Expelled! Film: Clumsy Creationist Marketing Ramps Up the Religion

I’ve made no secret about how big a fan of the new Intelligent Design film Expelled!, and I was one of the first to sign up to receive updates so I could find out how my church youth group, just in case I ever decide to join a church and then form one, could get involved. Having just received the latest marching orders from Motive Entertainment’s Dairek Morgan, I feel that I simply have to post it for everyone to see.

I mean, look at all the scientific evidence on display in this latest missive, without any hint of a religious agenda! Look at all the great celebrity endorsements the film has received, and from such a broad cultural spectrum of opinion. Why there’s everyone from employees of the Intelligent Design think-tank the Discovery Institute to employees of the Creationist think-tank ARN! Wow!

You’ve all signed up online to be involved in the film and I’m really thankful to have you. As a former youth pastor from Nashville, TN, the reason I took this job and am so passionate about this project is because I saw one too many of my students go off to college and be indoctrinated with a belief system that said their faith was antiquated and foolish.

My liberal arts university must have been defective, because I seem to have completely missed out on this. I can’t recall a single science teacher so much as mentioning the topic of religion in class: they were barely able to squeeze in all the science material they had to cover as it was. In fact, despite being one of the most famously liberal university campuses, religion was perfectly cool at our school, as it was at every single liberal arts school I ever spent time at. What there was was a diversity of opinion, but the biggest problem most Christians on campus faced was deciding which one of the 80 different campus-for-Christ groups to join.

Ever heard of The Blasphemy Challenge?? THIS IS WHERE THIS TEACHING LEADS – AND HOW ITS AFFECTING STUDENTS RIGHT NOW!! (www.blasphemychallenge.com) Seeing that was all I needed to know that I would throw my whole being into this project.

Yes, weep for those poor young adults, who I guess are obviously incapable of thinking for themselves. Waiting until someone is 18 until telling them about science sure is unquestionably the worst form of indoctrination imaginable: it’s not anything like teaching them to believe something right from birth, before they have any ability to question it or be skeptical of the beliefs that consume their entire social and family network.

Abe Lincoln said that “the philosophy in the schoolroom in one generation will be the philosophy of the government in the next.” Ideas have consequences. Our students are being deceived, and I know this film can help shed some light on the conversation. Faith and science are not incompatible and I believe this film will go a long way in allowing the two room to stand together in the cultural conversation.

I’m a bit confused on this part. I can’t recall even the most outspoken atheist scientists saying that there couldn’t be any cultural conversation between science and religion. In fact, these guys spend a heck of a lot of time having cultural conversations about religion, along with countless religious scientists who disagree with their views. I must be so indoctrinated that I must simply be imagining all of this debate and conversation.

Here’s what you can do to get the word out about this film to the students.

Here’s some things I’m asking you to do:

  1. Post an Expelled banner on your website/myspace: http://getexpelled.com/downloads_webbanners.php
  2. Tell your students about the film (send an ecard or just start an email chain).
  3. Organize an evening on OPENING week-end to take your students to see the film. Why not do a 7:00 showing and then an open forum discussion over ice cream afterwards?? We can send you a FREE resource kit to help advertise your event. Coming soon on www.getexpelled.com.
  4. Get your students to participate in some of our initiatives. We’ve got all kinds of contests and other ways to help them get involved in the discussion. www.getexpelled.com
  5. Educate your students on the issue. www.intelligentdesign.org is a great starting place to learn more on the topics.
  6. And if you’re REALLY up for the challenge, help your students host an EXPELLED DEBATE. More info here: http://www.getexpelled.com/debate.php


Amazing SYNERGY can happen when we all do a little. This film has the potential to change the cultural conversation in our country. I appreciate your participation.

Blessings,

Dairek
P.S. Please feel free to reply to this email and let me know what your youth/group is doing to get involved. It’s always good to know what’s happening at the “ground level”!

