by Denyse O'Leary
Winnick's approach to the intelligent design controversy has been marked by the same tendency to get quickly to the underlying issues. She focused on the key meeting at MIT in 1966 where mathematician Marcel-Paul Schutzenberger challenged Darwinists (and they did not have any good answers):
SchÃƒÂ¼tzenberger went on to question neo-Darwinism until his death in 1996, but his dissent was ignored by the American media. Perhaps because of science's post-Sputnik prominence, perhaps for political and philosophical reasons, and mostly likely, because of the stigma that attaches to any view that reinforces religion, the other objectors faded into oblivion and neo-Darwinism went on to thrive, unquestioned, as the only acceptable scientific explanation for the origin and evolution of life. (P. 122)
She also talks about the Biological Science Curriculum Study (BSCS) and quickly identifies the political agenda:
Although the BSCS included some local science educators, most of its leaders, those who produced the textbooks and other materials, were overtly hostile to the Judeo-Christian religion. Some of the BSCS leaders were outright eugenicists who, in other contexts, had openly promoted the "betterment" of man through selective breeding. This alone should have disqualified these individuals from educating America's youth, but their associations were never exposed by the media, which to this day fails to prove the political and economic agendas of the scientific community.In my view, anyone associated with eugenics should not venture into education, and especially not in a multiracial society. If they think that they should have a better group of students than the one in front of them, they are not going to do a very good job. In any event, as Winnick shows, they did not do a very good job:
Heading the BSCS was Bentley Glass, a renowned geneticist and member of the American Eugenics Society, who disparaged procreation, promoted population control, and advocated the establishment of genetic "clinics" to weed out the "defective." (P. 123)
Ten years after the BSCS developed its curriculum and textbooks, American students began their precipitous decline in academic standing. The BSCS textbooks were not the reason for this decline - but they certainly didn't help. In fact, they weren't very good. (p. 129)Their serious ideologically motivated shortcomings could easily have contributed to a continuing decline in science education (if such a decline was really occurring - finding out genuine information about things like that is actually quite difficult).
My sense is that Winnick, who understands so much, did not understand one critical thing: She was not supposed to write a book that set all this out for the vulgar public who pay taxes to support celebrity science projects. They are supposed to sit, dumbfounded, at churches on Evolution Sunday or listen to Carl Sagan preach the gospel of atheist materialism in Cosmos. And never under any circumstances should they have the simple, basic information they need to blow it all up the river.
I think Winnick's career setback, if it occurred, will not be long, and I strongly recommend A Jealous God.
Return to Introduction A journalist tries to understand a jealous god - materialist science
Toronto-based Canadian journalist Denyse O'Leary (www.designorchance.com) is the author of the multiple award-winning By Design or by Chance? (Augsburg Fortress 2004), an overview of the intelligent design controversy. She was named CBA Canada's Recommended Author of the Year in 2005 and is co-author, with Montreal neuroscientist Mario Beauregard, of the forthcoming The Spiritual Brain: A neuroscientist's case for the existence of the soul (Harper 2007).
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