I have said in the past that the opponents of Intelligent Design boil down to people who are scared to death of their science and philosophical conclusions, and who spend their time at ad homonim attacks; they smear ID scientists, try to label them with nasty names, and brush them aside. I have taken some smack for that, but I think a recent series of events shows this to be the case.
Richard Sternberg was an editor at a journal that published an article on ID by Stephen Meyer. He is no longer in that role because his fellow “scientists” in the Smithsonian smeared his name and his education and got him removed from his position.
Sound like a story line written up in a fundamentalist, evangelical tabloid? Try the Washington Post. Here are some of the important segments of the article:
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.
"They were saying I accepted money under the table, that I was a crypto-priest, that I was a sleeper cell operative for the creationists," said Steinberg, 42 , who is a Smithsonian research associate. "I was basically run out of there."
The underhanded child’s play was so pervasive, an independent investigation was launched to protect Sternberg’s academic integrity.
An independent agency has come to the same conclusion, accusing top scientists at the Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History of retaliating against Sternberg by investigating his religion and smearing him as a "creationist."
"The rumor mill became so infected," James McVay, the principal legal adviser in the Office of Special Counsel, wrote to Sternberg, "that one of your colleagues had to circulate [your résumé] simply to dispel the rumor that you were not a scientist."
One possible “out” for the Smithsonian accusers is that Sternberg is a Trojan horse-a religiously educated nut-job in a real thinker’s (read “scientist”) clothing. But that one, though tried, didn’t work either:
Sternberg is an unlikely revolutionary. He holds two PhDs in evolutionary biology, his graduate work draws praise from his former professors, and in 2000 he gained a coveted research associate appointment at the Smithsonian Institution.
Ouch! So, how about accusing him of faking the review process?
He mailed Meyer's article to three scientists for a peer review. It has been suggested that Sternberg fabricated the peer review or sought unqualified scientists, a claim McVay dismissed.
You be the judge as to who is behaving like a rational scientist.