La Ciencia está Amenazada

PARIS: Hace un siglo, pensando en lo que depararía el futuro, Anatole France dijo: "mi sueño es leer los libros de los escolares como serán en el año 2000". Ahora que el milenio es historia, quizá debamos preguntarnos si nuestros niños en edad de estudiar están siendo inspirados como Anatole France esperaba.

En el siglo XX hubo grandes revoluciones técnicas, como la televisión, el transporte aéreo y el desarrollo de cohetes y misiles. En un nivel más profundo, también ocurrieron dos revoluciones conceptuales. Desde los átomos hasta las estrellas, ahora tenemos una imagen precisa y operativa de casi todos los fenómenos físicos. La única brecha considerable en nuestro conocimiento se relaciona con el origen del universo. La segunda revolución conceptual inició con la biología molecular. En este renglón también tenemos una imagen precisa y operativa de todos los procesos de vida, desde las bacterias hasta la humanidad. Otra vez, la única brecha considerable involucra a los orígenes: la noción de la existencia de una "sopa primaria" en los océanos en la que los nucleótidos y los péptidos de alguna forma se orgranizaron para volverse organismos vivientes, no es del todo convincente.

En los libros de texto de la actualidad se enlistan estos logros con orgullo. Pero a las vidas de nuestros niños les falta algo que es importante para el avance científico. Falta el sentido de asombro por el futuro progreso científico, se está arraigando un creciente desinterés cultural por la ciencia. Además, cada vez hay mayores obstáculos legales para el progreso científico, los cuales están sofocando la inventiva en todas partes.

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