Demonstrators

No, people do not have to know about science

I’m going to piss off a lot of people.
But here’s something I’ve been thinking a lot lately.

In the middle of this pandemic, there’s been an uprising of science deniers worldwide, and here and there I find people wondering how’s possible that there’s a so high number of them.
After all, people should know about science, right?

Wrong.

People don’t have to know anything about science.
We live in a specialized society, there’s a lot of things to know in a lot of fields, and there’s no human way to be cultivated in every field, and that includes science.

That’s why we have experts. You know, the WHO, CDC, the EU, local governments…
Those are the people who are supposed to know about science. After all, we’re paying them to do that.

So, why are people against science?

Well, actually no one is against science. They’re against specialists and authorities.
And this isn’t something that happened overnight, this is the result of years of lies and hidden interests, we’ve instrumentalized science and now it’s coming back at us.

In 1996, Alan Sokal sent an article full of nonsense to an academic journal. The idea was to test the intellectual rigour of that time’s journals.
Unsurprisingly, it got published. And later that year was confirmed as a hoax by the author himself.

There’s a huge number of examples like that in our recent history.
Those behaviours are the ones responsible for the growing feeling of distrust of the general population.
And you might argue “Hey, but everyone knows how a vaccine works.”
But honestly, if we base our argumentations y generalizations and subjectivity, then we all should know how to change a tire, right? After all, it’s one of the basics of car maintenance.

But does everyone need to know how to change a tire?

No, that’s why you hire a specialist, someone who knows more than you. And if you catch that specialist lying to you change the garage. Or in the worst case, you take your car to some cheap guy you found on the internet, not knowing that he doesn’t know anything about the issue.

That’s what is happening, it’s not that people are stupid, it’s our system the one who has failed, globally.

I want to believe that we’re still in time to reverse this situation, to help people to believe in our scientists again.

The other choice could lead us to the death of every progress we have made in the last century.

4 Things that we have learned from this lockdown

The Covid-19 has hit humanity hard like a tsunami.

But although it may seem a misfortune or a setback, it is also a valuable life lesson that we can take advantage of now when the waters calm down.

The flower that blooms in adversity is the rarest and most beautiful of all.

Mulan

These are four valuable lessons we have learned:

  1. That we can live slower.
Cities were deserted
Almost every city on Earth looked like this

Each of us has faced lockdown differently, but there has been one common element: The world has moved slower than it used to, we have found that in fact, our quality of life has increased during the lockdown, giving us time to develop skills, practice hobbies or simply spend more time with family. In short: We discovered that we can live without being immersed in a constant frenzy.

  1. The importance of exercise and healthy living.
Girl preparing for exercising
We started some new habits

Some of us discovered the value of activities such as running, biking, or simply going for a walk. We even started exercising at home and made it a habit, which benefited us physically and psychologically.

Another trend that could be noticed was learning to cook; which in the long run will be beneficial to the environment since according to Greenpeace, 10.5% of the waste generated in each garbage bag are plastic containers.

So by reducing the number of ultra-processed foods that we consume, we would not only be taking care of our health but of the environment as well.

At the end of the confinement, the differences between those of us who opted for a healthy life and those who spent it in a sedentary way could be noticed.

We also discovered that taking the car or the motorcycle is only useful when we have to cover long distances or carry weight and that by avoiding its use we save an important amount of fuel each month.

  1. That we have an excessive impact on our environment.
A fox roaming Prypiat, the best example of a world without us.
Pripyat is the best example of nature regaining its place

During the lockdown, we saw videos on YouTube of animals camping in the middle of cities, roe deer, deer, wild boar and even cougars.

We should not be surprised as in recent decades we have confined animals to small corners. By 2018, it was found that wild animals had reduced their movements by 30-50%, which precisely led to a higher risk of contracting new diseases.

  1. We discovered that we can still save the planet.

In just two months of global lockdown, the planet was able to begin healing the wounds we have inflicted on it over the past few decades.

In Venice, the waters became as clear as glass, and many cities were rid of the chemical fog that covered them.

In Madrid, municipal authorities reported that greenhouse gases had been reduced by 57% between March and April, and a study by the Polytechnic University of Valencia found that Spanish skies were on average 64% cleaner.

If we achieve this in two months, what could we achieve by reducing our activity for a whole year?