This is a big reason why I largely eschew the term political scientist and prefer to refer to myself as a political philosopher or political theorist. In my view, there are three branches of political inquiry: normative, prescriptive, and experimental. I dislike that we label the broad field of political inquiry as a "science" because that suggests the field is mainly experimental while the normative and prescriptive aspects are small, cursory sub-fields. That this is the case is part of what leads to the problem you address in this article. The scientific method demands impartiality, but we, as human beings, are part of the inquisition. There is no pure lab for social and political scientific endeavor. We all have biases that cannot be arrested, no matter how hard we try, and, as you point out, we are engaged in a field of study that can and should demand our use of judgement and reason.

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Nov 17, 2023Liked by Jake D. Kroesen, Justin Stapley

“ Yes, teachers condemn Hamas and their attacks, but when it comes to saying which side is moral, they scatter.”

This is so on point. Too many people want to just sit on the sidelines. They’ll criticize our enemies but stop short of saying that America is good. In truth, they feel uncomfortable with the idea that America is good. They are painfully aware of our flawed past, and while we should not seek to hide from that past, it keeps them from fully experiencing a deep love of their homeland. It also keeps them from full-throated support of a righteous cause. Too many people are uncomfortable being earnest and feel more comfortable being halfhearted - they’ll condemn both sides and point out flaws, but they won’t affirmative say that their side is good. That’s sad.

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