Wednesday, September 19, 2007


Luskin's Lips Are Moving ... Again!

Casey Luskin is at it again, doing what Intelligent Design Creationists do best ... misrepresenting others.

Luskin is over at The Discovery Institute's Complaint Department, in an article entitled "Scientific Journals Promoting Evolution alongside Materialism," kvetching about scientists expressing their opinions about religion. The details of the scientists' statements are not all that important, though at least some appear to be in direct response to the misrepresentations of science by ID advocates. The heart of Luskin's complaint is that "some theists might find that such descriptions of evolution contravene their religious beliefs."

Well, so what? Some descriptions of capitalism or democracy contravene some people's religious beliefs. Neither point constitutes a cogent argument against evolution or the American political system. So far, Luskin is saying nothing more than 'my religion requires me to be ignorant and I like it that way.'

It is at the end that Luskin trots out the dishonesty:

[I]t seems that [these scientists] are nonetheless working hard to disprove Judge Jones's Kitzmiller ruling that held it is "utterly false" to believe that "evolutionary theory is antithetical to a belief in the existence of a supreme being."
Of course, Judge Jones never said that evolutionary theory couldn't contradict any religious beliefs. As I've pointed out many times before (here's one example), what the judge said was:

Both Defendants and many of the leading proponents of ID make a bedrock assumption which is utterly false. Their presupposition is that evolutionary theory is antithetical to a belief in the existence of a supreme being and to religion in general. Repeatedly in this trial, Plaintiffs' scientific experts testified that the theory of evolution represents good science, is overwhelmingly accepted by the scientific community, and that it in no way conflicts with, nor does it deny, the existence of a divine creator.

Judge Jones was in no way saying that there are no believers who find evolution contrary to their religion. Nor was he calling their beliefs false -- he takes some pains to say that he was not deciding the truth of ID, merely its status as science or non-science. The Judge was saying rather clearly that the "presupposition . . . that evolutionary theory is antithetical to a belief in the existence of a supreme being and to religion in general" is not true. He was summing up in that section and stating the well-known fact that many believers have no trouble reconciling evolution and their faith in a divine creator. Even Luskin's own complaint admits that fact: If some theists find that evolution contravenes their religious beliefs, that necessarily means others do not find it does.

Maybe the judge should have gone on to say that any assumption that religious zealots like Luskin would find lying antithetical to their religion is also utterly false.

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