Psychiatrist Dr. Bandy Lee noted that President Donald Trump and his administration's attacks on science are leading the United States into the Dark Ages.
"What is the difference between a civilized society and a bare-subsistence one?" Lee asked on Twitter. "It is the systematic training and application of expertise: science to keep out disease; engineering to build safe and durable structures; art to create an uplifting environment; etc. When the defenses of a deprived population meet an authoritarian who needs to suppress all expertise—in order to present oneself as the ultimate authority, the expert in everything, without competition—we negate progress and return to bare-subsistence days called the Dark Ages"
Trump has replaced the top infectious diseases experts and virologists on the Coronavirus Task Force with an X-Ray doctor who doesn't believe masks stop the spread of COVID-19.
He's repeatedly attempted to cut funding to science agencies in the government. Even his science adviser left experts wanting more.
“He came in all fired up, promising to make things happen,” one lobbyist says about White House Office of Science and Technology Policy director Kelvin Droegemeier. “But so far nothing has come out of it, and the research community is very disappointed. Another science policy specialist adds, “I give him an A for effort, and an F for performance.”
See Lee's full tweet below:
When the defenses of a deprived population meet an authoritarian who needs to suppress all expertise—in order to pr… https://t.co/Da5VEzSZMP— Bandy X Lee, MD, MDiv (@Bandy X Lee, MD, MDiv)1603194059.0
(Correction: A previous version of this article incorrectly referred to Bandy Lee as a Yale University psychiatrist. Her affiliation with Yale ended on June 30, 2020.)