Democracy versus Science

This is an ongoing topic of mine (I’m just now finishing my thesis on this very topic), but because this is the latest news, I thought I would share:

Italy’s new populist government just fired the entire national medical panel because of their pro-vaccine views. Vaccines are just one front in a brewing war that is seeing a direct conflict between expertise (“I literally spent my entire life studying this”) and populist democracy (“Oh yeah well my opinion is just as good as yours and I want this”).

Other fronts in this war include GMOs, Brexit (“the British people are tired of experts” – Michael Gove), Climate Science (

)

not to mention anything about Trump. There are still other religious-tinged elements to this war including creationism and flat-eartherism.

Western civilization must ask the question: when there are popular opinions on one hand and scientific expertise on the other, what should elected officials and governments do?

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