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Tens of Thousands of People All Over the World Are Marching for Science

Mother Jones

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Amid the Trump administration’s plan to gut the Environmental Protection Agency, cut billions in scientific research, and eliminate science advisers’ role in the government, thousands of people around the world participated in marches for science Saturday to defend the role of science and evidence-based policies.

The marches, which coincided with the annual Earth Day celebration, have sparked debate within the scientific community over whether scientists should be actively engaged in political actions. Organizers for the marches say the event is nonpartisan—there is no mention of Trump on its website—but assert silence is no longer an option amid the threats posed by Trump and many of his advisers.

Mother Jones has three reporters on the scene, Pema Levy in DC, Jaelynn Grisso in New York, and Karen Hao in Los Angeles. For up-to-the-minute news on the marches, be sure to follow them, along with our rolling collection of updates below:

4:45 pm ET A few more scenes from the march in Los Angeles before we sign off:

4:35 pm ET We’ll leave you with some final thoughts from—who else?—Bill Nye the Science Guy:

4:32 pm ET Humans weren’t the only animals marching for science today, as the dogged reporters at Buzzfeed revealed:

4:05 pm ET Here’s what scientists and their supporters had to say about the March of Science in New York, via Mother Jones digital fellow Jaelynn Grisso:

3:07 pm ET Trump weighs in on Earth Day for the second time today:

2:30 pm ET Mother Jones fellow Karen Hao is on the ground in Los Angeles:

2:03 pm ET The crowds in Chicago, where more than 40,000 demonstrators are expected:

1:30 pm ET Trump releases the following statement honoring Earth Day. While there was no direct mention of March for Science, the statement claimed “rigorous science” is essential to the president’s agenda.

1:21 pm ET The scene from San Francisco, via Mother Jones publisher Steve Katz:

1:05 pm ET While climate is the overwhelming topic of the day, many participants are also hoping to highlight other scientific issues at stake in the Trump era, including federal funding for medical research and the Flint water crisis:

12:48 pm ET Mother Jones reporter Pema Levy talks to scientists at the DC march:

Mike Khan is a microbiologist at Washington State University. He said scientists are looking at issues like global warming and realizing they need to speak out publicly about the problem. “Science says we are going in some awfully bad places, and a lot of politicians are not willing to accept that,” he said. “I’m out here in the rain because I think that’s a problem.”

Dr. Laura Anderko studies the effects of mold, pesticides, lead, climate change, and other environmental hazards on children’s health, but says her funding is threatened. “Everything that we’ve done to save humanity goes back to science: clean water, clean air, all of that,” she said.

12:08 pm ET Despite the rain, many are still lining up in DC. The official march doesn’t kick off for another two hours:

12:00 pm ET More scenes from DC:

11:37 am ET Scenes from New York:

11:12 am ET While we wait for the march in New York to get started, here’s some suggested reading to supplement your March for Science activities:

10:47 am ET More scenes from DC, via Mother Jones senior news editor Jeremy Schulman:

10:20 am ET Marches from outside the US:

9:37 am ET Crowds are beginning to gather in DC and other cities on the East Coast:

9:25 am ET Happy Earth Day! Here are some greetings from underwater to kick off today’s events:

Source:  

Tens of Thousands of People All Over the World Are Marching for Science

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Trump Invites Sarah Palin, Kid Rock, and Ted Nugent to the White House

Mother Jones

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President Donald Trump hosted a trio of eyebrow-raising guests at the White House on Wednesday, reportedly dining with Sarah Palin, Ted Nugent, and Kid Rock.

It’s not clear why Palin and her musician pals, one of whom has praised the use of the word “nigger” and suggested Barack Obama “suck on” his machine gun, were invited to the Oval Office, but here we are:

The guests even managed to sneak in a photo posing in front of a portrait of Hillary Clinton—seen in this Facebook post by Nugent’s wife, the self-avowed “Healthy Lifestyle Ambassador” Shermane Nugent:

The photos were roundly mocked when they first began appearing on social media:

Perhaps this is just one more reason the Trump White House is opting to keep its visitor logs secret?

