John Oliver skewered pop media “science” coverage on his recent show. It wasn’t all that funny but it was true. And depressing. What has our society become? So smart, we get stupid.
As an observer of the relationship between science and the public, he’s totally right for pointing out disturbing trends of morning news shows hyping one bad study, news orgs blowing a single study out of proportion, press releases jazzing up a study to get coverage, and headlines that don’t reflect at all what the study is even about. This sets us up for a whole lot more trouble than we already have when it comes to science literacy in the U.S. Take a look…
I’m shocked he didn’t mention my least favorite sexy science machine “I F**king Love Science”. People who know me online know that I F**king Hate I F**king Love Science. It makes people dumb.
Now, more than ever, we need practical skepticism, more people to point out blatant bullshit, a shift in the way we teach science in schools, and how we treat it in our culture. Man, this ain’t going to be easy. But, our future kind of depends on it. We aren’t going to do well for ourselves, our planet and future generations of Americans if we remain so ignorant about science and what news we take seriously.
Teaching ABOUT science is more important than teaching science. We so need a science appreciation requirement in schools.