Hello and good evening. Tonight, I want to talk about a word, and that word is "threatiness". Some of you may know the word truthiness, which is when people appeal to emotion and instinct, as opposed to reason and intellect. Likewise, threatiness is when you perceive something to be a threat, without having to justify this by evidence and arguments. As an example of someone who truly gets the meaning of the word, I'd like to point to Pat Shipman, writing in American Scientist:
These events prompted me to take ID seriously, and this movement scares me. Now I feel like a jogger in the park at night who realizes that she is far too isolated and that the shadows are far too deep. At first I ignored that faint rustling behind me, convincing myself it was just wind in the leaves. Louder noises made me jump and turn around, but I saw nothing. Now I know that I and my colleagues in science are being stalked with careful and deadly deliberation. I fear my days are numbered unless I act soon and effectively. If you are reading this, the chances are that you are in the same position.
Now, some of you anti-science people out there might respond, "Wait, what is the evidence that scientists are being stalked by ID supporters? Shouldn't Pat Shipman rather be concerned about people who inflict actual, physical harm on scientists? Such as animal rights terrorists?"
This just shows that you haven't understood anything at all. The threatiness of intelligent design is clearly so great that Pat Shipman can feel it even without having thought about it. She gets it.
Another one of the many it-getters is Richard Dawkins:
Admissions of ignorance and mystification are vital to good science. It is therefore galling, to say the least, when enemies of science turn those constructive admissions around and abuse them for political advantage. It is worse than galling. It threatens the enterprise of science itself. This is exactly the effect creationism or 'intelligent design theory' (ID) is having, especially because its propagandists are slick, superficially plausible and, above all, well financed. ID, by the way, is not a new form of creationism. It simply is creationism disguised, for political reasons, under a new name.
Quote-mining. Now there's a threat to science if I ever saw one! Need I mention how many young students have already given up a career in science because of concerns over being quote-mined, just this year? Some of you might respond, "Yeah, why don't you?" Well, it's exactly collaborators like you who're being enlisted on the side of the forces of darkness. I believe that should clear it up.
And that concludes our program for tonight. Until next time, good night and fare well.