"Expelled" Off-Shoot #1: Discussing the premise of the movie

drpmjhess, Thank you for your reply.You make a case that I personally didn’t see. The work that many good scientists were doing was ultimately being warped. That the work was not only being warped, but destroyed.

Did you see the film? Even if you didn’t, I can understand where you are coming from. When the Da Vinci Code came out, I thought, “People will believe anything!” and worried that the vast majority was going to get a biased view.

However, anyone who saw the film knows that evolution does not lead to atheism and saw the connection to extreme atheism. Both sides, IMHO were highly educated and scientists by profession. However, if you actually felt this when you saw this film, I wholeheartedly agree with you that if the science world is that concerned, then both outlets need to be heard fairly. When I saw this film, honestly, I did not see 20 years of work down the drain, it was an affirmation of the life long question being taught in public school, one that was being defended at all costs, even to the point of showing that there is no God. That was not a resentful statement as jman infers. That was a fact, plain and simple from my point of view.

And that is where I see the good in the film. Shedding light on the education system and the fact that many will not try to educate themselves as I did on the subject to defend their views. I wouldn’t be Catholic if I didn’t try to do my homework on the daily battles that most young Catholics fight in the public school system. I probably wouldn’t be Catholic if Catholic Answers only told me to go get a theology degree if I wanted part of the discussion. Being knowledgeable is one thing, being able to share that knowledge and educating people is another thing.

God Bless.

You don’t know me, so don’t assume anything about me. I posted two SMALL posts about a movie I have seen, and I haven’t seen posted yet that you have, I could have missed that post though. Stein doesn’t claim in anyway in the movie to be a scientist. He asks QUESTIONS of both sides of the arguments. All he is advocating for is intellectual freedom. That doesn’t sound too bad to me. I really hate when I ask questions people like you have to insult my intelligence. It is a low blow that shows you arrogance, not mine.

Did you know that dialog between the Church and science isn’t just something that has been happening in the present? I believe science doesn’t void religion. I don’t think you believe that either. Some of science does though.

Have you seen the movie? It isn’t that bad…

Exactly right. He showed the fear and panic that has set into the evolutionary community – and how they are attacking any criticism of their theory in unjust ways.

Yes, Amy, I’ve seen the film and reviewed it extensively. I know the background to the cases of the six “martyrs” he highlights, and Ben Stein bears false witness throughout. This is probably something Catholics should not be cool with. The stories about Hitler and eugenics, Richard Sternberg, Guillermo Gonzalez, Caroline Crocker, Robert Marks, Pamela Winnick, and Michael Egnor are based on falsehoods. That’s not a sign of a good film.

Yes, of course I know the science and religion dialogue is very ancient – I teach a whole graduate seminar on that. And that is why Stein’s film does not advance the dialogue in any way, because it posits a false dichotomy between atheist biologists on the one hand, and ID advocates on the other. Stein does not interview the hundreds of Catholic or other Christian biologists, including many Catholic priests, who use evolution every day in their work. The film is a serious distortion of the truth, another thing about which Catholics ought to be concerned.

Galandriel, within the profession of biology there is no controversy about the theory of evolution. There are approximately 100,000 biologists who use the theory every day to explore the evolving world. Many of these people are Catholic priests, who say Mass in the morning, who go to their labs and their classrooms to teach and research about how evolution works, and who retire at night praying for the evolving world. In Expelled all these faith-filled scientists are invisible. That’s a huge distortion, and it creates a serious problem for classroom scientists.


Interesting view. I consider myself quite conservative and very much in line with the Vatican, yet I accept evolution as a fact. How do I fit into your viewpoint?



The significant thing you say here is that you are in line with the Vatican. The Catholic Church does not teach evolution or creationism. These are considered areas of science, not theology.

Absolutely correct!



