Don’t Ape Around: The Gorilla Genome and the Media - Page 3
On biological topics in particular, when general understandings on evolution amongst the public is an area littered with banana-skins, even a paragraph or two mentioning that DNA is a chain of molecules called nucleotides (DNA stands for Deoxyribonucleic acid) and proteins are chains of amino acids; DNA codes for proteins, and these, in a complicated way with RNA, create bodies; nucleotides come in four kinds, A, T, C, and G, present in all plants and animals, and it is changes in the sequence of these building blocks of DNA that create the diversification of life. Given that it is still very common for children to be taught, grossly incorrectly, in schools that natural selection acts “for the good of the species”, such regular tidbits of information would go a long way. Or, at the least, push for this information to be available within easy reach from the journal story.
I fear, as journalistic trends are, they encourage bad understanding of science generally. This is a great day for science and the humanities, but, once again, it isn’t for pedagogy with the media.