By Sebastian Moronta Blanco, Staff Writer
Over the weekend, thousands of demonstrators gathered in the Boston Commons for the March for Science, one of hundreds of demonstrations across the country and the world dedicated to fostering support and engagement with the sciences and the most pressing issues in the scientific community.
Visitors held signs that, among other things, thanked scientists for their contributions to society, called attention to topics like climate change and renewable energy, and chastised politicians and public figures for their perceived anti-scientific views.
The March for Science has organized regularly for decades, but this year the event had a powerful aura about it, as recent events, most notably the advent of the Trump Administration, has raised strong emotions concerning the future of the scientific community’s impact on society.
Demonstrators fear the continued dismissal of factual evidence, most notably concerning climate change, will have, quite literally, disastrous effects on our collective future.
Several notable figures in science appeared before the crowd at the march, including Gina McCarthy, former administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency under President Obama, Dava Newman, former deputy administrator of NASA who stepped down in January, and George Church, a professor at Harvard and MIT who developed methods used for the first genome sequence.
Ben Jackson, a sophomore at Emerson college, attended the march with a group of his friends, holding up signs that read “Alternative Facts Can’t Trump Reality” and “Got Polio? Me neither, thank a scientist!”
They came to protest the Trump administration’s cuts to the EPA and rollbacks to the Clean Power Plan.
“It’s important to voice our concerns in masses. Trump is on track to do so much damage to our environment and we need to do everything we can to stop that and start saving it.”