Darwin and Hitler, friends forever?
You can’t say that creationists aren’t, well, creative. After trying to redefine all of biology with the help of a mathematician and a lawyer, and having their asses handed to them on a plate in court, they’re reverting to an old standby: that Adolph Hitler was supposedly inspired by “Darwinism”…
In a new documentary, Darwin’s Deadly Legacy and a book, The politically incorrect guide to Darwinism and Intelligent design, D. James Kennedy and Jonathon Wells try to discredit evolutionary biology by claiming that the holocaust was the love child of Darwin and Hitler. That’s right; they’re down to the old reliable ad hominem fallacy, a sure sign that the well is getting pretty dry.
Historical experts have already deconstructed that association, but I would like to make a different point: It would not matter even if Hitler curled up every night with his copy of Origin Of Species and required all the Waffen SS soldiers to pass a test on evolutionary theory before going out to do their ‘field work’. The moral qualities of those who believe in a theory have no bearing on its truth or falsity.
As someone once said, what matters is evidence, mountains of it. And plains and riverbeds and cliffs and gulleys full of the fossil record of life’s long struggle from whatever (call it God if you like) started it all somewhere on this planet. What matters is the concord of other scientific disciplines like genetics, physics, and astronomy, which provide congruence in their own experimental results. What matters is that evolutionary biology does a good job predicting how species will change.
That is what makes evolution true, and creationism false. It doesn’t make the slightest difference who believes in either one.
Hitler, like most politicians, presented himself as a Christian. Mein Kampf is full of references to God, to Christ, to the factuality of Christianity. The Reich made extensive use of Christian themes in its social expression. But this association does not make Christianity responsible for the holocaust, either.
Hitler is responsible for the holocaust. If he had been a cook he probably would have found justification for his madness in the Betty Crocker cookbook. It is a horrible thing to use the suffering of the holocaust’s victims to try to push one’s own agenda, and Kennedy and Wells should be ashamed of themselves. If they have any shame.