Joe Levine, science educator, discusses reasons for science illiteracy in America. Dry, fact-based methods used in K-12 science education, anti-science religious/sectarian influences, and the relative failure of scientists to communicate effectively result in popular movements such as resistance to teaching evolution, the media frenzy surrounding the "Climate-gate" scandal, and anti-vaccine campaigns. He discusses pressures external to the scientific community, such as campaigns against scientists, as well as internal challenges, such as the failure to disseminate jargon-free and media-savvy messages without a condescending tone. Levine suggests ways to better educate and motivate the public to make informed judgments about scientific policy. This lecture was presented as part of the Cutting Edge Speaker series at the Environmental Protection Agency Research Facility in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina.