Intended for healthcare professionals

Views & Reviews Review of the Week

Trust me, I’m a scientist

BMJ 2009; 339 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.b3658 (Published 09 September 2009) Cite this as: BMJ 2009;339:b3658

Scientists Are Not Demigods

We are ambivalent about scientists, because we are in awe of their almost magical ability to understand and control the forces of nature. Like modern-day Merlins, they thrill and mystify us with their jargon, potions, equipment, procedures, and results. But we tend to forget that science is incomplete, imperfect, experimental, and a work-in-progress. This is why scientists can’t fully heal us or solve all of our problems, and this is why they occasionally hurt us. So let’s respect and appreciate scientists, but let’s not worship them or give them our unqualified trust.

Competing interests:
None declared

Competing interests: No competing interests

21 September 2009
Hugh Mann
Physician
Eagle Rock, MO 65641 USA