I know I’m going to regret this….
Usually I tend to stand back from any arguments regarding fundamental beliefs, whether religious, political, or even about programming. The participants are not going to convince the other side of anything; hopefully they’ll each feel better afterward (if they don’t stroke out first).
Feel free to stop reading at any time; please hold the cards and letters, lol.
I recently discovered ScienceBlogs and have enjoyed reading many of the posts there. However, some have taken up a cause celebre: the movie Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed. Some are so vitriolic about it that I feel the urge to get an alcohol wipe and clean the spittle from the backside of my screen.
Here’s what Wikipedia has to say about it (feel free to join the edit wars):
Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed is a controversial film, which claims that educators and scientists are being persecuted for their belief that there is evidence of intelligent design in nature. Hosted by Ben Stein, the film claims that what it calls “Big Science” suppresses dissent from the scientific theory of evolution, and blames evolution for a range of modern movements from Nazism to Planned Parenthood.
I mentioned a couple days ago the appalling state of popular scientific knowledge: are you one of the 24% who apparently believe the Sun goes around the Earth? Welcome to the 16th Century. To be clear, the phenomenon of evolution is just as real as the phenomenon of gravity; to those who leap on the word theory, it doesn’t mean what you think it means.
So why am I posting about this? Because I’m foolishly reacting to (urm, whining about) this email spam I received a few hours ago:
I am a rebel at heart, yup, me.
I am ALL about free speech, and today, free speech seems ok .. if you are saying the “RIGHT THING” …
I don’t know that I HAVE EVER said the RIGHT thing.. (nor if i wanted too).
This weekend EXPELLED opens.
It is all about what happens when you DARE even QUESTION Darwin,
NO . this is NOT all about creationism.. this is about just asking a simple question.
The star is Ben Stein.. (read brilliant Jew) who is not a fundimentalist pounding a pupit, but an intelligent, reasonable man, asking a simple question.
[url to GetExpelled]
Questions.. we have room for those in our society.. right ? ;)
The Expelled Exposed web site says:
Welcome to Expelled Exposed, a detailed look at the Ben Stein movie Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed. We’ll show you why this movie is not a documentary at all, but anti-science propaganda aimed at creating the appearance of controversy where there is none.
The Internet Movie Database (IMDB) says:
This movie follows Ben Stein as he seeks to determine whether religious based Intelligent Design / Creationism is a pseudo-science trying to undermine evolutionary biology or whether it is legitimate science being suppressed by a scientific establishment that is hostile to any deviation from the status quo. Along the way, Stein is told that evolutionary biology is responsible for the Holocaust, Stalinism, and the Second World War, and that only religion based alternatives such as Intelligent Design / Creationism and the intervention of a god can adequately explain the existence of life.
And, finally, the Get Expelled web site says:
This site is specifically designed for students, teachers, pastors, youth leaders and organizers to provide useful tools and resources to promote the ideas surrounding this highly anticipated film.
I usually try to link back to all my sources, but in this case, I’ll leave it to you to Google “expelled” and explore for yourself. Well, one more link because I was amused by Ethan Gilsdorf’s closing comment in the Boston Globe review, No intelligence allowed in ‘Expelled’: “… all we are saying is, give Darwin a chance, for God’s sake.”