This article is interesting but utterly impossible. Cheers to Charles J. Reid for even saying what he says, but I hope he has good body guards to keep him away from being burned at the stake. After all he has real degrees, not just from Cornell but also Catholic University which brands him as an “intellectual” (and credible even when it comes to religion) which is almost as evil as a scientists. Charles, simply put, you don’t understand the religinuts and why they oppose science and reason.
None of the anti-science attitudes of religion have anything to do with science or religion. They are all about power and its cousin, money. Ken Ham isn’t preaching what he’s preaching because he cares about science; he’s running a business and trying to increase its customer base and revenues and his power. He’s a huckster salesman, not a man of sincere spiritual belief who preys on suckers.
Science is a threat to religion, not just because it demystifies phenomenon that previously were attributed to gods. It is a threat because of its process. Scienctists observe, study and do experiments. Then they publish. Then they debate, openly and using facts and logic. When they are wrong they have to admit it. Science isn’t interesting in apologetics, in defending doctrine – it is interested in finding truth. And finding truth is a process, not one of dogmatic shouting and burning books (or people) – it is a process of dialog based on reality.
The most prestigious and accomplished scientist can be wrong and when a lowly grad student with new/better facts and new/better refinements to theories challenges authority she is listened to. The debate that will follow new ideas (and, of course, new is always allowed, not “eternal” (no such thing) truths force out new) is based on facts, logic, reason, and, most of the time, on civil discourse. Vigorous debate is fine, attacking others as enemies is not and damning them to eternal hellfire is not.
The process of religion is authoritarian. Someone gets anointed as a leader and by definition I’m wrong if I challenge them, even about religious ideas. It is that rigid authority concept that is being defended in the attacks on science, not the science itself. How dare science have an open process where anyone can present new ideas and see them accepted if there is the evidence to support them.
Science is based on a fundamental concept that facts can be found and explained and new facts may require new explanation and anyone can participate in the process. Religion is based on a closed system of belief, where you’re simply wrong if you disagree and need to be re-educated (aka brainwashed). Your choice is to believe or not believe (and that can get you killed). There is no debate. There is no challenge to authority.
Evolution and cosmology don’t challenge religion per se (only literal reading of the wrong already edited and censored set of ancient books); they challenge dogmatic and authoritarian thinking. Therefore these ideas challenge power and the pocketbooks of the “leaders” and that’s the no-no. Sheesh, if you can challenge the old myths you can challenge the new (non-biblical) ones like papal infallibility, or jesus wants us to have guns and tax cuts, or mohamed wants women kept out of sight and not allowed to drive or learn to read.
So Charles, your appeal and logic are sound, and meaningless. Religion does not permit reason, only a obedience. And not to divine authority but to mere human power. Charles, good luck to you on your appeal to reason, but you’ll get more done if you use your knowledge of law to banish religion authority out of the public domain.