The recent flurry of stories concerning information suppression and punitive actions against scientists who do not conform (P. Rushton, The Scientist, Oct. 3, 1994, page 13; P. Duesberg, The Scientist, March 20, 1995, page 12) is quite disconcerting. To those who contrive to withhold from nonconformists grants or access to public debate, one should say: Please be kind to our dissidents. Anything worth doing has been started by them, and any mainstream that today dominates segments of science was once a dissident's idea. The editors might help in a crucial way by letting them battle each other in the pages they control and not in the conference rooms of National Institutes of Health grant review committees.
One could muse for quite a while whether or not the increased sensitivity concerning fairness issues represents evidence that science per se is no longer a prime objective of scientists. A dash of combative...
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