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[Update a few minutes later]

Alan Boyle has a link roundup of commentary on the movie.


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Listed below are links to blogs that reference this entry: Expelled.

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Jim Harris wrote:

This movie is better than any direct rebuttal at exposing the intellectual bankruptcy of demands for "viewpoint diversity" at universities. The creationists, cum intelligent designers, are just plain wrong about evolution, and it would only damage universities to grant them a share of positions in biology departments.

Indeed, the rebuttal at "Expelled Exposed" tries too hard by half. It's true that Guillermo Gonzalez is not actually a victim of persecution, but it's not true that his tenure denial had nothing to do with intelligent design. He argues that he deserved tenure on the basis of his book on intelligent design, but the department said, no, that book is worth nothing as a work of science. The department is correct, but only because it has science on its side. If viewpoint diversity made sense in this context, then Gonzalez could fairly claim that he was persecuted for his views.

Attacks on the theory of evolution are largely yesterday's viewpoint diversity poster boy. Attacks on the theory of global warming are only one of the new ones today. "Expelled" and "Indoctrinate U" are really the same anti-intellectual crusade, the only difference is that the former happens to specialize to evolution vs creationism.

Jay Manifold wrote:

Wow ... I'd say "apples and oranges," but that one's more like apples and aardvarks.

Steve wrote:

You know what proves to me, more than anything else, that Evolution doesn't exist as scientists say it does? The fact that neither side of this argument has EVOLVED enough to shut the f**k up and agree to disagree!!

Who cares what Ben Stein thinks about evolution? Who cares what evolutionary biologists think? Stop, take 15 minutes, drag out a pencil and a piece of paper, write down the pros and cons of each side and see where your thinking of the subject takes you.

As with many things in our country, most people don't want to think beyond the current price of gasoline and the number of channels on their new HD dish, over and above what they had with cable. They don't care what the schools are teaching their kids so long as the kids are passing. Dad's working 60 hrs a week to keep up this family and pay child support for the last one. Mom is working so the kids can do soccer, ballet, scouts and whatever else.

They don't care where life came from at that level and they won't go see this flick. Just like Al Gore's flick last year, Mr and Mrs Avg-American does not care to spend $30.00 or $40.00 for movie tickets and another $20.00 for junk food, to see this politically / religiously aimed stuff at the multiplex. Only the hard core believers from either group will see it and praise or savage it. The family from the last paragraph will be seeing "Leatherheads" or "Horton Hears a Who".

I know what I believe. So I don't argue this topic. But let me ask you this.

Why can't we simply agree that evolution, being a scientifically and scholarly approach be taught Mon through Fri in schools and creation being a matter of religious belief and faith be taught in our churches, synagogues, temples, and mosques on the appropriate days?

Maybe the believers from either side can try to convince the other guy of his sincerity and strength of belief with a few car bombs or suicide vests. Because it seems to me that both sides in this argument are about as rational sometimes as the Islamofascist, "I'm right and in charge of this topic, or you're dead" vest bombers, we see daily in the news.

I'm praying for ALL you knuckleheads.

Paul F. Dietz wrote:

You know what proves to me, more than anything else, that Evolution doesn't exist as scientists say it does? The fact that neither side of this argument has EVOLVED enough to shut the f**k up and agree to disagree!!

Try as I might, I cannot detect any sign of intelligence in what you just wrote. Really, are you so stupid as to actually believe such a howling non sequitur?

Karl Hallowell wrote:

Steve, the problem with your observation is that these are alternate interpretations of the real world. Using an unfounded interpretation can result in screwed up results. For example, our medical work and biotechnology is based in part on our understanding of how the organisms we work on change over time.

Here's an analogy. You wake up in a strange, completely dark room. You can either fumble around and figure out where the furniture, lightswitches, etc are, or you can arbitrary decide that the furniture is in certain places. Maybe you're right, but odds are that you'd be very wrong. And sooner or later, a belief system that makes unfounded claims about reality is going to wander into a sharp edge. In the real world, people can die when we're wrong. It seems better to me to start with a system that acknowledges we can't be fully right all the time and attempts to reduce the error of our poor understanding of the world.

Steve wrote:

I never thought for a moment that I'd have to write some kind of disclaimer and preface that paragraph, but here goes

[the following was typed with tongue in cheek, poking fun at the idiocy and militancy of both sides, I do know BETTER]

And NO, I'm not so brain dead as to believe that evolution could really happen at the thought / belief level like that.

There are actually those of us out here who believe in an old Earth, old Universe, created by God, with natural selection being part of it. As far as I'm concerned, Genesis 1:3 could read like the following and STILL be true,

And God said, "Let there be light," and there was a Big Bang.

It most probably was THE single largest explosion ever. I've never seen an explosion that didn't give off light.

I don't believe that God created so many species, sub-species, colors, sizes and whatever else the parameters may be. Although he is capable. We have the fossil record to show us that there are changes in the animal kingdom, over vast periods f time.

Having said that, I still do not get the barking and carping on this topic. It's not a difference of opinion over some political point. Should we do away with all tariffs and controls for a really free market system, or should we raise them all and be isolationists? It's been tried both ways, sometimes either system works, sometimes neither does.

The creation or evolution topic goes to the core beliefs people have about the existence of God, the origins of the universe and the meaning of life!!

Why should I waste my time, or yours or anyone else's for that matter, trying to convince you that I'm right and your so wrong that you'll burn in hell for eternity for not coming over and joining my club? People have been fighting for tens of thousands of years over their Gods, it's nothing new. We've got WWII or WWIV raging right now over the differences in what appears to most people to be the same God. Our current enemy thinks God wants us to follow the Imams and live in an Old Testament, lop off the infidels head, stone the adultrous women kind of world. Most of us here disagree with them because it would cause mass confusion what with "'merican Idol" and "Days of Our Lives" being canceled because they are evil.

I simply see no need in driving yet another wedge between myself and anyone who's beliefs at that personal level differ. It's NOT what my beliefs tell me God wants me to do. Ultimately, we will all find out in a very short time, most of us under 90 total years, who is right and who is wrong.

David Ross wrote:

Comments like this one are a cop-out: "Ultimately, we will all find out in a very short time, most of us under 90 total years, who is right and who is wrong."

So... with regards to facts about the universe which can be empirically verified, if I want to know with a reasonable degree of accuracy then I should just wait until I die. I suppose if I want to know sooner then I should just kill myself, right?

I'll stick to reading science books if I want to learn some science, and leave the Kool-Aid to my intellectual inferiors. (Which improves the gene pool, ironically enough.)

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This page contains a single entry by Rand Simberg published on April 21, 2008 5:31 AM.

Defecting From The Left was the previous entry in this blog.

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