This is a message to those of my friends and readers who are Christians who enjoy arguing about evolution. If you are going to attack evolution, actually attack evolution.
I guess I should put this into the proper context. I debate lots of Christians. I don’t always debate about evolution, sometimes it is other stuff which I end up arguing about. When evolution does come up though, it is rarely actually about evolution. I’ve noticed that some Christians are fond of encouraging people to not teach evolution. Not because it isn’t true, but because it is responsible for “Nazis” “Communism” and other generic bad things according to them. These people assert this as if it were a fact, and are typically impossible to move from this position. I’m about to drop a “truth-bomb” on these people. Even if it were true that information related to evolution were a contributor to the Holocaust, or the pogroms in Russia (not to mention atrocities committed by Stalin’s regime), this would in no way be an effective argument against evolution itself being reflective of reality.
This is a stupid argument that people use to try and make people feel bad about teaching evolution. It’s ineffective. As long as the evidence suggest evolution occurred, evolution should be taught. Not in philosophy, but in science classes (and natural history classes as well). The consequences of fusing natural processes (well, in actuality our understanding of natural processes, not the processes themselves) and social philosophies isn’t always good, but that doesn’t undo the evidence which supports the understanding that evolution happened and is happening even now. It doesn’t make the evidence less compelling in a purely scientific context. No amount of atrocities, undoes this evidence. Deniers of evolution wish it did, and oftentimes know better than to try and aim at the science (and some of them UNDERSTAND that the evidence as it stands right now is fairly solid) so they aim at how people feel about it. Which is bullshit.
In order to make evolution look bad, people want to use the works of men and women who fused scientific understanding with social “principles” resulting in things like social darwinism and other things that are viewed as bad. This is a clever tactic, admittedly, but it does nothing to actually disprove evolution. It might win a debate, by getting an audience to look at the other side as “bad” or lacking in a moral compass, but it does literally NOTHING to actually disprove evolution as being the process by which life diversifies on Earth.
If you want to ask evolution how it feels about things like genocide, in order to be fair you’d also have to ask erosion and gravity how they feel about genocide. Those are also natural processes. The reason people don’t do this is because those processes are deemed less controversial, and they don’t view those theories as necessarily opposite to their beliefs in God or in some other deity. People understand that as long as evolution appears to be true, there is less reason to believe in a literal Bible (or some other holy-text, but the evolution deniers/skeptics I’ve met are Christian, but I know that isn’t universal). Evolution has no opinion on morality. Evolution is a process. Evolution didn’t ask to be partially incorporated into ideas like Social Darwinism.
My personal sense of morality, of compassion, of philosophy are not influenced by evolution. I’m sure there are people who are different than I am about that. I have no doubt that some people out there have a sense of morality which is affected by their understandings of the processes which impact life which are natural. But those people and I myself are not evidence for or against evolution, nor are our decisions. Sorry evolution deniers/skeptics, you need to do better than this if you want to truly impact evolution and whether or not it should be taught
Here’s a tip: if you want to get evolution to not be taught anymore, focus on disproving it. Not trying to connect it to failed/”bad” social and political attitudes. Focus on finding evidence which disproves evolution, not making it somehow sound “bad” to people who hear how you conflate it with certain attitudes or ideas.
Have you seen this argument? How does it make you feel, if you have?