Re: re-whales from rodents

Steve Clark (
Mon, 23 Aug 1999 14:29:21 -0500

At 02:50 PM 8/23/99 -0400, Howard J. Van Till wrote:
>Let's not make this into a bigger deal than it is. My comment was limited
>to what struck me as a peculiarity in the combination of these two items:
>1. Your earlier comment that we should not expect the law professor to get
>all scientific details straight. (In some measure I am sympathetic to your
>line of thought here.)
>2. The fact that the law professor has nonetheless set himself up as one
>who is sufficiently informed regarding the empirical data and sufficiently
>equipped for the performance of scientific theory evaluation that he can
>rightly declare the professional judgment of the vast majority of the
>scientific community to be entirely misguided. (On that score you and I
>might have substantial disagreement.)
>Howard Van Till

I'd like to weigh in with my $0.02 worth of opinion.

I have a PhD in a biomedical science and I have done cell biology and
molecular genetics research for more than 15 yrs. I think that this
background would give me some qualification to evaluate much of the data
for and against evolution. But I assiduously avoid doing so. The field is
sufficiently complex and deep that I would be in constant fear of making
important errors of opinion. I prefer to let the experts debate the
scientific issues relevant to evolution. Given my own caution here, I feel
that it is highly appropriate for a law professor to be held to a similarly
rigorous standard when it comes to evaluating the scientific claims of