politics in the sense of science necessarily having a political agenda, as it were. Now, it's easy to tack "an agenda" on evolution - especially if the facts of it make your whole belief system crumble to dust, but if that's your argument surely you can quote a similar thing for, say, theory of gravity? Sadly, apparently you can't. Lucky gravity is apparently totally blameless for any and all evil in this world and is incapable of being abused by powers of evil. The only problem is - it is, and much more than evolution! Think of all the ballistic missiles, guillotine, and even things as simple as gallows! But then, who am I to argue? After all, I only - apparently - "believe" in evolution because it fits with my world view, and am thus blind to it being "just a theory".

Sad, sad, sad evidence of how poor debate can be with some who think they think "scientifically"...