I have decided that I am sick and tired of the antievolutionists. When I got into this game about 15 years or more ago, I thought that if we just argued and presented information about what evolution really is, and what it means for modern thinking, people would move away from attacking evolution in order to bolster their religious agendas.
I was wrong. Very wrong. Information isn’t what makes people change their minds. Experience is, and generally nobody has much experience of the facts of biology that underwrite evolution. The so-called “deficit model” of the public understanding of science, which assumes that all they need is more information, is false. Of course, people in the field of science communication knew that long ago. It took me some time to get to it myself, is all.
Anyway, the reason for this post now is that the indefatigable Joe Cain, at the University College, London, has been digitising a short-lived journal from the 1920s and 1930s entitled Evolution: A journal of nature, which was published in response to the Scopes trial and subsequent antievolutionary movements by fundamentalists (which had only just been named a decade or so earlier). He includes a number of (copyrighted, hence not shown here) political cartoons of the period, and the sad thing about them is that most of them could be published today and still be relevant. It’s amazing how much is the same.