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June 30, 2005

Ideology, evolution and the culture-wars

Mark Kleiman says:


Most of my friends...the blue team...are genuinely puzzled by the anti-evolution fury evident among elements of the red team....

To which I say, I am genuinely puzzled by the anti-genetic fury often in evidence among elements of the blue team. Just because we are animals doesn't imply we should behave like other animals, and just because we have behavioral biases rooted in our genetic heritage doesn't mean we should valorize our biases as necessary for the Good Life. I agree with Lindsay Beyerstein, we shouldn't "play along with those delusions because" we preceive that the ends are just or proper. We should attempt to find a way to attain the Good Life and live by Truth.

Addendum: William Jennings Bryan's concern that evolutionary accounts of human ancestry from animals dovetailed too well with Social Darwinist attempts to control and oppress the "lower orders" merges the two cautionary impulses.

Also, Mark says:


The account in Genesis, whether believed literally or accepted as a morally relevant metaphor, provides a very direct and convincing argument in favor of universal human rights....

Uh, when was the last time Mark read Genesis?

Via Chris.

Posted by razib at 03:32 PM