Dec 202006

Well, Richard Dawkins is at it again. This time he’s up in arms over an organization called Truth in Science over in the United Kingdom. Here’s a letter to the editor that RD put in The Guardian.

From The Guardian

Creationism in the classroom
Tuesday December 19, 2006
The Guardian

An organisation calling itself Truth in Science has recently used its (evidently large) financial resources to distribute DVDs promoting “intelligent design” to all schools (Report, December 7). The leading scientist behind Truth in Science is Andrew McIntosh, professor of thermodynamics at Leeds University. He has repeatedly said the world is only 6,000 years old. Given that all the scientific evidence points to approximately 4.6bn years as the true age of Earth, the scale of his error is remarkable.

Not surprisingly, therefore, the university has issued an official disclaimer: “Professor Andrew McIntosh’s directorship of Truth in Science, and his promotion of that organisation’s views, are unconnected to his teaching or research [here]… The university wishes to distance itself publicly from theories of creationism and so-called intelligent design, which cannot be verified by evidence.”

However, the claim that McIntosh’s eccentric view of reality is unconnected with his teaching or research as a professor of thermodynamics would appear to be cast into some doubt by a conversation that I recently had with him on BBC Belfast’s Sunday Sequence. McIntosh publicly stated that evolution is incompatible with the second law of thermodynamics.

In the light of this clear connection between McIntosh’s creationist views and his understanding of thermodynamics, Leeds University will presumably need to revise its press release.

Richard Dawkins

As the old saying goes, what’s sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander. So, let’s have some fun and re-write the Leed’s University disclaimer a bit:

Disclaimer from Oxford University: “Professor Richard Dawkins’s directorship of The Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science, and his promotion of that organisation’s views on atheism, are unconnected to his teaching, research or writing as holder of the Charles Simyoni Chair for the Public Understanding of Science… The university wishes to distance itself publicly from theories of atheism which cannot be verified by evidence or the methods of science.”

I wonder how RD would react if Oxford had the nerve to issue such a disclaimer about him!

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15 years ago

I would not be holding my breath for that one.

Thanks for the story. It is always such a joy to read Dawkins. 🙂

15 years ago

I know what you mean. How could someone as obviously intelligent and educated as Dawkins not see the blatantly obvious double standard here?