Monday, May 6, 2013

Genie Scott retiring

According to this announcement, Eugenie Scott, the current director of the National Center for Science Education (NCSE) will retire this year.  For those who don't keep up with all this stuff, NCSE was exclusively an anticreationist advocacy organization for nearly its entire existence, until it recently launched a climate change initiative.  (I've always found the name of the organization a bit of a misnomer, since it doesn't really do much for science education as a whole.)

My own experiences with NCSE and Genie Scott were decidedly mixed.  I've generally found the NCSE to be a typical advocacy group with the accompanying blinders on their own weaknesses and biases.  In other words, their publications tend to be about as oversimplified and error-prone as anything else in the creation/evolution debate.  On the other hand, the one time I heard Genie Scott in person, I found myself agreeing with a lot of her points.

I'm surprised that she's retiring mostly because I had no idea she was retirement age.  She doesn't look it.  I'm also a little nervous about who will replace her.  Better the devil you know.  I'm also wondering if NCSE will continue their conciliatory relationship with liberal Christians under the new administration.  This has been a contentious point of late, with some "new atheists" advocating a more hardline attitude.  But having religious folk claim they're OK with evolution is good for propaganda, so I can't imagine NCSE will change that.

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