In this meeting of the Boston Chapter of Science for the People (SFTP), we first discussed scheduling guest speaker Rochelle Gutiérrez to join a future chapter meeting to discuss her article “Towards a vision for the future” published in the Philosophy of Mathematics Education Journal. The work is generally concerned with social and cultural forces that inform how math is taught, challenging traditional frameworks. This will be scheduled at a chapter meeting in September.
We then reviewed social media accounts and email communication, and articulated responsibilities that will need to be assigned to group members that take on administrative roles for the fall term. We also discussed selling and distributing copies of the latest SFTP magazine “The Science We Need”, which can be purchased for $15.
We then discussed three major project/events currently in development by or in collaboration with SFTP:
- Mutual Aid Medford and Somerville (MAMAS) Tenantpower.org tool: this is an online search tool that allows tenants to see what other buildings their landlord owns, even if they are hidden behind multiple separate LLCs. This supports groups of tenants organizing against abuse landlords. Members are going to follow up with MAMAS to access historical data in order to identify patterns in citations and evictions associated with different landlords over time.
- Fall training event for scientists: The chapter will organize a virtual event to support skill development to facilitate scientists to be activists within their institutions. We discussed collaborating with the Union of Concerned Scientists for the event, as well as the Free Radicals Collective.
- #FreeTheVaccine direct action: We are working with the #FreeTheVaccine campaign to organize a local events to pressure pharmaceutical company, Moderna Therapeutics, to price their COVID-19 treatments at cost since the public has already paid for it in the form of federal funding.
The three demands have been summarized in an OpEd of the movement are:
- Vaccine should be priced at cost, free at point of use
- Moderna should sign the Open COVID pledge
- If Moderna doesn’t comply with these demands, the government should enact “march-in” rights to force Moderna to comply
STFP is reaching out to local organizations and potential speakers, creating infographics and media for the event.
We then discussed an interview with Clifford D. Connor, the author of: The Tragedy of American Science. This work focuses on the corporatization and militarization of science, and members discussed perspectives on how this has effected their own research and research field.