A while back, two ladies visited the Discovery Institute, and wrote about their experiences afterwards. They admittedly did so under false pretenses, acting as if they were fellow travelers in creationism, but they did get interesting and amusing responses from the inhabitants.
They tried to do it again. They wrote a letter and were entirely upfront about their motives this time, and asked to have a real conversation about Intelligent Design creationism.
Casey Luskin wrote back. It would have been entirely understandable if he’d simply turned them down, but no … instead, he writes a long letter in which he stirs himself to defend the DI in a rambling reply that offers fascinating insight into how these people see themselves. Number one: they are civil. That seems to be all that matters. Never mind that they are calling almost every biologist in the world corrupt and deceitful; ignore the fact that they are a propaganda organization trying to poison the educational system of our country; it is entirely irrelevant that they are ignorant of biology yet want to dictate how all of science should be taught; they think they are being very, very nice. And Casey Luskin, of course, has been nothing but sweetness and generosity, a poor soul who has been rebuffed by the “Darwinist community”, and who gets called mean names.
Then he makes demands. He’s willing to meet and talk if:
The ladies apologize for their previous attitudes towards the DI.
They edit all of their past posts about their visit to the DI to add a disclaimer, saying that they were sorry, that they were naughty, and urging everyone else to be nice to the DI.
They make a new series of blog posts that call all those other “Darwinist” blogs on the carpet.
They cease saying mean things about all creationists henceforth.
Awww, doesn’t that sound exactly like someone who wants to kiss and make up? Although I’m actually thinking the whole thing makes him sound like a whiny, pretentious pipsqueak.
Ooops, there I go again. I just violated the “culture of civility” in which Casey takes such peculiarly unself-aware pride. I am chastened, and need to revise my approach, I think. I therefore offer to get together and discuss reconciliation with the creationists if:
Casey Luskin immediately apologizes for the Institute’s meddling in school boards around the country.
They edit all of their PR pieces at Evolution News & Views to include a disclaimer, saying that they were sorry, they really don’t know what they’re talking about, and they ought not to be peddling such nonsense.
They make a new series of blog posts at EN&V that tell all the ID blogs that they shouldn’t be pushing propaganda anymore, and that their ought to be some actual science done for ID before they make further demands to change the culture to suit their ideology.
They cease saying stupid things about biology henceforth.
I think that’s fair.
He’ll probably turn me down. That’s OK. The poor guy has just added to his own mythos with an obliviously pathetic email that adds pitiful whiner to his accomplishments as a credentialist toady and scientific ignoramus; maybe he’ll learn his lesson, and realize that sometimes he needs to shut up, crawl into a corner, and lick his wounds.
(By the way, the two ladies will be on the Skepticality podcast in a week or two. I’ll have to catch that one for sure.)