The idea that half of the United States adult population is anti-science is ridiculous and implausible.
In this golden age of innovation, artificial intelligence, data science, global health (coronavirus, not withstanding), presence in space, and atomic energy, the idea that there’s an entire political party that is anti-science is foolish.
But, here we are. Democrats have successfully branded conservatives as anti-science, and, as usual, the Republican Party’s marketing department, the worst marketing department in the history of marketing, has done nothing to address or refute the claim.
So we at the Bubbler will take care of it for them.
Consider the traits of a good scientist. If you search, you can find many short lists of what makes a good scientist. The lists are all pretty similar. Here’s an aggregate list of common characteristics of good scientists:
- Well-versed in math
Now, apply these to what we know about conservatives.
Conservatives are generally very curious and patient. When something controversial happens, conservatives are more prone to wait for all the facts before forming an opinion. And while examining facts, they consider all possibilities and don’t rush to judgment. Not ones for protesting, they’ll wait for an election to make their voices heard.
Courage, determination, and risk-taking are all hallmark conservative traits. Consider the fondness conservatives have for entrepreneurs, and conversely, how many are conservatives. One of the core reasons conservatives love America is because they identify with America’s culture of fearless determination. It was true of those who came to America, as it was true of those who went west.
The curious blend of optimism and skepticism is a hallmark of conservatism. Conservatives are far more likely to be positive, good-natured, happy, and optimistic that things are going to end well. This is critical when you’re performing one experiment after another – especially when most fail. At the same time, conservatives are loath to just accept that they’re told. Most conservatives have a natural skepticism that leads them to hold that famous Reagan axiom, “trust, but verify.”
Unlike the blanket statements, like “conservatives are anti-science,” that liberals are prone to make, conservatives are far more likely to speak in specific details. They don’t lazily label groups. Conservatives understand that no two people are alike and tend to speak to the specifics of the individual or topic at hand.
As much as liberals claim to be open-minded, their inability to listen to, consider the opinions of, or tolerate conservatives proves otherwise. While conservatives try to debate liberals on merit, it’s not uncommon for liberals to make blanket insults, in absence of substantive debate.
It’s the conservative love of creativity that attracts them to federalism and makes them skeptical of socialism. Federalism celebrates the inherent creativity of the individual and structures society so different states, counties, and communities can do things they way they think best. They become little laboratories from which all of society can learn.
Like all claims liberalism, a philosophy rooted in projection, makes of conservatism, the label anti-science applies far more accurately to liberals.
President Trump’s recent comments about “injecting disinfectant” were lampooned by liberal media and politicians. Not one of them stopped to wonder if there was any truth to it. They just saw an opportunity to maintain the conservative anti-science brand and ran with it. Meanwhile, conservatives were so curious, that most conservative news outlets found stories of how we’re doing that today, and have been for some time.
Or take the holy grail of liberal
religion science: global warming climate change. That is their crowning example of just how science-minded they are. And conservatives, being natural skeptics, have been dismissed as anti-science “climate deniers.”
Yet with all of the amazing science liberals have on their side, they can’t address one, fundamental, basic question: If we’re having an effect on climate change, how do you account for the seven extinction events, dozens of phases of extreme cooling and heating, the Medieval warm period of 1000 years ago, and the little ice age of 700 years ago? All of this occurred before industrialization.
It’s the creativity and curiosity of conservatives that even leads to this question. Not only have liberals not thought to ask, but they proudly discuss these periods of history, not realizing they’re undercutting their own
What passes for liberal “science” is, more often than not, models that poorly and inaccurately predict the future. How many times have you heard we only have 5, 10, or 20 years to make some drastic change before the world ends from climate change. (Kinda reminds you of the coronavirus models that have all been wrong, doesn’t it?)
Obviously, conservatives are not anti-science. It makes no sense. So what’s this all about? What do Democrats hope to accomplish with this label?
Democrats hope to accomplish two things. By labeling conservatives as anti-science, it’s implied they’re ignorant simpletons who actively reject knowledge. Nevermind that conservative farmers rely on science to grow the food we’re all eating. They’ve labeled those very heartland citizens as deplorable, toothless, rubes.
They’re also trying to separate people from God. The anti-science label implies that they’re willing to put their faith in a “man in the sky,” at the expense of proven, real-world science. In liberal worldviews, the two can’t exist together, not realizing that faith and fact can exist on the same plane quite well together.
With conservatives successfully marginalized, liberals can get the real goal of their science concerns – the prescription, which somehow always requires government takeover of our freedoms to save us.
As in all of the labels Democrats have successfully used to brand conservatives, the anti-science one is another that just seems to be taken for granted. And thanks to the worst marketing department in the world, it hasn’t even occurred to Republicans to address it.
But, like all labels given to conservatives by liberals, it really applies to liberals. Now it’s just up to conservatives to make the case.