Caroline Crocker’s Intelligent Design Persecution Story is a Crock: Expelled! “Martyr” Exposed

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.


8 Responses to Caroline Crocker’s Intelligent Design Persecution Story is a Crock: Expelled! “Martyr” Exposed

  1. Jesse says:

    Too bad those slides are a hoax.

  2. Bad says:

    That’s an interesting possibility I’d like to follow up on for a correction, if true: can you point me to a cite? I can’t find anything directly, and since the source appears to be a Coral Ridge Ministries video…

  3. Bad says:

    Jut watched the video, and it most certainly does display those exact slides as she is talking about her lecture. They also fit with what’s been described about her claims elsewhere. So unless this pro-Crocker, pro-creationism documentary is the one perpetrating a hoax, which I find to be highly unlikely, then your accusation seems pretty flimsy unless you can provide some more evidence than a driveby post.

  4. […] this essentially means is that teachers can no longer be let go because of incompetence. Implicit in the claims of the bill, which is taken almost verbatim from the Discovery Institute, […]

  5. doppelganger says:

    “Too bad those slides are a hoax.”

    Standard creationist comeback to embarrassing informaiton.

  6. […] While ethics certainly haven’t proven necessary for the promotion of Expelled!, it’s really no surprise that Baehr would love Expelled! regardless. Still, his actual review is still a pretty priceless read. It’s like a gag reel of every goofy misrepresentation that Expelled! is trying to push, all bought hook-line-and-sinker by a guy who thinks that Will Ferrell worships Baal. Here’s a sampling of what I mean: He interviews professor Richard Sternberg, who lost his long-term job at the Smithsonian Institute (wrong) because he dared to publish a peer-reviewed article (wrong) with two or three references to intelligent design (wrong). The article did not endorse intelligent design(wrong), but the very mention of intelligent design brings severe repression from the pseudo-scientific academic community (wrong). He then talks to Dr. Caroline Crocker, who lost her professorship at George Mason for having one reference to ID (wrong). […]

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