Looking for Dr. 900

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The National Center for Science Education is looking for a few good Steves to join them in standing up to the culture warriors that threaten the very foundations of science and science education. They need just a handful of new Steves to sign up, and then they can make “900” t-shirts.—At last count they had 895.—I only have three names, so I’m putting a call out to all my Steves, Stephens, Stephanies, et al., who’ve earned doctoral degrees, to join us in denouncing the campaign to box science into the ’30s—the 1530s.

Creationists love to name drop. They compile lists of random people that hate evolution like they do—“my pa waz no munkie”—and then present those lists as expert testimony against the modern world. In response, NCSE developed Project Steve, a list of academics, scholars, and scientists that support evolution and oppose the anti-evolution movement.

There is just one catch: the signers have to be named after me.

I know, I know. Some of you are asking, “who isn’t named after the illustrious Prof. Steve Steve?” And I’ll tell you what, too many people are not named after me. However, that top 1% that are named after me are the smartest people in the world, Stephen Baldwin excluded. We Steves are so smart that even the US Congress has started focusing on our opinions on important issues like global warming and polar bear biology.

So what can we Steves do for the other 99%?

We can use our vast intellects and experience to agree with the following statement:

Evolution is a vital, well-supported, unifying principle of the biological sciences, and the scientific evidence is overwhelmingly in favor of the idea that all living things share a common ancestry. Although there are legitimate debates about the patterns and processes of evolution, there is no serious scientific doubt that evolution occurred or that natural selection is a major mechanism in its occurrence. It is scientifically inappropriate and pedagogically irresponsible for creationist pseudoscience, including but not limited to “intelligent design,” to be introduced into the science curricula of our nation’s public schools.

Come on, all the other Steves are signing it, why don’t you?

2 TrackBacks

Then you should sign up for the Steve list. They're trying to get 900 qualified evolution supporters with names that are variants of "Steven" — I think they should aim for a nice round one thousand.... Read More

Five, actually. Read More

46 Comments

Your post has left me wishing for the first time that I too was named steve.

Shoot… let’s go whole-hog and see if we can’t hit *1000* before the upcoming US presidential election! Could we corral 100+ Steves in the next couple of months?

(There are only two things keeping me from signing up. My name isn’t Steve and I don’t have a PhD. But other than that, I’m fully qualified.)

Prof. Steve - It was an honour to meet you in London, and I hope you have recovered from your attack.

Just started to the paperwork for changing my name. Cheers, Steve Pineda-Krch

Alas I am neither a scientist nor a Steve, so all I can do is register my sympathy with the effort.

Speaking of the “National Center for Selling Evolution” (as some unsympathetic souls like to label it), didn’t someone mention the NCSE was about to release a “takedown” of the DI EXPLORE EVOLUTION (“And Find Out What A Crock It Is”) textbook? I can’t find the reference.

White Rabbit (Greg Goebel) http://www.vectorsite.net/tadarwin.html

You can always Go change your name!! :-)

Noel said:

Your post has left me wishing for the first time that I too was named steve.

I am trying to contribute. I named my son Stephen, and I am encouraging and supporting him in his effort to get a Ph.D. I doubt the Creationists are going to quit anytime soon, so he should have time to get on the 900 list.

Have you contacted Steve Fuller?

The statement could usefully be amended to say:

It is scientifically inappropriate and pedagogically irresponsible for creationist pseudoscience, including but not limited to “intelligent design,” to be introduced into the science curricula anywhere of our nation’s public schools.

since the problem isn’t restricted to the US of A and it is scientifically inappropriate and pedagogically irresponsible to teach creationism even in private schools or other schools (or even in home-schooling) that have the legal right to do so.

I propose a new organization: Friends of Steve. This organization (of which I am the first member) has all the same membership requirements as the NCSE Steve Project, except, of course, the nifty and providential first name. Steves need our support!

On the other hand, maybe we also need a Friends of Steve Steve International League (FOSSIL) to support our favorite panda scientist. There are many who would say that I already qualify, so.…

You might want to update the statement. No only has “evolution occurred”, but that evolution has occurred and is occurring. It’s not a static thing that happened in the past.

Good luck to all those Dr. Steves out there.

Thanks to Professor Steve Steve, the Steveometer is now at 900 – and climbing. Visit NCSE’s website (http://www.ncseweb.org) for details.

