Letter to the Editor

Facts, not opinions

Paso RoblesFebruary 4, 2014 

In reference to the letter entitled “Climate action” on Jan. 27: The problem hindering some elected officials and the general public at large is deciphering the difference between fact and opinion.

Many elected officials and again the general public at large have limited awareness of science and its methodology. The scientific method seeks to explain the events of nature in reproducible ways. Empirical evidence or data — observable, measurable evidence — is collected and analyzed. Conclusions are based on the empirical evidence collected, and that evidence should and could be reproduced by another independent being.

This hard, reproducible data, once collected and analyzed, can allow for conclusions. Conclusions: thinking based on facts, not on opinion or belief.

We all have rights to an opinion, but it behooves all of us to know the difference between our opinion and the basis of our opinion and the conclusions of a scientist, which are based on empirical evidence.

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