On July 18, 2008, Richard Weikart writes about The Dehumanizing Impact of Modern Thought: Darwin, Marx, Nietzsche, and Their Followers. Allow me to summarize Weikart’s position: Modern science and the philosophy based on these findings are killing humanity. Weikart starts by quoting a holocaust survivor(Viktor Frankl) who believes that the action taken by the Nazi’s was due to scientists. While I feel for Viktor and everyone who suffered unbelievable horrors during the Holocaust, I do not believe his arguments are true. For example, he says:
I am absolutely convinced that the gas chambers of Auschwitz, Treblinka, and Maidanek were ultimately prepared not in some Ministry or other in Berlin, but rather at the desks and in the lecture halls of nihilistic scientists and philosophers
This sort of opinion of scientists comes straight out of Ben Stein’s recent journey into scientist bashing. Remember this quote from Stein?
the last time any of my relatives saw scientists telling them what to do they were telling them to go to the showers to get gassed
Of course these kind of personal opinions do not really coincide with the evidence. Stein and Weikart both want you to think that believing in evolution and therefore not believing in God allowed the Nazi’s to do such horrific things. Richard Darwkins wrote an open letter to a victim of the Holocaust that dispels these falsehoods. For example, Darwin is not even mentioned in Hitler’s Mein Kampf. However, Hitler did write:
Hence today I believe that I am acting in accordance with the will of the Almighty Creator: by defending myself against the Jew, I am fighting for the work of the Lord.
The rest of the post is essentially Weikart recanting the history of materialism, including the effect that evolutionary theory had on his perceived destruction of mankind. One interesting thing to point out is that most of these philosophers that he points to were in the late 19th century. What happened during this period of history? The last vestige of the most dehumanizing practice ended. Of course I am talking about slavery, a practice that has been with humans before all of these supposed “dehumanizing” ideas.
I really think that the goal of Weikart in this post and many of the anti-evolutionists is to equate the belief in evolution with amorality. Why else would the Discovery Institute allow a post that equates Nazi’s with believing in evolution? But even if believing in evolution meant that you were the most immoral person in the world (it obviously doesn’t), it doesn’t change that evolution happened. Reality does not care what effect it will have on those that uncover it. It could be true that humanity would be better off not knowing our true origins. However, we don’t really know and I don’t think that this fear is worth the ignorance. As Jesus once said “you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” John 8:32