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Comedian Ben Stein Cancels Speech Over Evolution Controversy
AP/Fox News ^ | Feb 04th, '09 | AP Staff

Posted on 02/06/2009 6:21:07 PM PST by blueplum

BURLINGTON, Vt. — Comedian Ben Stein has withdrawn as the University of Vermont's commencement speaker because of complaints about his critical views on evolution in favor of intelligent design. UVM President Daniel Fogel said he chose Stein based on the warm response to a lecture he gave on campus last spring. Fogel said, however, he was deluged with e-mail messages from people offended by Stein's views of science. When told about the criticism, Stein — who was to be paid $7,500 — backed out of the May 17 commencement, Fogel said. "I did not ask him not to come," he said. "I was not going to let him be blind-sided by controversy." The former host of Comedy Central's "Win Ben Stein's Money" quiz show, Stein has drawn fire previously for criticizing evolutionary theory and speaking in favor of intelligent design. That view holds that life is too complex to have developed through evolution alone, implying that a higher power must have had a hand in creation. Stein told the Burlington Free Press that he was not "anti-science" as some critics have labeled him. "I am far more pro-science than the Darwinists," Stein wrote in an e-mail to the newspaper. "I want all scientific inquiry to happen not just what the ruling clique calls science." He said the controversy over him as commencement choice was "laughable" and "pathetic." Fogel said he was sorry that he did not anticipate the extent and intensity of the concerns expressed about Stein.

(Excerpt) Read more at foxnews.com ...


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Culture/Society; News/Current Events; US: Vermont
KEYWORDS: benstein; commencement; evolution; intelligentdesign; stein; vermont
Protests against Stein and welcome mats for Ayers - what's wrong with this picture?
1 posted on 02/06/2009 6:21:07 PM PST by blueplum
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To: blueplum
"..what's wrong with this picture? "

Vermont.

2 posted on 02/06/2009 6:24:10 PM PST by Anti-Bubba182
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To: blueplum

i wish Ben had stayed in the fight.

When your enemy gets up on his hind legs, you dont back away, you take it to ‘em with a meat ax!


3 posted on 02/06/2009 6:26:03 PM PST by Keith Brown (Among the other evils being unarmed brings you, it causes you to be despised Machiavelli.)
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To: blueplum

What is wrong is that the state of Vermont is a liberal hell hole, and it’s university is populated by spoiled brain washed nitwits.

Having bashed Stein elsewhere tonight, I tip my hat to him on his response. Well done, Ben.


4 posted on 02/06/2009 6:26:41 PM PST by Phillipian
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To: blueplum

Ben Stein is a “comedian”. He may project a humorous image, and has appeared in some lightweight films like Ferris Bueller, but “comedian”? That is hardly an apt description.


5 posted on 02/06/2009 6:29:12 PM PST by Robwin
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To: Phillipian

And they don’t have a football team!


6 posted on 02/06/2009 6:30:03 PM PST by lt.america (Looking for a bailout)
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To: blueplum
Good God.

The doofus probably believes in Leprechauns too.

His pandering to the intelligent design crowd is embarrassing.

7 posted on 02/06/2009 6:30:17 PM PST by billorites (freepo ergo sum)
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To: blueplum

Offended by views on evolution?! Even if to assume that they are wrong - where the hell is an offense?? Dissent is offensive?


8 posted on 02/06/2009 6:31:53 PM PST by alecqss
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To: Robwin
erstwhile or alleged comedian perhaps.

Lacking substance isn't fatal to a comedy career. Lacking substance and humor is.

9 posted on 02/06/2009 6:33:10 PM PST by billorites (freepo ergo sum)
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To: blueplum
David Horowitz, Ann Coulter, Ben Stein and others have had trouble at colleges where they have been invited to speak.

I cannot think of any comparable figures on the Left who have been treated this way. Even terrorists like Ahmadinejad have been welcomed at places like Columbia.

And people think that the Left is the tolerant side of the political spectrum and the Right is the "oppressive" side. Sheep.

10 posted on 02/06/2009 6:33:43 PM PST by ClearCase_guy
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To: blueplum

Vindicates his movie “Expelled”.


11 posted on 02/06/2009 6:35:31 PM PST by TruthConquers (Delendae sunt publici scholae)
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To: billorites

No, but having a closed mind and only accepting or allowing one view really is worse than embarrassing it is dishonest.