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Trump Invites Sarah Palin, Kid Rock, and Ted Nugent to the White House

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The Curious Case of Dr. Donald and Mr. Trump

Mother Jones

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On Fox Business this morning, President Trump said he’s not done with health care after all. In fact, he wants to take another swing at TrumpCare before he tackles tax cuts for the rich. Just for the record, then, here is what Trump’s domestic and foreign policy has looked like over the past two months:

March

  1. NAFTA is the worst trade deal ever. It must be uprooted and fundamentally reformed.
  2. China needs to stop screwing us on trade and North Korea or they’re in big trouble.
  3. We’re committed to good relations with Russia.
  4. Assad can stay in power. We don’t really care.
  5. Health care is dead, time to move on to taxes.

April

  1. We have a few modest changes we’d like to make to NAFTA.
  2. We had a pleasant meeting with Xi. It would be nice if they helped out with North Korea.
  3. Russia’s actions in the Ukraine, its interference with our elections, and its backing of Assad are intolerable.
  4. Assad is a monster who has to go.
  5. We’re going to try again on health care before we get to taxes.

FFS, does Trump have any idea at all what he wants to do? On health care, I gather that somebody explained to him yet again why tax cuts for billionaires will be procedurally easier if they gut health care first. So now he’s on board with taking another run at it. I suppose that he’ll forget the explanation shortly, though, and make yet another U-turn until someone explains it again.

I dunno. The first few twists in this show were entertaining, but the writers are getting lost lately. In just the past few episodes they’ve given us an EPA administrator who wants additional security to protect him from his own employees; a press secretary whose can-you-top-this bloopers now include a defense of Hitler; a fresh-faced son-in-law they don’t quite know what to do with; and a president who’s ready to go to war because of what he sees on Fox News. I like quirky characters as much as the next guy, but this is getting to be a little much.

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The Curious Case of Dr. Donald and Mr. Trump

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Sean Spicer: Hitler "Didn’t Even Sink to Using Chemical Weapons"

Mother Jones

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White House press secretary Sean Spicer attempted to compare Syrian dictator Bashar al Assad to Adolf Hitler on Tuesday, arguing—incorrectly—that unlike Assad, Hitler never used chemical weapons during World War II. When a reporter gave Spicer a chance to clarify his remarks, Spicer followed up with an explanation that was arguably even more problematic.

“You had someone as despicable as Hitler who didn’t even sink to using chemical weapons,” Spicer said in response to a question about Russia’s ongoing support for the Assad regime.

When a reporter asked Spicer what he meant by this comment, Spicer explained that Hitler “was not using the gas on his own people the same way that Assad is doing.” Apparently referring to Nazi death camps, Spicer acknowledged that Hitler “brought them into the Holocaust Center, I understand that.”

Reporters and pundits on Twitter quickly pointed out that Hitler justified the Holocaust in part by claiming that German Jews were not really Germans.

Nearly 6 million Jews perished in the Holocaust from systemic murder that included the use of gas and shooting, as well as starvation and disease. This included between 160,000 to 180,000 German Jews. The Third Reich also targeted non-Jewish Germans it deemed “unworthy of life,” including people with mental and physical disabilities. These were among the first victim’s of Hitler’s use of poison gas beginning in 1939.

On MSNBC, the chyron fact-checking Spicer’s comments was particularly stunning.

After his briefing, Spicer sent out a second clarification, followed by a third:

And then a fourth:

From: 

Sean Spicer: Hitler "Didn’t Even Sink to Using Chemical Weapons"

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Climate activists carved a clever message into a Trump golf course.

During a Wednesday visit to Michigan, President Trump will announce that efficiency standards established by the Obama administration will undergo further review, according to a senior White House official.

The Obama standards for vehicles manufactured between 2022 and 2025 were originally adopted in 2012 with a promise to automakers that a review before April 2018 would assess whether they could realistically meet the goal. Days ahead of Trump’s inauguration, Obama EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy announced the review was complete. The standards — requiring new cars and light trucks to get an average of 36 miles per gallon, up from 26 today — would remain unchanged.

The auto industry was incensed, claiming there hadn’t been proper consultation or data collection. In February, automakers reached out to new EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt and asked him to reconsider. Now, they’re getting a second chance at relaxed guidelines.

Another review of the standards could take years. To stand up to legal challenge, the government will have to prove the data undergirding the EPA’s original review was inadequate.

But the Trump administration contends the new review is no big deal. “I don’t think we’re saying we’re going to pull [regulations] back,” said the White House official. “We’re just doing the review that was originally agreed to.”

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Climate activists carved a clever message into a Trump golf course.

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