Dr. Devon G Peña wrote a piece, March for Science: Why I Will Not be Marching with the ‘Liberal Nerds‘ referencing The March for Science, a series of rallies and marches held in Washington, D.C. and more than 600 other cities across the world on Earth Day, April 22.
“..I am not marching today. And it is not because I am anti-science. I am against continued widespread reductionism of and in science (e.g., the geneticization of all phenomena); I am against continued service of scientists in the capitalist control of knowledge production and the deployment of technologies that place our health, safety, and well-being at higher risk. I am certain many of the scientists marching today will feel the same way; but this is a minority worldview.”
Scientists need to withdraw from collaborating with federal, state, or corporate interests or agencies that are not just anti-science but anti-health, anti-safety, and anti-Earth. Scientists need to consider a strategic boycott and a withdrawal of their labor; they must not remain subservient or obsequious under the empire of a capitalist dictatorship over the planet. Critics of the M4S note the march is but a self-interested response to Trump’s war on science and how it lacks grounding in broader mass-based movements against the capitalist anti-ecological rationality of the extant global neoliberal regime. Too many of these (mostly white male) scientists are disconnected from the struggles of indigenous and peoples of color as well as other vulnerable communities.
For additional context, see this piece by Canadian investigative journalist Bruce Livesey at The Walrus titled Big Agro on Campus. The story tracks pesticide industry funding, particularly at University of Guelph, which has lead to research on pesticides such as glyphosate, atrazine and neonics.