I wrote an editorial for the science industry magazine that employs me in which I recount a moment of minor crisis during my job interview with the editor-in-chief and managing editor. It went like this:
MJ (the editor-in-chief) asked what I considered the best educational background for a journalist covering the chemical industry.
“History,” I said.
“Which,” she asked, “is the worst?”
“Any kind of science background,” was my answer.
I vaguely remember RB (managing editor) rising out of his seat at this juncture, and MJ touching his elbow. “Let him explain,” she said, smiling at me with a hint of nervous tension in her eyes.
Well, I ‘splained and I got the job. They even published my editorial, complete with my explanation–which I will spare you, other than to assure you I am not one of these “anti science” types. I will, however, for the second time in two days, lean on the Op Ed page of the New York Times to give you the views of a heavyweight on a topic dear to my heart. Here is Arthur M. Schlesinger Jr. on better living through history, and the moral imperative of our “quest for an unobtainable objectivity.”