Discoveroids on Martin Luther King Day

The Discovery Institute, wonderful folks that they are, couldn’t let Martin Luther King Jr. Day go by without giving it proper recognition. The task was given to David Klinghoffer, who eagerly functions as their journalistic slasher and poo flinger.

Klinghoffer’s post is On Martin Luther King Day, Consider This About Intelligent Design. It’s a repeat of something he wrote three years ago — On MLK Day, Remember that Intelligent Design Is a Civil Rights Issue — but we ignored it then. Today we’ll give you some excerpts, with bold font added by us for emphasis.

He introduces his old post by saying:

I’ve observed here before that intelligent design poses not only a scientific challenge to Darwinism but also a challenge to think a little more broadly about civil rights … [then the repeated material begins].

This is what Klinghoffer wrote back in January 2014:

As we were reminded in the final and likewise shameful resolution of the David Coppedge matter, evolution is a civil-rights issue as much as it is a scientific one. Coppedge’s right to dissent from Darwinian orthodoxy was crushed by NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, and the judge in the case accepted NASA’s slickly constructed defense, rubber-stamped it, denying him the justice of what should have been total vindication.

BWAHAHAHAHAHA! Klinghoffer’s attempt to portray the promotion of junk science as a civil rights issue reminds us of something we wrote more than six years ago: Creationism: Abuse of the Language of Rights. We won’t repeat ourselves (as Klinghoffer is doing), but we recommend that you take a look at that post. Okay, back to Klinghoffer. In his oldie-goldie, he said:

[F]or every David Coppedge, there are countless other people who share their scientific doubts about Darwin, their openness to seeing evidence of design in nature, but who keep their views to themselves in a strategy of self-defense. They are teachers, professors, students, and other thoughtful open-minded citizens, who can’t exercise their right to advocate a particular scientific view. They reasonably fear censorship and bullying.

Sickening, isn’t it? You can read it all if you like, but here’s our last excerpt:

Civil-liberties organizations like AU and the ACLU ought to be in the thick of the fight to protect free-expression rights for Darwin doubters. Instead, they stand firmly with the censors and the bullies.

Although it’s irrelevant to Klinghoffer’s strange message, here’s a discussion of King’s views on Darwin. From the quotes therein, we would judge his attitude to be similar to that of the Catholics — he didn’t deny that humans evolved, but he thought the soul is a divine gift. Our guess is that he wouldn’t agree with the Discoveroids — and they probably know it — but they’re willing to exploit him anyway.

Copyright © 2017. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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13 responses to “Discoveroids on Martin Luther King Day

  1. If someone can explain why ID would be a valid research kind of discussion at NASA/JPL. Why would an employer be expected to put up with a guy promoting some issue at work and bothering people that wasn’t related at work?

  2. How many people get in trouble with fundamentalist institutions because they doubt that Noah’s Flood was world-wide? What are the chances for someone at the Discovery Institute who expresses reservations about the coherence of Irreducible Complexity?

  3. Michael Fugate

    Perhaps the DI should start bestowing sainthoods on their supposed ID martyrs. Saint David of the Coppedge has a nice ring to it.

  4. Michael Fugate

    And they can have days too. The DI can hold David Coppedge Day celebrations across the land. They can even shut their offices and silence ENV in solidarity. Instead of pretending to say nothing, they can actually say nothing – won’t everyone be better off?

  5. The only fact is this: nobody, not a single person ever, anywhere has been fired for being an ID advocate. Not one. Not Sternberg, Coppedge, Crocker, Gonzalez – what, are there more?

    Sternberg couldn’t have been fired from the Smithsonian because he didn’t work for the Smithsonian! Coppedge was laid off because he refused to upgrade his skills, and his job was being eliminated along with 45% of the project team. Crocker was a contract hire, her contract ended and wasn’t renewed. Gonzalez didn’t make tenure because he stopped doing research, stopped publishing and didn’t bring in any grant money.

    On the other hand, Willie Dembski, an actual ID theorist – in fact, one of only two ID “theorists” the Tooters ever had – was fired from his professorship at a seminary because he wrote an article questioning the veracity of Noah’s Ark and the Great Flood. What did the Tooters say about that? Absolutely nothing. Not a peep. Nary a word. Total silence.

  6. The Wikipedia article on Dembski tells me that Dembski was not fired, but said that he was wrong about the Flood.

  7. robnorman2015

    Appropriating this grievance is insulting to those who have suffered REAL civil rights injustice!

  8. >I’ve observed here before that intelligent design poses not only a scientific challenge to Darwinism but also a challenge to think a little more broadly about civil rights …

    (1) Intelligent design poses a political challenge, thanks to dimwit legislators and the dupes who keep electing them, but not a scientific one.
    (2) How I ironic that K. should bring up civil rights, since if the shoe were on the other foot he and people like him would doubtless be demanding that “Darwinists” be denied the right to vote lest they elect heretics like themselves. Dr. King must have turned over in his grave.

  9. Ceteris Paribus

    Klinghoffer does have a grievance to proclaim. But a pitifully mawkish and unnecessary one to set out on this particular day of the calendar. But, even that fact sheds light on what goes on inside the rat hole in which the DI works.

    In his speech of 1967 MLK jr said

    “The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice”.

    And he was correct. But it was a long time in coming, considering that the root of MLK’s hopes is found 200 years earlier. When Thomas Jefferson said:

    “We hold these Truths to be self-evident, that all ……”

    One wonders how the sanctified religious bigots at the DI have nothing better to do with their time than to whine about their sense of “injustice”. Consider that the MLK quote follows from a speech by the anti-slavery abolitionist, Theodore Parker .

    “I do not pretend to understand the moral universe; the arc is a long one, my eye reaches but little ways; I cannot calculate the curve and complete the figure by the experience of sight; I can divine it by conscience. And from what I see I am sure it bends towards justice.”

  10. When believers in Intelligent Design are:

    1) denied housing;
    2) denied the right to vote;
    3) denied educational opportunities (other than self-inflicted);
    4) stopped by police for “Driving While Ignorant”:
    5) shot by police for “appearing to be a threat”;
    6) denied employment;
    7) charged much higher interest rates simply because of their beliefs;
    and
    8) spat upon by “thought bigots”;

    then perhaps they would have a complaint as serious as M.L. King’s.

  11. If I recall correctly, Demski was threatened with being fired if he didn’t recant his position and accept a literal interpretation of Noah’s flood.

  12. This seems to be Dembski’s own account of the affair:

    https://billdembski.com/disillusion-with-fundamentalism/

  13. @ TomS: Thanks for that link, v. interesting.

    Here’s my favourite money quote from Dembski:

    I’m an old-earth creationist

    …But, but, Klinghoffer whines and whimpers whenever anyone calls the Disco’Tooters by the ‘C’-word!