US public say yes to science debate
I'm sorry to say that, having taken a day's leave on Monday, this snippet of news (above) about ScienceDebate 2008 escaped my attention. According to a poll conducted by Harris Interactive on behalf of ScienceDebate 2008 and Research!America, 85% of US adults think agree that the presidential candidates should participate in a debate on science in the run up to the November election.
(For those of you who have missed the protests of the 37,000 signatories of ScienceDebate 2008, see my last news story on their progress.)
Shawn Otto, CEO of Science Debate 2008, gave the following statement in a press release:
"This topic has been virtually ignored by the candidates, but this poll shows that Americans of all walks know how important science and technology are to our health and way of life. We've heard a lot about lapel pins and preachers. But tackling the big science challenges is critical to our children's future — to the future of the country and the future of the planet. Americans want to know that candidates take these issues seriously, and the candidates have a responsibility to let voters know what they think."
The poll also shows that:
- 67% of adults think scientific research has contributed either "a lot" or "a great deal"
- 67% think that scientific evidence, rather than personal belief, should influence science policy
- 69% rate alternative energy as one of the most serious long-term issues
- 53% rate climate change as one of the most serious long-term issues