Prof. Steve Steve just told me that they’ve now found Dr. 900.

They’re now looking for Dr. 909.

Friends of Steve. This organization (of which I am the first member) has all the same membership requirements as the NCSE Steve Project, except, of course, the nifty and providential first name. Steves need our support!

I’d join only I don’t have a Ph.D., and at my age, am unlikely to earn one.

Go Prof. Steve Steve!

I am so wise Wrote:

Have you contacted Steve Fuller?

Last I heard he left the family brush business to sell something more profitable at the DI.

have you contacted Steve Goodman, Field Museum? (He might be in Madagascar at the moment.)

I thought ID agreed with common descent and natural selection. ID disputes the idea that the processes of evolution are blind and random, and argues they are at least partly designed by an intelligence.

So the way I see it an ID proponent could sign the above statement, because their only debate is about the “patterns and processes” of evolution.

CLAVDIVS said:

I thought ID agreed with common descent and natural selection.

That depends on which day it is and which way the wind is blowing.

White Rabbit (Greg Goebel) http://www.vectorsite.net/tadarwin.html

That depends on which day it is and which way the wind is blowing.

And who they’re talking to at the time.

Henry

CLAVDIVS said:

I thought ID agreed with common descent and natural selection. ID disputes the idea that the processes of evolution are blind and random, and argues they are at least partly designed by an intelligence.

So the way I see it an ID proponent could sign the above statement, because their only debate is about the “patterns and processes” of evolution.

Some ID proponents do agree with common descent, namely, Michael Behe.

The ultimate goal of the Intelligent Design proponents is to replace science with GODDIDIT, heedless of the fact that to do so would be to destroy it utterly.

CLAVDIVS Wrote:

I thought ID agreed with common descent…

Adding to Stanton’s reply:

ID, as in the stillborn “theory” promoted by the Discovery Institute, does not specifically challenge CD, and indeed, a few proponents like Behe conceded it before it became politically incorrect to do so. ID tries to accommodate anyone who wants to deny evolution, so even though IDers claim not to promote YEC or OEC, those proponents who seem to disagree with one or both do not challenge them either. And of course none of them challenge Behe directly. Which is why I call it “don’t ask, don’t tell” creationism.

Stanton Wrote:

The ultimate goal of the Intelligent Design proponents is to replace science with GODDIDIT, heedless of the fact that to do so would be to destroy it utterly.

At least some major IDers must know that they will never replace science with their pseudoscience. They know that theistic evolutionists will never buy their nonsense, let alone atheists. So the long-awaited debate about such “details” as the age of the Earth (as Phillip Johnson advised to defer until after ID defeats “naturalism”) will never happen.

Yes and no, remember that ID likes to conflate the concept of design with ‘intelligence’ even though the link between the two is hardly that simple. In ID parlance, design is the “set theoretic complement of the disjunction regularity-or-chance”. ID “argues” that when science cannot explain something that the default position should be design not “we don’t know” while providing no positive evidence for such a position. Even worse, ID admits that design need not imply an “intelligent designer”.

In another incarnation of ID, it claims that evolutionary processes are “blind and random” however they fail to accurately describe the processes of evolution by referring to natural selection as random and blind.

In other words, at best ID remains scientifically without content and argues that even though science may be able to explain life in terms of chance and regularity, it may still have been “designed” by some one or more intelligent designers, although they are clear that they are not interested in pursuing the hypothesis of multiple designers, even though it matches the evidence much better.

Hope this clarifies

CLAVDIVS said:

I thought ID agreed with common descent and natural selection. ID disputes the idea that the processes of evolution are blind and random, and argues they are at least partly designed by an intelligence.

So the way I see it an ID proponent could sign the above statement, because their only debate is about the “patterns and processes” of evolution.

Whatever you changed, I don’t like it. The “New” link doesn’t show up anymore, and it takes two clicks to get to any comments at all.

How come the Steve-o-meter doesn’t read 900 yet? An instrumentation glitch?

They’re up to 899 as of this morning!

Reed A. Cartwright said:

Prof. Steve Steve just told me that they’ve now found Dr. 900.

They’re now looking for Dr. 909.

Can we make it 999 and really scare the (Australian) superstitious population?

It’s my understanding that anyone with a variation of “Stephen” (Esteban, Estefania, Steve, Stephanie, Stevie, Stevianna, etc.) can sign up. If this is true, then you may be limiting your audience by harping on “Steve” in this thread, especially in such a multicultural society as the US.

PvM said: Even worse, ID admits that design need not imply an “intelligent designer”.

That one always leaves me scratching my head. If nonsentient critters can be designers, then I don’t see what ID brings to the party that isn’t already covered by natural and sexual selection. These mechanisms already cover critters performing nonrandom goal-oriented selection (when the goals are provided by instinct rather than sentient calculation).

Methinks that given the variety of different things said by different ID pushers (or the same one at different times), comments like “ID admits…” or “ID says…” are somewhat ambiguous.

Henry

A question for the esteemed Prof. S. S.: just who is that you are conferring with in the left-margin photo between the yellow flowers and the red-shouldered hawk?

Totally OT, but I thought people might be interested in reading an excerpt from Bruce Albert’s editorial in the September 5th edition of Science magazine:

The publication of a scientific article is less a way for scientists to earn recognition and advance their careers than it is an engine for scientific progress. Science continually advances only because many cycles of independent testing by different scientists allow new knowledge to be built with confidence upon old knowledge, thereby creating a repository of reliable understandings about the world. The publications of those of us who are scientists explain what we have found in our investigations, and they lay out exactly what we have done to make each discovery. Clear, truthful presentations of data, results, and methods are essential for enabling the findings of one scientist to be confirmed, refuted, or extended in new ways by other scientists.

Scientists have an absolute obligation to honesty: They must accurately report how they arrived at their discoveries, as well as the discoveries themselves. Thus, our journals must insist on detailed descriptions of all of the methods used, so as to allow other scientists to reproduce the results in a straightforward manner

Should point out that it is not a red-shouldered hawk, it is a Harris’s Hawk.

To all the commenters who, ‘would join but I don’t have a Phd, and am not named Steve’, hope. Do what DI do and join anyway, they don’t care about inconvenient niceties such as honesty. But no, we are, many of us, atheists, and our consciences would tear us to shreads. How about a list of all those who are not Phds, who are not Steves, but who support STeve Steve and Pandas? Rob.

I begin my my doctoral work next year, does that count?

Steve: I am but a lowly grad student and high school biology teacher but I wholeheartedly support your effort to dispel this superstition. I am a religious person but I believe these efforts are misguided. Science and religion are not not incompatible, they simply deal with different non overlapping sets of perceptions.

I will search for other Steves for your campaign.

Steve Johnston

The list is now at 930, but they are still getting more application.

The list is now at 930, but they are still getting more application.

Going for 1000? That would be a nice even number (especially if you can reach it in time for the election).

Why don’t all of you closed minded so called scientist read a little more on both sides and see that you don’t have all the answers either. What are you so afraid of - Eternity?

Dr. Bayles

Professor with an OPEN Mind said:

Why don’t all of you closed minded so called scientist read a little more on both sides and see that you don’t have all the answers either. What are you so afraid of - Eternity?

Dr. Bayles

Tell us again why scientists should be open to blatant lies and religious dogma incompetently masked as science?

Professor With… used the phrase “open mind” in his id. I do not think those words mean what he thinks they mean.

Henry J said:

Professor With… used the phrase “open mind” in his id. I do not think those words mean what he thinks they mean.

Like I said before, having one’s mind so open that one’s brain falls out is not a good thing, and mistaking the splat of the cerebrum impacting with the sidewalk for an epiphany is not an accomplishment worth being proud of.

Professor with an OPEN Mind said:

Why don’t all of you closed minded so called scientist read a little more on both sides and see that you don’t have all the answers either.

You’ve got it exactly backwards. When faced with an unsolved problem, scientists say “I don’t know, let’s form hypotheses, do research, and see what we can learn”. It is the ID crew who claims to always have the answer to every question.

And why don’t all of YOU closed-minded supporters of the ID scam peruse the Wedge Document, the Dover trial transcripts, and all the other evidence that the ID crew is a load of lying sacks, and abandon that most un-Christ-like venture? Why do you support charlatans?

Science Avenger said: Why do you support charlatans?

Because they were told/commanded to do so, that’s why.

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This page contains a single entry by Prof. Steve Steve published on September 5, 2008 1:30 AM.

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