“Maybe the firing squad was on your side”



A scene in our general neighborhood


My week Thursday column appeared in the Deseret News this morning and, already, there are six comments about it at the newspaper, and other comments elsewhere:




I’m very proud of my commentators.  Several of them, clearly, are distinguished scientists/philosophers.


This is evident from the casual and confident ease with which they dismiss an argument advanced by the (apparently less) eminent British theoretical physicist Sir John Polkinghorne along with a famous parable on the same topic created by the (evidently less) distinguished Canadian philosopher John Andrew Leslie.


Both the argument (and a cluster of closely-related arguments) and the parable have been criticized and discussed and endorsed, in a large number of books and articles, by such scientists as Francis Collins and Paul Davies and by such philosophers as Richard Swinburne, William Lane Craig, Keith Ward, and Alvin Plantinga.  (It was this particular cluster of arguments that led the famous British atheist philosopher Antony Flew to abandon his atheism.)


Several of those who read my column, though — eat your hearts out, other columnists, silly inferior scientists, and undeservedly respected hackademic philosophers! — have been instantly able to brush both argument and parable off with just a derisive sentence or two.



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