When science becomes a tool of government propaganda it’s propaganda, not science, and people afford such “science” the respect they afford propaganda. From Neil A. Kurtzman at amgreatness.com:
As many scientists have behaved like fools, the discipline itself is in jeopardy of being thought stained and unreliable.
Science is in its worst state since the burning of Giordano Bruno (1600) and the trial and conviction of Galileo (1633). The wounds it has suffered are largely self-inflicted. Science advances by questioning the current state of knowledge and by attempting to fill the gaps identified by examination of the germane data pertinent to the discipline. Any attempt to stifle vigorous—even if heated—debate is an assault on science. Over the past three decades dissent from what some consider orthodox scientific theories has been ridiculed rather than refuted.
Consider the interaction between Albert Einstein and Niels Bohr about the implications of quantum mechanics. Einstein constantly peppered Bohr with a litany of objections to the statistical nature of quantum mechanics and pointed to the seemingly astounding implications inherent in the theory. Eventually, Bohr and others were able to answer all of Einstein’s objections to quantum mechanics, but the field was immeasurably advanced by having to deal with the complicated and sophisticated issues raised by Einstein. Einstein’s prestige was so great that he could not be demeaned nor ignored.
Many of the great scientific issues of today seem governed by dogma rather than debate. The inflexible response to the COVID pandemic was pre-conditioned by the anti-scientific restrictions imposed, mostly by scientists, on several major scientific problems that have come to prominence and importance over the past decades.