As one should beware of creationist error one should also beware of
anti-creationist attacks which are inaccurate hatchet jobs.
Pennock's Tower of Bable is just that. Below I paste in some comments on
Pennock's clumsy hatchet work as he describes Van Till as brushing up
agianst the border of creationism, which should send most of this listserve
into hysterics and then to tears.
Pennock uses the image of the tower of Babel to bring together in a
pejorative way all those silly ideas he calls Creationism. Despite having
differentiated the varieties of "creationism" from YEC to Van Till in the
first chapter, he spends the rest of the book smoothly gliding from one to
the other to mislead the undiscerning, and give the discerning high blood
pressure. To describe Van Till as 'brush(ing) right up against the border'
of Creationism is laughable?. To say that writing 'To know God as Redeemer,
must first know him as Creator' . 'may make Van Till sound like a
creationist' is even more so. We can all be tarred with the same YEC brush.
Guilt by association is pure McCarthyism. Pennock fails to indicate that his
19th century "creationists" such as Sedgwick and Henslow were superb
scientists, and to imply otherwise is poor scholarship. This is shallow
rhetoric and worthy of Clarence Darrow. By this he can belittle those he
disagrees with rather than understand them. Thus, Morris and Gish, Behe and
Johnson, and Henslow and Sedgwick are portrayed as of the same creationist
mould. Of course, all are CREATIONISTS in the wider sense - and so am I- ,
as are Arthur Peacocke and John Polkinhorne.
This is part of my review to be found on the Association of Christian
However Ken Miller's is a wonderful book and a model of critical empathy.
Can anyone explaint ome why Pennock is so hughly regarded?
----- Original Message -----
From: "Freeman, Louise Margaret" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
To: "asa" <email@example.com>
Sent: Monday, May 20, 2002 2:51 PM
> > An overall result of the NSF study is that science education &
> >scientific literacy in the US is, in a word, bad. I think that the
> >state of science education is an important social issue that churches
> >should be addressing.
> I having just read Miller's Finding Darwin's God and being half-way
> Pennock's "Tower of Babel." I couldn't agree more. (Your book is next on
> list, George!) What seems to be needed is some sort of cirriculum for a
> School-type class that incorporates that type of explanation of
> theory with a polite but well-reasoned refutation of the typical YEC
> misinformation AND a thoughtful study of the relevant scriptures. (Add a
> video presentaion and a guarentee of weight loss and babies sleeping
> the night and you might have yourself a best seller! :)
> > A related issue: Some may reply that the answer to bad science
> >education is home schooling. But that prompts another question: What
> >fraction of kids who are being home schooled are being taught some
> >variant of creation science or ID?
> Of ones that are being home-schooled primarily for religious reasons,
> a lot. How many well-meaning home-schooling parents are finding nothing
> that in the Christian-based materials being marketed to them? Until
> evolutionists get better at presented their science as complementary to
> than in opposition to a Christian worldview, homeschooling parents will
> little incentive to seek out such materials for their children.
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