Jerry Coyne, who teaches evolutionary biology at the University of Chicago, long ago took upon himself the role of Grand Inquisitor of Modern Atheism. On his Why Evolution is True blog he routinely informs us of the latest heresies against Atheistic/Darwinian orthodoxy. Some of the heretics he has “outed” are academics of the highest caliber (all of whom are non-believers by the way): Jerry Fodor – Rutgers, James Shapiro – University of Chicago, George Church – The Wyss Institute of Harvard University, Thomas Nagel – NYU, and of course, Discovery Institute Fellow, Dr. David Berlinski.
Recently, Coyne’s zealousness has reached a new fever pitch. He now self-righteously points a finger and proclaims “I Accuse!” at a major publishing house that dared to publish a book without prior ideological approval from…..Dr. Jerry Coyne! On June 18, HarperCollins is officially releasing Dr. Stephen Meyer’s new book entitled Darwin’s Doubt: The Explosive Origin of Animal Life and the Case for Intelligent Design. Coyne had this to say on Why Evolution is True, 4/17/13:
“This isn’t an ad for an upcoming book showing that Jesus caused the Cambrian explosion of animal life (the rapid origin of many phyla about 540 million years ago); rather it’s an indictment of a once-reputable publisher, HarperCollins, who under the imprint of HarperOne is going to publish this book in June.”
Coyne candidly admits that the Cambrian Explosion poses serious questions for evolutionary biologists and that – at present – there is no definitive scientific explanation:
“There are of course many theories for why so many phyla originated within a short time…my former colleague, paleontologist Charles Marshall, summarized many of them, concluding that we can’t yet lean strongly toward one explanation, even toward one key factor. That’s the way science works, when we don’t know, we say so.”
Coyne, however, presents an alarmingly dishonest and distorted picture of Dr. Meyer’s explanation of the explosion of life that took place in the Cambrian period:
“But creationist Stephen Meyer, from the Discovery Institute, has apparently wrapped up the story. He’s hit upon the real reason for the Cambrian explosion: it’s intelligent design! Yes, baby Jesus made the phyla. As the ID blog, Evolution News and Views notes when touting the book: Here is a sweeping account…of the frontiers of the scientific critique of Darwinism and the case for ID…he demonstrates that the weaknesses of orthodox evolutionary theory…are precisely the positive indications that point most persuasively to intelligent design. Evolutionary biologists…have come tantalizingly close to reaching this conclusion themselves.”
To which Coyne adds: “Tantalizingly close? My yiddishe tuchus! [my Jewish butt]…I doubt that [any evolutionist working on this problem] would entertain intelligent design for a second.”
(I guess that Coyne – by pointing out to his readers that his “tuchus” is Jewish – wanted to remove all doubt that he might entertain ideas about “baby Jesus” creating new phyla. Anyone who is familiar with Coyne’s blog knows that he –as a passionately committed atheist – has real confusion about his Jewish identity. )
Of course, Dr. Meyer – who was a geophysicist with Atlantic Richfield and has a PhD in the history and philosophy of science from Cambridge University – makes no references to Christianity in Darwin’s Doubt. However, if Dr. Meyer’s commitment to Christianity itself offers us grounds to question his scientific analysis and conclusions, then Coyne’s zealous ideological commitment to materialism/atheism would likewise offer us grounds to question the scientific analysis and conclusions reached in Coyne’s book, Why Evolution is True, published in 2009.
Professor Coyne closes his tirade with a finish that would do any fanatic proud:
“Shame on him [Meyer], but even more shame on HarperCollins for feeding and misleading the public with creationism masquerading as science. Have they no shame at long last?” [as the crowd jumps to its feet roaring “Praise Darwin! Praise Darwin!]
Dr. Coyne, if you want to criticize Meyer’s work on its own merits, then by all means; but condemning a publishing house for publishing a book that challenges your views?! That is a clear indication that your emotional commitment to your atheistic ideology has skewered your rational faculties. That is real grounds for us to doubt your ability to approach this subject with any objectivity at all. Shame on you Dr. Coyne, shame on you. I will add a free piece of advice: As increasing numbers of fiery arrows – launched by critics of Darwinian orthodoxy - find their mark and the Darwinian edifice burns around you, it might be advisable to put down the fiddle and start taking note of the location of the nearest exit.
Rabbi Moshe Averick is an orthodox rabbi, a regular columnist for the Algemeiner Journal, and author of Nonsense of a High Order: The Confused and Illusory World of the Atheist. It is available on Amazon.com and Kindle. Rabbi Averick can be reached via his website. If you wish to be informed when new articles appear, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with the email address and the word “Subscribe” in the subject line.