Dairek Morgan
Motive Entertainment
dairek@motivemarketing.biz

P.P.S. Here’s what a few of the “big dogs” are saying about the film~

You know the film must be powerful if it managed to convince everyone from James Dobson to the lead singer of a Charismatic evangelical pop band to agree that evolution is a lie. I mean, what a tough audience to win over!


“I recommend the film enthusiastically! Ben Stein’s film exposes an entrenched and aggressive Darwinist establishment in academia that suffocates all competing points of view. What Ben Stein discovers in this riveting documentary is incredibly enlightening.” – James C. Dobson, Ph.D., Chairman of the Board, Focus on the Family

“What Ben Stein is doing in this film is extremely important by opening up an honest debate in the public square where people can hear reasoned arguments on both sides and make their own conclusions. I love Ben Stein” – Chuck Colson, Radio Commentator, Founder of Prison Fellowship

“This is an enormously important project and I am so proud of the fact that Ben Stein, who is a national treasure, is part of it. People know that there is a dictatorial impulse at work in the land to shut down even the most elementary questioning of this unquestionable belief in random evolution” -Michael Medved, nationally syndicated radio host

“We highly recommend the movie to anybody. It is not only informative and challenging—it is fun to watch. Ben Stein’s interviews with avowed atheists, is well done as he elicits responses that leave grave doubt regarding their position of absolute disbelief in a creator and/or God”. – Ken Smitherman, President, Association of Christian Schools International

Now this should be fun. Most of the atheists interviewed figured they’d have their ideas on atheism and science used as boogeymen to frighten Christian America, or at worst just flat-out misrepresented. Wait till PZ Myers finds out that Stein is going to portray him as a deist on the down-low!

“EXPELLED is an engaging film. Ben Stein has given us a powerful documentary about the widespread repression of faith-friendly scientific scholarship. Along the way, he also makes a strong case for a return to civil discourse in a time when political correctness often overshadows the search for truth”. -Ronald D. Ellis, Ph.D., President, California Baptist University

“We are seeing the consequences of locking matters of faith out of our classrooms. We applaud Ben Stein for casting light on today’s challenges to academic freedom.” -Luis Palau, President, Luis Palau Association

“Propaganda molds minds in a very direct way and that is the logjam in this situation, which the Ben Stein movie, EXPELLED: No Intelligence Allowed, seeks to break through. I wish it well – I hope under God it will have a great effect just at that point.”. -Dr J.I. Packer, theologian

“Expelled blows the lid off the heavy-handed tactics within the scientific community to crush dissenters who dare to question Darwinism. This entertaining yet sobering documentary reveals why civilized societies cannot progress if held captive by Darwinian philosophy, and will decline from moral and just societies to brutal oppression.” Wendy Wright, President, Concerned Women for America

“The movie is powerful…shocking….intense….humorous at times….well worth seeing. This message must be given to the next generation or else….” -Jack Brown, CEO, Capitol Prayer

“If the Ben Stein movie is asking these questions and if somebody is keeping us from finding out the great answers to the great questions – then maybe they are more than just questions. Maybe they are questions with eternal consequences.” -Peter Furler, lead singer, The Newsboys

Hmmm… maybe Stein should be asking different questions then, because as a religious Jew, he has no hope of avoiding Furler’s “eternal consequences” no matter how much he disses Darwin.

“This movie only samples the tip of the iceberg of academic and intellectual persecution in the land of “freedom” and may trigger a cultural revolution as more people are emboldened to tell their story and make a stand. It is rare to find a movie that is entertaining, educational and motivational, but that is exactly what you get with Ben Stein’s documentary, EXPELLED: No Intelligence Allowed”-Dennis Wagner, Executive Director Access Research Network

“Finally, someone has exposed the head-in-the-sand reaction of mainstream academia when it comes to intellectual honesty and the theological implications of modern science. This film is a wonderfully crafted gift to this needy culture.” -Ed Flanagan, Manitou Motion Picture Company, Ltd.

