What is the best choice in 2020

Scientific American: Joe Biden is your best bet

The science magazine "Scientific American" had to be 175 years old to call for the election of a US presidential candidate in 2020 for the first time in its history: In an editorial, the editors recommend the Democratic candidate Joe Biden, because, unlike Republican President Donald Trump, he is not a scientist is negative.

In principle, the magazine sees itself as non-partisan. But Trump's disdain for science leaves our colleagues in the United States no choice this year. The recommendation of a candidate may be new - even before that, Scientific American was not apolitical. For example, the magazine positioned itself against the hydrogen bomb in the 1950s and later against a missile defense system in space. In addition, the editors questioned Trump's suitability for president in 2016, but did not support Hillary Clinton at the time.

This article is featured in Spectrum - The Week, 38/2020

The editor-in-chief Laura Helmuth emphatically emphasizes that "Scientific American" did not explicitly recommend voting for the Democrats, but only for the person Biden. That too is understandable.

"It's not easy for us," write the authors led by editor-in-chief Laura Helmuth, but there is various evidence that Donald Trump's policies caused serious damage to the United States and its people. The most devastating example is the dishonest and inadequate response to the Covid 19 pandemic, the consequences of which have so far killed more than 190,000 citizens.

But that's not the only point on which Donald Trump has stood against research and scientific knowledge in order to spread his own supposed truths. For example, he consistently denies the role of human-accelerated climate change in the widespread droughts and forest fires that have plagued the western United States for years. To a corresponding question about climate change and the fires, he replied a day before the editorial was published that it would soon be colder, researchers just didn't know.

Trump and his affiliated advisors not only ignore science, they also undermine it by placing followers in key positions or publishing wild conspiracy theories. In many cases, recognized scientists have been dismissed from advisory bodies and replaced by representatives from the industry. The head of the EPA is now Andrew Wheeler: a former lobbyist and advisor to Murray Energy, one of the largest coal mine operators in the United States. It is therefore hardly surprising that Trump and his administration have repealed or significantly changed numerous environmental protection laws over the past four years, including health protection regulations that are designed to protect people from harmful substances. Trump's health advisor Michael Caputo, in turn, claimed on Facebook that pandemic researchers working for the federal government were inciting people. After all, he later apologized for it, but the lie spread.