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March for Science to encourage lawmakers to make informed policy decisions


Encouraging lawmakers to make informed policy decisions when it comes to legislation about science…that is the goal of a march that occurs this month at the state capitol in Little Rock.  The theme for the event is “Stand Up for Science.” Dr. Michele Merritt is assistant professor of philosophy at Arkansas State University.  She came up with the idea of a March for Science. 

"You don't have to be a scientist to appreciate science," says Merritt.  "I am not a science professor, but I rely on science and I wanted to protect what I see is valuable research that is going on."

Glenn Hooks says he will be there as well.  He is the Director of the Arkansas Sierra Club.  Hook says members of all parties should look at hard data before making crucial decisions:

"We are concerned with the administrations in Washington and Little Rock making decisions that involve governing by anecdote rather than by hard data and evidence," said Hooks.  "Public policy matters and it matters that we get it right."

Hooks says state and federal lawmakers of all political parties should take a close look at scientific evidence before making decisions that effect every aspect of life.

The March for Science takes place on Earth Day, which is April 22nd. Marchers will meet at Capitol and Chester Streets and then march to the steps of the State Capitol for a rally that will start at 1:00 p.m.  Kevin Delaney from the Museum of Discovery in Little Rock will be the keynote speaker.  He says after Delaney speaks, there will be a time where people can get together to learn how to get involved after the march is over.

"People who are interested in continuing their activism after the march will be plugged in to groups that will help them continue to spread the word.  We want people to stay involved after the march is over."

The march is open to the public.