Academia is in meltdown. A new Gallup survey shows that only 48% of U.S. adults have a "great deal" or "quite a lot" of confidence in academia. That's down from 57% in 2015. And it's not just due to partisanship. Maybe this wouldn't happen if academics were held accountable for their behavior.
Partisanship is a terrible development for our culture. But it's even worse for areas such as public health, because people die when we implement bad, partisan ideas.
The stated mission of 314 Action, a group that supports scientists in their bids for U.S. congressional seats, is laudable. Among its objectives is a desire to "elect more leaders ... from STEM backgrounds." However, if you're a Republican don't expect much action at all.
One of the biggest problems of our hyperpartisan culture is that everything has been turned into a morbid game show. Gone are the days when politicians and the media acted in the best interest of the American people. Instead, we have manufactured controversy and faux outrage over the most mundane of events. Instead of world news, we get 24/7 coverage of the President's Twitter feed. And instead of serious analysis, we get programming that resembles some horrifying merger of Family Feud, Hunger Games, and Real Housewives of New Jersey.