Casey Luskin Advances Agenda of Ignorance by Misappropriating Scientific Terms
“After lecturing this spring to the Alaska Bar Association on the debate over intelligent design and evolution, I was approached at the podium by a young lawyer. The tight-lipped smile, close-cropped hair and maniacal gleam in his eyes told me that he was probably a creationist out for blood. I was not wrong.” (Luskin’s emphasis)
in this book review found in Nature.
Luskin, who has more of a toothy smile but still has the characteristic maniacal gleam in his eyes ;), claims that the take home message from Coyne’s statement is:
b>“Don't ask hard questions about evolution of leading Darwinists, or you will get called mean-spirited names in major scientific journals.”<>b>
While noting that someone has a maniacal gleam in their eyes may not be nice, it’s certainly not calling them mean-spirited names.
Luskin then goes on to ask a bunch of rhetorical questions suggesting that anti-Creationist bias at Nature may be why they are unable to publish all their valuable research.
Other than completely ignoring this beautiful paragraph that is the actual take home message from Coyne’s review:
“In the end, the true value of evolutionary biology is not practical but explanatory. It answers, in the most exquisitely simple and parsimonious way, the age-old question: “How did we get here?” It gives us our family history writ large, connecting us with every other species, living or extinct, on Earth. It shows how everything from frogs to fleas got here via a few easily grasped biological processes. And that, after all, is quite an accomplishment.”
“Incidentally, one of the two commercial uses Coyne does find for evolution includes "the use of ‘directed evolution’ to produce commercial products (such as enzymes to protect crop plants from herbicides)." (pg. 984) "Directed evolution" is otherwise known as intelligent design.”(emphasis Luskin’s)
J. C. FRANCIS2 AND P. E. HANSCHE
What’s important to note about this process, directed evolution, is that the evolution occurs by completely random mutations. The end product, an improved enzyme, is not itself intelligently designed, only the selection process is designed by an intelligent agent. So if you’re trying to say that
Nothing wrong with that, congratulations on joining the world of reason!
Unfortunately we all know you are a Creationist who tries to use science-y jargon and bad metaphors to try to make your beliefs seem to be based on evidence rather than Faith. That’s fine too, it’s a free country, but drop the misappropriation of actual science and scientific terms as belonging to, or supporting of, your Faith. It just puts your ignorance of science on display.
PZ Myers delivers a thorough lashing to the contemptibly dishonest Discovery Institute's David Berlinski for an erstwhile letter to Science.
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