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Jerry Coyne’s Witch-Hunting Ways

Jerry Coyne’s Witch-Hunting Ways

If the essence of witch-hunting is in its minute inquiry, condemnation, and eventual throttling of what is feared as supernatural, then there’s a witch-hunt going on today in the most unlikely of places: among atheists in academia. The self-appointed magistrate in charge of this beady-eyed hunt for bewitchery is Dr. Jerry Coyne, professor of biology at the University of Chicago. Last April on his “Why Evolution Is True” blog he exposed an Honors course being taught by Dr. Eric Hedin…

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Darwin’s Doubt Available for Pre-Order

Darwin’s Doubt Available for Pre-Order

They say you can’t tell a book by its cover. Not unless you’re Jerry Coyne, that is. He is quite certain that Stephen Meyer’s forthcoming book Darwin’s Doubt is a sellout on the part of publisher HarperCollins: nothing but God-of-the-Gaps. Nice work to be able to tell that kind of thing without having to bother reading it. Reminds me of Meyer’s last book, Signature in the Cell,which was also roundly pummeled by reviewers who hadn’t read it. At least most…

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Sorting Out My “Is This Not Also Hatred?” Reaction

Sorting Out My “Is This Not Also Hatred?” Reaction

Soon after I posted on “While Atheists Accuse Christians of Hatred” yesterday, Crude asked me to write a commentary on it. I didn’t, because I didn’t have anything more substantial to say about it. It hit me on a purely emotional level, or so I thought. With the help of some more of the comments I’ve been able to sort out what really bothered me about it. Thanks go especially to TFBW and to Kevin for helping me figure myself…

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Dishonesty Is As Dishonesty Does

Dishonesty Is As Dishonesty Does

This morning I posted a comment at New Atheist provocateur Jerry Coyne’s blog, “Why Evolution Is True.” I was somewhat surprised he let it out of moderation, because in the past he hasn’t let me comment there, except when he could twist my words to his purposes. When I saw how he handled it, though, I had no cause for surprise. What he did, predictably enough in hindsight, was to admit my comment aboard so he could laugh at it…

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Sophisticated Biology™

Sophisticated Biology™

Jerry Coyne has been running a series of posts on “Sophisticated Theologians™.” Here’s how they all go (check it out if you don’t believe me): Pick any difficult topic in theology, find someone who presents a non-obvious answer, call it “Sophisticated Theology™,” and laugh at it. Coyne never bothers to consider whether the non-obvious answer actually makes sense within a theistic framework. If a theologian says it, and if it’s not obvious, it’s Sophisticated Theology™, an object of pure mockery….

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How Deeply Atheism Can Corrupt Rationality

How Deeply Atheism Can Corrupt Rationality

Jerry Coyne, the University of Chicago biologist, is nothing if not dependable. When he takes religion to task for errors in thinking, you can always count on him demonstrating difficulties with rationality. Most recently he was upbraiding Father Alexander Lucie-Smith for writing in the Catholic Herald. He quotes Fr. Lucie-Smith: Here is a saying that I find particularly problematic: “The universe we observe has precisely the properties we should expect if there is, at bottom, no design, no purpose, no…

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Coyne Explains His Philosophical Superiority Over Plantinga

Coyne Explains His Philosophical Superiority Over Plantinga

Jerry Coyne explains today why Alvin Plantinga is “so in violation of the normal canons of reason,” such an “infuriating” example of the “drivel” that “passes for sophisticated philosophy in theology.” Plantinga missed this possibility, you see: Couldn’t God, if he’s omnipotent, commit divine suicide? And he really ought to understand, says Coyne, that God need not be viewed as the First Cause, for just like God, as we know, the Universe could have “caused” itself. Take that, Dr. Plantinga!…

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Rejecting Knowledge for the Sake of Science?

Rejecting Knowledge for the Sake of Science?

Jerry Coyne and others may think it makes sense to reject knowledge for the sake of science. They’re wrong. Here’s a great case in point, though, from a transcription Coyne provided of a talk given by Michael Gazzaniga. “If you think about it this way, if you are a Martian coming by earth and looking at all these humans and then looking at how they work you wouldn’t—it would never dawn on you to say, ‘Well, now, this thing needs…

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