Letters: Anti-science movement is dangerous for America
Stick to the facts
Flat earthers. Holocaust-deniers. Anti-vaxxers. Climate-change deniers. Goop fans. Could these seemingly small splinter groups collectively spell a dangerous message for public health?
Anti-science counterculture has now become so thoroughly permeated into the mainstream culture that people are unable to identify it.
Recently, in Boca Raton, Florida, a high school principal came under fire for treating historical events such as the Holocaust and slavery as political viewpoints one could decide to either agree with or deny based on one’s own interpretation of the facts. “I can’t say the Holocaust is a factual, historical event because I am not in a position to do so as a school district employee,” he explained. “I do allow information about the Holocaust to be presented and allow students and parents to make decisions about it accordingly. I do the same with information about slavery, I don’t take a position but allow for the information to be presented”
Simply put, the denial of science (and history for that matter) isn’t just nauseating — it’s dangerous. The latest measles outbreak may be the foreshadowing of something much more catastrophic. Somehow our culture has collectively been fooled that mythical vaccine injury is scarier than real legitimate communicable disease and the death of innocent children. When focusing on your health, remember that while wellness trends are alluring — good health care often comes down to sleep, diet, exercise, facts and science.
If you’re reading this, I beg you to take action. Do not allow the line to be blurred between holistic self-care and snake oil. Too often we have prized politeness over the well-articulated argument. Be assertive in your defense of the truth. There must be a transition from avoiding topics of controversy, to a culture that values discourse on the merits of an argument. We can have different values, but please let America be a place where we value the facts.
Janelle Marie Petrow
Use biodegradable material
Contractors and engineers like to use the synthetic mesh products for erosion prevention measures.
My horticultural crew has found two snakes twisted up in that mesh in the last year. One we were able to cut out, but last week we found a large snake entangled — warm, but dead.
I would like to encourage the use of materials that REALLY biodegrade such as burlap, hemp, jute or coir. They are made from renewable resources. I have used these natural products the entire 23 years of my landscape work with great results.
And by the way, the photodegradable synthetic mesh does NOT biodegrade, rather it breaks down to smaller groupings of squares. The second snake we found was in the photodegradable mesh that had been exposed to the sun for five years.
Have you ever caught a bike pedal or your foot in that stuff? Animals get caught too.
I urge contractors, builders and engineers to change practice and use natural fiber products — if not for the well-being of fellow creatures then to save the predators that augment the explosion of rodents we’ve seen the last few years.
Don’t miss climate discussion
As our beautiful mountain town populations continue to grow, we must begin to seek solutions to reduce the effect of air pollution and climate change. If you are interested about the future of air quality and climate in our community we have an amazing opportunity to participate in the Mayor’s Town Hall meeting addressing these issues on Wednesday, July 31, at 6:30 p.m. in the Park City Library’s Jim Santy Auditorium. The mayors of Park City, Heber and Midway are going to be joined by professors from BYU and the University of Utah, along with a local high school student. Also in attendance will be representatives of our state and national government.
After the panelists give opening remarks there will be a moderated Q-and-A session with the audience. This is YOUR chance to ask our elected officials how they feel about these issues and what their plans are for our future.
I hope to see you there!
Change the world together
And that’s a wrap! The Hope Alliance held its annual fundraiser called Night Vision on Saturday and if you were unlucky not to be able to attend, put it on your calendar for next year! It was foot stomping, terrific, wonderful, inspiring, heart wrenching, humbling in that Dr. Scott Kellermann opened our minds and hearts to the plight of the Batwa Pygmies, once of The Impenetrable Forest of the far Southwestern corner of Uganda. He also showed us the many vision problems plaguing peoples of Africa. We of The Hope Alliance bring vision screening and corrective lenses to those needy and destitute peoples in the region of Uganda we serve. We hope to increase our scope to enable physicians to come and perform simple cataract surgery and give sight to the blind of the Bwindi region in Uganda. Please help us, please support us, please come volunteer with us on our expeditions. Together, we can change the world — it will change yours!
We want to thank our major sponsors: Stephen and Margaret Taylor, Rocky Mountain Power and University of Utah, all the individuals who support us year round and those who attended our fundraiser at the gorgeous Copper Moose Farms. Thank you to all who contributed to the excellence of the event. We’ll see you again next year!
Hope Alliance board chair
Progressives — not conservatives — tell us our strength is in our diversity. Conservatives know this is not true. We know that our strength is our shared values, and this is exactly what made us the best country the world has ever known. The Rule of Law, individual freedoms guaranteed in our constitution and free markets are what have raised more people out of poverty since the beginning of time — no other political formulation. It is not diversity that makes us great, it is that we agree to live together by sharing a belief in those values.
People quote Emma Lazarus’ poem on the Statue of Liberty about how we welcome the world’s tired and poor. We have never made foreign or immigration policy based on poetry (scripture like the Ten Commandments, yes) — especially without reciting the culminating verse: “I lift my lamp beside the golden door!” The huddled masses must come to our doors, our ports of entry, lift their light — make their case, and respectfully ask for asylum. If they have been truthful and are admitted, they are then obligated to show appreciation to this country.
That is our final shared value: simply to love and appreciate the freedoms America provides its citizens. We are free to work hard, keep the fruits of our labors, take care of ourselves and families, and become all that we are able. We have personal charity for our fellows in need. No immigrant or citizen should want to remake America in the image of the culture they fled or to fundamentally transform it into what it was not founded to be. No one is entitled to rush our border. We must all strongly stand against open borders.
We Americans strive to be a good and moral people, and in this case we look to God’s example. His heaven also has a gate, a door, and we must make our truthful petition prior to being allowed entrance.
There are rules for entrance to anything worthwhile.
Salt Lake City
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A Park City resident who is moving away says the community is lucky to have Recycle Utah and should not take the nonprofit for granted.