In “Signature in the BioLogos” (June 28, 2011) at his The Hump of the Camel blog, retired British doctor and BioLogos contributor Jon Garvey blasts the Darwinthink treatment of Steve Meyer’s Signature in the Cell (Harper One, 2009):
What struck me in all this was that every single contribution contained at least some degree of ad hominem attack, and most included dire warnings about the damage the book threatened to science, religion, society or all three. That, combined with the protests of many that the BioLogos articles were misreprepresenting Meyer’s arguments, made a good case for assessing it carefully, my reading informed by 18 months of confutation rather than vice versa.
Briefly, reading the book made it absolutely clear to me that indeed Meyer had been misrepresented, and without any real excuse since Meyer is a good writer and makes his case clearly (and it has to be said, a lot more even-handedly than his opponents).
Francisco Ayala’s review became notorious because it was quickly evident that he had not read the book, or if, as he later claimed, he had read it, that he had very poor powers of comprehension. He wrongly quotes the title, he wrongly represents its argument as ID being just an alternative to chance, he wrongly applies it to evolution rather than Origin of Life and he ends with a theologically naive criticism of ID generally on the grounds that God could not be responsible for so many bad things in nature. Meyer is unqualified to write on science, but Ayala is, it seems, qualified to write on theology. When these observations were made by Meyer in his response, Ayala had recourse to the index of the book to justify his (quite clearly erroneous) assessment.
So the doctor joins those who think that Templeton Prize-winner Ayala (2010) noviewed the book. Even better, signing off on all that:
My personal conclusion from all this is that, since I regard strong methodlogical naturalism to be rationally and philosophically untenable, and since I hold strong theological naturalism to be theologically naive as well as unbiblical, I cannot commit myself to the BioLogos viewpoint, even as a theistic evolutionist. Darwin is not that sacred to me.
Betting here is he won’t be asked to commit to the “BioLogos viewpoint” for much longer. But why worry.As Frank Beckwith said, extricating himself from a vulgar attack by non-theist Darwinists, “Or we can be philosophers.”
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