The Great Darwinian Conspiracy

Dissect any creationist’s arguments and you’ll eventually uncover a belief in a worldwide Darwinian conspiracy. Scientists everywhere are hiding the truth of creation and teaching evolution as part of a vague shadowy plot to destroy religion and to corrupt the world’s youth with liberal ideas. Why should scientists do this? Is it for that sweet professorship level income? Is it to be in the presence of mobs of grateful undergraduate students? Or are all scientists radicals?

A better question is do scientists get along well enough to concoct a conspiracy? I’ve just finished reading The Earth Dwellers: Adventures in The Land Of Ants by Erich Hoyt. And featured in this book is entomologist Edward O. Wilson, who’s famous for creating the sub-field called sociobiology. One of the implications of sociobiology is that human behavior is partly genetic. Unfortunately, some people erroneously saw hints of social-Darwinism, racism, and sexism, in Wilson’s work. As a result, Wilson received nasty criticism and personal attacks not only from the public but from his colleagues at Harvard University. Two of his most vocal critics were fellow professors Stephen J. Gould and Richard C. Lewontin. Do you feel the love?

In the book, we also get a glimpse into Wilson’s feelings toward James Watson, the co-discoverer of the structure of DNA. The author writes:

Wilson found Watson the most unpleasant, scornful scientist he had ever met. Watson’s discovery [DNA structure] was so earth-shattering that he [Watson] became a “Caligula” who could do or say no wrong. In spite of Watson’s disdain, Wilson deeply admired the man’s accomplishment and even his sheer audacity. He credits Watson as his “brilliant enemy” or “adverse hero”.

This is just one example of conflict amongst scientists. The history of science is fraught with nasty disagreements. What good scientist wouldn’t disagree with a colleague in order to gain personal glory? If the evidence and data indicate a contrary opinion, then that’s the path one must take? Wilson found Watson “unpleasant”, but he still admired the man’s work. It’s the work that counts, not loyalty and ideology. Of course, scientists are human, and like everyone they have their biases. But most of the time they have no misgivings about following the data wherever it leads. This is why a worldwide conspiracy to hide the “truth of creation” simply wouldn’t work. And this is why evolutionary science couldn’t be suppressed in the 19th century.


1 Comment

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One response to “The Great Darwinian Conspiracy

  1. Polenz357

    To be honest with you I don’t really know anything anymore. First, I was an atheist, I believed in Evolution, I believed in Science, I thought all religions were for weak men who were afraid of suffering in vain and dying.

    Truth is, we have evidence that throughout history, that there were numerous conspiracies and serious efforts to hide truths. Its only logical to assume that the same takes place today, under the cover of a global Democracy and Free World. Call me a conspiracy theorist but it may as well be true. There seems to be a lot of suppression going on in science, be it the evidence dismissed for being contradictory or the fact that anyone can label you a pseudo-scientist and ruin your career. Today we have an institutionalized science, you are either with them or against them, and since its mandatory to have peer reviewed articles to gain any reputation (of course its not that simple) but nonetheless this means you can’t publish certain articles for fear of destroying your career. I don’t mean scientists will be hanged for contradicting the establishment but they will surely face consequences.

    What we see happening with Evolution is that instead of having science and investigation, we have a bunch of Christian Creationists trying to push their agenda and a bunch of neo-atheist evolutionists trying to make Evolution look like something that is absolutely established and there is no way around it. Truth is that maybe in a hundred years, we will look back and observe that at least some of what we thought about evolution was wrong, it happens all the time. We all thought the Earth was flat and the Sun moved around it until we could prove the contrary. Most of the 18th Century scientists believed in E.T. life in other solar system planets! Of course science today will make it look like everything is thoroughly studied and there are no mistakes, but this isn’t true. We can’t know for sure now, but the freedom to pursue any theory, be it contradictory or not, should be supported by Scientists and the Academia. To see that today we have a somewhat “dogmatic” science in the Academia, really narrows research and new ideas, and I am talking about all fields of science.

    (I am sorry for my English, I hope you can understand what I mean.)

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