Luther College prof Robert F. Shedinger has two books, Jesus and Jihad: Reclaiming the Prophetic Heart of Christianity and Islam and The Mystery of Evolutionary Mechanisms: Darwinian Biology’s Grand Narrative of Triumph and the Subversion of Religion. It appears that, although the intention was to talk about both books, the design controversy stole the show.
Shedinger calls Allison Hopper’s piece in Scientific American, “startlingly vacuous,” which raises — once again — the question of why on earth the mag published it. It’s not as if there is no scholarship on the topic of Darwin and racism. Did the editors not want to address that scholarship? Well, we can’t read minds but we can make some reasonable guesses. How about: Create a big uproar and hope everyone will focus on that and not on the topic at hand? Shedinger also notes perceptively, “One does not become racist because of the view one holds on human origins. One becomes racist for other complex reasons and then reads that racism back into whatever view on human origins you hold.”
Shedinger: But how could a similar series of mutations of the sort necessary to produce similarly structured eyes in different lineages occur so many times independently if the mutations are randomly produced?
Shedinger: “ Darwinism… in more recent times has grown into a philosophical grand narrative designed to naturalize and normalize a fully materialist worldview.” Indeed. And that’s WHY there is so much controversy over teaching Darwinism in tax-supported schools with compulsory attendance.
Shedinger, author of The Mystery of Evolutionary Mechanisms: Darwinian Biology’s Grand Narrative of Triumph and the Subversion of Religion (Cascade, 2019), offers some thoughts on origin-of-life theorist Paul Davies’ decades-long dance around design in nature.
“this literature was far more scientifically substantive than the usual caricature, and this drove me to immerse myself in the scientific literature of evolutionary biology to see if it was as convincing as usually portrayed.” Um, yes. And the longer such critiques can be evaded rather than addressed, the more substantive they will be.