How to believe in science in the event of a pandemic?
Two competing hypotheses can be made. The first is that its authority has been tarnished by the inconvenience of various recommendations made by experts and epidemiologists. Conspiracy theories that were symptomatic of some people’s suspicion of science and scientists also emerged. An alternative hypothesis might say that the status of science has increased because the epidemic demonstrated and realized the extent to which we need effective science in cases of historical experiments, and for effectiveness in creating inventions, especially tests and vaccines.
Which thesis turns out to be correct?
Our survey results speak volumes for the other. It seems that people saw in science and medicine, above all, an opportunity to save. This is how I explain the high confidence in scientists and doctors.
There are reasons to say that this is not just an intellectual routine. Please pay attention to other confidence indicators. In particular, the relatively low level of trust in the police is a symptom, which, on the one hand, took upon itself the difficult task of imposing restrictions, and on the other hand, engaged in activities of a distinctly political nature – in particular, the selective way of responding to protests and public gatherings. In this case, it is easy to note that the level of confidence recorded is a result of the performance evaluation during the pandemic. There is no reason to believe that this is the case with scientists and doctors. We meet with doctors and nurses recently, especially in times of danger or when we receive a vaccine. Therefore, the medical staff is primarily associated with assistance, and even rescue. For scientists, most people probably realize how quickly scientific solutions to a global problem have been developed.
So why do YouTubers or Cezary Pazura appear in campaigns promoting vaccines and not scientists?
What professional groups do you trust and which you don’t?