Monday, September 13, 2021

The Distrust Of Scientists Is Widespread — Including On COVID Vaccines

From coronavirus vaccines and the virus' origin to climate change, a substantial portion of the country distrusts scientists to do their jobs honestly and capably.

The latest data from the September Issues & Insights/TIPP Poll also found significant differences among Americans of different political views, reflecting a growing politicization of science in America.

Overall, among the three, vaccine safety was tops in scientist trust, at 61%. Perhaps not surprisingly, that almost perfectly matches the share of the U.S. population currently vaccinated: 63%. But just 45% said they trusted scientists when it comes to the actual origins of the coronavirus.

As for climate change, just 54% of those queried said they trusted scientists, a sign of significant mistrust despite overwhelming media sensationalism and extreme political bias on the global warming issue.

On the question of trusting scientists on vaccine safety, Democrats were far more likely to trust them than either Republicans or independents/other.

In such a hyper-politicized environment, even the most apolitical of scientists can get hit by the partisan crossfire.

The data appear to bolster recent comments even by some scientists of a growing public crisis of confidence in science in general and scientists in particular. 

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