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Thursday, July 07, 2005

Darwinians their own worst enemy?

So says Florida State University prof Michael Ruse, who is a Darwinian himself. His forthcoming book, The Evolution-Creation Struggle advances the view that Darwinists "have hurt the cause by habitually stepping outside the bounds of science into social theory."

... Ruse asserts that popular contemporary biologists like Edward O. Wilson and Richard Dawkins have also exacerbated the divisions between evolutionists and creationists by directly challenging the validity of religious belief - Dawkins by repeatedly declaring his atheism (''faith,'' he once wrote, ''is one of the world's great evils, comparable to the smallpox virus but harder to eradicate''), and Wilson by describing his ''search for objective reality'' as a replacement for religious seeking.
There's also the fact that you actually have to be a Darwinist to see how self-evidently true Darwinism is. I've received literature from any number of causes like that, and always had the same reaction: Who moved the paper recycle bin?

Writer Dizikes of the Boston Globe sounds shocked, shocked that anyone would criticize Darwinist luminaries such as Richard Dawkins and E.O. Wilson, but he should just get used to it. Ruse is easily among the most interesting writers on Darwinism today, all the more so because he questions the fearless leaders, and — as I am in the habit of shilling books — let me take a moment to recommend his Evolution Wars as well. It provides many useful short readings from various figures in the controversy.

Blog service note: Did you come here looking for any of the following stories?
- the Privileged Planet film shown at the Smithsonian, go here for an extended review. Please do not raise cain about an "anti-evolution" film without seeing it. If your doctor forbids you to see the film, in case you get too excited, at least read my detailed log of the actual subjects of the film. If you were one of the people who raised cain, ask yourself why you should continue to believe the people who so misled you about the film's actual content ...

- the showing of Privileged Planet at the Smithsonian, go here and here to start, and then this one and this one will bring you up to date.

- the California Academy of Sciences agreeing to correct potentially libellous statements about attorney Larry Caldwell, who thinks that students should know about weaknesses as well as strengths of Darwinian evolution theory, click on the posted link.

- Bill Dembski threatening to sue the Thomas More Law Center in the Dover, Pennsylvania ID case, click on the posted link and check the current daily post for updates. (Note: In breaking news, this dispute has apparently been settled. See the story for details. )

- Denyse O'Leary's articles on the Smithsonian showing of Privileged Planet, now online at Christianity Today and the Toronto showing, online at
Blog policy note: This blog does not intentionally accept fully anonymous comments, comments with language unsuited to an intellectual discussion, URLs posted without comment, or defamatory statements. Defamatory statement: A statement that would be actionable if anyone took the author seriously. For example, someone may say “O’Leary is a crummy journalist”; that’s a matter of opinion and I don’t know who would care. But if they say, “O’Leary was convicted of grand theft auto in 1983,” well that’s just plain false, and probably actionable, if the author were taken seriously. Also, due to time constraints, the moderator rarely responds to comments, and usually only about blog service issues.
If you like this blog, check out my book on the intelligent design controversy, By Design or by Chance?. You can read excerpts as well.

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