Darwin and Russel Wallace were the first scholars to put forward a theory of evolution which relied upon natural biological processes rather than on innate capabilities or divine interventions in whatever form. Moreover, Darwin’s Origins of Species (first published in 1859) demonstrated how natural selection and evolution explained the known data in biogeography, comparative morphology and embryology, taxonomy and systematics, and palaeontology.” British Centre for Higher Education



FYI, I’m a Roman Catholic woman who* isn’t *a creationist nor are the 300,000 Roman Catholic’s within a ten mile radius of my home. Children aren’t taught to be creationists in public or Catholic schools where I reside. As Roman Catholics who truly love Jesus, we were created in the image of Jesus Christ (a human being) who is the Son of God (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit) and we truly believe God the Father has given every man, woman, and child an immortal soul and allowed us the grace of time to discover his love for us…:slight_smile: Thank you, my all loving and kind God for your continued patience. :slight_smile:

As far as message 115, the make-believe (fairytale propoganda) movie **Expelled-No Intelligence Allowed **strongly insinuates that it was because of Charles Darwin that Adolf Hitler committed horrific crimes against innocent people. Charles Darwin didn’t have anything to do with the insane actions of Adolf Hilter. Talk Origins has written about it here:

As far as Ben Stein is concerned, he is as fruity as they get. :shrug: Read **Ben Stein’s Financial Rules…**To Wind Up In Bankruptcy Court
NEW YORK, April 21, 2004

This is my last message on this topic. I rather be talking about my love for Jesus to the kids (some of them are non-Catholics) in my neighborhood that already understand The Theory of Evolution as do I. We love our dear Alec MacAndrew for helping us. Thanks Alec. You are super dupper! :smiley: The best scientist in the Net.
Ta ~

In the context of the discussion, Petrus was explaining different uses of the term. When he said all Catholics are creationists, it was to show the broadest meaning of the word, specifically, that we believe God created all that there is from nothing. This is Catholic doctrine. Whether this took 15 billion years or ten thousand years is not a matter of Catholic doctrine. This is considered a matter for science.

petrus << Stein himself deliberately omitted Catholic biologist Ken Miller from the film because he didn’t want to “confuse” his audience. By this, I presume he meant he didn’t want to offer a nuanced discussion that would shoot his little one-sided tirade in the foot. >>

Any of these guys would have been nice: Ken Miller, Keith Miller (no relation), Denis Lamoureux, Francis Collins, Darrel Falk. At least they got Alister McGrath and John Polkinhorne for a few seconds.

For me, the documentary was better than expected (saw it three times, paid for it twice). It was professionally done from a production standpoint. Dawkins is wrong when he says it was poorly produced.

The content is another story. You don’t blame the Nazis on evolution any more than you blame the Nazis on Christianity. Hitler said he was for “positive Christianity.” Eugenics, nazism, etc are abuses and distortions of the science. Same with Hitler’s religion, etc. I haven’t read Weikarts From Darwin to Hitler yet.

Another main problem with the documentary is you don’t or can’t explain the origin of life in a 30 second sound bite. If you really want to find out the cutting edge research on origin of life / abiogenesis, you go to a university library, find at least 50 books on the topic, and start studying. Or you interview an origin of life expert (not Michael Ruse, not Richard Dawkins, etc) for 5 hours at least. Let him explain it to you carefully. You don’t look for a 10 second quote that you can ridicule.

I am sure that Shermer, Dawkins, PZ Myers and the rest gave them much more evidence for evolution, but they probably cut all that. The documentary wanted to emphasize their atheism, not the science. Although Dembski made clear in the movie many IDers have no problem with evolution.

For production I give it 4 out of 5, for content one star. So maybe 2 out of 5 stars. :stuck_out_tongue:

For the counter to the movie, see www.ExpelledExposed.com

Phil P

Petrus and PNewton,

Thank you both for your insightful comments about this movie. My kids go to a Protestant school, and I had received some emails promoting the film. I have struggled several times over the science curriculum at the school, because promotes this ID stuff and is very unscientific. I don’t claim to be a scientist, but I did take quite a bit of biology in college, yet I never even encountered some of the “theories” that are being put forth! My kids are young enough, fortunately, and I know enough so far, for me to supplement and explain that it is perfectly Christian to accept evolutionary science.

It frightens me that a film like this can be so persuasive to good, thoughtful, intelligent Catholics. It brings to mind things like the DaVinci Code and Eckhart Tolle (bad scholarship packaged for the mass media). I’m not sure whether to take the issue up with our school or just ignore it.

