America Is No Longer Attracting The Top Minds In Physics
“We find ourselves, today, at the very beginning of what could be the end of America’s greatness in the realm of scientific research and education. Science has always been touted as the great equalizer: the scientific truths underlying our Universe know no borders and do not discriminate based on race, gender, or religion. We still have time to reverse this trend, and to welcome the brightest minds the world has to offer into our country.
But if we fail to do so, that intellectual capital will thrive elsewhere, leaving America behind. If we do not change course, “America First” will be the downfall of scientific greatness in our country.”
In the decades leading up to 1933, Germany was second-to-none in the fields of physics and mathematics. Yet all of that shifted extremely quickly. In April of 1933, Germany terminated the ability of Jews to engage in public service; over the coming months, 18 mathematicians were removed from their position at the University of
Göttingen alone. When the minister of education asked David Hilbert, the pre-eminent mathematician there, how things were now that the jewish influence had been removed, the sober response was simply, “There is no mathematics in Göttingen anymore.” We are witnessing an unprecedented drop in international students applying to physics in the United States, and politics are to blame.