In Science We Trust

It may have taken decades, but scientists are now certain to a very comforting degree (99.999999999%) that the Higgs Boson exists.

Peter Higgs proposed the existence of a theoretical particle fifty years ago that would explain why things have mass. Ever since then thousands of people have worked to try and prove – or disprove – this theory. Using many different experiments, scientists have not been able to disprove this theory but instead have provided strong evidence for such a particle. The latest experiment was carried out at CERN using the Large Hadron Collider. THIS is how science is done. THIS is how we know what we know. Thousands of people devoting their entire lives to answer a single question to add just one more piece to the puzzle.

And yet, people still have a hard time trusting these same folks to provide them answers for comparably trivial questions. We can’t “see” the continents moving given a human’s lifetime, but through experiments and careful observation we know they are moving and we call it Plate Tectonics. No one has ever seen a live dinosaur but we know they existed and when they lived based on fossil evidence and carbon dating, among other reasons. We all walk around with virtual supercomputers in our pockets that can enable us to instantly talk to folks around the world, access a world wide data network, record high definition video, and hold many hours of audio. We know the scientists know what they’re doing. If they didn’t, none of that would work. Would the Large Hadron Collider have a budget of almost $10billion and physically span across two countries if these scientists could not be trusted? As a matter of fact, CERN was the birthplace of the World Wide Web which we all use on a daily basis. It works.

Given hundreds of years and multiple independent lines of evidence by very passionate, devoted people just like the folks who work at CERN, we are just as confident in human evolution as we are about the existence of the Higgs Boson. How is evolution still a controversy? What is the problem? These people – these scientists – should be our ‘rockstars.’ It’s disheartening to me that our culture looks up to people like reality TV personalities who have contributed literally nothing to human society and are only ‘famous for being famous.’

As much as I love movies (trust me, I watch my fair share), the people who participate in these films nowadays are held on an increasingly high pedestal. But why? I understand entertainment is an essential part of human culture. I’m not arguing against it, but I think it has its place. These actors, for example, deliver lines that someone else wrote for them and are paid to pretend to be someone else. They’re praised in our modern culture for essentially being as fake as possible. As for the ‘reality TV’ folk well, they’re not even in the same league as real actors. At least acting takes skill and practice. I cannot even make an argument for ‘reality TV,’ period. However, I’d bet you could name at least a few of their names.

Yet, the people who are providing luxuries like smart phones and essentials like MRI machines are practically unknown. More than that, they’re sometimes ridiculed and not trusted based on unjustifiable ideologies. Maybe a finding goes against someone’s religious beliefs. Maybe the new discovery is too difficult for someone to comprehend – or maybe they’re simply too lazy to try – and they write off the fact and overlook the scientist and the work put into it.

Come on guys, we can do better than this. Let’s teach our children what’s important. Let’s teach real values and real meaning. Let’s contribute, or at the very least, promote positive contribution. We must instill confidence in our children’s individuality and to be proud of who they are, not show them that pretending to be someone else is preferable.

We need to start at the grassroots. We need a fundamental change. The only way that can happen is if we begin with our children. We must understand the universe around us to understand ourselves. As Socrates said, “…a life unexamined is a life not worth living.”

I encourage feedback :)

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