Protesting scientists decry “state propaganda” and “fantasy” in Ottawa

Reuters covers the hundreds-strong protest by scientists and their supporters against the anti-science, anti-environment agenda of the Harper government:

Several hundred Canadian scientists and their supporters held an unprecedented protest march on Tuesday to demonstrate against the government’s decision to close down major facilities and fire research staff.

The protesters, who say the right-of-center Conservative government dislikes science, walked through central Ottawa behind a woman dressed as the Grim Reaper and a coffin designed to mourn the “Death of Evidence”.

"Evidence is the way that adults navigate reality. To deny evidence is to live in a fairy world … when countries engage in fantasy it’s called state propaganda,” Simon Fraser University professor Arne Moores told a crowd of around 800 people gathered on Parliament Hill.

I recently wrote about a study that Arne Moores co-authored warning of an “imminent irreversible planetary collapse”. One of the pressures identified in the study was the use and extraction of fossil fuels.

If, as Prime Minister Harper repeatedly says, fossil fuel extraction is a “national priority”, then suppressing the work of people like Moores truly is state propaganda.

It’s extraordinary and inspiring to see the research and scientific community speaking up in this way.