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Science writer dons sandwich board: Ask me anything about evolution!

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Consider the Platypus: Evolution through Biology's Most Baffling Beasts by [Sandford, Maggie Ryan]

At the Minnesota State Fair. And wrote it up at Nature:

I went to the Minnesota State Fair last year wearing a sandwich board. It said, “Ask me anything about evolution.” Proponents of evolution assumed I was a religious zealot. Creationists assumed I was there to mock their beliefs. The biggest challenge in fighting misinformation? Just getting a conversation started.

This public-engagement stunt taught me a crucial lesson: the key to effective science communication isn’t the science. It’s communication.

Maggie Ryan Sandford, “You can’t fight feelings with facts: start with a chat” at Nature, 578, 339 (20 February 2020) | doi: 10.1038/d41586-020-00452-3

But why on earth did she think that such a strategy would ever be an aid to effective communication?

Wasn’t she, at bottom, just trying to put the supposedly stupid mid-Western rubes on display for the supposedly sophisticated Brits? That stuff is wearing thinner all the time though the targeted Brit demographic might be the last to know.

The patronization and self-indulgence are instructive—but then so many science outlets are bowing deeply to the raging Woke as well. So expect much more (and nastier) nonsense to come down the pike than this stuff.

The remarkable thing is that so many fascinating things are happening today in the study of the ancient past. It’s not a good sign for the defenders of “evolution” (Darwinism?) that they can think of nothing better to sponsor than this stuff.

Science writer Sanford is the author of Consider the Platypus: Evolution through Biology’s Most Baffling Beasts.

5 Replies to “Science writer dons sandwich board: Ask me anything about evolution!

  1. 1
    asauber says:

    “The biggest challenge in fighting misinformation? Just getting a conversation started.”

    In all fairness, this is the same problem I have. There are only a few of us (relatively speaking) that are at all interested in Evolution-related conversation to begin with.

    People are content with being misinformed. It’s better for them to conform to their comfortable culture than it is to discover and hold on to the truth, which might cause them problems.

    Andrew

  2. 2
    Fasteddious says:

    As a fun exercise, let’s start listing questions that people could have asked her. Questions that would have disturbed her (presumably) unassailable belief in her own knowledge of the subject. How about, “Where do all the unique ORFAN genes come from?” Or, “why do evolutionary trees derived from different genes in the same species yield different and incompatible trees?”
    Let’s start a collection of such questions to ask Neo-Darwinists. Probably someone has already done this, so if you have a link to such a list, I’d like to see it.
    Thanks!

  3. 3
    Truthfreedom says:

    Question: why the stupid dichotomy ‘artificial’ selection/ ‘natural’ selection if they are the same (we humans are natural).
    Thanks.

  4. 4
    EDTA says:

    How cute. Oh well, I guess everyone has to learn these basic facts about human nature and people’s beliefs somewhere.

  5. 5
    bornagain77 says:

    as to this comment from the article:

    I pointed out how humans can build muscle by eating cow protein, because of our shared ancestry.

    So following her ‘reasoning’, the further from ‘shared ancestry’ we have with the animal and/or plant then the less we should be able to build muscle, Yet, whey protein and fish are considered excellent body building proteins.

    GO FISH: FOR ONE OF THE BEST PROTEIN FOODS FOR BODYBUILDERS
    Bodybuilders who steer away from seafood completely are missing the boat in the nutrition department. Fish offers many benefits, from easy-to-digest amino acids on par with whey protein to an array of minerals that support testosterone and thyroid functions.
    http://www.simplyshredded.com/.....lders.html

    So much for her first claim of shared ancestry. She goes on,

    Advocates of evolution often hadn’t learnt that evolution can now be tracked in genomes, , not just fossils,

    Actually, the fossil record is far more discordant with evolution than she has apparently falsely been led to believe and genomes also reveal something far different than gradual evolution,

    Günter Bechly video: Fossil Discontinuities: A Refutation of Darwinism and Confirmation of Intelligent Design – 2018
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M7w5QGqcnNs
    The fossil record is dominated by abrupt appearances of new body plans and new groups of organisms. This conflicts with the gradualistic prediction of Darwinian Evolution. Here 18 explosive origins in the history of life are described, demonstrating that the famous Cambrian Explosion is far from being the exception to the rule. Also the fossil record establishes only very brief windows of time for the origin of complex new features, which creates an ubiquitous waiting time problem for the origin and fixation of the required coordinated mutations. This refutes the viability of the Neo-Darwinian evolutionary process as the single conceivable naturalistic or mechanistic explanation for biological origins, and thus confirms Intelligent Design as the only reasonable alternative.

    This Could Be One of the Most Important Scientific Papers of the Decade – July 23, 2018
    Excerpt: Now we come to Dr. Ewert’s main test. He looked at nine different databases that group genes into families and then indicate which animals in the database have which gene families. For example, one of the nine databases (Uni-Ref-50) contains more than 1.8 million gene families and 242 animal species that each possess some of those gene families. In each case, a dependency graph fit the data better than an evolutionary tree.
    This is a very significant result. Using simulated genetic datasets, a comparison between dependency graphs and evolutionary trees was able to distinguish between multiple evolutionary scenarios and a design scenario. When that comparison was done with nine different real genetic datasets, the result in each case indicated design, not evolution. Please understand that the decision as to which model fit each scenario wasn’t based on any kind of subjective judgement call. Dr. Ewert used Bayesian model selection, which is an unbiased, mathematical interpretation of the quality of a model’s fit to the data. In all cases Dr. Ewert analyzed, Bayesian model selection indicated that the fit was decisive. An evolutionary tree decisively fit the simulated evolutionary scenarios, and a dependency graph decisively fit the computer programs as well as the nine real biological datasets.
    http://blog.drwile.com/this-co.....he-decade/

    as to this comment she made,

    humans are related to all living things, and that we didn’t come from apes because we are apes

    LOL, golly gee whiz, no evolution needed if we are already apes. 🙂 Anyways, the supposed evidence for human evolution is highly misleading and when examined closely, reveals that we are definitely NOT ‘apes’:

    https://uncommondescent.com/intelligent-design/at-texas-m-last-week-theistic-evolutionist-joshua-swamidass-vs-id-proponent-michael-behe/#comment-693556
    and
    https://uncommondescent.com/intelligent-design/at-texas-m-last-week-theistic-evolutionist-joshua-swamidass-vs-id-proponent-michael-behe/#comment-693590

    Interestingly, her emphasis on ‘communication’, i.e. ‘speech’, in her article is highly ironic since speech is one of the best proofs against evolution:

    In 2014, a group of leading experts in this area of language research, authored a paper in which they stated,,,

    Leading Evolutionary Scientists Admit We Have No Evolutionary Explanation of Human Language – December 19, 2014
    Excerpt: Understanding the evolution of language requires evidence regarding origins and processes that led to change. In the last 40 years, there has been an explosion of research on this problem as well as a sense that considerable progress has been made. We argue instead that the richness of ideas is accompanied by a poverty of evidence, with essentially no explanation of how and why our linguistic computations and representations evolved.,,,
    (Marc Hauser, Charles Yang, Robert Berwick, Ian Tattersall, Michael J. Ryan, Jeffrey Watumull, Noam Chomsky and Richard C. Lewontin, “The mystery of language evolution,” Frontiers in Psychology, Vol 5:401 (May 7, 2014).)
    Casey Luskin added: “It’s difficult to imagine much stronger words from a more prestigious collection of experts.”
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....92141.html

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