Let me share with you some of the past day’s correspondence via Twitter that I think you’ll find illustrative. Yesterday I started receiving taunting tweets from an individual I’d never heard of, Matthew Herron, directing me to his blog where he is identified as Senior Research Scientist in the School of Biology at Georgia Tech. Dr. Herron had authored a post (“Lies of omission and straight-up lies“) reaching back to the David Coppedge discrimination case and specifically a podcast series in which Coppedge told his story of being persecuted by NASA. I highlighted that here, here, and here.
Herron’s “research” appeared to consist of downloading a court document from the website of the Darwin-lobbying National Center for Science Education. If he had consulted any of our copious analysis here, by Casey Luskin and others, from the months around the Coppedge trial, that was not reflected in his post.
Now why would a biologist employed at a public university, a self-described atheist and “Senior Research Scientist,” care to delve backward into history to attack Coppedge, who lost his job at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab in 2011 and soon developed cancer, all shortly before retirement age? Why do the strong ever pick on the weak?
The story of bullying is unfortunately a familiar one from our defense of ID proponents in the science world. Do you find that as gut-wrenching as I do? As I asked here the other day, “NASA Versus David Coppedge: Most Reprehensible Case of Anti-Intelligent Design Persecution Yet?” Yes, I think it is that, because of the power differential:
Taking advantage of his vulnerability, David Coppedge’s supervisors sought to hurt and silence him. They succeeded. And that, by fear of career and personal ruin, is how the scientific “consensus” against ID is maintained.
Now we have a publicly funded professor coming along out of nowhere and, gratuitously, giving Mr. Coppedge another stamp of the boot heel, accusing him of being “deluded” (and me of lying on Coppedge’s behalf), all without having done the elementary research demanded by a sense of fairness.
This presents, in a nutshell, the reason I appeal to you today for your end-of-year generosity, to support the work of Discovery Institute and our research and advocacy for intelligent design. Darwinism is Goliath to ID’s David. Think about the power differential between Matthew Herron, a random biologist supported from the public trough, versus David Coppedge, cut from his own work with gross prejudice for the offense of lending out DVDs on intelligent design to willing colleagues.
If you’re a taxpayer, you already support Goliath. As Evolution News noted here the other day (“Let’s Tell the Truth about Science Funding“), responding to a Wall Street Journal op-ed by the president of MIT asking for still more government funding:
The incestuous world of science grants is one of the best-kept secrets of the Federal Government. Billions of dollars are involved and Congressional oversight is unimpressive. Moreover, the system is so big that it effectively shapes research priorities of universities, rather than responding to them. The Federal Government controls and monopolizes science research, and the whole business is in the service of something quite other than the legendary disinterested search for truth.
Addicted and engorged, Big Science isn’t what most of the public pictures it to be. Professors don’t so much profess — they suck money as through a straw, thanks to a system that epitomizes the kinds of corruption we associate with government.
Won’t you assist in balancing the scales just a little today? Discovery Institute receives none of that government largesse. Not one dollar. The work of our scientists and scholars is made possible exclusively by the generosity of donors like yourself. Thank you for that!
Consider what your support has done already. The past twenty years have seen ID emerge as the major flashpoint in the evolution debate. Our researchers — Stephen Meyer, Douglas Axe, Michael Denton, Michael Behe, Ann Gauger, Paul Nelson, Jonathan Wells, Richard Sternberg, and more — are forcing government-funded science to confront the deficiencies of orthodox Darwinian theory and to consider scientific alternatives.
Go back and take a look at our comments on last month’s Royal Society conference. Would that ever have happened if it weren’t for the ID movement?
Because of our effectiveness, our opponents think we must be much bigger and better funded than we are. I mean, look at what we do, from books and articles to documentaries. Consider, just as one example, our colleagues John West and Rachel Adams, who are a two-person movie studio. Their most recent work is Revolutionary: Michael Behe and the Mystery of Molecular Machines, which Dr. West wrote and directed while also expertly managing the efforts of the Center for Science & Culture, which he serves as associate director.
The funders who made that provocative and highly professional hour-long video possible are listed at the end with the credits. You will not see any federal or state agency among them.
West and Adams are, by the way, also responsible for publishing Michael Denton’s recent book, Evolution: Still a Theory in Crisis (Discovery Institute Press), that was recognized by A.N. Wilson in the London Spectator as a best book of 2016. These are impressive accomplishments, all on what amounts to a shoestring.
Imagine if our budget were just a little less constrained than it is. Please help us now to continue this important work! We rely on you entirely. With much gratitude, I ask you to hit the red button above now!
Image: Goliath laughs at David (1915), by Ilya Repin [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons.