Editor’s Note: In this post, Alison S. Ricker, head of the Science Library at Oberlin College, recaps last month’s March for Science.
Science librarians were well-represented in the March for Science on Earth Day, April 22, in cities from coast to coast, from the heartlands to the deep south and the far west. The March for Science drew tens of thousands of scientists, science communicators and science enthusiasts world-wide, with a mission statement that was strictly nonpartisan: “The March for Science champions robustly funded and publicly communicated science as a pillar of human freedom and prosperity. We unite as a diverse, nonpartisan group to call for science that upholds the common good and for political leaders and policy makers to enact evidence based policies in the public interest.”
In addition to the March in Washington, D.C. there were 610 registered satellite marches to “acknowledge and voice the critical role that science plays in each of our lives.” The March For Science website links to a website or social media page for every march, where summaries of speeches, photos, videos and estimated attendance numbers attest to the outpouring of support for science and, just as fervently, evidence based policy, and legislation.
It was both exhilarating and exhausting in Washington, D.C., where we spent 5 hours standing in the rain at the foot of the Washington Monument. Inspiring messages from speakers and good music kept us energized for the eventual march along Constitution Avenue toward the U.S. Capitol. By the time we passed the EPA building, marchers and spectators were full of enthusiasm, shouting “fund the EPA!” and “alternative facts have got to go!”
Check out online comments from librarian participants across the country to get the full flavor and scope of the event.