United States Senator and Republican presidential candidate Sam Brownback (R-KS) has issued a forceful statement expressing alarm over the denial of tenure to pro-intelligent design astronomer Guillermo Gonzalez at Iowa State University. According to Sen. Brownback, “such an assault on academic freedom does not bode well for the advancement of true science.”
Action Item: Help Guillermo Gonzalez in his fight for academic freedom. Contact ISU President Gregory L. Geoffroy at (515) 294-2042 or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org and let him know that you support academic freedom for Dr. Gonzalez to follow the evidence wherever it leads. Pity John McCarroll, the poor PR person for Iowa State University: He has so little to work with in the Guillermo Gonzalez case, he apparently has to invent his facts in order to defend his university. Last week, for example, McCarroll put out a document claiming that tenure standards at ISU were “so high, that many good researchers have failed to satisfy the demands of earning tenure.” Then it turned out that ISU approved 91% of Read More ›
While Iowa State University denied tenure this spring to gifted pro-ID astronomer Guillermo Gonzalez, it turns out that it decided at the same time to promote to full professor outspoken atheist Hector Avalos, religious studies professor and faculty adviser to the ISU Atheist and Agnostic Society. Avalos has led the charge against Gonzalez and intelligent design on ISU’s campus, helping to draft a 2005 petition denouncing intelligent design that ultimately was signed by more than 120 ISU faculty. Apparently ISU professors who are horrified by the supposed mixing of metaphysics and scholarship on the part of ID proponents have no qualms about supporting Avalos’s explicit anti-religious propaganda, including his effort to equate the Bible with Hitler’s Mein Kampf (for more Read More ›
An article today by Chronicle of Higher Education reporter Richard Monastersky reveals new evidence that further strengthens the case that pro-ID astronomer Guillermo Gonzalez was denied tenure at Iowa State University on illegitimate grounds, although Monastersky does his best to downplay the evidence through spin and speculation. According to Monastersky, data from a prestigious Smithsonian/NASA astrophysics database show that Gonzalez has the highest rating for citations to his work of anyone in his department: “Mr. Gonzalez has a normalized h-index of 13,” the second highest in his department. The fact that Gonzalez—an Assistant Professor—is ranked higher than almost every other member of his department, including full tenured professors, is incredible.
I recently read Carl Zimmer’s response to my critique of his November, 2006 article in National Geographic. In this post I will discuss Zimmer’s response to me regarding embryology and developmental biology. The embryonic hourglass is the idea that vertebrate embryos (like those of fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals) start off developing very differently, converge with some similarities at the pharyngular stage, and then again diverge. I stated in my original article that “vertebrate embryos start off quite differently,” but that “Zimmer’s diagram selectively displays embryos from the encircled stage where they are most similar.” The implication is that this falsifies the idea that evolution proceeds by tacking on new stages of development because these vertebrate groups start off Read More ›