Thursday, May 11, 2017

People against science: Gmos, vaccines, flat earth, fake fossils/moon landing, & History Channel -Cassie K

In the past, I have had said that we should be critical of textbooks in schools because they are white washed, and I include being critical of science that has its own history of racism as well. And, I can understand when someone is skeptical of the billions of dollars funding trips to space when there are so many other financial problems of the world. However, science is revolutionary. NASA, GMOs, vaccines, archeology, sociology and anthropology to me are all revolutionary ways we have increased our knowledge, understanding, empathy, consciousness, and so much more. But, there is still an overwhelming amount of the current society that has flourished because of science that in turn discredits science as it's own corporate, new world order agenda.

I must first admit that despite being enchanted by learning about the cosmos and physics, I was also anti-GMO and anti-vaccine. Slowly over the last several years I have come to research these scientific innovations myself without the chatter of others, and I came to the conclusion that they are safe and good. Actually because there is such a growing number of people against GMOs and vaccines, scientists have studied these more than ever and still come to the same conclusion that reflects the thousands of studies done on GMOs and vaccines. One example just days ago was a measles outbreak in Minnesota. The news has reported that health officials in Minnesota are tackling the worst measles outbreak in nearly 30 years. Most of those with the disease are un-vaccinated Somali-American children. Currently, 51 people were affected. I started writing this essay before I watched Bill Nye's new Netflix series, and although the title of the series is pretentious, I was glad to see that he had touched on all these subjects I am mentioning here.

With that said, I had read that there were red algae-like Fossils unearthed in India that are 1.6 billion years old, which shows us one of the earliest-known plants, and this means reassessing the timing of major lineages in the tree of life that first appeared on Earth. And yet there are religious groups that believe fossils are ways their god is testing them to believe the Earth is older than it really is. Do you know how absurd that actually sounds? Just because the timeline goes against the bible and other "sacred" texts, doesn't mean it actually goes against their faith. We are constantly learning new information, so of course a book like the bible written over a thousand years ago is going to be something that actually may be false, fictional, or shouldn't be taken literally. I suppose that terrifies some of those religious people to consider that their text they live by is false.

Even Bill Nye admits he was misinformed about GMOs and now believes they are safe and necessary for some crops. This phenomenon continues to happen through groups like environmentalists that are against GMOs, even though study after study has confirmed they are not linked to health risks. In addition to that, GMO foods are not so much the "frankenfoods" that is used as an anecdote to frame scientists as poisoning people. GMO foods are associated with the corruption of Big Ag and the potential environmental effects of pesticides on the land, air, water, people, animals. But GM foods are actually preventing the use of pesticides by using genes from other plants to prevent certain diseases and pest resistance. GMO foods help us to create more food options for people in the coldest climates or the hottest. I have been guilty of all of these thoughts about GMOs to vaccines, and even microwaves.

The GMO and vaccine debate however isn't as audacious as the belief of a flat Earth and the moon landing being faked. For years I have heard the moon landing was faked and that NASA is lying to us or keeping top secret information for the public, and the government knows their aliens--but that couldn't shock me more than when I heard of people suggesting that the Earth was flat. This is a new conspiracy theory that is being perpetuated that I have recently heard from people. On some level I understand how there is a distrust in authority. Actually, I am quite angered by the textbooks and teachers that told me Columbus discovered America and then learned when I got into college that Columbus started the genocide of indigenous people to extract gold for his people's own wealth. However, there is a difference between what we're taught as history-- which is political-- and what we learn as fact. Science is not political because science is facts.

Similar to some who say fossils are trickery, would have to completely disregard the decades of scientific information that we have built upon. There would have to be an absolute denial of all the astronauts that have been in space and all the pictures that have been taken of Earth and other planets within our solar system. And, the history channel is guilty of creating these conspiracy theories as well, because they have TV shows like Ancient Aliens that suggest that space aliens created all of the ancient structures of our time on Earth, and they also suggest that the moon landing was faked. But, notice this is the History channel also has TV shows like Pawn Stars, American Pickers, Swamp people, Counting Cars, Ax men, etc that cater to older men and working men. The History Channel is not the Science channel.

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