I have no idea what I was doing in the meantime, but I somehow missed a great post over at Tiny Frog which reveals some of the Powerpoint slides that celebrity creationist Caroline Crocker used in her biology classes.
Keep in mind the key points here: the Discovery Institute regularly claims that Crocker was fired for merely “mentioning Intelligent Design” in a class lecture. The soon-to-be-released Intelligent Design flak flic Expelled! will likely present the story the same way.
But even a cursory glance at those slides makes her story of martyrdom look ridiculous. From the grossly misleading to the grossly incomplete to the just plain silly, her lecture was cavalcade of incompetence. Her slide on transitional forms doesn’t even betray a hint of what evolution actually says a transitional form is, much less any understanding of how taxonomy works in the fossil evidence evolution. Even if you don’t buy the evolutionary case, you still have to at least demonstrate some competence in the subject.
Getting so many of the basic ideas flat-out wrong just isn’t something a college judging the quality of her teaching can possibly ignore. If a physics professor gave a lecture in which he stated that only one particle accelerator had ever been built, or that protons exist at the same time as neutrons, so they can’t both be made up of quarks, would that professor likely get their contract renewed (which is, in fact, what actually happened to Crocker: not the alleged dramatic “firing”)? Well, that seems to be what Crocker and cronies are claiming: that their “maverick” critiques of evolution should basically get a free pass on standards like intellectual honesty.
Yet again, it’s that same double standard: Intelligent Design theorists claim that they are just being persecuted because of their
religious beliefs brilliant scientific ideas. What this really means, however, is that unlike what every other scientist has to face, they don’t want to be held accountable if those ideas turn out to be wrong, misleading, or grossly incompetent as science. Their ideas are supposedly both 100% scientific, and yet also deserve a special class of intellectual protection that effectively sets them apart from any criticism or judgment by their peers.
It would be one thing if Crocker merely believed Intelligent Design and/or merely mentioned it. But because the current “Intelligent Design” movement is mostly a bundle of recycled and barely rewritten creationist arguments, all of which are just as false or unconvincing as they were to the begin with, Crocker’s “mentions” are basically just an excuse to peddle falsehoods.
And sorry: but you’re not going to get away with that.