I touched on this the other day, with my post “skeptics are more scientifically literate than alarmists.” The conversation seems to be hitting a crescendo across the blogosphere, with Mooney and Green having a go at a variant of the discussion, who’s more anti-science, the left or the right. Predictably, and perhaps inevitably the conversation drifted to the misperception that Christians are anti-science. I believe this errant framing is intentional, but whether it is or isn’t intentional, its patently wrong.
One of the problems is discerning what is and isn’t science. Many try to frame the abortion issue as an issue of science. It isn’t. It is a moral issue. Another group tries to make the argument that Christians are skeptical of the CAGW hypothesis. Many are, but, there are many that aren’t. A couple of notable professed Christians that are decidedly pro CAGW is Dr. Kathy Hayhoe and blogger John Cook. So that argument is baseless. But more to the point, much of the CAGW argument , as I’ve pointed out before, (The Travesty of Trenberth ) isn’t science at all, but rather, political advocacy. For clarity, I’ll repeat the posit. The CAGW hypothesis has little to do with science and more to do with political advocacy. There’s nothing scientific about pretending to find heat where no measurements or observations have taken place. There isn’t anything scientific about mischaracterizing other scientists positions. There isn’t anything scientific about falsifying pictures and passing them on as views of reality. There’s nothing scientific about stifling debate. And to the crux of the CAGW hypothesis, there is absolutely nothing scientific about conducting science by a show of hands.
Are most Christians skeptical of the CAGW hypothesis? Christians are typically against acts of deception. And most importantly, Christians typically oppose burning people out of their homes, murdering their children, and confiscation of people’s property.
If we are to define this as science, then I proudly stand by my Christian brothers and sisters as anti-science. But, what I’ve described as part and parcel of the CAGW hypothesis isn’t science. It is Malthusian. It is misanthropy. And it is collectivism in its worst form. But, it isn’t science. But, let us, for a moment, examine what is universally held as science.
Most people hold that works of Isaac Newton is an establishment of many principles of modern science. Who was Isaac Newton? Isaac Newton was a deeply religious Christian, a prolific hymnist and studied the Bible with earnest and consideration. His works, Optiks and Observations upon the Prophecies of Daniel and the Apocalypse of St. John bear witness to his faith. And, what of the Big Bang theory? While some may disagree with the theory, the basis of the theory is grounded in science. Monsignor Georges Henri Joseph Édouard Lemaître was the first to propose the Big Bang theory. Yes, that’s right a Roman Catholic Priest. A mathematician, physicist, astronomer……etc. While we’re talking about physicists, a contemporary of Lemaitre, a one Max Planck should be discussed. He’s often credited with being the father of the quantum theory. Max Plank was an elder in his Lutheran church from 1920 to the day of his death in 1947. There are, of course, many, many more examples of Christians leading the way in scientific understanding and discourse. For those interested, a look at the Templeton Prize and its recipients would be a worthwhile venture.
Just one notable professed Christian deeply engaged in the CAGW discussion is Dr. Roy Spencer. He is often criticized, not for his science, but for his belief in Christ.
There’s much more to say on this subject, and I’m sure there will be. I’ll continue to enlighten on this subject as best I can.
A brother in Christ,