Re: US Science Education Sucks

From: Olga Bourlin (
Date: Fri Aug 24 2001 - 12:14:48 MDT

From: "Mike Lorrey" <>

> "J. R. Molloy" wrote:
> >
> > How can the same system produce scientific elites and illiterates?
> >
> > The United States by any conceivable measure has the finest scientists
in the
> > world. But the rest of the population, by any rational standard, is
> > ignorant of science, mathematics and all things technical. That is the
> > of scientific elites and scientific illiterates: how can the same system
> > education that produced all those brilliant scientists also have
produced all
> > that ignorance?
> Because of specialization, of course. You don't train people to be
> chemists when they are going to pound nails all their lives.

Good grief, what an insufferably elitist viewpoint. Understanding how
science works or being familiar with its macro-concepts is not beyond the
intellectual skills of people who "pound nails all their lives." One
doesn't have to be a chemist in order to appreciate the integrity of the
scientific method. Scientists are not the only people with critical
thinking skills in our society. Carl Sagan's "Cosmos" series did not appeal
primarily to scientists. Science needs more and better PR, and certainly
not the perpetuation of myths like "science is too complicated to explain to
dumb-asses like y'all ..."


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