Thousands of people are expected to rally across the United States on Saturday, Earth Day, to participate in the March for Science, a collection of events meant to oppose Trump administration policies some have alleged are harmful to science and to support science in general. The largest rally and march is expected to take place in Washington, DC, where protesters have already begun to gather.
According to the March for Science website, “the rally will be a call for politicians to implement science based policies, as well as a public celebration of science and the enormous public service it provides in our democracy, our economy, and our daily lives.”
Organizers have told scientists attending the rallies to wear their “work clothes,” which might include “lab coat, goggles, a stethoscope, field gear — scientists work in all settings and we shouldn’t limit the march to any specific kind.” Organizers are also encouraging people to dress as their “favorite scientist” and to carry signs showing their support for science.
“It might have been ignited by Trump, but it’s not about Trump,” said Lydia Villa-Komaroff, an honorary co-chair of the March for Science, according to CNN. “It’s about the importance of science in society and continuing the support for the science community in keeping our edge.”
Other supporters and organizers of the event have echoed similar sentiments: It’s not just about Trump, it’s about protecting science.
But protecting science from what, exactly?
The marches were sparked by President Donald Trump’s budget proposal, which plans to cut $54 billion from various government programs to help pay for upgrading and expanding the military and to reduce what many conservatives have said are unnecessary, costly, freedom-limiting bureaucracies, such as the Environmental Protection Agency, which Trump wants to cut by more than 30 percent.
Trump has also already signed executive orders limiting funding for climate-change-related government programs.
Some critics of the event have said the March for Science isn’t about science; it’s about protecting jobs, especially jobs related to climate change, which Trump has proven to be very skeptical of. The federal government is one of the world’s largest funders of climate-change-related research.
In its 2017 budget proposal, the National Science Foundation requested Congress provide it with nearly $8 billion in funds, most of which would be provided to scientists across the country in the form of research grants.
NSF’s budget states promoting “clean energy” is one of its highest priorities. It requested to spend more than $500 million on clean-energy-related grants alone. In fiscal years 2015 and 2016, NSF spent more than $250 million on “science, engineering, and education for sustainability.”
The March for Science’s leadership is full of people climate alarmists who have been vocal opponents of Trump’s decision to scale…