*collapses in a pile of giggles*
If you dont want to read more blag drama, move along. This post is strictly for the lulz.
In addition, Mooney and Kirshenbaum offer no practical suggestions for how to acquire the target audience. People with no interest in science will not tune in to Science Idol on Fox, even if Fox were to pick up such a show.
After I read the article, I posted the following comment on Chris’s Facebook profile link to the article:
I must say, I am very disappointed and somewhat insulted. Blaming scientists for scientific illiteracy is like blaming doctors for disease.
And your solution is that scientists spend their time making the talk show circuit instead of doing their work.
A bit snarky, I admit, but this is a personal conversation and I was pretty angry.
Following another comment which blamed education, I posted a more critical comment:
IMO, JOURNALISTS do more damage to science literacy in this country than anyone else.
I do not believe this comment is unfair. Not only did Mooney and Kirshenbaum blame my profession for the problem, but they presented no evidence to support their claim. I, on the other hand, can cite hundreds of examples of bad reporting which can and have led to persistent myth and ignorance.
In addition, I left a comment on the Boston Globe site. Perhaps this was the tipping point for him. When I returned to Facebook the following evening (last night), I found notifications that others had commented on the link which started it all, but I could not access them or the thread.
Chris Mooney “defriended” me!
What’s more, he did so without responding to my comments and ensured I could make no more on that thread.
On the one hand, this was Chris’s personal profile. On the other hand, he opened the discussion by posting the link and if he did not want to discuss professional matters in personal space…
I have gotten into some pretty heated discussions with friends on Facebook. None have resulted in cut ties. The only incident of “defriending” on my part involved someone I could only call a spammer who, IMO, misrepresented themselves. I did nothing of the sort with Mooney. I have been nothing but supportive until now. So, either he does not like criticism, or he does not want it to influence his book sales which might ensue from his personal relationships on Facebook.
If you dont like ‘Unscientific America’, you cant be Mooneys friend on Facebook.
Pffffft… hehe… HAAAAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!! Hes so MATURE! **SWOON** AAAAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!! WHAT A TOOL!!! LOSER!! LOOOOSER!!!
But wait! Theres more! You see, Barbara Drescher, like me, only has a problem with Mooney because he is a TRAITOR to the CAUSE! How DARE he offend our LORD and SAVIOR PZ!!!
Drescher– I am dumbfounded by this article. I once thought you were brilliant and I think the book has a few gems in it despite 2 glaringly BAD chapters, but this is WAY OFF. It’s also insulting & arrogant.
You think that the reason Americans are generally scientifically illiterate is because scientists do not hire PR people and act like celebrities?
There are many factors responsible for it:
– lack of interest
– poor critical thinking skills
– lack of education
– entrenched beliefs which are threatened by scientific findings
– people like you. Perhaps you have not misquoted or misrepresented research yourself (I really don’t know), but 75% of science that is reported in the media is misrepresented, misinterpreted, and otherwise mangled by “science journalists”. They misquote scientists and spin research to create angles they think readers want.
I am also unhappy with the way you tossed in the NSF-IGERT program as if it has ANYTHING to do with your point. I was an IGERT fellow myself, and I can tell you that scientific literacy is NOT the goal of the program. Students in PhD programs KNOW THEIR SCIENCE ALREADY. The program is designed to provide training in research which emphasizes interdisciplinary work. It is not an “outreach” program and it does not train scientist in “talking to the public”.
Telling people how science affects them personally – isn’t that YOUR job? The jobs of TEACHERS? (not all scientists teach)
If people are intimidated by scientists, that’s THEIR hang-up. Most scientists are VERY approachable, many DO open their labs to the public, volunteer for outreach, give talks open to the public, etc. If that’s not good enough for you, tough. Scientists are pretty busy already – DOING SCIENCE.
Someone stupid enough to be commenting on Intersection— “despite 2 glaringly BAD chapters”
Gee, I wonder what two chapters those could be? I realize you’re quoting someone else, but you quoted them.
You know, I don’t have a problem with people who are fans of something. But just come out and say it, OK? It means you’re biased in favor of something and that’s fine.
HAHAHA! Cause you know, if youre criticizing Mooney, its because youre an atheist and PZs pit bull. Oh wait:
I wrote that and it’s pretty arrogant of you to assume that I’m a “PZ fan” simply because I had serious problems with the same number of chapters.
FYI, one of them was need “The internet won’t save us”, but the other was NOT the religion chapter. I don’t give a rat’s tail about whether or not PZ is insulted. He put it out there and, from what I can tell, he can handle the heat. Yes, I read his blog – about 25% of it. If that is what “fan” means, so be it.
The other chapter I disliked intensely was “Why Pluto Matters” because in it the authors give the distinct impression (in fact, they pretty much state it outright) that science and scientists should consider the public’s feelings when deciding matters of science.
Scientists should not even consider THEIR OWN feelings. That’s WHY they use SCIENCE.
And I also don’t give a rat’s tail if you don’t like my use of capital letters for emphasis.
By the way, science literacy in this country is going UP, not down. And you can present statistics to support the opposite if you feel compelled; I won’t bother to pick them apart. It’s not that important of a point. I completely agree that it should be rising at a much higher rate than it is and it is far too low for my comfort level. However, scientists not being “sexy” is NOT the problem.
No, the scientifically illiterate are not just a bunch of stupid people, but intelligence is not the only factor in critical thinking ability. We still need to look more closely at EDUCATION – at the elementary level.
Welp. Now you gone and done it, Dresher. Took me years to do what you just done. Now youre gonna get your very own hit-piece by one of SciBlogs resident Anons. Especially because you are a misogynistic woomyn hater too.
Sorry, Mrs. Drescher. You should have known not to mess with teh Mooney. He has nice hair. And you dont MESS with people with nice hair.