Saturday, March 31, 2012

Notable Humanists: Eugenie Scott

Hooray!  It's time for another profile of a notable humanist!  Eugenie Scott is one of the signers of the Humanist Manifesto III.  She is the executive director of the National Center for Science Education.  She holds a Ph.D. in physical anthropology, which studies human origins and biological variation.  She is also the recipient of many awards, including the American Humanist Association's Isaac Asimov Award for Science.  She is most widely known as a leading apologist for evolution.  In that role, she wrote, Evolution vs. Creationism: An introduction, which was published in 2004.

Scott describes her upbringing as "liberal protestant" but now identifies as a secular humanist and a nontheist.

Here are a few quotes from Eugenie Scott:

  • "When they say 'teach the controversy' - their ringing phrase - they want us to pretend to students that scientists are arguing whether evolution took place.  This argument is not taking place."
  • "Not many appreciate the ultimate power and potential usefulness of basic knowledge accumulated by obscure, unseen investigators who, in a lifetime of intensive study, may never see any practical use for their findings but who go on seeking answers to the unknown without thought of financial or practical gain."
  • "I never say that evolution is a fact.  Evolution is a theory.  It's much more important than a fact because theories explain things."

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