Harrison Ford rages at Trump team's lack of belief in science

Commentary: The Star Wars actor says there's no greater danger than having people in charge who disregard science.

Chris Matyszczyk
3 min read

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Harrison Ford

He's not happy with Donald Trump. 

Ian Gavan/Getty Images

Experts aren't always right.

When it comes to science, however, it's generally wise to listen to those who live it, breathe it and fear we won't be breathing it much longer.

The current US government, though, appears to have something of a science-skeptical bent.

Which is rather upsetting to Harrison Ford.

On Thursday night, the Star Wars actor received an honor from nonprofit group Conservation International. 

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Ford took the opportunity to suggest the Trump administration offers our biggest obstacle to, well, survival.

"Today's greatest threat is not climate change, not pollution, not flood or fire," he said. "It's that we've got people in charge of important shit who don't believe in science."

He might have been referring to any number of Trumpist appointments. Energy Secretary Rick Perry, for example, isn't so sure about climate change

The Environmental Protection Agency's head, Scott Pruitt, just removed scientists from his science advisory committee and replaced them with representatives from, oh, industry.

The president has nominated Oklahoma Rep. Jim Bridenstine to be the new head of NASA. Bridenstine has no formal science education.

Trump's nominee to head the Department of Agriculture, former talk radio host Sam Clovis, also has no scientific background. However, on Thursday he withdrew, after being caught up in Robert Mueller's investigation of the Trump campaign's ties to Russia.

Ford railed against those politicians who allow "political or economic self-interest to denigrate or belittle sound scientific understanding of the causes and effects of human pressure on the environment." 

He insisted that nothing matters more than preserving the Earth for future generations, because if we can't do that, nothing else will exist.

The White House didn't immediately respond to a request for comment on Ford's remarks. Ford's representatives also didn't respond to a request for comment.

Coincidentally, on Friday the most respected scientists in America issued the Climate Science Special Report that declared climate change is real and that humans are the cause. 

Perhaps surprisingly, the White House approved the release of the report, despite the fact that the findings contradict many of the declarations and actions of the Trump administration over the past year. 

The most symbolic of these actions was the withdrawal from the Paris Climate Accord, which led to the resignation of Tesla CEO Elon Musk from the president's advisory councils.

Releasing the report doesn't, however, mean the White House will leap into action to address the report's concerns. 

White House spokesman Raj Shah offered these words in a statement reported by The New York Times: "As the Climate Science Special Report states, the magnitude of future climate change depends significantly on 'remaining uncertainty in the sensitivity of Earth's climate'" to the greenhouse gas emissions we pump out every day. 

I fear that Ford, should he read those words, might scowl just a little.

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