August 12, Story Time (a cautionary tale for scientists)

A scientist should know that others don’t think like we do.
We like our charts and graphs and tables showing us what’s true.
But preachers, lawyers, politicians have a different style.
They like to tell us stories and influence us with guile.

You must be story tellers, not just data analysts,
For liars and bullshitters often trump the scientists.
The public draws conclusions based on stories they are told,
Not facts and data, but tell them good stories and they’re sold.

Since science seems like magic to so many folks today,
They don’t dig into charts and graphs to learn what data say.
Since most of us accept the first good story that we hear,
We tend to discount later facts and data that appear.

So, scientists, you must be better story tellers….for
The public will accept what harmonizes with their core.
It’s confirmation bias in both unschooled and the schooled
Which means that everybody bears a risk of getting fooled.

Pandemics and indictments both bring facts to analyze;
The public is bombarded with a flood of truth and lies.
And scientific data frequently are just ignored,
Which leads to situations that the world can ill-afford.

The narcissists and power-hungry know how we’re deceived;
They prey upon our bigotry and notions, pre-conceived.
They know of our misogyny, racism, avarice,
And laziness of thinking, in which we are all remiss.

Who tells the better story: that is who will best persuade.
Keep that in mind when planning how your facts should be relayed.
Those telling the best stories are the ones who’ll win their case.
It’s life or death for Earth, democracy, and human race,