Monday, July 07, 2008

PZ Myers on Point of Inquiry - Part 2

Here is the second part of the Point of Inquiry interview with PZ Myers (first part here). The problem is again about making atheism and evolution almost synonymous with each other (or worse, creating an impression that science necessarily leads to atheism). DJ Grothe does a good job here of pushing Myers on the mixing of the messages of spreading science with spreading atheism and its effects on the National Center for Science Education. I do completely agree with PZ Myers' views about Expelled and how they truly misled people into giving interviews about science & religion interaction and then inserting those clips into a movie about ID. This is a good interview - if you have half an hour, give it a listen.

Here is the description of the program:
In this discussion with D.J. Grothe, P.Z. Myers details his expulsion from a screening of Expelled, Ben Stein's documentary which claims that the scientific community is limiting academic freedom by not allowing Intelligent Design to be taught or discussed in the schools. He explains the background of how he and other scientists were invited to appear in the film under false pretenses, and what his response has been. He addresses "focus groups" and other marketing methods for finding the best way to communicate science to the public. Calling himself part of the "radical fringe," he elaborates on his view that leading science organizations such as the American Association for the Advancement for Science and the National Academies of Science are "playing a shell game" on the public when it comes to teaching the compatibility of science with religion, arguing instead that there is a direct link between science education and religious skepticism. And he also shares his thoughts about the future of the atheist and rationalist movement in the United States.
Listen to the podast here.