You have clearly, and patiently, defended both science and Catholicism, and for that I thank you. You may not convince everyone posting of that, but remember, there are many more reading than posting. Courtesy and clear thinking wins out in the end!

You are absolutely correct. We are free at to beleive as we will on the subject.


Tsk, tsk. Petrus. This is just what enflames people. “A staple of church basement screenings to the scientifically illiterate.” You have just presented the attitude that motivates people to go see Ben Stein stick it to the elitists of the science establishment.
That is the point of this movie/documentary. It’s not to present a nuanced discussion, because the scientific establishment, the intelligensia, the elite will not even tolerate that much.
Whether or not ID or Evolution or some mixture of the two answers to scientific rigour has never been even asked. The answer has always, since Darwin, been assumed. And he stepped immediately beyond science intrinsically within his theory from the very beginning, and his followers, scientific or polemical, have carried on this charade ever since that they have confined themselves to science and any talk of a creator is out of bounds.
Absolute nonsense. Darwin stepped beyond those bounds and the willfully ignorant and the malicious and mischevious have perpetuated the myth that he did not, simply to shut down the discussion, not to encourage it, as you might reasonably expect in academe, and they have done so in consistently arrogant style.
I, for one, am quite amused to see a little exposure of their arrogance and condescension.
I think the evidence shows an old earth, a record of creatures long gone, etc., etc. and it may even circumstantially show a pattern that could be a progression of growth of simple to complex. I’m happy to call that, with Cardinal Schoenborn, evolution. But the science is limited to seeing patterns, commonalities, genetic structures, ratios of populations, and so forth and so on.
But give me just one magical mutation and I’ll give you God, because you have moved into metaphysics, unfounded by science.

Pnewton, perhaps the best book on this is Christopher B. Kaiser’s Creational theology and the history of physical science: the creationist tradition from Basil to Bohr (Leiden; New York : Brill, 1997).


Reggie to Petrus << You express concern that the film wasn’t more balanced with a variety of views. But that assumes that the purpose of the film was to show the diversity of opinion that people in the world can have. The purpose was to show how these influential and dominant voices in the evolutionist community really harbor an animosity towards God and religion (Meyers envisions a utopian world where religion has disappeared from the earth). >>

I will answer. :smiley: The (false) “two sides” presented primarily in “Expelled” are:

Side (1) those nasty atheists who accept evolution as fact
Side (2) those persecuted theists who (for the most part) reject evolution, and accept God and some form of “intelligent design”

Whereas, the true real two sides (in the real world of practicing scientists) are:

Side (A) those nice atheists who accept evolution as fact
Side (B) those equally nice theists who accept evolution as fact

And these two sides (A) and (B) get along for the most part, the reason being there is really nothing to debate as far as the overall science of evolution is concerned. Evolution happened, the evidence is overwhelming. What scientists debate are the details, how it happened, by what natural mechanisms, etc. They don’t debate “God did it” since that isn’t a scientific question. Origin of life (abiogenesis) is also another area scientists research and debate, but that is to be distinguished from the evolution of life, as the movie somewhat brought out.

Time to quote (evangelical geologist) Keith Miller again as I have a dozen times in past threads:

“The doctrine of creation really says nothing about ‘How’ God creates. It does not provide a basis for a testable theory of the mechanism of change. If it does not address this issue, then it does not contribute anything to a specifically scientific description of the history of life. I believe that all of creation is designed by God and has its being in God, but that does not give me any insights into the processes by which God brought that creation into existence. That is the role of scientific investigation, a vocation in which I find great excitement and fulfillment…It is the continuing success of scientific research to resolve previous questions about the nature and history of the physical universe, and to raise new and more penetrating ones, that drives the work of individual scientists. For the theist this simply affirms that, in creating and preserving the universe, God has endowed it with contingent order and intelligibility, and given us as bearers of the divine image the capability to perceive that order.” (Keith Miller, Perspectives on an Evolving Creation [Eerdmans, 2003], pages 13,14)

I could also quote several things from Ken Miller’s Finding Darwin’s God but the above quote is what I have handy. The “debate” isn’t over the factual evidence for evolution. Furthermore, there is no “scientific content” to “Intelligent Design” (here I am talking about biological ID, which I would distinguish from Cosmological ID or the “Anthropic Principle”). Since there is no content, there’s nothing to teach in science class. So-called “problems” with evolution is not scientific evidence for ID. Most of the so-called “problems” are simply wrong, or have been answered for decades when the original creationists brought them up (in the 1970s and 80s).

