[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index][Subject Index][Author Index]

SCIENCE, THE MEDIA, AND WHAT I ACTUALLY SAID



I wrote:
<<<Most people who are not in science are quite ignorant of the processes
 involved.  Quotes like the above from Feduccia help feed creationists'
 rantings about the un-reality of evolution because of its percieved
 impossibility, or confuse the educated, though still non-professional as to
 what is actually going on.>>>

to which James Sutton (Wiwaxia) responded with:
 <<Seldom have I read about
 how they are attempting to refute the hypothesis of such a link. To do
 that is what science is all about and, it seems to me, Feduccia has acted
 in the highest tradition of the scientific spirit in that he actually tries
to
 refute the theory that everyone else seems to be attracted to like moths
 to a flame.>>

Did I ever say that what Feduccia was doing was unscientific?  NO.
Did I ever say he was doing a disservice to science? NO.
What I did say was that I wished that reporters would report all sides of a
story, and not quote just one (or in the case two, where there are three
opposing viewpoints).  Additionally, they quote the most ignorant of
Feduccia's patented mass-media blitz points, such as the time gap, and the
semi-lunate carpal in just four theropods etc.

Feduccia is a great ornithologist, that is certain, and I was never ever ever
EVER saying that he wasn't.  My beef was with ignorant reporters, 99.9% of
whom 1) have no idea about anything scientific and 2) would like all their
stories to be a great warlike dichotomy, two well defined sides etc full of
ignorant sound-bites and with little to no real substantive information.

 <<He deserves a lot better personal consideration than he has
 been given by many on this list.  He is surely not ignorant and I think most
 of you know it.>>

Did I ever say he was?  NO.

Speaking of personal consideration though...  Perhaps it would be good of
Feduccia to keep that in mind as well.  Was it not he who reffered to the
dino-bird people as "fanatics"?  Did he not call Sinosauropteryx the "pilt-
down dinosaur", implying that the Chinese workers deliberately painted the
feathers on to the slab?

That is absolutely uncalled for.  To imply such fraud without any proof, and
without having even examined the specimen is much worse than any comments
George may have made about Bob Bakker and the wax skull....

Who's being unscientific now?
 
 <<Their argument is that because there is
 disagreement among scientists about evolution, it must be a false
 doctrine. It's the coin and not the sides of it that give them their
 pseudo-ammunition.  Any disagreement is enough for them.>>

Again, you are missing the point of what I actually wrote.  I was calling for
reporters to report on all sides of the story, not just sound bites from a few
participants in the debate.  If reporters actually reported everything, then
the creationists who feed off of Feduccia (which I am sure he hates) would
have less faux support in their 'debates'.

 <<And don't be so smug about these latest discoveries.>>

I am not being smug.

 <<They may require
 interpretation later on in the light of new interpretations and "new"
 fossils.>>

I never said otherwise.  I said that the media is not reporting all sides and
simply taking sound-bite quotes.  That's all.  Nothing more, nothing less.

Peter Buchholz
Tetanurae@aol.com

Bacterial poop