This has to be the funniest thing I've read in the last week. PZ Meyers, one of my favorite bloggers and inspirations, took a field trip, on Thursday night, to see "Expelled" (the new movie being promoted by Ben Stein about the alleged bias against creationism and ID). Not only did the man manage to get tickets, but he arrived on the scene with Richard Dawkins ("I'm not worthy!!"). In tow were people from the Richard Dawkins Foundation, Meyer's wife, and Skatje (P1's idol). You can read the full account at PZ's blog, but the evening went a little something like this: PZ got up to the place where IDs were checked (because, irony of ironies, the producers of the movie want to keep REAL scientists out of the movie), he was told to leave. This order came from from the producer. Now...call me crazy: but, I say, if you are portrayed in a movie, I think you have a right to view said movie and see how you were portrayed. Apparently, the producers of Expelled don't agree. I'm not saying PZ is Johnny Depp or Brad Pitt, but can you imagine Tim Burton throwing Johnny Depp out of a screening for Willy Wonka?
I hope PZ will forgive me for saying this (remember I love ya' PZ!), but...they let DAWKINS in, but not PZ? I suspect, knowing a bit about the industry in question, that the producer correctly concluded that throwing Dawkins out would look bad even to creationists and IDers. What the producer obviously didn't anticipate was that PZ is just as beloved and respected. I've checked my blog roll and I'm far from the first person to write up a post on this event. So, I'm left to wonder: What the hell was the producer thinking?
I'd already lost a large margin of respect for the creators and producers of this movie (mostly because they misrepresented themselves to people LIKE PZ and Dawkins). Then, there was the whole issue of calling Ben Stein a scientific authority and vesting him with undo credentials as their spokesperson. Then, there's the whole problem with them twisting billions of years of biology into a bunch of tripe that serves no other purpose than to serve up some evangelism with a side of arrogant blustering. Then, the producers decided that they were going to exclude any person who may disagree from seeing the picture (this included notable members of the press and real biologists/physicists/cosmologists). Tonight, they've proven how disingenuous they are. Of course, it's their movie. I suppose they have a right to decide when, how, where, and to whom it plays. But, you officially lose at life if you stand on a soapbox and scream about being marginalized and excluded only to marginalize and exclude. Game over!
The people who made this film want to be taken seriously. I have a message for them: don't make a film about your, supposed, "science" if you clearly misunderstand and misapply the scientific method. REAL scientists welcome debate and peer review. Real scientists don't throw out information/footage/data because it doesn't fit their hypothesis or desired result. REAL scientists don't quote mine and plagiarize.
But, I suppose that's the point: they're not scientists! They're evangelical creationists who have a political and ecumenical agenda to promote a position that can't stand on it's own merit. Masel Tov! You know... I never thought I'd be repulsed any worse than I am repulsed by Kent Hovind and CSE - I was mistaken.