The Daily Dose: Science in the Trump Era is a pretty exhausting endeavor

Sign up for Scientific Inquirer’s Steady State Newsletter for the week’s top stories, exclusive interviews, and weekly giveaways. Plenty of value added but without the tax.

Days after the Trump administration and ICE announced that foreign students attending schools that had temporarily transitioned online must either change schools with in-person attendance or leave the country, the academic community is continuing to speak out against the mind boggling decision. As per Science, “The policy ‘is cruel to international students and damaging to America’s scientific leadership,’ Sudip Parikh—CEO of AAAS (the publisher of Science Careers)—said in a statement released today. ‘We urge the administration to reconsider and rescind this guidance.’” If carried out, the policy will further weakening the United States’ position as a global research and higher education powerhouse. It also signals a grim future for the country.

It’s all fun and games for some people until they get infected. Then suddenly, COVID-19 is real. Look at what’s happening in Brazil. As per the Associated Press, “After months of touting an unproven anti-malaria drug as a treatment for the new coronavirus, Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro is turning himself into a test case live before millions of people as he swallows hydroxychloroquine pills on social media and encourages others to do the same.” Stupid is as stupid does. That’s all we’ve got to say about it.

The old, established theory about Jupiter’s formation was that it took place pretty much where the massive gas planet currently resides. Now, teams of scientists on two different planets have shaken things up with a new theory. “In 2019, however, two groups of researchers unaware of each other’s work—one in America (1), the other in Europe (2)—proposed a literally far-out alternative: Jupiter got its start in the solar system’s hinterlands, probably beyond the current orbits of Neptune and Pluto, and then moved inward.” Picture that hulking planet on the move. Crazy, right?

The sorry and sordid tale of hydroxychloroquine as a COVID-19 treatment churns on and on and on, mostly thanks to non-scientists who feel they know much more than the people who’ve dedicated their lives to the field. As per STAT, “The study that sparked the latest controversy was anything but randomized. Not only was it not randomized, outside experts noted, but patients who received hydroxychloroquine were also more likely to get steroids, which appear to help very sick patients with Covid-19. That is likely to have influenced the central finding of the Henry Ford study: that death rates were 50% lower among patients in hospitals treated with hydroxychloroquine.” It’s pretty exhausting. What’s that saying about people in possession of a little bit of knowledge?

Thanks for reading. Let’s be careful out there.

IMAGE SOURCE: Creative Commons

Words matter. Images matter. The Scientific Inquirer needs your support. Help us pay our contributors for their hard work. Visit our Patreon page and discover ways that you can make a difference.

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: