Flunked, Not Expelled: What’s the Difference Between Peppered Moths and Pepperdine Students?

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expelled movie exposedOn Austringer, Wesley Elsberry discusses Michael Shermer’s (Scientific American) posting how during the showing at Pepperdine University, ‘extras’ were brought in as ‘students’ since the movie producers were concerned that there would otherwise not be enough attendees.

Shermer Wrote:

It was with some irony for me, then, that I saw Ben Stein’s antievolution documentary film, Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed, opens with the actor, game show host and speechwriter for Richard Nixon addressing a packed audience of adoring students at Pepperdine University, apparently falling for the same trap I did.

Actually they didn’t. The biology professors at Pepperdine assure me that their mostly Christian students fully accept the theory of evolution. So who were these people embracing Stein’s screed against science? Extras. According to Lee Kats, associate provost for research and chair of natural science at Pepperdine, “the production company paid for the use of the facility just as all other companies do that film on our campus” but that “the company was nervous that they would not have enough people in the audience so they brought in extras. Members of the audience had to sign in and a staff member reports that no more than two to three Pepperdine students were in attendance. Mr. Stein’s lecture on that topic was not an event sponsored by the university.” And this is one of the least dishonest parts of the film.

Elsberry points out the irony of how gluing moths to a tree for educational purposes is somehow fraudulent but bussing in ‘extras’ to serve as ‘students’ isn’t.

Food for thought

As an interesting sidenote

Shermer Wrote:

In 1974 I matriculated at Pepperdine University as a born-again Christian who rejected Darwinism and evolutionary theory—not because I knew anything about it (I didn’t) but because I thought that in order to believe in God and accept the Bible as true, you had to be a creationist. What I knew about evolution came primarily from creationist literature, so when I finally took a course in evolutionary theory in graduate school I realized that I had been hoodwinked. What I discovered is a massive amount of evidence from multiple sciences—geology, paleontology, biogeography, zoology, botany, comparative anatomy, molecular biology, genetics and embryology—demonstrating that evolution happened.

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If the criticism wasn’t thorough enough, even webcomic illustrator Jeff Rowling is getting on it.

this link

It is indeed food for happy thought.

But unfortunately I’m pretty sure that the creationists will claim that they don’t glue students to their seats as the evilutionary ‘Darwinism’ establishment ‘would do’.

Ricardo, what a find!

“Ben Stein, poopin’ puppy stufsz in ur offize!”

Yeah, there is a difference:

Peppered moths positioned on tree trunks illustrate a point, and therefore serve a genuine purpose.

Extras paid to act as an audience for Ben Stein are only there for the money - the only purpose they serve is to deceive Expelled viewers by making it look like he has an audience. So this is deliberate deception.

Wells has no grounds for complaint about staging anything. From a review of the premiere of the video for ‘Icons of Evolution’:

“The DH [Roger DeHart]segments contain shots of the audience from the “Banned in Burlington” talk and scenes from CNN footage of our BECSE meeting. There is even a picture of Carl with Supt. Jones and DH in one of the Skagit Valley Herald front-page articles. One scene depicted DH supposedly teaching biology in Burlington. However, it wasn’t in Burlington, the textbook shown wasn’t Burlington’s, and most of the “students” have been identified as Roger DeHart’s son’s friends. (And Wells has issues with peppered moths glued to trees?) BECSE has learned that that DH and the DI may have used the Mount Vernon Christian school for the footage of fake classroom drama. Regardless, a DeHart supporter said at a Burlington-Edison School Board meeting that the classroom scene was filmed in Mount Vernon. “

http://www.antievolution.org/people[…]remiere.html

Burlington. Edison. Mt. Vernon. Skagit Valley and Samish Flats.

Winter days with tens of thousands of snow geese … hundreds of trumpeter swans … great grey owl and gyrfalcon on the same day … five falcon days (kestrel, prairie, merlin, ‘grine, gyr)… shorebirds galore …

And DI operatives working the local school board? You just ruined my day, dude!

If the criticism wasn’t thorough enough, even webcomic illustrator Jeff Rowling is getting on it.

It looks like Rowling misspelled “cdesign proponentsists”.

Does anyone who has actually seen Expelled know whether the film identifies Pepperdine University as the site of Ben’s big auditorium speech? I remember getting back to campus late last summer and seeing posters all over the place advertising for extras. Everybody who showed up was given a raffle ticket for some iPod model or other. I remember thinking, “Most of my students already have their own iPods. You’ll have to do better than that.” Lots of filming goes on at Pepperdine during the summer. I was kind of hoping that the auditorium would just seem to be a generic college campus. (Full disclosure: I’m an associate prof of religion at Pepperdine.)

Not only did the Evilutionists glue moths to trees, but they also made an animated film showing the inner workings of a cell! How unethical!

But unfortunately I’m pretty sure that the creationists will claim that they don’t glue students to their seats as the evilutionary ‘Darwinism’ establishment ‘would do’.

oh?

what’s a church but a bunch of long benches with glue on the seats?

“What’s a church but a bunch of long benches”

Hmm. Seems I need to get a glue stick.

But their still moths!!111!!!one!!eleven!

the Difference Between Peppered Moths and Pepperdine Students?

Students don’t eat sweaters? :p

Christopher Heard said:

Does anyone who has actually seen Expelled know whether the film identifies Pepperdine University as the site of Ben’s big auditorium speech?

i actually just watched the movie, and knew right away that they were in smother’s theater. the only reason that i knew this was from my time at pepperdine and knowing a bit about the theater. no where in the movie could i see evidence that it was filmed at pepperdine. the closest that the credits came was having a malibu unit.

About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by PvM published on April 14, 2008 12:26 AM.

Behe versus ribonuclease; the origin and evolution of protein-protein binding sites was the previous entry in this blog.

Time Magazine Reviews ‘Expelled’ is the next entry in this blog.

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