The Atlantic

Marching for the Right to Be Wrong

What it means to protest in the name of science.
Source: Charles Platiau / Reuters

When I was asked to speak at the Los Angeles installment of the March for Science, a vision leapt unbidden to my mind: thousands of scientists and science-lovers gathered in Pershing Square, carrying whiteboards and graphs, arguing with each other about how to properly interpret the data they were showing.

Presumably the real march won’t be like that. But nothing would be more characteristic of how scientists behave in the wild than a bit of good-natured disagreement. Indeed, the March for Science itself has notably stirred up some controversies—over the fear that it turns science into a partisan special interest, over worries that it has tried too little (or too hard) to promote diversity, over a concern that scientists shouldn

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