Richard Dawkins has made the Galle Literary Festival look even more of a farce!
Posted on February 19th, 2012
ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â The Galle Literary Festival (GLF) seems peculiar in terms of literary festivals elsewhere in that the organisers do not seem to have pretensions that it offers little more than a relaxing holiday to the boho-chic set. What is on offer is interestingly named cocktails in resort hotels in and outside the colonial Fort in the pleasant coastal town of Galle, and probably some hanky-panky after enebriation!
ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â Serious literary pursuit at the GLF appears to have been relegated to a distant second to events aimed at challenging the traditional belief systems of the host country: the focus seems to be very much on propagating the American devised global value system founded on gay rights, human rights and other concepts useful for fomenting trouble in a country such as Sri Lanka.
ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â This view is confirmed by a casual glance at the people and organisations behind the event as well as the list of guest luminaries: it has been founded by an expatriate British hotelier named Geoffrey Dobbs, the owner of a string of boutique hotels in Galle and elsewhere, and its sponsors include some shady foreign agencies such as the American Centre, the British Council and the Norwegian and Dutch governments.
ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â The chief guest at this years event was Professor Richard Dawkins, the leading ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œfatheistÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢ (someone who exhibits blind faith on the theory of non-existence of God) and the Norwegian funded millionaire human rights merchant Pakiasothy Saravanamuttu. The main invitee of last yearÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢s affair has been Candace Bushnel the writer of that unadulterated TV garbage, ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œSex And The CityÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢; obviously, there are people on this planet who seem to seriously think that ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œSex and the CityÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢ is a literary masterpiece!
ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â This yearÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢s invitee Dawkins has been so impressed by the event and the invitation that he has asked to be invited back, probably to continue his work on converting the attendees to his faith of ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œno-faithÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢.
ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â This invites our comment on who this man Richard Dawkins is and what he stands for.
ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â Richard Dawkins is a man who has become famous by claiming that he has found the ultimate truth relating to the origin of life: Dawkins goes around the world, ordering (in his trademark arrogant tones) that they should not believe in Christian and other Gods whom he says are imaginary, but believe in ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œhisÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢ God, a British native named Charles Darwin who traversed the earth about 150 years ago.
By way of introduction to the debate on the mystery of origin of life Dawkins is trying to educate us, it must be pointed out that the quest has preoccupied the human mind from time immemorial: the Hindus, probably the Muslims, and certainly the Christians have come to believe in an omnipotent Creator God.
ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â Buddha on the other hand had a unique view in that he included the question of how life began among a list of ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œ14 unanswerable questionsÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢, further professing that speculation on such issues is counterproductive and does not help in achieving enlightenment. At another level, he preached that life being a natural consequence in the ceaseless cycle of cause and effect that is subject to the law of dependant origination (paticca-samuppada), it cannot be assigned a first cause.
ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â DawkinsÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢ God, Mr Charles Darwin appeared in the scene in the early 19th century and claimed that it was a ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œprocessÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢ called Natural Selection that put us here on earth! If the reader wonders as to how or why this ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œprocessÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢ itself began, you are not alone! Notwithstanding such inconvenient little questions, people like Richard Dawkins, (ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œwannabeÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢ monopolists of the ideas market), have chosen to push DarwinÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢s view forcefully and aggressively.
ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â What Dawkins does not reveal to the world is that Darwin did not put forward a precise ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œtheoryÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢ as to how life began, or even how new species arose, but merely suggested that ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œnatural selectionÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢ may explain how evolution (a concept that predated Darwin by a few hundred years) would have happened.
ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â DarwinÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢s ideas do not constitute a formal ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œtheoryÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢ based on empirical, measurable evidence gathered through the application of the scientific method of observation, experimentation and sound reasoning as known in science; DarwinÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢s views are best described as opinions, speculation or conjecture. DarwinÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢s opinions also fail the ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œtheoryÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢ test because they are not predictive as a true scientific theory ought to be, and are not verifiable through experimentation (due to being based on slow, natural processes said to have occurred over a period of up to billions of years).
ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â Judging by the content of a series of books Dawkins has written, such as: The Selfish Gene (1976); The Extended Phenotype (1982); The Blind Watchmaker (1986); and The God Delusion (2006), he seems to have cast aside such concerns and has taken a literary licence to DarwinÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢s speculative discourse; through these books, Dawkins takes DarwinÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢s views way beyond the point Darwin himself intended. Dawkins for example, contends in his ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œGod DelusionÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢ that a supernatural creator almost certainly does not exist and that religious faith is a delusion: a claim Darwin resiled from!
ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â However, in order to better understand the fraud Dawkins represents, one needs to critically examine DarwinÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢s original opinions based predominantly on morphological observations on randomly collected fossil samples, later supplemented with some extremely crude ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œexperimentalÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢ evidence.
ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â DarwinÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢s theory is riddled with fundamental weaknesses: to begin with, a theory based primarily on fossils was being presented with gaps in the fossil evidence to support crucial, major transformations of species; genetic mutations (which he claimed was the vehicle of transmuting survival traits) were later found to be generally damaging to life. Nor has Darwin explained such key aspects of human life as consciousness and intelligence, or describe how they could have ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œevolvedÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢; he did not provide an explanation of the anatomy of the human eye which clearly has not ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œevolvedÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢, and his explanations on the anatomy and physiology of sexual reproduction are putrid.
ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â DarwinÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢s crude experimental testing of the beliefs he had formed reflect child-like curiosity rather than methodical scientific inquiry: in one famous ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œstudyÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢ he reported that ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¦Ã¢â‚¬Å“Worms do not possess any sense of hearingÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â¦when placed on a table close to the keys of a piano, which was played as loudly as possible, they remained perfectly quiet.ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â
ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â In an astonishing example of circular reasoning, Darwin explained gaps in fossil evidence in terms of ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œextremely imperfect geological recordÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢ (rather than any possible weaknesses of his theory). Darwin stated: ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¦Ã¢â‚¬Å“and this fact will to a large extent explain why we do not find interminable varieties, connecting together all the extinct and existing forms of life by the finest graduated steps.ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â To his credit however, Darwin noted the significance of this missing evidence to the story by acknowledging: ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¦Ã¢â‚¬Å“He who rejects these views on the nature of the geological record will rightly reject my whole theory.” ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â
ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â Recent advances in molecular biology and biochemistry have resulted in knowledge that deals a death blow to DarwinÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢s views on the evolutionary history of species determined on the basis of comparative anatomy. Books by scientists such as Michael Behe and Michael Denton synthesise such evidence that seriously challenge DarwinÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢s speculative ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œnonsenseÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢. Dawkins is the current leader of a campaign started by J.B.S. Haldane to reformulate Darwin in the light of such emerging science.
ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â A look at Charles Darwin the man helps in explaining the deficiencies in his theory: he simply did not possess the necessary training or qualifications in any area of science or the scientific method required for the task.
ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â Charles Robert Darwin was born in 1809 in Shrewsbury, central England. His family in all probability, was Jewish, ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â but has been variously described as Unitarian (those who do not believe in the sacredness of the Holy Trinity), Anglican and Freethinking.
ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â Darwin was not a bright student and his father is reported to have been greatly disappointed by his failure to complete a medical degree at the University of Edinburgh, reprimanding him: “you will be a disgrace to yourself and all your family.” In 1827, he enrolled in a Bachelor of Arts (Theology) course at ChristÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢s College, Cambridge and ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â graduated in 1831 performing well in theology, and scraping through in classics, mathematics and physics.
ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â In 1858, Darwin announced his speculative theory in a book titled The Origin of Species. DarwinÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢s theory certainly did not receive universal aplomb or acceptance at the time. It was criticised heavily by Richard Owen, the leading figure on comparative anatomy of apes and man at the time, and by geneticists including Gregory Mendel.
ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â Darwin himself was less than ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œfully confidentÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢ about the theory, and he kept away from the public debates that followed the publication. It is well documented that he suffered debilitating stomach pains, vomiting, boils, palpitations, trembling and other symptoms, attributed to his nervousness over the ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œtheoryÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢ and its non-acceptance by leading scientists of the day. ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â DarwinÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢s theory however, with all its weaknesses, was enthusiastically embraced by the British imperialist establishment due, in their view, to the moral basis and justification it provided for the global colonisation project.
ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â As revealed in his autobiography, Darwin was most inspired by Thomas MalthusÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢ who provided theories that underpinned colonialism, including the 1798 paper An Essay on the Principle of Population in which he advocated limiting the family size of the lower classes by law as a solution to the problem of overpopulation); DarwinÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢s theory as stated in the introduction to The Origin of Species reads almost Malthus paraphrased.
ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â Karl Marx condemned Darwin for borrowing MalthusÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢ ideas he fiercely opposed. Fredrick Engels also rejected DarwinÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢s theory on the grounds of ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¦Ã¢â‚¬Å“lumping together ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œnatural selectionÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢ and the ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œsurvival of the fittestÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢, two absolutely separate concepts. This particularly keen observation is still valid today, and is more destructive to Darwin than any criticism levelled by the scientific community.
ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â Imperialists on the other hand transformed DarwinÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢s imprecise ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œscientificÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢ concepts to suggest that nature would ensure the victory of best competitors in a contest for survival, earning them the nickname ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œSocial DarwinistsÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢. Their particular interpretation of Darwin justified the racist, imperialistic claim that the European ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œwhite manÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢ had the ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œrightÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢ to seize the land and wealth of the ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œlesser breeds without the lawÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢ in Africa and Asia.
ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â Across the Channel, Hitler saw the ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œstruggle for existenceÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢ as a battle between races and sought to evolve a ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œmaster raceÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢. As German philosopher Erich Fromm observed: “If Hitler believed in anything at all, it was the laws of evolutionÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â.
ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â DarwinÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢s own views were not radically different to those of his colonialist disciples: during the Beagle voyage, referring to a bloody slaughter of the Indigenous people of the Argentine pampas by General Juan Manuel de Roses in 1833, Darwin made a revealing diary note:ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â “…This war of extermination, although carried on with the most shocking barbarity, will certainly produce great benefits; it will at once throw open four or five hundred miles in length of fine country for the produce of cattle.”
ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â DawkinsÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢ strident defence of, and attempts to propagate, DarwinÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢s speculation can also be attributed to his upbringing in the distant points of the British empire: he was born in Nairobi, Kenya in 1941 and spent childhood in Nyasaland (presently Malawi) before returning to England. His mother is supposed to have grown up at Matara, in colonial Ceylon.ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â
ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â Those who appear to be easily impressed by people like Richard Dawkins need to critically examine the foundations of DarwinÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢s theories before rushing to the book shop to buy DawkinsÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢ books, or pay homage to him.
ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â Such evaluation is not made easy due to the almost automatic association of any criticism of Darwin or his views with the creationist position. Attacks on creationism is an easy diversion for Darwinists from the fundamentally unsound (and unscientific) aspects of DarwinÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢s work that led to the ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œtheoryÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢. The generally ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œdefensiveÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢ position adopted by the creationists also has played in to DarwinistsÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢ hands.
ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â Any contention from within the scientific community is dealt with even more harshly, generally with ridicule and vitriol, and funding cuts. Dawkins is the greatest leading exponent of this hostile technique; his response to anyone who doubts Darwin is only just short of physical assault!
ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â Such ÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€¹Ã…â€œgroup thinkingÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¾Ã‚Â¢ that currently pervades the field of science in western society is transferred to the scientific community in the developing world through sponsored training, peer pressure and subtle media campaigns. People like Professor Carlo Fonseka seem to have fallen in to this trap, appearing almost like Dawkins has replaced the God he used to worship!
ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â The reason why Dawkins is keen to get back to Galle next year is not just the raspberry bellinis: he is part of the movement that is working on altering perceptions in developing countries!