We'd like to think that science should exist outside of politics and researchers follow the truth wherever it goes.
But the ideal of rational non-ideological science is under attack at many colleges and universities, says our guest, Alice Dreger. An historian who studies human sexuality and the ethics of medical research, Alice is the author of the provocative new book, "Galileo's Middle Finger."
"I'm really looking at how activists go after scientists who have ideas that the activists don't like - usually about human identity," she tells us.
Alice speaks of her concerns about attacks from conservatives from the outside universities and the "ideological bubble" inside, "where you have this sort of ...knee-jerk liberalism that causes people to shut each other down on the basis of 'you're making me uncomfortable.' That is tremendously dangerous," she says.
Alice's argument is that facts are sacred.
Colleges, she says, should adopt principles from The University of Chicago. "Our job is to disagree with each other. Our job is to raise uncomfortable questions. That is what we do for democracy."