Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Reform Jews Resolve to Defend the Integrity of Science

A few years back, at the height of the Bush administration, the Union for Reform Judaism, concerned by the politicization of science, passed the following excellent resolutions. Others, especially science organizations, should do the same:

  1. Demand that public officials and appointees to governmental and advisory bodies respect the integrity of the scientific process, and not manipulate scientific data and evidence, to achieve political or ideological objectives
  2. Call upon all levels of government to ensure that the appointment of scientists to government positions and advisory boards be made on the basis of scientific experience, expertise and accomplishment
  3. Demand that federal funding of scientific research result from a merit based peer review of proposals, relying strictly upon scientifically objective criteria
  4. Demand that government employed scientists and scientists conducting research under government sponsorship be free from threats and intimidation that might compromise their scientific integrity
  5. Support appropriate measures to ensure that all of the above principles are adhered to and valued
  6. Oppose government efforts and policies that seek to redefine science or the scientific method to incorporate religious, theological or other theories, including “intelligent design” and creationism, that are neither testable by experiment nor observation.

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