I want to block out the constant barrage of news about “The Sequester.” It seems it’s all over the radio (or at least NPR) and TV (or at least Rachel Maddow), but I still didn’t feel like I had the whole story, so I turned to the internet.
I’m particularly concerned about this because it has the potential to decimate science. My friends who are scientists at universities and other publicly funded research centers are taking to Facebook with pleas like “Sequester or not. Just let us know. We have real work to do and need to know if we have budget Plan A or Plan B.”
For researchers who rely on the NIH (National Institutes of Health), the NSF (National Science Foundation), DoD (Department of Defense), and other public funding sources, the mandatory, across the board cuts that The Sequester would impose will have direct impacts on their ability to conduct research.
In addition to fewer air traffic controllers (FAA, Federal Aviation Administration), meat inspectors (Food and Drug Administration), and less money for FEMA, it means less funding for research that could save your life.
It may seem abstract, or not critical to your daily life, but ask yourself: Will The Sequester set science back far enough that the treatment that could save my life won’t be discovered in time?
If the answer (or the question) concerns you, contact your representatives in Congress and tell them to get their act together.
You can also speak up for science by signing the AAAS petition “Speak up for Science” by clicking here.
Wondering what The Sequester actually is? Check here and here.
Want another opinion on what it could mean for science? Check here and here.