WND Reports on Francis Collins/D. James Kennedy Controversy

WorldNetDaily has a follow-up to its report highlighting a new show that blames science for the Holocaust:

Darwin-Hitler connection sparks attacks
Bloggers try to discredit experts on evolution’s connection to bloodshed

…Author and Christian broadcaster D. James Kennedy of Coral Ridge Ministries said the new “Darwin’s Deadly Legacy” is a ground-breaking inquiry into Darwin’s “chilling” social impact, and it will air nationwide on Aug. 26-27 on “The Coral Ridge Hour.”

But yesterday comments appeared on the Pharyngula website, among others, offering stinging criticism of those on the show…One of those targeted was Human Genome Project Director Francis Collins, whose book, “The Language of God: A Scientist Presents Evidence for Belief,” was published only a few months ago.

…The program, according to producer Jerry Newcomb, is about the social effects of Darwinism, and the bloodshed that can be attributed to those beliefs. He said before Darwin, the basic concept was that man was made in the image of God, and was therefore valuable. But Darwin changed all that.

Alas, WND makes no mention of my own modest contribution to the discussion – if they had seen it, perhaps they might have at least learnt to spell the name of the show’s producer correctly (“Newcombe”, not “Newcomb”).

WND also includes the following tasteful photo and caption:

wnd-science-libel

I’m sure that not one of those emaciated figures imagined that sixty years later their iconic suffering would be put to service as part of a fundamentalist campaign to whip up hate against scientists. And I suspect that Jews who care about using science to improve human welfare will find this crass misappropriation to be particularly painful and offensive.

UPDATE: It ooks as though my instincts were right. Pharyngula has the details:

ADL National Director Abraham H. Foxman said in a statement: “This is an outrageous and shoddy attempt by D. James Kennedy to trivialize the horrors of the Holocaust. Hitler did not need Darwin to devise his heinous plan to exterminate the Jewish people. Trivializing the Holocaust comes from either ignorance at best or, at worst, a mendacious attempt to score political points in the culture war on the backs of six million Jewish victims and others who died at the hands of the Nazis…”

Collins, meanwhile, is

absolutely appalled by what Coral Ridge Ministries is doing. I had NO knowledge that Coral Ridge Ministries was planning a TV special on Darwin and Hitler, and I find the thesis of Dr. Kennedy’s program utterly misguided and inflammatory,”

PZ notes that publicity for the show has now removed all mention of Collins (and, more weirdly, of Ann Coulter).

12 Responses

  1. Collins takes a principled stand : good.
    Also, Christian right ( apparent ) subterfuge against science : the Bush Adm. has “inadvertantly” dropped evolutionary biology”from the list of acceptable fields of study for recipients of a federal education grant for low-income college students.”

    See August 24, 2006 story in the NYT

  2. The evangelical right in America is so utterly misguided and blatantly wrong on so many issues that it borders on criminal activity. The evangelical right believes in things that are not even mentioned in the bible, like the ‘rapture’ for example, yet all the while claim to be people of the book. Give me a break, your all simply idiots. Down with the evangelicals!!!!

  3. Concerned American, Your absolutly correct!!! Evangelical christians and there ridiculus arguments are what divides America. There wrong about abortion, there wrong about stem-cells, and there wrong about the seperation of chuch and state. Why should anyone take them seriously. Its people like Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson that divide America by “preaching” their coded message of intolerance to those who don’t believe what they do…thats not quite democratic is it? I can think of another nation-state that is just as conservative and ‘religious’ as the evangelical christians wish the USA was….Iran.

  4. don’t forget that the evangelical right is also wrong about the gay marriage issue as well. This is the same type of bigitry that took place during slavery, and the christian right are the one’s that use the “slippery slope” argument. Hypocrites!!!!

  5. I agree with myself, too

  6. Does anyone know the relationship Coral Ridge has with ABC (or any of their network affiliates)? Do they pay broadcast channels to air their “documentaries” or is the “Coral Ridge Hour” more in the relm of the “700 Club” in that the networks enter into a contractual agreement with Coral Ridge to air their program? Any information and sourcing would be much appreciated! Thank you.

  7. I did not see the documentary, but I believe that Adolf Hitler used Darwin’s theory as philisophical justification for the Holocaust. In his 1924 book Mein Kampf, he wrote:
    “If nature does not wish that weaker indiviuduals should mate with the stronger, she wishes even less that a superior race should intemingle with an inferior one; because in such cases all her efforts, throughout hundreds of thousands of years, to establish an evolutionary higher state of being, may thus be rendered futile. But such a preservation goes hand-in-hand with the inexorable law that it is the strongest and the best who must triumph and that they have the right to endure. He who would live must fight. He who does not wish to fight in this world, where permanent struggle is the law of life, has not the right to exist.”

    Sounds to me like the theory of evolution and survival of the fittest is being used by Hitler to justify the Holocaust. IMO

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