On the Discovery Institute’s podcast, ID the future, there is a tragic story of how Jesse Kilgore took his own life. Jesse was a college student who had spent most of his life as a devout and involved Christian who loved to debate people about his beliefs. He was even had a couple of of blogs to his credit. He had already spent some time in the military and by all accounts appeared to have a great life ahead of him.
According to the podcast, he was challenged with reading Richard Dawkin’s The God Delusion by one of his professors. His studies into the theory of evolution, as well as Dawkin’s book, appeared to have changed his worldview. Jesse stopped believing in god, which led to him questioning everything he had previously believed. Although he left no suicide note, many believe that this change is what led to his death.
The Discovery Institute wasted no time in blaming Jesse’s death on the belief in evolution. This is another example of their use of fear-mongering to persuade people that evolution is evil. They have even blamed the horrors of the Nazis on evolution. Yet, their exploitation of Jesse or even the holocaust victims does nothing to show that evolution did not happen. Besides, there are hundreds of millions of people that believe in evolution that have not taken their own lives or become evil because of it. Furtherore, Jesse had already made references to committing suicide well before his new encounters with evolution and Dawkin’s book. Putting the blame on the theory of evolution and its proponents is simply wrong.
On a personal note, I also had a relative take his own life. I understand the pain that Jesse’s family must be feeling. I also understand the need to blame anyone and everyone for his death. This is why it angers me to see the Discovery Institute use this tragedy for some small gain in pushing their pseudoscientific fairy tale. They should be ashamed.