Lying for Darwin
In the week since Expelled came out in theaters, I've been startled not so much by the juvenile name-calling directed at me for defending the movie ("self-hating Jew," "Hitler sympathizer," "Jewish Uncle Tom," "hired hit-pen and journalistic hatchet job expert," etc.). That's something that publicly admitted Darwin-doubters quickly get accustomed to.
Much more surprising is the sheer flat-out lying done by critics bent on denouncing the movie's controversial linking of Darwinism and Hitlerism.
Now, I happen to think that the Darwin-Hitler link is pretty darn well established, as I've argued on National Review Online, Jewcy, and in this space. The major Hitler biographers agree with me that Hitler in Mein Kampf and elsewhere used transparently Darwinian arguments to motivate fellow Jew-haters to actuate the Final Solution.
I don't care if somebody insists on disagreeing with my interpretation of the relevant texts -- though frankly that would be hard to do if your powers of reading comprehension rise above sixth-grade level. Just please don't lie in your representation of what I've written.
Yet that is exactly what a variety of fancy-pants professors along with prominent and obscure bloggers have done. By these Darwinist propagandists, it is asserted that I agree that "Hitler was right about the Jews," that I "participate in this demonizing of the atheist 'other,'" that I "excus[e] Christians from their role in the Holocaust." Not a bit of which is remotely true. Obviously.
Somebody called Sahotra Sarkar is a professor of "Philosophy and Integrative Biology" at the University of Texas. He writes on Jewcy and grotesquely distorts my argument as follows: "If you believe in the theory of evolution, you are an anti-Semite."
In fact all I said was that Hitler drew on Darwinian theory, and yes, that should give us pause about what Darwin wrote. No more than that.
A picture of reality, after all, such as the one Darwin offers in his books, naturally suggests ethical corollaries. But maybe, if judged strictly from a Darwinist perspective, Hitler drew the wrong corollaries. On that point I'm agnostic. But certainly, given that Darwin in The Descent of Man prophesied the extermination of the inferior by the superior races, it should surprise nobody that Hitler, influenced by the Darwinian worldview, sought to bring Darwin's prophecy to fruition.
Of course sometimes Darwinists aren't lying. They are simply unaware of the facts. Thus on National Review Online, John Derbyshire chides me: "As always when the Darwin-Hitler business comes up, I note that guilt by association cuts two ways. Islamic fundamentalists are Darwin-hating creationists to a man."
Anyone who believes John's simplistic assertion should consult Andrew G. Bostom's useful new book The Legacy of Islamic Anti-Semitism. Bostom recounts how certain Islamic sources "differentiate" Muslims from unbelievers "quite graphically in a derogatory, Darwinian manner. Thus Jews are compared with apes, Christians with pigs, and women with dogs." However, another Muslim text refers to the "Jewish ape Darwin."
Also on National Review Online, Jonah Goldberg graciously admitted his unintended goof: "I think I was unfair to the narrow claims in Klinghoffer's piece."
Jonah made the honest mistake of not reading me carefully.
Is there, in any case, something in the psychological profile of many a Darwin-partisan that leads such a person not simply to misunderstand or insult those who disagree with him but to purposefully misrepresent what we say?