20 September 2013

Is There Increasing Turmoil In the Darwinist Camp?

On his blog today, Tim Challies posted a blurb about the success of a recent book by apologist Stephen Meyer. One of the commenters posted a comment about how much turmoil there is in Darwinist camps, "...as it is increasingly recognized how flawed their theory is."

Is there increasing recognition of flaws in Darwinism? The short answer is, no.

Is there increasing turmoil in Darwinist camps because of this recognition? Well, obviously, no.

I think the comment is wrong on both premises.

But there's more to the story. I'm a working scientist, even though I spend most of my energy in administration now. I can tell you for certain that recognition of the flaws in Darwinist theory is not recent. But over the last century or so, the problems with Darwinism have been kept to an in-house debate. What is 'recent' is the internet. Because of the rise of the internet and alternative sources for news and information, the ability to keep these kinds of things in-house has been lost.

So yes, there is turmoil, but it isn't over the problems in Darwinism, it's over the problems of keeping the public out of the debate. Just about anyone can now eavesdrop on scholarly conversations about things like this, and many do. Most of us would agree that this is a good thing. It keeps people honest.

While there are some scientists who would support their agenda by hook or crook, I would say that a majority of scientists, even when faced with philosophical or religious objections to their worldview, are mostly honest about it. Unfortunately, those who are all about an agenda are the most vocal, so a minority makes the rest of us look bad. (There's a great lawyer joke buried in that, but I won't digress at this point.)

Bottom line: Yes, there are problems with Darwinist theory, and yes, these problems are recognized. But the problems have been dealt with quietly in the past, and now are out in the open where others have entered the debate. I think this is good for everyone involved, as I believe truth wins over time, even in the face of some pretty organized propaganda. But don't expect secular scientists to bow a knee just yet; even if Darwinism collapses completely (not likely in the short run), the won't adopt a theistic worldview. They'll find another atheistic explanation for reality. That's because evidence doesn't, and has never, determined one's worldview, but rather one's worldview determines how evidence is interpreted. As one famous anthropologist said, "I wouldn't have seen it if I didn't believe it."