Jaime made a thoughtful comment here regarding yesterday’s “hater” post. I started responding in the thread but it’s become more of a treatise. Hope I don’t scare Jamie away (since it’s noted that s/he is unlurking to make it):
i read the post, and the comments, and the stuff on here, so i will unlurk to make my 2 cents. there is bad science in evolution like in any field these days but no one seemed to address the issues – some complained about the crappy font and 2 regulars on here used the ‘you’re stupid’ argument on him.
tara also can be a little guilty for snipping parts of sentences for her convenience. the guy/girl also said ‘Obviously we are not against evolution but we go apeshit over bad science’ … the quote she used was from a different one on reconciling religion and evolution.
Maybe they came here and just saw the real crazies, like pharyngula and whatever and wrote that post. so what does everyone do in response? they go crazy like he said. if sb is so balanced and open to all scientists, let’s make sure we continue to show it.
My thoughts after the jump.
Jamie, there are dozens–hundreds–of posts here on SB where people address those very issues. But in my opinion, it doesn’t have to be done in every post, especially when “Chief Scientist” also isn’t addressing issues, but just making sweeping generalizations about the whole audience here at SB. There weren’t a whole lot of actual arguments even in the posts I linked, so to be fair, there wasn’t much for the commenters to respond to. (And coupled with the font/color issues, I can’t say I blame them for pointing that out).
Second, you seem to be accusing me of quote-mining. I take deep umbrage at that. The “obviously” quote was in a third post that I didn’t link or even comment on. Certainly you don’t expect me to scan every one of Chief Scientist’s posts before I write a comment on one of them? (And that post also has so many mischaracterizations…he doesn’t seem to understand how science works; there is no “proof” in biology. For another day, maybe…) As far as the rest of the portion of the paragraph I quoted in the prior post, here it is in its entirety (the part I included is in bold):
I don’t say religion and science because, of course, not all scientists are anti-religion. A lot are … most everyone at Scienceblogs is contemptuous of religion to a point beyond objective reasoning and bordering on zealotry.
I left out the first sentence because I was only concerned about the SB part, and because the first sentence doesn’t make much sense without the title of the post (“Reconciling religion and evolution”) anyway. That post has some better points, and the “religion/evolution/science/faith” angle is something that gets discussed with some regularity on Panda’s Thumb (especially in the comments), but ironically, religion isn’t something I really discuss on here, so I’m not the one to tackle it.
Finally, Jamie, you make an appeal for inclusiveness, and that I agree with. But at the same time, you label PZ and unnamed others as “real crazies.” How is that inclusive? Doesn’t PZ write about good science, too? Why can’t he speak his mind about his own worldview, even if others disagree–strongly and vocally–with it? Personally, it doesn’t matter to me what religious beliefs you have. Worship Zeus for all I care. Science is the common ground, and when people spit on it, yes, I’m less likely to pull punches in that arena–but it’s not because they’re a [insert religious affiliation here]. It’s because this promotion of bad science hurts all scientists, no matter what their beliefs may be.