I had a great time on Saturday joining the March on Science in New York City. (I wrote about the march with some background back in February after it was first announced.) Aside from the main march in Washington, DC, there were over 600 satellite marches around the world. Nice! There were tens of thousands of people lined up on Central Park West for ten or more blocks. Relaxed, festive. Some young, some old, some nerdy, some hip, a good number of scientists, science teachers, activists, and others who are fans of science. It was all largely apolitical but the message was quite clear: The war on science – and particularly climate science – being waged, let’s face the facts, almost wholly by the Trump Administration and his enablers in the Congress, is not something that people are going to take lying down.There is a general sense in the land of needing to stand up and be counted. We saw that at the Women’s marches, at the airports immediately on the issuing of the Muslim travel ban, at the Trump tax marches, at the scores of Republican congressional district meetings, at the special elections in Kansas and Georgia, and this past weekend with the Science marches.
Next up: The People’s Climate March. I’ll be there with my daughter in Washington on Saturday. If you can’t make it down, check out the sister marches, again all around the globe.
One fine poem that I saw that was worth sharing is this:
On the Fifth Day
By Jane Hirshfield
On the fifth day
the scientists who studied the rivers
were forbidden to speak
or to study the rivers.
The scientists who studied the air
were told not to speak of the air,
and the ones who worked for the farmers
and the ones who worked for the bees.
Someone, from deep in the Badlands,
began posting facts.
The facts were told not to speak
and were taken away.
The facts, surprised to be taken, were silent.
Now it was only the rivers
that spoke of the rivers,
and only the wind that spoke of its bees,
while the unpausing factual buds of the fruit trees
continued to move toward their fruit.
The silence spoke loudly of silence,
and the rivers kept speaking,
of rivers, of boulders and air.
In gravity, earless and tongueless,
the untested rivers kept speaking.
Bus drivers, shelf stockers,
code writers, machinists, accountants,
lab techs, cellists kept speaking.
They spoke, the fifth day,