Wichitans join international March for Science rallies

WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – Hundreds of Wichitans gathered downtown to participate in the March for Science. The event started at the Historical Sedgwick County Courthouse and many called it the first step of a movement that defends the role science plays in our health, safety and government. Some here say they are concerned that science is taking a backseat in the current administration.

“Well right now James Thompson is talking about building a movement which is something that we need to do. After the last election we saw that science isn’t as respected as we would like to see it,” said Lindsay Drees, one of the organizers to Saturday’s March.

Before the rally there was an organized speech with a number of speakers, including James Thompson.

“We are going to make sure our concerns are not only voiced but heard,” said Thompson.

There were a ton of different handmade signs seen throughout the crowd, showing each individuals support for the march and the overall movement.

“We would like to see climate change taken seriously — nothing else matters if our planet warms and we can’t live here anymore but we’d also like to see the 20 percent cuts to NIH go away — we’d like to see more funding for different research programs,” said Drees.

The march Saturday was organized by volunteers like, Drees and some say it presented an opportunity for like-minded folks to get together and share ideas on how to move their concerns forward. The march ended at the Keeper of The Plains where volunteers did science demonstrations for the youth.

People all over the world are joining the march: from New York, to London, to Antarctica. This international campaign is intended to promote the understanding of science and defend it from attacks such as proposed U.S. government budget cuts.

“We’re going to build a movement and we’re going try to see some change happen on that front. At the very least we’re going lobby the people that have been elected and let them know if they want to keep their jobs that they need to start listening to their constituents who respect science,” said Drees.