From SMBC Comics. Thanks to GeekPress for the pointer.
Science magazine went over to the dark (not a racial slur) side a long time ago.
The problem is almost as much the fault of the scientist as it is of the journalist. Few scientists have the verbal skills to explain what they do on a 9th grade level. If a journalist isn't spoon fed it on a 9th grade level, he will just report it in such a manner as supports his belief system.
With a few exceptions science reporters know little science.
Bad news. With rare exception, genuine advances on the frontier can't be explained at the 9th grade level, whatever your verbal skills. At least, not without gutting your explanation of any serious accuracy and reducing it to cartoons and metaphors.
I'm curious where you get this assumption that they usually (as opposed to occasionally) can be. Do you also feel that you could teach calculus to a two-year-old, if you only had top-notch toddler language skills?
Few scientists have the verbal skills to explain what they do on a 9th grade level.
Do you also feel that you could teach calculus to a two-year-old,
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