July 23, 2024

Western Society Does Not Value Scientific Knowledge

Personally, I do not presume that scientific knowledge has a special status in western society. People do not consider the fact that scientific knowledge takes years and years to become accepted as such. The public does not understand all of the in-depth planning that must occur before experiments happen. The public cannot comprehend how many years it takes for such experimentation to be carried out, documented, and interpreted. The public does not discern the amount of statistical analysis that is necessary to evaluate data. The lengthy process of getting scientific papers published in peer-reviewed journals, for instance, is unbeknownst to the public. People do not think about all of these things when they hear a scientific fact. Therefore, scientific knowledge does not carry any weight in western society even if it should.

Current events perfectly exemplify the insignificant status that scientific knowledge holds in western society today. Despite all of the scientific evidence that confirms the reality of climate change, many of the U.S.’s politicians deny climate change as an issue. They refuse to acknowledge global warming and to enact policies that help save our planet. Another example of western society’s rejection of scientific knowledge is the way that some people have failed to follow CDC guidelines. Regardless of how many studies have been conducted to show that social distancing, wearing masks, and constantly washing hands, is the most efficient way of protecting oneself and others from Covid-19, there is still a large population of the U.S. that refuses to abide by any of these recommendations. Science can have all of the evidence in the world to back up its claims yet there will always be people that do not value the work that goes into the development of scientific knowledge and they will continue to repudiate it. Additionally, the idea of “fake news” that is currently gaining popularity in western society does not help. There are some people that believe everything is fake news, including scientific knowledge, regardless of how much support or data can back it up.

To say that science is apart from culture is to say that numbers are apart from mathematics. It is simply untrue. Science is certainly part of culture. For context, the definition of culture that is employed in this short essay is culture as “a particular way of life, whether of a people, a period, a group, or humanity in general.” Science studies what is relevant to culture at the time. Science is responsible for discovering what culture needs at certain point in time and what culture lacks. Science is meant to advance culture and build upon its foundation. Both, science and culture, influence each other and provide each other guidance. Science influences society’s way of life just as much as culture often dictates in what direction science is heading. To think of the two as mutually exclusive is absurd. Science and culture are both happening all of the time. Thus, it is virtually impossible that they could be considered as separate.

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