Dispatches from the Creation Wars

More DI Lies about “Free Speech”

The Discovery Institute clearly recognizes that its purpose is not science but public relations. It is incredibly obvious that their strategy at the moment is to sell the ridiculous spin that the Dover lawsuit will oppress scientists and forbid them from discussing or researching ID. Here’s the latest example:

The ACLU is also trying to get the federal judge to decide by court order the very nature of science, essentially telling scientists what ideas they may or may not research and discuss as a part of legitimate scientific inquiry. Efforts to get the government to shut down free inquiry used to be called censorship. One would hope that at least someone at the ACLU is embarrassed by this effort to stop debate in science by judicial decree.

I present to you a textbook example of propaganda. When the Supreme Court ruled that “creation science” was a religious concept and therefore could not be taught in public school science classrooms in 1987, they did the very same thing that is being asked for in this case. They established that creation science was not science at all but merely a religious position dressed up in scientific-sounding language and the court agreed. But did this “shut down free inquiry” or “tell scientists what ideas they may research and discuss”? Of course not.

Since that ruling, creation science groups like Answers in Genesis have not only continued to exist but have thrived. AIG is building an enormous creation science museum as I type. The Institute for Creation Research continues to publish volumes of material every month. The Geoscience Research Institute at Loma Linda continues to conduct research that they claim supports their young earth views. No one has told them they can’t do that anymore. No one has raided their facilities or burned their journals. They are as free today as they were before the court’s ruling to discuss and research and advocate their ideas. They just can’t teach them in public school science classrooms.

And if we win this case in Dover, the Discovery Institute will not be shut down. They will continue to exist and, presumably, continue to crank out this kind of dishonest propaganda by the bucketful. They just won’t have access to public school science classrooms to do it. And that is exactly why they are so frantic to distort the legal issue and pretend that Big Brother is targeting them for removal. They are no more “censored” by being kept out of public school classrooms than are the flat earthers, the geocentrists or the moon landing deniers.


  1. #1 Ginger Yellow
    September 29, 2005

    The hilarious thing about this is that at the same time as they’re banging on about the supposed free speech implications of the case, they’re also claiming that they don’t want ID taught in schools. If only DI fellows were “designed” by people called Geppetto.

  2. #2 Bill Snedden
    September 29, 2005

    I wonder….could there be any connection between this type of obfuscation and the common Christian Right lie that prayer has been banned from schools? Hmmm….could be….

  3. #3 spyder
    September 30, 2005

    I just wonder if the agents of DI will be supporting the Pombo bill that passed through the House yesterday in which the Secretary of the Interior will be the sole determinant of what constitutes science? But of course, they will be the hypocrits they truly are and simultaneously attack this cases merits and still support a probably inept and undereducated political appointee’s arbitrary scientific rulings.

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