Sometimes I worry about the state of science today. The majority of students are woefully ignorant about even the most basic scientific concepts. More worrisome, however, ideology drives much of science. Evolution (in the ‘goo to you’ sense) is taught as fact, even though it is, at best, an unconfirmed hypothesis. In an attempt to promulgate this myth, many scientific journals refuse to publish anything that challenges the dogma of evolution.
And if any journal dares to publish a heretical paper, heads must role. For example, when Stephen Meyer sent a paper entitled “The Origin of Biological Information and the Higher Taxonomic Categories” to the small journal called Proceedings of the Biological Society of Washington, the editor (Dr. Richard Sternberg), sent it out for peer review. It passed peer review, and it was published. Then, a firestorm occurred. As the Washington Post says
Within hours of publication, senior scientists at the Smithsonian Institution — which has helped fund and run the journal — lashed out at Sternberg as a shoddy scientist and a closet Bible thumper.
Why did the firestorm occur? Because the paper discussed intelligent design in a positive manner. It doesn’t matter that the paper passed peer review. It doesn’t matter that the reviewers who didn’t even agree with intelligent designed called it meritorious and worthy of publication. The fact that it dared to question the dogma of the day was enough. Sternberg faced retaliation, defamation, and harassment because he allowed heresy to creep into the biological literature.