Thursday, October 19, 2006

Maciej Giertych in Polish Radio Interview: Evolution (Geocentrism Mentioned)

The English language Radio Polonia interviewed Maciej Giertych Oct. 16th, 2006. The discussion was regarding a desire for a scholarly debate on evolution. Representing evolution science was Kielan-Jaworowska. The interview was actually reasonably fair, and the establishment science side came off as arrogant.

Giertych started with:

I am a scientist, I am a geneticist, my specialty is population genetics and I reject the theory of evolution on the basis of the field of science I represent. I find that in many fields of science there are scientists who reject the theory of evolution because in their fields they also find evidence against the theory.

Next he voiced his concern on Darwinianism in education:

Schools are teaching evolution as a fact and there seems to be very little reference to new research that would either support or negate the theory of evolution. There is so much new evidence that is being simply ignored by the school textbooks.

At this point the voice of establishment science was brought in, equating anti-evolution to geocentrism (Kielan-Jaworowska):

There are people who still believe that not the earth is going round the sun but the sun round the earth. His views have nothing to do with science; I would not call him a scientist. We are deeply ashamed that he got the title of a professor and that he is a biologist.

Yes, Ms. Kielan-Jaworowska, there are those who look at the evidence rather than worshipping at the altar of science. Some of us are glad that a few people with the title 'professor' are willing to have an open mind.

Later Giertych made a statement regarding working with established science:

The proponents of the theory of evolution are not prepared to sit down and look at the evidence and present their own evidence for the theory of evolution. Debates on the subject immediately develop into philosophical conflict, a lot of emotions are involved and a tendency to label the other side as ignorant, as motivated ideologically - whereas what is needed is a serious scientific debate and confrontation of results.

Kielan-Jaworowska predictably supported Giertych's contention in her next segment:

I don't think scientific discussion with him is possible.

The radio show in Catholic Poland ended in a manner not likely in the US or much of western Europe (announcer Joanna Najfeld ):

The liberal archbishop Życiński of Lublin, has criticized Prof. Giertych's call for scholarly debate. However the official Catholic Church position on the subject was reiterated by the late Polish Pope, John Paul II, who in a 1996 statement to the Pontifical Academy of Sciences said, "fresh knowledge leads to recognition of more than one hypothesis in the theory of evolution."

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You can listen to the interview here. A decent English transcript is available here.


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