The popular science publication, New Scientist, has just published a series of articles and editorials addressing "The decline and fall of science in America." What is being called into question is the rejection-- by knuckle dragging, God fearing, gun-tottin' morons, imbeciles, and idiots-- of settled science.
I love science-- which I will loosely define as the objective systematic activities associated with learning about the world. (I did not consult a dictionary on this.) But as with any other activity, science can be bastardized by the individuals engaged in doing science. Thus, it is right to be skeptical of all science. Skepticism is not rejection. A healthy dose of commonsense skepticism should be-- but often isn't-- welcome among scientists. Here's why:
|From General Zoology by Tracy I. Storer, published in 1943 by McGraw-Hill Book Company, Inc. New York and London.|
From the Preface
This text is a general introduction to zoology, primarily for students in colleges and universities. It comprises a general account of animal biology and a systematic survey of the animal kingdom from protozoans to man...
In other words, this text presents settled science. Please click on the photos to enlarge and read that, for example,
... the most serious of these [heritable defects] are mental ones such as feeble-mindedness and insanity.
In the United States there are seven million persons with an intelligence quotient of 70 or lower, from high grade morons to imbeciles and idiots.
The feeble-minded become juvenile delinquents, problem children, and cases for public relief and charity. They breed early and often and so tend to increase their kind.
Although 29 states have laws that permit insane and feeble-minded persons to be sterilized, only about 35,000 have been so dealt with up to 1941.
And what's to be done about all this?
Call me a moron, imbecile or idiot-- or all three-- but me & my science are skeptical that "legislation to prevent matings between obviously defective persons" is a good idea.