Science, New College and the Public Square

SRQ Magazine, September 9, 2017

Much has been written about how divided our country is. And some of it is true. So it is worth noting when we’re not.

On August 21, the solar eclipse pulled Americans together in a way that now seems difficult to remember. No one doubted that Charleston would go dark at 2:46pm or that at New College the eclipse would begin at 1:18:44pm and peak when the sun was 83 percent occluded at 2:50:50pm. As I write, individuals and organizations across Florida are carefully consulting the analyses of sophisticated meteorological models performed by governmental agencies and university groups to determine the probable path of incoming storms and are making decisions based on that information.

With a few exceptions around evolution, anthropogenic climate change and the efficacy of vaccinations, most Americans believe in science. We insist that science be taught to all students. We make sure that our young know of the scientific method and the role of hypothesis and experiment. As I pointed out in last month’s column, the United States was founded on science.

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