“If you seek intellectual integrity, see Expelled. If you enjoy thought-provoking conversation, bring a friend. If you value free speech, tell everyone you know to meet you at the movies and spend an alarming evening with Ben Stein. Expelled could easily be one of the most important movies of the year.”Denny Rydberg, President, Young Life

“Honest people have no fear of the truth. Expelled is a great first step in tearing down the wall and bringing honest, vigorous debate back to the academies. I want to thank you for your film, EXPELLED: No Intelligence Allowed.”-Curtis Martin, President-Fellowship of Catholic University Students

“As a media literacy education specialist and film/television reviewer, I encourage critical thinking. If this film respects every human person’s ability to think and to question, thereby promoting our search for truth and meaning, it will renew the debate about academic freedom by initiating a dialogue (sic) that inherently respects the dignity, freedom, beliefs and opinions of all those who sit around the table – and beyond it.”-Sister Rose Pacatte, FSP Director, Pauline Center for Media Studies

“If” this film respects “every human person’s ability to think and to question”? If? She has doubts? And what the heck does she mean by sitting ‘beyond the table?’ I thought the “table” was just a metaphor for people talking: is she implying that there’s an actual table somewhere? Save me a seat, yo!

“As chairman of the Mission America Coalition, I highly recommend Ben Stein’s upcoming film “Expelled”. We have personally met with Ben and have screened Expelled, and we found it to be compelling, insightful and entertaining. I encourage you to see the film when it hits America’s movie theaters in April and to invite others to join you.” – Rev. Paul Cedar, Chairman, Mission America Coalition

“EXPELLED: No Intelligence Allowed is earthshaking. I was absolutely blown away. Ben Stein boldly shines a light of honest inquiry revealing that evolution’s emperor has no clothes.” -J. Matt Barber, Director for Cultural Issues, Concerned Women for America

This crowd has a real problem with using metaphors apparently. I think he means that evolution IS an emperor with no clothes.

But if so, well then, that’s totally true, baby. Cus it’s just the naked truth.

Peace out, ya’ll!

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5 Responses to Expelled! Film: Clumsy Creationist Marketing Ramps Up the Religion

  1. Ebonmuse says:

    Hmmm… maybe Stein should be asking different questions then, because as a religious Jew, he has no hope of avoiding Furler’s “eternal consequences” no matter how much he disses Darwin.

    This is an important point, and I wonder if Stein himself is aware of it. If it hasn’t happened already, sooner or later he’s bound to get approached by some pastor or evangelist thanking him for making a film that will help bring children to Jesus. Has he fully thought through the implications of who he’s in bed with?

  2. mynym says:

    Yes, weep for those poor young adults, who I guess are obviously incapable of thinking for themselves.

    It would seem that you’re the one incapable of thinking for yourself. After all, if you believe that natural selection creates organisms then your brain events have more to do with the mating habits of ancient worms than intelligent thought.

    Waiting until someone is 18 until telling them about science sure is unquestionably the worst form of indoctrination imaginable….

    Darwinian reasoning results in pseudo-science because it allows for citing the imagination as if it is empirical evidence. If you’re dumb enough to believe in Darwinian creation myths then you lack the intelligence to write about what scientia/knowledge is or is not. After all, if intelligent causation can be imagined away based on Darwinian forms of pseudo-science and so “expelled” from every organism then you are no different.

  3. Bad says:

    It would seem that you’re the one incapable of thinking for yourself. After all, if you believe that natural selection creates organisms then your brain events have more to do with the mating habits of ancient worms than intelligent thought.

    If you think evolution says that natural selection “creates” organisms, then you are laughably misinformed. Natural selection modifies organisms in a non-random manner, relative to their environment.

    Darwinian reasoning results in pseudo-science because it allows for citing the imagination as if it is empirical evidence.

