PZ Myers continues to field creationists’ demands for debate with scientists:
Carl Wieland, the creationist clown from Australia, wrote a bitter article denouncing atheists and scientists for refusing to give him a platform to yodel nonsense on, and one of the things he did was link to my my public refusal to debate him. Unfortunately, what that meant is that all of his Too-Stupid-To-Know-They’re-Stupid acolytes came charging over to declare that creationism was too scientific, evolutionism is a religion, scientists are afraid to debate their pet idiots, you’re all mean poopyheads who call us names, yadda yadda yadda. It’s turned into a regular storm of argument that has filled up the thread with over 1100 comments.
I don’t have much to add to the discussion of whether scientists should debate creationists. I’m just going to indulge in a tangent off Prof. Myers’s paraphrasing of creationist assertions that creationism is too scientific and that evolutionism is a religion.
Specifically, I want to talk about the claim of evolutionary theory as religion.
My question–and I’ve been wondering about this for some time–is, what is that supposed to mean, “evolutionism is a religion”? Is religion supposed to be a good thing, or is it not?
Why is it that “religion” means a belief or idea is sacred, moral and exempt from criticism, if it involves going to a place called a church (or any recognized house of worship) to worship God, but, when the “religion” in question takes place in a laboratory and examines evidence, then “religion” means it has no truth value and can be dismissed without evidence?
Why is it that we’re horrible, shrill, strident, intolerant people for examining the religion of a person who believes the Earth is roughly 6,000 years old, but evolutionary theory (or biology, or science in general) is “just a religion” as if it’s no more valid than anyone else’s opinion?
In fact, here’s another question that’s been bugging me for some time now: