[asa] On telling the truth about science

From: Ted Davis <TDavis@messiah.edu>
Date: Fri Jan 18 2008 - 13:27:55 EST

I changed the heading of this thread to reflect this particular topic.

A couple of years ago, in the wake of the Kitzmiller trial (ID), I attended
Kent Hovind's seminar, in the auditorium of Dover Senior High School. I'll
skip the details on how it was arranged, and who declined an invitation to
"debate" "Dr Dino," (not yours truly), and cut to the chase. Forget ID,
Hovind told the audience -- most of whom did not live in the Dover school
district (there was a show of hands about this during the seminar). Forget
creationism. Forget the Bible. Just focus on the "lies" in the textbooks.
All from a man who is now in jail on a criminal offense. Hovind still likes
to use some of the arguments that creationists themselves say you shouldn't
use, esp the howler about the retrograde rotation of Uranus disproving the
big bang. Hello? A few details would be appreciated, to help me connect
those dots. That one, as Pauli or Dirac or someone (I've forgotten exactly
who) once said, isn't even wrong. He has to know that some of his stuff is
more than out there on the fringe and entirely unsupported even by his
fellow YECs. He has to. I just don't think he cares. Whether his tune
will change after he gets out of prison, we'll just have to wait and see. I
hope it does, literally for Christ's sake.

The closest that most YECs come to deliberate lying, IMO, is when the
present the big bang as an atheists' theory. That one also isn't even
wrong. It's such a profound distortion of the history of the theory and how
it is often viewed even by religious sceptics today. A profound distortion.
 It absolutely enrages me when I hear it, so I do make a big point of
telling my students why I get angry about that one. Here's a little bit of
what I tell them:


On the other hand, I get comparably angry when Scientific American devotes
an issue to the multiverse and present it without blinking an eye as good,
hard science that challenges religion. Of course--with Michael Shermer on
board there now, they are advancing the old warfare thesis of religion and
science. I know quite a few people who've canceled their subscriptions in
recent years for similar reasons.


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Received on Fri Jan 18 13:29:34 2008

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