I am Janice Rael, Founder and President of the Delaware Valley Chapter of Americans United for Separation of Church and State (DVAU). Our parent group, Americans United for Separation of Church and State, called Americans United or just “AU,” feels that a solid wall of separation between church and state will keep Creationism out of science classrooms. As a science supporter who has actively engaged in opposition to teaching Creationism in science classrooms, I immediately joined the March for Science Philadelphia team when it was formed in late January. The March for Science is in support of scientific research and the application of science in all fields of inquiry including those that lead to fighting disease, supporting safe and healthy food and water supplies, and improving people’s lives. The March for Science wants to unite scientists with science supporters, for the betterment of all our lives.
Now, I serve as the lead organizer of the Philadelphia March for Science. I am doing this to not only as a church-state separation advocate who supports public education and science education, I also want to raise awareness of the importance of science in our everyday lives. Technology invented for NASA astronauts has filtered down to household use, such as our GPS devices, and Facebook “check-ins” using geolocation, for example. I feel that many people and politicians are ignoring peer-reviewed science, resulting in problems ranging from the outbreak of preventable diseases to removal of climate change data from the government’s website. People are afraid of safe, nutritious food, because they don’t understand the science behind genetic modification. People are afraid to ask doctors medical questions, turning instead to shady groups of internet strangers offering each other damaging advice that flies in the face of modern medicine.
We want to reach out to these people, to ask them to trust science, trust the peer-review process, trust the experts whose lives are devoted to scientific research and study. Don’t believe tabloid news or unscientific websites and blogs. Ask a doctor. Ask a scientist. Rely on the scientific method to correct its mistakes when new evidence comes to light. Support science. Stand up for science. Protect science education in school.
The March for Science Philadelphia is slated to kick off from a to-be-determined location at 11:00am on Saturday, April 22, 2017, Earth Day, followed by a rally from 12:00pm to 3:00pm at another location. The rally will feature speakers who will champion robustly funded and publicly communicated science as a pillar of human freedom and prosperity. By uniting together on April 22nd, we will be calling attention to the need for science that upholds the common good as well as for political leaders and policy makers to enact evidence-based policies in the public interest. We hope that the Philadelphia March will be an important step in raising this awareness regionally and laying the groundwork for future dialogue and action.
When I’m not defending the wall of separation between church and state, I spend my free time running a science/space/politics Facebook Page devoted to astrophysicist Dr Neil deGrasse Tyson, called “Tysonism,” with over 190,000 page fans. The April 22 March for Science helps me exercise my interests in all of these topics. There are many reasons to March, and I hope you will join me in Philadelphia PA for our March for Science. We are a satellite march of the National March for Science in Washington DC, taking place the same day.
DVAU, the Delaware Valley Americans United chapter, is a proud endorser and sponsor of the March for Science Philadelphia.
Donations are tax-deductible! Use the official website button to ensure proper earmarking of your donation. http://philly.marchesfor.science
By Mail: Send a check or money order
payable to the “Freethought Society” to:
The Freethought Society
March for Science Committee
P.O. Box 242
Pocopson, PA 19366
MUST ADD “March for Science PHL” in the memo line!