Ken Miller and PZ Reconcile

Question to Gordo: what would make a good picture for this?

After blasting Ken Miller for suggesting to creationists to fight atheism instead of science, PZ is reconciling, largely due to clarification emails from Miller.

Jack Krebs has his summary of the KU talk by Ken Miller, and I’ve also had a bit of a private conversation with Miller in email. I’m not going to post it, but I will summarize my ideas after getting more of the story.

  • Miller is not trying to redirect creationists to fight atheists, and he’s very clear that all of us need to stand together in our opposition to bad science (I also agree the religious and the non-religious should be united on this issue.) Krebs mentions that this was a new section of his talk, so I suspect this is one where he’ll be reworking some of the wording. I hope.


  • I think we both agree that the debate with creationists needs to shift in direction—the science is settled and has been resolved for a long, long time. Where that argument should go is unsettled, and I don’t think his talk helped clarify matters much. I think it muddied them, if anything.

Most surprisingly, PZ’s starting to get heat from people who say he’s too weak on religion. I’m not sure when or why this trend started, but there are some people who really do think any alliance with people who disagree with them on anything is treacherous; the new development is that secularism is attracting these people.

On the other hand, the bloggers who contribute material to COTG have resisted that development, it seems, so for now it’s restricted to comment threads, hardly the most influential medium in modern society. Hopefully American secularism will score a good success soon, obviously with the help of religious allies, undermining the atheist equivalent of lesbian separatism and black nationalism before it has the chance to cause real damage.

3 Responses to Ken Miller and PZ Reconcile

  1. PZ Myers says:

    I’m not reconciled at all. It’s more an admission that we have some significant common causes, but I’m not going to forget that I also have some significant differences with him.

  2. Alon Levy says:

    Well, we obviously have significant differences with him, but I think the major point is that on issues of evolution/creation, we’re all on the same side. It’s no different from how you view Dawkins as an ally against religion even though you disagree with his gene-centrism.

  3. SLC says:

    Unfortunately, it appears from the threads on PZs’ blog, Braytons’ blog, Rosenhouses’ blog, etc. that the intramural fight with Ken Miller goes on. As I have commented on all of these blogs, Ken Miller is one of the good guys and picking a fight with him only allows the born-agains to play divide and conquer. I suggest fighting one war at a time; defeat the Behes of the world first, then worry about Miller and Collins.

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