The world is a better place when it is simple, black and white. That is why campaigning NGOs and many journalists share a not-so-attractive sensibility: they are often uncomfortable with complexity, writes Jon Entine at Forbes. Dividing the world, and prickly science policy issues, into black and white makes for exciting narratives.
Unfortunately it’s invariably wrong, authoritarian and, as Freud would say, crazy (“neurosis is the inability to tolerate ambiguity”).
Ignoring the science on phthalates is just easier, and it gives desperate editors the chance to breathlessly claim in headlines that a backpack is going to hurt children.
Progressive anti-science flack Senator Charles Schumer (D-NY) is being invoked most recently - the anti-science community loves to fawn over "elites", especially if they know nothing about the topic - by the Center for Health, Environment and Justice, but they are not alone. CBS is also predictably alternating its Miracle Vegetable Of The Week fare with some Scare Journalism.
Read Entine for the takedown: Anti-Chemical Alarmism Spreads to Your School -- Dora the Explorer Will Kill Your Kid! at Forbes.com
- PHYSICAL SCIENCES
- EARTH SCIENCES
- LIFE SCIENCES
- SOCIAL SCIENCES
Subscribe to the newsletter
Stay in touch with the scientific world!
Know Science And Want To Write?
- What Do EU Countries Give Up When They Opt-out Of GMO Crops? And For Whom?
- Nobel Prize Validates Chinese Medicine? Nope.
- Sex Change Hormonal Treatments Alter Brain Chemistry
- An Easy Problem
- Coincidence Or Conspiracy? Investigating If Believers Really See So Much Secret Design
- Thank You Guido
- Prenatal BPA Exposures (Don’t) Affect Birth Weight
- "This is a bit of irony: Mother Jones, which can never be bothered with facts or truth and got sued..."
- "Great piece Steve. While the potential for suffering and death in Africa especially thanks to this..."
- "I look forward to more threats and libel from you in the very near future. It's your stock in trade..."
- "Dear Mr. Campbell: Again you spin and dissemble. It was quite clear from the many tweets between..."
- "One of us does not know what libel means (hint: It is you). Calling me a felon and a fraud is libel..."
- FDA-Approved Test for Meningitis is a Home Run
- Trends In Smoking – Chinese Men In Peril, American Women Get Better Cessation
- Counter-Point: Activists Operate By Outrage, Not Fear
- Whole Foods Recalls Organic Roquefort Cheeses After Listeria Found
- Suicide Tries Linked to Weight-Loss Surgery? Study Doesn’t Show
- Following Rules, Refreezing Thawed Meat is Safe
- Beetles provide clues about the genetic foundations of parenthood
- Teens value results of genetic tests to inform future life decisions
- Trees to power: McMaster engineers build better energy storage device
- High dose chemo & stem cell transplantation results in long-term survival for amyloid patients
- 'Blind analysis' could reduce bias in social sciences papers