As I noted last week, it has gotten tiresome, depressing, and repetitive to post numerous individual links of stories each day that highlight the oppressive culture that apparently permeates much of today’s academic community. I found that by doing these posts individually, I would not post every important story.
To solve this, I have decided to periodically post the stories in a bunch, and have so far found that I still have had to do it twice a week. Below is today’s list. Check each out. The pattern that disturbs me most is that while much of the intolerance is coming from the students, the administrations and faculty of most of these schools appear quite content to either appease, or support, that intolerance.
And then there is this story from the journal Science: Analysis of China’s one-child policy sparks uproar
A new study of China’s one-child policy is roiling demography, sparking calls for the field’s leading journal to withdraw the paper. The controversy has ignited a debate over scholarly values in a discipline that some say often prioritizes reducing population growth above all else.
It is definitely worthwhile reading this story. While I have serious doubts about the scientific rigorousness of the paper in question, I find it remarkable and disturbing that the first instinct of the scientists in this field who question the paper is to demand its retraction. In other words, rather than argue their doubts and questions publicly and let the chips fall where they may, they prefer to grind their boots into the author’s face, silencing him entirely.
From the press release: From the moment he is handed a possibility of making the first alien contact, Saunders Maxwell decides he will do it, even if doing so takes him through hell and back.
Unfortunately, that is exactly where that journey takes him.
The vision that Zimmerman paints of vibrant human colonies on the Moon, Mars, the asteroids, and beyond, indomitably fighting the harsh lifeless environment of space to build new societies, captures perfectly the emerging space race we see today.
He also captures in Pioneer the heart of the human spirit, willing to push forward no matter the odds, no matter the cost. It is that spirit that will make the exploration of the heavens possible, forever, into the never-ending future.
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