Sunday, December 30, 2007
This a bit old but Denyse (accent on the "Deny") O'Leary was over at Mens News Daily a couple of weeks ago, trying to harness Anthony Flew to her Christ wagon and flogging the poor ol' guy for all he's worth. First she tries to get him to drag around the weight of being "the world's most important atheist scholar." While it's true that Flew was certainly a prominent philosopher in the area of religion and morality in the latter half of the 20th century, to call him the most important anything, atheist or not, as usual with O'Leary's claims, is most charitably described as "greatly exaggerated."
The dishonest (though amusing) part is this:
Some are seeking legislation against discussing the idea of intelligent design in school settings. The Council of Europe considers it a threat to human rights. But their panic isn't my panic or yours. Or Antony Flew's, either, it turns out. I guess we choose our panics.Now, of course, if you chose to exalt the worthiness of ID for discussion in schools by citing to the conclusions of a philosopher, it naturally follows that the appropriate school forum for it should be in philosophy classes. But who, exactly, has sought legislation to ban teaching about ID in philosophy? Certainly not the Council of Europe. That resolution urged its member states to:
... firmly oppose the teaching of creationism as a scientific discipline on an equal footing with the theory of evolution and in general the presentation of creationist ideas in any discipline other than religion.I'm pretty sure that "the discipline of religion" would include the kind of philosophy of religion that Flew was expert in as well.
So it does seem that Denyse has chosen (or is trying to get others to chose) to suffer from an unfounded panic.