I was initially invited to attend the Dutch event as an independent journalist by one of its organizers—-University of Amsterdam computational biologist Jaap Kaandorp—-during an interview we did a couple of weeks ago about his research on corals. However, after I made all necessary travel arrangements, Kaandorp—-who thinks natural selection “is still kind of a major event in the evolution of organisms”—-emailed saying Konrad Lorentz Institute protested my attendance and that my invitation was cancelled. Furthermore, KLI had so poisoned the waters, that Kaandorp asked me not to run the interview we did. More.
The issue was her 2009 book The Altenberg 16: An Exposé of the Evolution Industry (2009), which details the serious discussions a number of evolution scholars had been having around why Darwinism isn’t working any more. She got disinvited from that meeting too but published her interviews with participants. The interviews give us a shrewd idea of what was probably said and the book should definitely be in your collection if you follow the issues around Darwinism closely.
Mazur’s later book, Public Evolution Summit, brings us up to date to last fall, so get that one too. Read up on what is happening before Nature weighs in to tell us that Nothing is Happening.
Obviously, disinviting journalists other than obedience-trained house pets causes onlookers to think that things are even worse than they might actually be. I mean, the Dutch are behaving as if they had staked everything on the equivalent of Piltdown Man. And surely it’s not that bad… Or…
Keep the file open.
Update October 25, 2017: Gerd Müller at the Lorenz Center (U Amsterdam) has responded:
At the KLI we know nothing about protesting your attendance, poisoning waters, or a “disinvite” from the D’Arcy Thompson meeting. Jaap Kaandorp cannot speak in the name of the KLI, and neither is Johannes Jäger its director (he left in June this year). Whatever these persons may or may not have said or done, it is unrelated to the KLI.
Why don’t they help save the environment by livestreaming the whole thing, the way so many of us do now?
Sources tell us that the meet is about big data and computational biology. Maybe papers will follow. That’s certainly a hot topic.
See also: From Biology Direct: Darwinism, now thoroughly detached from its historical roots as a falsifiable theory, “must be abandoned”