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Opinion: Science has no agenda but the truth
06232018 CLIMATE EARTH

Living through the past four years, I have the sinking sensation of having been sent to past times. I believe that I am living in a period where knowledge and scientific data have lost some of their meaning.  

Remembering history lessons, I’ve thought of Ancient Egypt where the pharaohs performed religious ceremonies when the star Sirius rose in the middle of August. The Egyptians believed the pharaoh’s powers caused the annual flooding of the Nile. They believed in this power until there was a prolonged drought in Southern Africa and the floods were interrupted.  

A Dominican friar, Giordano Bruno, who was a cosmological theorist, believed that the stars were other suns with their own planets.  Bruno also believed that the universe was infinite and therefore had no center and he refused to reject these beliefs.  

The church, in the 16th and early 17th centuries, taught that the Earth was the center of the universe and that everything revolved around it. For his heresy, Giordano Bruno was burned alive at the stake on Feb. 17, 1600.  

Sixteen years later, in 1616, Galileo was accused of heresy because he opposed church teachings that the Earth was the center of the universe.  He believed the Earth went around the sun.  In 1633 Galileo was sentenced to house arrest for the rest of his life.  

I thought of German poet Heinrich Heine who wrote the play “Almansor” that has the admonition “Where they burn books, they will also ultimately burn people.” In March of 1933, in Germany and Austria, the governments burned books, and during WWII they burned people.  

Why go into this?  Currently, the federal government rejects scientific data.  The U.S. has withdrawn from the Paris Agreement, which is an international agreement to deal with the issue of global warming.  The research is in.  The information is available.  Global warming is real, and man is contributing to it.  

For those needing proof.  This year, as of Oct. 21, there have been 23 named storms, which in recorded history is a record at this point in the season. And in many areas of the West, unparalleled wildfires in number and size are devastating areas as large as some states. The tropical storms and wildfires are, in part, attributed to a warming earth.  

In July of this year, the CDC removed government documents from its site because the data conflicted with the administration’s agenda, according to reporting from Politico, among others.  Nonscientific or medical experts were assigned to edit CDC and FDA reports before being made available to the media and public. That is a modern equivalent of book burning.  

Recently, Donald Trump rejected the recommendations of scientist and medical researchers from the CDC and mocked Dr. Anthony Fauci because their efforts fighting COVID-19, conflicted with his political agenda. Trump said that Fauci was not a “team player”.  

Fauci’s only agenda is the health and well-being of the American public.  

If nothing else, this election is about accepting science.  

Jimmy O’Neill  

Cleveland 


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