The Left’s war on science

This is pretty much the biggest pile of poop that I have ever read. The article posits that if the Right has declared a war against science, the Left has declared “Armageddon.” I read the article because I wanted to learn: how is the Left anti-science? Don’t make the same mistake I did.

The article talks about “cognitive creationists,” a clever term the author invented to describe “those who accept the theory of evolution for the human body but not the brain.” These people believe that “the mind [is] a tabula rasa shaped almost entirely by culture.” In the ’80s and ’90s, these cognitive creationists “assault[ed]” evolutionary psychology, which “proffer[s] the now uncontroversial idea that human thought and behavior are at least partially the result of our evolutionary past.”

First, he’s bitching about things done 20-30 years ago. He’s not saying that the far-Left today, in the face of evidence, is refusing to believe things that are generally accepted in science.

Second, I don’t see a contradiction between the idea that human thought is “at least partially” the result of evolution with the idea that our mind is “almost entirely” shaped by culture. The two statements are qualified and can coexist.

The article goes on to complain that the far-Left doesn’t like nuclear power because of waste disposal issues, fossil fuels because of global warming, hydroelectricity because it disrupts river systems, and wind power because it kills birds. Ok, liberals are whiny. Fair complaint. The far-Left apparently wants us abolish electricity. But that’s not an anti-science position. They don’t hate these things because they hate science but rather because of environmental concerns. Wasn’t it probably the Left that first worked to develop and study some of these alternative energy sources? Discovering that it is less idealistic than they had originally hoped isn’t anti-science. That actually seems pretty pro-science to me: learn about something and then move on if it doesn’t work for you.

Finally, the author complains that the Left’s hatred of Monsanto is anti-science but doesn’t explain why. Maybe because the author doesn’t understand. Some gripes about Monsanto come from how the company treats farmers. That has nothing to do with science. As for genetic modification, yes, every food we eat has been genetically modified in some way, and genetic modification existed long before Monsanto. Genetic modification can be a good thing. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t valid scientific arguments against it.

It’s not anti-science to question. It’s anti-science to blindly accept.


About emmawolf

I'm a freelance writer living in Baltimore with my husband, son, and two cats. I'm working on editing my first novel. I love reading, traveling, and the cello.
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2 Responses to The Left’s war on science

  1. soundslikeorange says:

    Just to extend your point (although it’s well said, as is), I think it might be fair to say that, on average, the Left is more likely to hate the products of science (technology, I guess), rather than science itself. Meanwhile, the Right take issue with science directly (e.g. young-earth creationism and the like). Naturally, both of these are generalizations about a group and not equally applicable to all members of the group.

    … [mumbled to self] and now that my broad brush is well-used …

    • emmawolf says:

      I don’t know if it would be the product or the process (new technology being made by slave labor, for example), but yes, I see your point.

      About broad brushes: don’t grumble too much. The context of this is that we’re talking about the extremes (though the right extreme seems to be a little larger or more powerful), so I know what you mean.

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