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John Patterson — Now and Then

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John Patterson is one of the Iowa State faculty currently opposing ID and Guillermo Gonzalez (go here). Patterson, an avowed atheist, has a history of censoring ideas inconsistent with his atheism. As one of my colleagues reports:

The current controversy at Iowa State Univ. about
Guillermo Gonzalez has a precedent involving the ISU
emeritus professor of engineering John (Jack) Patterson.
About 20 years ago, Patterson proposed giving
ISU professors the power to fail students who disagreed
with Darwinian evolution — whatever the students’
actual performance in science courses.

In other words, if a biology student earned an “A” in
his or her work, but nevertheless rejected Darwinism,
professors should be allowed to flunk him.

One summary of Patterson’s proposal and its
reception by the ISU community at the time
is available here:


Ken Frazier, the editor of Skeptical Inquirer, also
covered the situation in a series of articles (see
e.g., “Science and Creationism at Iowa State,” Skeptical
vol 4 no 2). The ISU student paper also
covered the controversy.

I don’t know if Patterson has changed his views
about his proposal in the intervening two decades.
It would be interesting to ask him.

So, John, have the last 20 years made you more or less of a bigot?

Here is yet another Iowa Student that Patterson would persecute. This Senior in Engineering shows that he is well schooled in ID literature. I would not be surprised if is versed in the works of another ID friendly engineer by the name of Walter Bradley as he quotes Bradley's ideas. http://www.iowastatedaily.com/vnews/display.v/ART/2005/09/01/43166cddc62d7 It is heart-warming to see the students of science coming to Gonzalez defense and taking a position opposite that of the professor of Religion, Hector Avalos. And here is yet another senior at Iowa Sate in a scientific discipline coming to ID's defense. This so heart warming to see. The following student may have even watched Unlocking the Mystery of Life as he quotes Crick. http://www.iowastatedaily.com/vnews/display.v/ART/2005/08/26/430e71f6ae224?in_archive=1 scordova
Patterson 1983: "I suggest that every professor should reserve the right to fail any student in his class no matter what the grade record indicates, whenever basic misunderstandings of a certain magnitude are discovered. Moreover, I would propose retracting grades and possibly even degrees if such gross misunderstandings are publicly espoused after passing the course, or after being graduated…." http://telicthoughts.com/?p=251 Analyysi
Here is one Iowa State biology senior that would have been a target of Patterson's proposed inquisition: http://www.iowastatedaily.com/vnews/display.v/ART/2005/08/26/430e714b58aca?in_archive=1 scordova
I'm still in shock at hearing that biology in Iowa is about more than corn, hogs, and chickes. Some stereotypes, exspecially the well deserved, die hard. DaveScot
John Patterson an avowed atheist with a phd huh ?. im actually surprised that an atheist of all people purports to have a ph.d ?. [gosh, is that even possible, real even] im calling this into question, after all he being an atheist and a devout evolutionist... was probably using his "un designed" & therefor [relied highly on his] naturally selected mutated evolved brain to get a ph.d. ?. what really happened was probably, he went home one day [couple zips on da booze] got some printer paper and used his home pc to print out this phd [ im right, right ?] or did he actually use his designed brain for once and actually earn a phd ?. it's so funny to think to have all that smarts and then trash his own brain that got him a bbc, ccd, add, oh right that was ph. wha ? sadly another case [ tragic really ] of phd smarts that have gone away like the dodo Charlie Charliecrs
Require each malefactor to wear a scarlett "J" on their lapel. It'll make it that much easier to round them up. nostrowski
Immature and cowardly, but not particularly surpising. mechanicalbirds

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