Following a tweet in which Lovell thought science and medicine writer Ben Goldacre had jumped to a conclusion too hastily, Lovell received several replies disagreeing with him. In his defense Lovell tweeted "I am a massive fan of [Ben Goldacre's] - adore the book and quote it constantly", and "@bengoldacre I'm a vocal supporter of you on MMR & using science accurately.".
Skeptical Voter Questionnaire Response
[1. Do you support the use of NHS money to provide unproven health products such as homeopathy?]
1) No, categorically no. We must base our decisions on healthcare on sound science. Homeopathy is blatantly neither.
[2. Should schools be allowed to teach creationism as an equivalent theory to evolution?]
2) No. They are not equivalent theories. One is based on decades of thorough research, the other is based on an allegorical story.
[3. Do you believe that religious belief should be legally protected from ridicule?]
3) I don't believe we should encourage anyone to ridicule anyone else, but comedy encourages debate and in a free society, we need to be able to laugh at each other.
[4. Should an independent government adviser whose views in their area of expertise conflict with government policy be able to express those views publicly?]
4) Yes - open discussion and expert input is vital. Sometimes I accept that policy must take in issues other which the experts do not consider, but it is essential that we have an open and honest debate on all issues which affect us. I don't agree with the sacking of Professor Nutt.
[5. Should religious courts such as Sharia and Beth Din be recognised as alternative systems within UK law?]
5) No. The law and the state should be entirely secular.
[6. Do you agree that testing on animals (within strict criteria) is a necessary part of the development of medicines?]
6) Yes, but I think we should work to find alternatives and where there is any alternative of equal efficacy, then it should be used. Animals are not there to be exploited by us.
[7. Should policy-makers trust scientific evidence even when it appears counter-intuitive?]
7) Yes, but I understand the difficulties, given the media pressure on politicians.
[8. Do you think that abortion time limits should always be determined by the current scientific and medical consensus?]
8) Yes. Fundamentally and categorically yes.
[9. Should religious leaders be entitled to vote in the House of Lords?]
9) No. The upper house should be fully elected, but should be elected on a fully proportional basis and lists not drawn exclusively on party lines, but include representatives from significant national institutions (e.g. the Royal Society).
[10. Do you support the reform of English and Welsh libel law to allow a stronger 'public interest' defence?]
10) Yes. As a lawyer, I think it is vital that people cannot manipulate our libel laws to effectively stifle free speech.
I hope these answers are helpful. They are my personal views and they may not entirely match those of my party, but they are strongly and honestly held and I am happy to stand by them.
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