    No it doesn’t. This line has always been dishonest: creationists run around claiming that something is impossible, so scientists point out that there are plenty of possibilities… and then get attacked for the fact that they are just speculating. But speculation is all that’s necessary to deal with allegations of theoretical impossibility.

    No scientist treats speculation or imagination as “empirical evidence.” What they do is speculate, but then, unlike creationists, go out and actually test those speculations against evidence to see which ones hold up.

    If you’re dumb enough to believe in Darwinian creation myths then you lack the intelligence to write about what scientia/knowledge is or is not.

    A bunch of baseless claims and assertions about my level of intelligence are really pretty meaningless. If you can’t offer sound argument or sound evidence for your own views, why bother?

    After all, if intelligent causation can be imagined away based on Darwinian forms of pseudo-science and so “expelled” from every organism then you are no different.

    ID is not “imagined away.” It needs to be explained in terms of testable claims, and then demonstrated first before anything else can be done. This is the bar that all scientific evidence must meet, and things like evolution DO meet. But since most creationists know that they cannot meet that standard, they try to change the subject or distract people with endless bluster, allegations of conspiracy, and irrelevant issues like whether or not Darwin was a racist or not (he was, though just like Abraham Lincoln, Newton, Martin Luther, and virtually every human being living prior to the 20th century)

  4. Unspin says:

    I don’t see how to convince a staunch creationist that he is in error, if he’s smart. Because everything you say about creationism, he can basically say right back.

    Evolution cannot be definitively proven, per se. (Of course, neither can creationism – or ID, but it’s the same idea). So you can’t really get anywhere on the claim that evolution has been proven by science, because, technically, we didn’t see it happen.

    And realistically, can we – with no bias brought to the table – look at life, look at the Theory of Evolution, look at Creationism, and say for certain “Evolution did it”, or “God did it?” Of course not. We can only make a reasonable assumption based on all of the information we have.

    Now, one of the big problems science has with creationism is that saying “God did it” is cheating: a religiously motivated cop-out. Anything that cannot be explained is attributed to God; essentially, “God = whatever I can’t figure out”.

    But we have to admit that evolution, however elegant, likewise fits our predisposition that God doesn’t exist. There are other reasons we have for believing this, but evolution conveniently eliminates the need for a creator. If we can’t explain something, we change the theory (think punctuated equilibrium) because, let’s face it, if we admit that God could have created life, atheism loses the mightiest weapon in its arsenal.

    So if you say, “Creationism cannot be proven scientifically,” he says, “And neither can evolution.” If you say, “But look at all the facts!” he says, “They could just as well support divine creation.” If you say, “You’re just motivated by your religious views,” he says, “Your ‘belief in evolution’ is biased by your atheism.” And if you say “Well, only 5% of scientists are on your side,” he says either “Big Science is discriminating against creation scientists and their research,” or “It’s not the first time that the majority of scientists were wrong.” So you’re stuck. You know you’re right, but what else can you say? I mean, the logic is legitimate.

    Until we invent time machines, I don’t think we’ll ever be able to convince ardent believers one way or the other…

  5. Bad says:

    The idea that we need to “see” something happen in order to know it for sure is specious.

    What matters in science is evidence, not eyeballs. Personal observation can be a form of evidence, but it’s neither definitive nor the strongest sort, and witnesses are easily confused and tricked in ways that lots of hard convergent physical evidence cannot be.

    It’s true that explaining some phenomenon that we once ascribed to God makes citing God as the cause of something unnecessary. But that’s a problem with how “God” functions as a purported explanation, not science’s problem. God explanations generally never explain anything, and so real explanations cannot help but push them aside. If believers don’t like this, then they’d better start putting some real intelligible meaning behind their explanations.

    PE had nothing to do with preserving atheism: like every other scientific development that has panned out, it was simply where the evidence led.

    The facts don’t “just as well” support divine creation, not if we really mean to use facts to figure things out, as opposed to ad hoc explaining away of facts. The logic isn’t legitimate, and that’s the only case that really matters: what the facts are.

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