I know we’re all used to seeing creationists dishonestly quoting something written by scientists, but folks I’m about to show you one of the most egregious examples you will ever see of it. This is as bad as Morris and Whitcomb’s famous distortion of Ross and Rezak’s paper on the Lewis overthrust, where they literally quoted a paragraph and stopped just before the sentence that began, “However…..”, to give the impression that the authors were saying the exact opposite of what they actually said. Go read this post by Sal at UD and you will see the following quote:
Charles Darwin, perhaps medicine’s most famous dropout, provided the impetus for a subject that figures so rarely in medical education. Indeed, even the iconic textbook example of evolution–antibiotic resistance–is rarely described as “evolution” in relevant papers published in medical journals. Despite potentially valid reasons for this oversight (e.g., that authors of papers in medical journals would regard the term as too general), it propagates into the popular press when those papers are reported on, feeding the wider perception of evolution’s irrelevance in general, and to medicine in particular.
And then go read the article he is citing, an editorial by Catriona McCallum, the senior editor of PLoS Biology. There you will find the statement he quotes from it, but you’ll also notice that he doesn’t quote the whole paragraph, he leaves out the last sentence. Why? Because the last sentence is the “However….” sentence and it contradicts the story he’s trying to sell. Here’s the full paragraph with the last sentence included:
It is curious that Charles Darwin, perhaps medicine’s most famous dropout, provided the impetus for a subject that figures so rarely in medical education. Indeed, even the iconic textbook example of evolution–antibiotic resistance–is rarely described as “evolution” in relevant papers published in medical journals . Despite potentially valid reasons for this oversight (e.g., that authors of papers in medical journals would regard the term as too general), it propagates into the popular press when those papers are reported on, feeding the wider perception of evolution’s irrelevance in general, and to medicine in particular . Yet an understanding of how natural selection shapes vulnerability to disease can provide fundamental insights into medicine and health and is no less relevant than an understanding of physiology or biochemistry.
After his highly dishonest quote mine, he then provides this absurd analysis:
Darwinists claim how important Darwinism is to science, but MacCallum’s editorial makes an embarrassing admission of Darwinism’s irrelevance to medicine.
Really, Sal? Is that what it says? Let me quote what MacCallum actually says about the importance of evolution to medicine:
The most obvious examples of evolutionary biology’s importance to medical understanding are related to infectious disease . As Jon Laman (Erasmus University, The Netherlands) pointed out at the meeting, the immune system provides the perfect platform to explain the medical relevance of the exquisite evolutionary relationships between pathogens and their hosts. Understanding how virulence evolves, for example, can help predict the potential, sometimes counterintuitive (and controversial) negative consequences of imperfect vaccination [8,9]. But evolution can also tell us that the origin of HIV was precipitated by a jump across the primate species barrier  and enables us to predict the imminent arrival of avian flu and the mutations most likely to be responsible for that evolutionary leap from birds to humans . Where epidemiological and population genetic processes occur on the same time scale, the emerging field of “phylodyamics” can also inform us about the timing and progression of pathogen adaptation more generally .
The relevance of evolution to medicine is, however, much broader. Participants at the York meeting discussed not only how vulnerability to cancer is an inevitable but unfortunate consequence of imperfect human engineering and natural selection (Mel Greaves, Institute of Cancer Research, UK), but how life history theory can potentially explain patterns of pregnancy loss (Virginia Vitzthum, Indiana University), how a comparative approach applied to different human cultures and different primates can improve rates of breastfeeding (Helen Ball, University of Durham), whether clinical depression has an adaptive origin (Lewis Wolpert, University College London), and if suicide attempts are really just evolutionary bargaining chips in intense social disputes (Ed Hagen, Humboldt University).
The point of MacCallum’s column is emphatically to argue against the idea that evolution is irrelevant to medicine, despite the misconceptions of some clinicians who don’t care much about looking at the big picture. Here is her concluding statement about the need to teach evolutionary biology in medical schools:
The time has clearly come for medicine to explicitly integrate evolutionary biology into its theoretical and practical underpinnings The medical students of Charles Darwin’s day did not have the advantage of such a powerful framework to inform their thinking; we shouldn’t deprive today’s budding medical talent of the potential insights to be gained at the intersection of these two great disciplines.
Sal has completely reversed the meaning of the article and I can’t imagine he did so unintentionally. You simply cannot read his description of the article and the article itself without having the utter dishonesty of his misrepresentation of it hit you in the face. Kiss your credibility goodbye, Sal. This is rank, rank deceitfulness. Tell us again about how evolution undermines morality while you tell lies like this.