Further, the philosophical “debate on God” (between general atheists and theists, not just scientists) is separate from the scientific evidence for evolution. Macroevlution or Common Descent is a fact. There is no debate on that in the biological and other scientific communities. That did not come out clearly enough in the documentary, aside from Dawkins saying “evolution is a fact.” More of the evidence could have been presented. I assume it was, but it was probably cut.

What was missing from the film were the actual two sides fully represented. Better interviewees would have been

Side (A) Dawkins, PZ Myers, Michael Ruse, Dan Dennett, Will Provine on the one side.
Side (B) Ken Miller, Keith Miller, Denis Lamoureux, Darrel Falk, Francis Collins on the other side.

But it wouldn’t be a “debate” on the science, since they fully agree on the science. It would be a philosophical / metaphysical / theological debate and disagreement which as I’ve mentioned is a totally separate issue from the science.

At least they did bring in Alister McGrath, who fully accepts evolution and I believe he rejects (uppercase) “Intelligent Design” as well, also the same with John Polkinhorne (he only had a few seconds clip I think).

As for the ID people supposedly being persecuted, get the full story from www.ExpelledExposed.com

The stuff on Darwin to Hitler was also nonsense, though I mentioned I haven’t read Weikert’s book yet.

Phil P

[SIGN]The stuff on Darwin to Hitler was also nonsense, though I mentioned I haven’t read Weikert’s book yet. [/SIGN]
Phil P quote

Richard Weikart, in his book “From Darwin To Hitler”, explains the impact Darwinism had on ethics and morality. He demonstrates (demonstrates) that many leading Darwinian biologists and social thinkers in Germany believed that Darwinism overturned traditional Judeo-Christian and Enlightenment ethics, especially those pertaining to the sacredness of human life. Many of these thinkers supported moral relativism, yet simultaneously exalted evolutionary “fitness” as the highest arbiter of morality. Darwinism played a key role not only in the rise of eugenics, but also in euthanasia, infanticide, abortion, and racial extermination, all of which were embraced by the Nazis.

Hitler built his view of ethics on Darwinian principles rather than nihilistic ones.

All this just from the dust jacket of “From Darwin to Hitler”.

Is it possible that Darwin has much to answer for in abortion that is taking place across the world? Fifty million dead in our country alone

bean << Richard Weikart, in his book “From Darwin To Hitler”, explains the impact Darwinism had on ethics and morality. >>

Yes, I understand that is his view, and he probably presents a good amount of evidence and argument in the book.

Regardless, it would be an abuse and distortion of the science. Scientific data by itself is neutral. Scientifically the data and evidence points to macroevolution (i.e. “common descent”) via “natural selection” which has been directly observed in both field and laboratory (although on a “small scale” since you can’t observe millions of years in a lab).

As I pointed out in a previous post, Hitler himself was for something called “Positive Christianity” (in German: Positives Christentum). If we say “Darwinism” caused the Nazis, can we also say that “Christianity” caused the Nazis?

You know in the Gospels that Jesus had a lot of things to say about the Jews or at least the Pharisees (calling them poisonous snakes, hypocrites, blind guides, tombs, liars, and devils, “you are of your father, the devil”, cf. Matthew 23; John 8:44; etc). St. Paul says the Jews were directly responsible for killing Jesus (see 1 Thess 2:14-15). Maybe Hitler was inspired by this as well?

Therefore, “Christianity” caused Nazism. The same “logic” applies to “Darwinism.” But I will try to find or buy Weikhart’s book. At least one of his lectures is online at his home page. I will convert to MP3 and make available here:

From Darwin to Hitler (MP3 audio) click in an hour or so should be ready

Phil P

Darwinism and Nazis. All I can think is…:rotfl:

This is starting to sound like a Jack Chick tract.

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