A Trump administration simply cannot wish away inconvenient facts such as climate change and must accept the scientific conclusions said the head of a top scientific organization. But the president-elect may be changing his mind on some of these issues.
ADVANCEMENT OF SCIENCE
In a frank and plainly worded commentary, the CEO of the American Association for the Advancement of Science said he was worried about federal funding for scientific research but also worried about the new political atmosphere after the November 8 election results.
“This election is said to have been about rejecting the political establishment. We cannot let that mean rejecting the established facts,” Rush Holt, a physicist and former Democratic representative for New Jersey, wrote in a commentary for his organization’s flagship journal, Science.
“We hope that President Trump will be more grounded in specific facts than was candidate Trump and pay more attention to the process of careful, open vetting of hypotheses and claims,” Holt added.
“We must make clear that an official cannot wish away what is known about:
- Climate change;
- Gun violence;
- Opioid addiction;
- Fisheries depletion;
- Other issues illuminated by research”.
Having repeatedly denied that people are responsible for climate change and sometimes goes as far as to deny it’s even real, “I don’t believe in climate change,” he told CNN late September.
The concept of global warming was created by and for the Chinese in order to make U.S. manufacturing non-competitive.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 6, 2012
GOP IN CONGRESS
Many Republicans in Congress also deny climate change being real or caused by people.
Scientists are worried that a Republican-led government could pull the U.S. out of climate deals meant to help or at least slow the decline into what many experts foresee will be extreme climate and weather events such as:
- Temperatures rise;
- Ocean currents change;
- Ice at both poles melts.
Holt points out that overwhelming scientific data is often dismissed as “theory” or as something that’s debated.
“Over recent decades, a disturbing trend in the U.S. government has been for ideological assertions to crowd out evidence,” he wrote.
“This inclination accelerated with this year’s election in which candidate Trump made statements that contradicted or unsupported by accepted scientific facts.”
“Will there be members in the new administration who are familiar with the practices and findings of scientific investigation? What are scientists to do? Certainly at the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), following a tradition nearly 170 years old, we will advocate forcefully that science be fully and positively integrated into public policy making,” Holt wrote.
Trump has mentioned the opioid crisis and has suggested he would like to work to help reduce overwhelming rates of addiction – something U.S. Surgeon-General Dr. Vivek Murthy highlighted in a report Thursday.
FIREARMS LAWS REPEALED
But he has suggested that laws limiting the display and carrying of firearms should be repealed. Public health experts have been pushing back against Republican-led efforts to limit research into the causes of gun violence. They say laws should be based on what scientific evidence shows about the effects of gun laws and gun possession, not on ideology.
Congress has blocked federal health agencies from researching, or even paying for research, on gun violence since the 1990s.
Trump has made remarks in only the last 2 days showing he may be changing his mind on the issue of climate change – including the part humans play as well as the recent signed Paris Accords.