I have been thinking about where we are going as a country and I do not like the trajectory. In spite of it I think we are not lost. There is still time for a late rescue. Examining the most recent employment data both encourages and worries me. The overall number and trajectory is good, the devil is in the details. Most of the jobs created are in sectors that have been and continue to be low paying. These jobs are low skilled and some would call them dead-end. The service sector is growing and has produced more jobs than it lost during the great recession. Job creation is great, except these are not the jobs needed to create a viable middle class. These are the types of jobs that create short-term corporate profits and shareholder value.
Many pundits with their ideological blinders on have “trashed” the report while hailing the profitability of wall street without acknowledging the interdependence present. They are correct to be worried, but they have not taken the next step to discern the reasons. It is easy to say the government of the day has not provided the incentives for the creation of high paying jobs and that maybe correct. However, where are the high skilled workers? Why are there many high skilled job vacancies? I would like to suggest that the dearth of high skilled potential employees is a result of our ambivalence to and in many sectors disdain for scientific education.
We are a country of magical thinking and low expectations. Many believe that the magician from the heavens created everything and do not encourage their children to learn the foundations of science. These same people have been elected to positions of leadership and continue to lead many into the darkness of ignorance and scientific illiteracy. Our ignorance has allowed for the export of many potential jobs to countries with much less dependence on magical thinkers. We need to put the work in that ensures that all our children receive a myth free first world science based education.
I am hopeful for America because our young people are willing and able to take on the challenge of a more competitive world. They will deliver if we are willing to allow them access to education without the misleading influence of our pervasive mythical belief system. I do not worry about our kids, I worry about the ignorance of the adults charged with guiding them. Our children are a reflection of the education we allow them to access. Educate them well and we will all reap the rewards.
Often life gets in the way of living and we get carried away with the emotional. The beauty is in the living not in the life. Our experiences are the sum total and the after life is irrelevant. That view of life is much disputed, but it is my view. The constant attempt of the religious to guilt us into prescribed behaviors is admirable only in that it has so thoroughly succeeded.
The complaints that will spring from my expression of this opinion is so perfectly conjured, by the religious, as to make even the most noncommittal give credit to those views. The oddity is that the same people who believe in the absolute power of scientific evidence in the care of patients ignore the validity of those rules to justify their beliefs.
As I tell the story I lost my religion in the sixth grade when a teacher seeing I was bored gave me a book about the solar system. Not far into reading about our tiny part of the universe the story of creation as proclaimed by Genesis lost all meaning. As a 9-year-old I was not sure about what I was reading, but the seeds were planted.
Those seeds grew into my love of science and evidence. I will allow you your belief structure as long as you do not attempt to guilt me into compliance with your view of the universe. I will acknowledge the evidence and your freedom to do otherwise. I am comfortable with the knowledge that I am not in control of the universe. I am comfortable that your religious convictions do not give you any more understanding of the universe.
Religion is about ignoring the uncertainty and providing platitudes to explain the unexplained. I will stand with the evidence and follow it where it leads. I can live with the uncertainty and strive to find the evidence to answer the important questions. Because I am looking for evidence does not make me any less of a person than you are. It makes me less ideological.
Enjoy your Easter, while I continue to look for the evidence.
I like most grew up in a christian family and learned the creation story and held it as the truth. I had faith, but then my curiosity got the better of me.
In the sixth grade someone noticing I was bored in class gave me a book on the solar system. There started my love affair with science and the cosmos.
My first question was ” if the stars are so far away from us, how are we seeing them”. That question has stuck with me for years. The answer is simple. I think it is simple, but you may not. If the earth was 2000 years old we would have a dark night sky every night. Think about it?
Now, if you accept that premise, how old do you think the earth is? Can you believe in God and science?
Meditate on that question this week.