left biblioblography: CRY RACIST!

Monday, August 21, 2006

CRY RACIST!

This particular maimed meme is being trotted out lately, and to be blunt, not only is it stupid, it’s infuriating.

Courtesy of God4suckers.net via Pharyngula, from the Raw Story:”New Christian broadcasting TV special featuring Ann Coulter blames Darwin for Hitler”
(SNIP)"Author and Christian broadcaster Dr. D. James Kennedy connects the dots between Charles Darwin and Adolf Hitler in Darwin’s Deadly Legacy, a groundbreaking inquiry into Darwin’s chilling social impact," announces a press release issued by Florida's Coral Ridge Ministries. "The new television documentary airs nationwide on August 26 and 27 on The Coral Ridge Hour."(SNIP END)

Now both these worthies have covered this, but prior to this, I got into it with a bozo at the NGB, here prior to reading these posts (the clown was posing by the monicker of ‘question’: talk about hubris! People posturing as a philosophical concept? Puh-LEASE!), and truth be told, I laid into him pretty hard. He brought up the Scopes trial (GROAN – not that old chestnut!), claiming several experts had been called to the stand (I buggered him on that one). I also pulled a reversal on him with this – of course, being a theist, he was NEVER wrong.

But it prompted me to pick up a copy of the ‘atheist bible’ (that’s actually what this idiot called it). A very old, second-hand copy of DARWIN SELECTED AND EDITED by NORTON CRITICAL EDITIONS (circa 1970).
Honestly, it’s a hard read: there are a few humorous commentaries on drunken monkeys in the Descent of Man. I scanned the index: a few references to Negroes (four in all), a lot of supplementary commentary surrounding the main works. I haven’t quite finished it.

Not content with my lot (am I ever?), I started googling around. Came across this:


“With savages, the weak in body or mind are soon eliminated; and those that survive commonly exhibit a vigorous state of health. We civilised men, on the other hand, do our utmost to check the process of elimination; we build asylums for the imbecile, the maimed, and the sick; we institute poor-laws; and our medical men exert their utmost skill to save the life of every one to the last moment. There is reason to believe that vaccination has preserved thousands, who from a weak constitution would formerly have succumbed to small-pox. Thus the weak members of civilised societies propagate their kind. No one who has attended to the breeding of domestic animals will doubt that this must be highly injurious to the race of man. It is surprising how soon a want of care, or care wrongly directed, leads to the degeneration of a domestic race; but excepting in the case of man himself, hardly any one is so ignorant as to allow his worst animals to breed.”

Note the emphais: apparently this John West only reads selectively. First off, everything I’ve read to date from the two theses gives me the distinct impression that these are observations only. Second off, the sharp-eyed reader may note the passage at the end, where it is qualified as ‘excepting in the case of man himself’.
Third off, from the article:” [See Darwin, Descent (1871), vol. I, pp.109-110, 160, 201, 216.] In the same book, Darwin disparaged blacks and observed that the break in evolutionary history between apes and humans fell "between the Negro or Australian and the gorilla," indicating that he considered blacks the humans that were the most ape-like.”

Here is the passage in its entirety:
“The great break in the organic chain between man and his nearest allies, which cannot be bridged over by any extinct or living species, has often been advanced as a grave objection to the belief that man is descended from some lower form; but this objection will not appear of much weight to those who, from general reasons, believe in the general principle of evolution. Breaks often occur in all parts of the series, some being wide, sharp and defined, others less so in various degrees; as between the orang and its nearest allies- between the Tarsius and the other Lemuridae- between the elephant, and in a more striking manner between the Ornithorhynchus or Echidna, and all other mammals. But these breaks depend merely on the number of related forms which have become extinct. At some future period, not very distant as measured by centuries, the civilised races of man will almost certainly exterminate, and replace, the savage races throughout the world. At the same time the anthropomorphous apes, as Professor Schaaffhausen has remarked, will no doubt be exterminated. The break between man and his nearest allies will then be wider, for it will intervene between man in a more civilised state, as we may hope, even than the Caucasian, and some ape as low as a baboon, instead of as now between the negro or Australian and the gorilla.”

So as you can see, Darwin was in no way equivocating black people with apes. True, he was a 19th CE Englishman, and he did indeed have a Eurocentric viewpoint, but past that, he hardly qualified for membership in the KKK. He wrote quite eloquently upon the mistreatment of slaves: he was against slavery: and was an abolitionist. Would he have married a woman of another color? Chances are pretty strong he wouldn’t have. Hardly pegs the man as a white-hood wearing white trash wackinoid riding on the hood of a car in Memphis. He was nowhere near being as enlightened as we are in this modern age in regards to race. I might turn the creationists’ view to this little footnote:
“Some men of that time (such as Louis Agassiz, a staunch creationist) went so far as to say they were a different species.”

And this website, that touts itself as ‘Evolution News’ is sponsored by…three guesses. Yep, got it in one: the Discovery Institute! (Note: you have to poke around to discover this).

So, in a nutshell:Was Darwin a racist? Most probably. Was he a White Power Supremacist? Obviously not. He was a product of his time and age: were you or I raised in the 19th CE, we’d probably have the same backward idiosyncrasies. Am I an apologist for this? No. I am pointing out the facts of the matter. Was he correct in this? NO. Did Hitler ever mention Darwin’s alleged ‘influence’ on him? NEVER. Does this impact the multiple fields that have evolutionary at their core?

Don’t make me laugh.

This is one (of many) problems I have with creationism. Never mind they’ve contributed absolutely nothing to the scientific community. Never mind that if you were to strip these folks of the evolutionary theory attack, they’d topple over at the first light breeze. Let’s skip the fact that they use sophistry and semantic gymnastics to cobble together a vicious meme:

They’re dishonest.

