Nature magazine, arguably the most prestigious science journal in the world, is trumpeting praises for the charming P.Z. Myers, an unabashed ID bigot.
Scientists who blog see their activities as a useful adjunct to formal journals, not a replacement. “The standard scientific paper is irreplaceable as a fixed, archivable document that defines a checkpoint in a body of work, but it’s static, it’s very limited,” says Paul Myers, a biologist at the University of Minnesota, who blogs at Pharyngula. “Put a description of your paper on a weblog, and something very different happens,” says Myers. “People who are very far afield from your usual circle start thinking about the subject. They bring up interesting perspectives.” By sharing ideas online, you get feedback and new research ideas, he says. (NATURE, December 1, 2005, vol. 438, p. 549)
Here’s one interesting perspective Myers has. Commenting on President Bush’s favorable remarks regarding intelligent design in August, Paul “P.Z.” Myers posted the following on Pharyngula:
“I say, screw the polite words and careful rhetoric. It¹s time for scientists to break out the steel-toed boots and brass knuckles, and get out there and hammer on the lunatics and idiots.”
So I don’t take it out of context here are a few other of Myers interesting perspectives in that very same post.
It is correct that if I were talking to a student or a parent, trying to persuade them to abandon misbegotten notions of creationism that are affecting the student’s ability to be a good biologist, I wouldn’t call them lunatics. It isn’t very effective to try and persuade an individual by calling them idiots, and in most cases I don’t think the creationist students I occasionally get are idiots–just sadly misled.
However, I was not attacking such individuals, but the president of the US and the preachers at the Discovery Institute. You know, the responsible people who are lying to the public or working to disseminate destructive delusions.
So, “It isn’t very effective to try and persuade an individual by calling them idiots” but it is
effective “for scientists to break out the steel-toed boots and brass knuckles, and get out there and hammer on the lunatics and idiots.” Indeed, that is an interesting perspective.
That wasn’t an isolated incident of anger for Myers. Here’s another interesting perspective of Myers about teachers who question Darwinism that Myers shared on Pandasthumb.org:
Please don’t try to tell me that you object to the tone of our complaints. Our only problem is that we aren’t martial enough, or vigorous enough, or loud enough, or angry enough. The only appropriate responses should involve some form of righteous fury, much butt-kicking, and the public firing and humiliation of some teachers, many schoolboard members, and vast numbers of sleazy far-right politicians.
Why would Nature waste space promoting anything PZ Myers does?