Jack Krebs has his summary of the KU talk by Ken Miller, and I’ve also had a bit of a private conversation with Miller in email. I’m not going to post it, but I will summarize my ideas after getting more of the story.
Miller is not trying to redirect creationists to fight atheists, and he’s very clear that all of us need to stand together in our opposition to bad science (I also agree the religious and the non-religious should be united on this issue.) Krebs mentions that this was a new section of his talk, so I suspect this is one where he’ll be reworking some of the wording. I hope.
Miller should speak out vociferously against atheism, just as I should speak out against religion. While we have a united front against creationism, that doesn’t mean our disagreements on other issues should disappear.
There is a distinction to be made between small “c” creationists who believe in a creator god, and big “C” Creationists who wage a culture war against good science. Miller may be a believer in a creator god, but he’s a staunch opponent of the Creationists—despite disagreement on matters philosophical, I should be clear in saying that he is on our side.
I think we both agree that the debate with creationists needs to shift in direction—the science is settled and has been resolved for a long, long time. Where that argument should go is unsettled, and I don’t think his talk helped clarify matters much. I think it muddied them, if anything.
I’ve also listened to that section of Miller’s talk where he is proposing a “road to peace” in the creation-evolution wars, and I’ve seen several different interpretations in the comments now. I think the problem is that I still don’t know what the hell he is proposing, how it will work, how it will lead to a resolution of the problem, or how he sees this happy world will turn out, nor do I agree with his premises about the causes of the conflict. Maybe the real source of our disagreement is that he announces that he has the answer, and then serves up such a vague mish-mash that anyone can read anything into it.