Archive for May, 2014

My interview on Intersection show

Tuesday, May 20th, 2014

I finally got a chance to listen to my segment on the Intersection show on radio station WMFE that was broadcast this morning. It’s archived at the show’s website here. I think it turned out great. We recorded about twice as much as what made it into the show but I think they still managed to capture all the important aspects of the interview. My sincere thanks to host Matthew Peddie for having me on. I promised him that the issue of evolution in Florida schools will come up again within a year or so, and when it does I’ll make myself available for another interview. This subject is the gift that just keeps on giving, ya know!

Pint of Science U.S.

Saturday, May 17th, 2014

This looks like a great event happening next week in the Tampa area: Pint of Science festival. “The hottest scientific research explained by world experts … all with a beer in hand.”

There’s an article in the Tampa Times about it, too: Pint of Science festival brings experts to the pubs for free talks.

If you want people to listen to the hottest scientific research, lure them with beer. That’s the strategy of the Pint of Science festival next week at several bay area bars.

It’s one way the scientific community is pushing back. Scientists are tired of being vilified in political circles or doubted by a general public who is not educated in basic facts, organizers said.

In Tampa, more than 20 professors, researchers and industry scientists, mostly from the University of South Florida and Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa, eagerly signed up to give talks in local pubs Monday through Wednesday. They’ll talk on everything from climate science to brain research, said festival organizer Parmvir Bahia, a research associate at USF’s College of Medicine who specializes in neuroscience.

America Can’t Afford to Ignore Science

Thursday, May 15th, 2014

This Op-Ed appeared in the politcal web site “Roll Call” a couple of days ago, which I thought was worth a read.  Michael S Lubell is a professor of physics at the City University of New York and the director of public affairs of the American Physical Society. The article revolves around the point that Americans love and embrace science until it’s outcomes challenge their deeply held religious beliefs, then that love can quickly turn to rejection.

Hat tip to Paul Cottle on this.

 

 

On the radio

Monday, May 12th, 2014

Just a friendly reminder: I’ll be on WMFE’s show Intersection at 9:30 tomorrow (Tuesday) morning. I’m in the second half. The show will also be available for listening online and on a podcast. Let me know how you think I did.

[Edited to add: Unfortunately, my radio interview about my book Going Ape that I had expected to air today on WMFE’s Intersection show was rescheduled. It’s now going to run next week.]

Last day of legislative session

Friday, May 2nd, 2014

The fight in the state legislature over a voucher program expansion attempt might spill over into today, the last day of the session. Florida Citizens for Science believes that expansion of the program is a bad idea without a requirement to hold voucher-accepting private schools accountable for what they teach, especially in science classrooms. Let’s see if there are any fireworks today: Voucher program expansion stalls again in Senate.

Also, Florida lawmakers passed a bill yesterday affecting how textbooks are selected. This final version may cause some headaches and is a bit worrisome, but it’s nowhere near as bad as the original horrible bill proposed by Sen. Hays.
Florida Legislature passes school textbook bill

Parents would have a chance to object to textbooks used at public schools under a bill passed Thursday by the Florida Legislature.

Sen. Alan Hays, R-Umatilla and sponsor of the bill, said it would finally give parents a way to object to textbooks without having to complain to legislators or state education officials.

“They don’t have to come to Tallahassee,” Hays said. “They can appeal right there at the local level.”