Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed
Ben Stein attempts to link evolution with communism, fascism, atheism, Planned Parenthood, and the Nazi holocaust by correlating evolution to eugenics. The film further contends that an extensive conspiracy exists to promote Darwinism and suppress any concept of intelligent design. This conspiracy allegedly involves scientists, media, educators, and even the courts.
In his blog, Ben Stein claims:
Under a new anti-religious dogmatism, scientists and educators are not allowed to even think thoughts that involve an intelligent creator. Do you realize that some of the leading lights of "anti-intelligent design" would not allow a scientist who merely believed in the possibility of an intelligent designer/creator to work for him... EVEN IF HE NEVER MENTIONED the possibility of intelligent design in the universe? EVEN FOR HIS VERY THOUGHTS... HE WOULD BE BANNED.
Ben said that they did two years of "extensive research" regarding evolution before doing this film. However, he has said evolution is "lightning striking a mud puddle" in several talk show interviews, which is a straw man argument against abiogenesis, not evolution. One team extensively researching evolution for two years (with a bias towards the results) is also hardly on par with the numerous groups and individuals who have made researching evolution their life's work.
Eugenics is nothing more than the idea that artificial selection techniques, such as those used by animal breeders, can be used on humans as well. Evolution is the study of change, specifically, changes in biological forms. While the artificial selection techniques of eugenics and breeding do fit under this umbrella, the main concern of evolutionary study is the understanding of natural selection.
While these techniques can, theoretically, be used against a population by forcing individuals to breed or sterilize themselves, in practice, eugenics are used by individuals to increase their quality of life and that of their children.
Dor Yeshorim, for example, is a genetic testing program that identifies harmful recessive genes in Jews. When both parents have the same recessive gene, their offspring have a significant chance of contracting certain harmful or even fatal conditions. Eugenics come into play where Jews use this information in selecting a mate, deciding to have children, or deciding to abort a pregnancy. This form of eugenics helps prevent Tay-Sachs disease, Cystic Fibrosis, Canavan disease, Fanconi anemia, Familial Dysautonomia, Glycogen storage disease, Bloom's Syndrome, Gaucher Disease, Niemann-Pick Disease, and Mucolipidosis IV.
Expelled From Expelled
PZ Myers and Richard Dawkins, who were both interviewed in Expelled (and thanked in the end credits), went to see a pre-release screening of the film. While waiting in line, Myers was recognized by event personnel and denied access, but Dawkins went unnoticed and attended the screening. During a Q&A session after the screening, hilarity ensued as Dawkins brought this up.