Darwin-doubting often based on science and not just religion; Dover opinion is worthless
I believe the central reason we have such massive problems with the teaching of evolution to be precisely this — millions of America believe, incorrectly, that they must give up their faith in order to learn about it or accept it. This misconception is highly prevalent, and is regularly reinforced in a number of ways: Through the media, by church leaders, by the New Atheists, and so on.
If this incorrect view could somehow be dislodged, then, we might also have a better chance of defusing tensions over the teaching of evolution, and thereby improving “scientific literacy” . . .
The Darwinists have deluded themselves into thinking that all they have to do is persuade the fundies that evolution is compatible with the bible and then everything will be hunky-dory.
Geocentrism, like creationism, is supported by the bible, but the fundies accept heliocentrisn but not evolution because they find the scientific evidence to be persuasive for heliocentrism but not for evolution. There is a lot of evidence for an old earth and some evidence for common descent, but the net evidence is actually against an evolutionary process that was driven solely by natural genetic variation and natural selection. Teaching that such an evolutionary process is fact is lying to students.
Another mirage is Darwinists' belief that the fundies reject evolution in order to maintain a belief in the inerrancy of the bible. But that belief in biblical inerrancy has already been undermined by the bible's erroneous teaching of geocentrism.[link]
Yet another Darwinist myth is that all they have to do is persuade the clergy that evolution is compatible with religion and then the faithful will follow the clergy like sheep following a Judas goat. The infamous Clergy Letter Project is an example of this kind of thinking. But, for example, a lot of Catholics don't follow the church's very strict teachings about abortion, so why should Catholics follow the church's teaching about evolution?
Loony Mooney's post also praises the Kitzmilller v. Dover decision, but that decision should not be taken seriously. Judge John "Jackass" Jones is a crackpot activist judge who showed extreme lack of restraint in the Dover opinion because he knew that the opinion was unlikely to be reviewed by higher courts because the school board was unlikely to appeal because of a change in the school board membership as a result of an election. The extreme one-sidedness of the Dover opinion's ID-as-science section, which was copied nearly verbatim from the plaintiffs' opening post-trial brief while ignoring the defendants' opening post-trial brief and the plaintiffs' and defendants' answering post-trial briefs, is evidence of this lack of restraint. If Judge Jones had anticipated an appeal, he probably would have -- as a precaution -- addressed the defendants' arguments about ID-as-science even if he thought those arguments were bad. Judge Jones lied when he said that the school board election results would not affect his decision. And after the release of the decision, Judge Jones gave further evidence of what a big crackpot activist he really is. For example, he showed extreme prejudice against intelligent design and the Dover defendants -- regardless of whether or not ID is a religious concept -- by stating in a Dickinson College commencement speech that his Dover decision was based on his cockamamie notion that the Founders based the establishment clause upon a belief that organized religions are not "true" religions. [link] Also, he has extolled "judicial independence" and "the rule of law," charging that critics of his Dover opinion have no respect for those things. [link]
Some bloggers' reactions to Mooney's debate with Coyne are discussed here. Mooney has another follow-up post here.