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Thursday, October 28, 2021

Science reviews a creationist book

You can't get much more anti-science than a book about Adam and Eve. Nevertheless, Stephen Schaffner—a computational biologist at the Broad Institute of MIT in Boston—decided that such a book was worthy of a mostly favorable review in one of the most prestigious science journals in the world [Adam. Eve, and the evolution of humankind].

Schaffner is reviewing a book by William Lane Craig whom he describes as "a widely published philosopher, theologian, and Christian apologist." There are others who would dispute that laudatory description including Richard Dawkins in a ten-year-old essay published in The Guardian [Why I refuse to debate with William Lane Craig].

I won't bother to mention all of the issues with the review since Jerry Coyne has covered them on his website but I would like to quote part of the second-last paragraph of the review.

Craig’s goal in writing this book, of course, is not a scientific one, and it cannot be judged on scientific grounds. I suspect that for many scientists, including religious ones, the exercise will be seen as misguided or simply incomprehensible.

Having followed Craig's anti-science crusade for several years, I have no difficulty in understanding why he would write such a book. What I find truly misguided and incomprehensible is why Science would publish such a review. Perhaps it's because AAAS, the publisher of Science, has a history of accommodating religion?


John Farrell said...

This is becoming a cottage industry in religious circles, including Catholic ones: the cartwheels even theologians with an understanding of evolution will go through... to prop up the belief in 'First Parents'.

Steve Watson said...

Wasn't Steve Schaffner a Howler?

Larry Moran said...

What a memory! In 1999 Stephen F. Schaffner of worked at SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory at Stanford University and then he moved to MIT. It's the same guy!

PrinceV said...
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PrinceV said...
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Steve Watson said...

He took us on a brief tour of the Human Genome Project when we visited Boston c.2001