from Ben Stein: “Darwinism cannot explain gravity” (with video)

added January 7, 2009: There’s been a lot of interest in this post lately, but people have not been finding their way to this later post:

more on Ben Stein: “Darwinism cannot explain gravity”

Based on a C-Span interview that I didn’t know about when I did this first post, the later post looks at how Ben Steins conflation of Darwinism and gravity is much more significant than I imagined when I did this initial post.

From Glenn Beck’s show on CNN Monday, April 28, 2008:

BECK: Right. He — tell me about [Richard Dawkins].

STEIN: A very smart guy. I`m not a judge of male beauty as much as I am of female beauty but a very good looking guy.

BECK: You`re good with the ladies —

STEIN: I`m pretty good with the ladies. [Richard Dawkins is a] self confident guy. But thinks — in my humble opinion, thinks he knows a lot more than he does. Darwinism cannot explain gravity, cannot explain thermodynamics. Most of all, it cannot explain how life began. That`s what we`re trying to get in the movie, how did life began and why should we close our eyes to the possibility that God did it, there is an intelligent creator and his name is G-O-D.

BECK: It amazed me to see the arrogance and honestly the misery that these people live in.

STEIN: I think they live in a little, teeny box. They`re surrounded like a little teeny box protecting themselves and their theory. . . .

Here’s the video:

We can view this astonishing display of ignorance (among other things) for its entertainment value, and hold these guys up to ridicule. On the other hand, as I suggested in an earlier post on Jonathan Wells (2006) The Politically Incorrect Guide to Darwinism and Intelligent Design. Regnery Publishing, Inc. Washington, DC., we could use this as a “high stakes” test of science education for the general public. Paraphrasing:

If non-scientists with high school diplomas are unable to see pervasive and profound errors and inaccuracies in this, that fact can be used as evidence that science education for non-scientists in our schools has failed to accomplish the goals of “scientific literacy” or “science for all Americans” (cf. AAAS – Project 2061). This can provide a focus for reworking science education within general education (i.e., for non-specialists) so that high school graduates would pass the test (a test for science education, more than for the graduates as individuals) of having learned to understand the nature of science at least well enough that they could not be taken in by something like this.

Click here for more on this blog re: Ben Stein and Expelled.


  1. Posted May 3, 2008 at 3:02 pm | Permalink

    This is laughable.
    You know, it does make me wonder, is the world really round?

  2. Posted May 3, 2008 at 3:12 pm | Permalink

    Kurt asks

    it does make me wonder, is the world really round?

    And Darwinism has no answer for that, either !!

  3. Posted May 4, 2008 at 7:47 pm | Permalink

    I last quote could easily apply to the folks who are unable to discern the scientific flaws in Darwinian theory… What passes for science today, in both Evolution and Creation Circles, is nothing more than philosophy masked at science.

  4. Catana
    Posted May 5, 2008 at 10:57 am | Permalink

    Having just come from a “discussion” about atheist churches which degenerated into the usual name-calling, and more or less ended with “pity the poor unhappy atheists,” Stein’s ignorance is almost comic relief.

    Thanks for brightening my day.

  5. Posted May 7, 2008 at 8:30 pm | Permalink

    Ben Stein is laughable, but it’s pretty sad at the same time.

    I saw Ben Stein on the Glenn Beck show back in February when he was promoting the film. He worked himself into a rant about academia that ended with this gem: “The more degrees they have, the less they know” (or something very close to that). What utter nonsense!

    I used to like Ben Stein when he was on “Win Ben Stein’s Money” and some other shows. It’s been disappointing to see him promoting this garbage.

  6. Posted May 8, 2008 at 1:04 pm | Permalink

    There has been research to indicate that a college degree today is about the equivalent of a HS diploma from about 50 years ago. Educational standards have gone down over the past several decades, so while you may disagree with Stein’s observations of science, the premise of hi statement is supported by the data.

  7. Kevin Currie
    Posted July 10, 2008 at 6:00 pm | Permalink

    I have read enough Dawkins to know that, bet on how, the quote was taken out of context.

    I haven’t seen the full clip, but I am guessing that Dawkins was talking about the APPERAANCE of design – as he often does – before talking about how evolution is quite capable of producing it wilthout an actual designer.

    It would be smart if all evolutionists who dare consent to interviews with those they do not know do so under the stipulation that they recieve an unedited copy of the full interview. That way, the pressure can be kept on the director not to quote out of context under threat of the interviewee going very public with the real clip.

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