And I can’t stand liars. “Half a truth mixed with half a lie is oftentimes the blackest lie of all.”

/Autorant off

Stumble Upon Toolbar

15 comments:

Mesoforte said...

There is no Bliblical or archaeological evidence that this punishment was ever carried out.

I was reading down the thing when I saw that. Amazing, I've been doing some research into archaeology recently, and it doesn't support the OT writings happening before the 7th Century Before the Common Era. What's almost ironic though is that the person writing the book is named 'Israel.'

And you wrote this-

You do realize remy's kidding?
All we have are decoder rings & secret handshakes.
Can't seem to agree on snazzier accessories. ;)


I have a jet pack personally. ^_~

I think the argument broke down when you all started joking around. After that, this 'Question' person really stopped listening.

Krystalline Apostate said...

MF:

I was reading down the thing when I saw that. Amazing, I've been doing some research into archaeology recently, and it doesn't support the OT writings happening before the 7th Century Before the Common Era. What's almost ironic though is that the person writing the book is named 'Israel.'

Ummm...is this the right thread? You've got me confused here.
I think the argument broke down when you all started joking around. After that, this 'Question' person really stopped listening.
Nah. He made his mind up looonnng before he dropped in. He was dropping innuendoes about this crap before he finally tried to 'blindside' us w/this 'startling' revelation.

Mesoforte said...

Ummm...is this the right thread? You've got me confused here.

The person wrote that as a side-note as you DNAunion and others were talking about Deuteronomy (sp?)

Jerret said...

Extremely nice post RA. I just made a post that I really like, if you'd like to check it out. I want the type of discussions there that you have here ^^.

Krystalline Apostate said...

MF:
The person wrote that as a side-note as you DNAunion and others were talking about Deuteronomy (sp?)
Oh, okay, got my threads crossed.;)

jerret:
Hey, I'll give it a look see, my friend.

GooseHenry said...

The question whether Darwin was racist or not is not the big issue.

More important is that he reduces men to mere animals.

Nature is amoral. Theories like the ones of Darwin does in fact undermine all morals.

RA, you have agreed to this yourself. If naturalism is true, morals become a convention.

loki said...

Goose, hi again, good to see you're not frightened by heathens.
More important is that he reduces men to mere animals.

Men aren't animals? We have 97.5% DNA the same as chimpanzees. (From a statistical perspective, 97.5% is ridiculously high.) If it weren't for a bigger brain and a voice box we'd be virtually the same as chimpanzees.
Nature is amoral. Theories like the ones of Darwin does in fact undermine all morals.
Truth is what I'm concerned with here. If the facts points to subjective morality and humans being a animals, then so be it.

Anonymous said...

Why is it that theists are so uncomfortable with the fact that we ARE mammals?

Terms: "men" "mere" animals: patriarchy, entitlement.

GooseHenry said...

Loki

Hi, no i am not frightened by neathens;) I would have problems at work and in the family were it so...

you said;

"If the facts points to subjective morality and humans being a animals, then so be it."

Are you going to let people tell you morals are subjective even though you intuitively feel that some things just are plain wrong and vice versa?

Krystalline Apostate said...

Goose:
The question whether Darwin was racist or not is not the big issue.
1 of those rare moments where we agree.
More important is that he reduces men to mere animals.
Hey, at least we're the highest form of animal. That's something, ain't it?;)
Nature is amoral. Theories like the ones of Darwin does in fact undermine all morals.
Oh please. Morals are a result of evolution.
RA, you have agreed to this yourself. If naturalism is true, morals become a convention.
You sure love that slippery slope, dontcha? Newsflash: everything we DO is a convention.
So are you attending the Morals Convention this year? ;)

loki said...

Are you going to let people tell you morals are subjective even though you intuitively feel that some things just are plain wrong and vice versa?

I'm not letting anyone tell me that. I look at the reality that is presented to me and decide for myself that subjective morality is the most likely case.

I don't see an objective morality because people can strongly disagree on morals. Even the big ones (murder, rape, etc), people can disagree on. I bet there are some people in this world that think its ok to murder and rape all they want.

Also, there are times where the morality of certain actions are ambiguous. For example, I would lie to save 1000 people or perhaps to spare someone's feelings. These are rare circumstances, but they demonstrate to me that there isn't some constant, unflinching set of moral rules that I'm required to follow.

Its all situational, baby

Aviaa said...

RA,

Oh please. Morals are a result of evolution.

(nods) Michael Shermer has book I really enjoyed on this topic, The Science of Good and Evil.

Krystalline Apostate said...

aviaa:
(nods) Michael Shermer has book I really enjoyed on this topic, The Science of Good and Evil.
I'll have to check that out. Thanks.
This is 1 of Goose's pet peeves: he's convinced we need an authoritarian figure in order to keep us in line. He usually skips over the vast amount of forensic evidence that has accumulated over the last CE or so, & cuts straight to the 'morality' issue.

Mesoforte said...

Are you going to let people tell you morals are subjective even though you intuitively feel that some things just are plain wrong and vice versa?

For someone that claims to be logical, you sure are illogical goose. 'Intuitively feel' is an appeal to emotion. I smell logical fallacy.

say no to christ said...

I finally got a chance to read over what the TV series is all about. I'm appalled that christians will go to any means, including flat out lies to spin doctoring to prove their hateful religion is better than reality. They make me sick! This just makes me dislike christians even more including liberals cuz they leave the door cracked for the other psychos to spew their lies all ove the airwaves.