Signs.

Today I went to the March for Science Silicon Valley in San Jose. I had a great time.

I had also gone to the Women’s March in January. The vibe there was fierce, and angry. Today it was determined and a bit goofy. I felt part of the crowd in January, but today… I was with my tribe. I am not a scientist, but many of my friends are scientists or engineers, and I firmly believe that science is one way we can find our way out of the morass we find ourself in.*

The signs were cleverer at this march. There were more puns, more obscure references.  And, as one woman I talked to observed, all the words were spelled correctly. I saw at least three people carrying whiteboards, and in one case, changing messages mid-march. I have never seen a whiteboard at a march before.

So, herewith, some of the best signs….

The legal: “U.S. Constitution, Article I, Section 8: Promote science!” (Actually the paragraph in question is really about establishing copyright and trademark laws, but I still like the sign.)

The epidemiological:
“Got Plague? Me neither. Thank a scientist.”
“Do you remember polio*? I don’t. Thanks, Science.” (*The best part of this sign, held by high-schoolers, was the footnote — a protest sign with a footnote, I love it — which gave the extremely lengthy scientific name for the polio virus.)
“You haven’t died of dysentery. You’re welcome, sincerely, Science.”

The Feminist:
“A woman’s place is in the lab!”
“I am Florence Nightingale — Jane Goodall — Sally Ride”
“Nevertheless, She Persisted (said by every woman scientist ever)”

The appeal to non-scientists:  “You need science to Tweet and play golf!”

The political:
“Frack Scott Pruitt!”
“Hey,  Ocean, destroy Mara-A-Lago first!”

The exasperated: “I have to defend SCIENCE?????”

The literary: “Without science, it’s just fiction”

And, of course, the Scientific:
“Truth ÷ 0 = Toxic Idiocy”
“Keep your [Ti][N][Y] hands off our data.” (That would be Titanium, Nitrogen, and Yttrium.)

Herewith my favorites:
“Protest Sine” (with a drawing of a sine wave.)
“It’s impossible to find a good quantum mechanic.”
“Don’t turn my students’ favorite dystopian novels into coming of age stories.”

And, best of all

“Archimedes had principles; Trump, not so much.”

*It didn’t hurt that the end point was an event put on by Silicon Valley Comic Con. There were enough port-a-potties, and food truck. The weather (cool, not cold, and dry) and the lack of mud helped too.

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