At the so-called “March to Science” protests, one of the many examples of anti-science sentiment on display was a call for embracing “indigenous sciences“…
“Indigenous knowledge and practices are often dismissed as mythology or ‘quaint stories,’ Melissa Nelson, associate professor of American Indian Studies at San Francisco State University […].
“‘There are numerous contemporary indigenous sciences based on a long tradition and history. They need to be validated as such — not as folklore,’ said Nelson, who is Anishinaabe.
“With the global March For Science events being held on Saturday, Nelson was part of a group that wrote a declaration arguing that indigenous science, including ancient practices of conservation and healing, could complement dominant ‘Western science’ and be useful at a time when people are looking for ways to tackle problems, such as climate change and issues of sustainability.
“‘It seemed incomplete to me that as we celebrate science, we don’t celebrate the other sciences,’ Robin Kimmerer, director of the Center for Native Peoples and the Environment at State University of New York, who is Citizen Potawatomi, told BuzzFeed News.”
A herb that is used to treat an illness may very well have a chemical that does indeed have a pharmacological positive effect. However, perhaps the herb is just a herb.
There are not different “sciences“. Different “ways of knowing” are not all valid. There is no such thing as “Western science” just as there is not such thing as “Indigenous science”: There is just science and not-science.
It is this type of “indigenous science” nonsense that leads stupid rich White people to worship crystals or believe in indigo children. Ultimately, all this does is make this new multicultural spectrum of “science” a laughing-stock.
— David Burge (@iowahawkblog) September 22, 2014