Angel "Java" Lopez en Blog

30 de Agosto, 2010

Publicado el 30 de Agosto, 2010, 0:12

Ya varias veces escribí sobre Richard Feynman, gran físico del siglo XX. Hoy me encuentro con una de tres "lectures" que dictó sobre la ciencia y su relación con la sociedad (no tengo los datos del año y lugar). Hay veces que se culpa a la ciencia y a los científicos sobre los males que provocan sus avances. Esa es una posición errada, o que no apunta bien al problema. Coincido con la posición de Feynman:

Is science of any value?

I think a power to do something is of value.Whether the result is a good thing or a bad thing depends on how it is used, but the power is a value.

Once in Hawaii I was taken to see a Buddhist temple. In the temple a man said, "I am going to tell you something that you will never forget." And then he said, "To every man is given the key to the gates of heaven. The same key opens the gates of hell."

And so it is with science. In a way it is a key to the gates of heaven, and the same key opens the gates of hell, and we do not have any instructions as to which is which gate. Shall we throw away the key and never have a way to enter the gates of heaven? Or shall we struggle with the problem of which is the best way to use the key? That is, of course, a very serious question, but I think that we cannot deny the value of the key to the gates of heaven.

El problema de su uso no cae en la ciencia, sino en la sociedad:

All the major problems of the relations between society and science lie in this same area. When the scientist is told that he must be more responsible for his effects on society, it is the applications of science that are referred to. If you work to develop nuclear energy you must realize also that it can be used harmfully. Therefore, you would expect that, in a discussion of this kind by a scientist, this would be the most important topic. But I will not talk about it further. I think that to say these are scientific problems is an exaggeration. They are far more humanitarian problems. The fact that how to work the power is clear, but how to control it is not, is something not so scientific and is not something that the scientist knows so much about.

Es claro que no son problemas científicos, sino problemas de todos. La ciencia avanza, y parte de sus avances llegan a la sociedad. Ese avance se realiza, con o sin consecuencias tecnológicas. Y todos esos avances, no indican ni obligan de qué forma se usan: eso es una cuestión nuestra, de la sociedad. Pedir responsabilidad a los científicos es tirar el problema en el lugar equivocado. Por supuesto, un científico, como miembro de la sociedad, puede tomar postura. Pero, como escribe Feynman, sería una exageración decir que es un "problema científico". Es un problema humano.

Nos leemos!

Angel "Java" Lopez

Por ajlopez, en: Ciencia