12 posted on 02/06/2009 6:38:50 PM PST by yarddog
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To: Robwin

Because he hasn’t been sucked into the damnable vortex of evolution and all that it portends, the Darwinist would consider him a comedian. ;-)


13 posted on 02/06/2009 6:39:18 PM PST by doc1019 (Obama, a child in an adult sandbox.)
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To: blueplum

Ah.. the tolerant left. They are all for free speech and an honest exchange of ideas just so long as the speaker believes in what they believe. If he or she doesn’t then it is time for tar, feathers and pitch forks.


14 posted on 02/06/2009 6:43:42 PM PST by mort56
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To: blueplum
I think evolution explains the inhabitants of Vermont, perhaps in a few more centuries they will develop into something better than they are now.
15 posted on 02/06/2009 6:46:10 PM PST by mimaw
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To: mort56

To paraphrase Voltaire: “I may not agree with your views, and I will defend to the death my right to suppress them.”


16 posted on 02/06/2009 6:46:50 PM PST by ClearCase_guy
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To: blueplum

It simply gives more credence to the theme of his movie, Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed,


17 posted on 02/06/2009 6:47:44 PM PST by daniel1212 ( "O earth, earth, earth, hear the word of the LORD." (Jer 22:29))
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To: lt.america

Burlington and its university are very peculiar places; but you only read about them when they act up or act out like juveniles. When’s the last time you heard of them in the context of any outstanding achievement? Why’s Vermont a state anyway? It ought to be a county, or maybe even some sort of reservation.


18 posted on 02/06/2009 6:50:01 PM PST by mathurine
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To: TruthConquers

How to make fiends, and influence people.

“The general media response to the film has been largely unfavorable. It received a 10% meta-score from Rotten Tomatoes. Multiple reviews, including those of USA Today and Scientific American, have described the film as propaganda.[24][25][26] The Chicago Tribune’s rating was “1 star (poor),”[27] while the New York Times described it as “a conspiracy-theory rant masquerading as investigative inquiry” and “an unprincipled propaganda piece that insults believers and nonbelievers alike.”[25] One of the few positive reviews appeared in Christianity Today.[28] Noted evolutionary biologist and atheist Richard Dawkins has strongly criticised Stein’s film in an open letter on his website.” WP


19 posted on 02/06/2009 6:51:30 PM PST by daniel1212 ( "O earth, earth, earth, hear the word of the LORD." (Jer 22:29))
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To: blueplum

This is really stupid. Science is NEVER supposed to be taken so defensively. They have turned a scientific theory into a religion and they may not even realize it.


20 posted on 02/06/2009 6:59:43 PM PST by Soothesayer (The United States of America Rest in Peace November 4 2008)
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To: alecqss

His saying that modern science was responsible for the Holocaust didn’t make him many friends.

“When we just saw that man, I think it was Mr. Myers [i.e. biologist P.Z. Myers], talking about how great scientists were, I was thinking to myself the last time any of my relatives saw scientists telling them what to do they were telling them to go to the showers to get gassed … that was horrifying beyond words, and that’s where science — in my opinion, this is just an opinion — that’s where science leads you,”

“Crouch: That’s right.”

“Stein: …Love of God and compassion and empathy leads you to a very glorious place, and science leads you to killing people.”

“Crouch: Good word, good word.”


21 posted on 02/06/2009 7:00:20 PM PST by DevNet (What's past is prologue)
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To: daniel1212

“Six Things in Expelled That Ben Stein Doesn’t Want You to Know...”

http://www.sciam.com/article.cfm?id=six-things-ben-stein-doesnt-want-you-to-know&sc=rss


22 posted on 02/06/2009 7:01:43 PM PST by DevNet (What's past is prologue)
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To: billorites

I don’t agree with his position either (at all) but people still get too defensive about it all.


23 posted on 02/06/2009 7:02:02 PM PST by Soothesayer (The United States of America Rest in Peace November 4 2008)
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To: mort56

When the country is doing well, places like this are rioting. There just aren’t enough riots on college campii today. They struggle to find something to whine about.


24 posted on 02/06/2009 7:02:31 PM PST by Phillipian
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To: ClearCase_guy

The only thing that the left understands is emotion. They look to the personality first and to the intellect second if at all. Horowitz, Coulter, and Ben Stein are not really the cuddly type.


25 posted on 02/06/2009 7:05:14 PM PST by Soothesayer (The United States of America Rest in Peace November 4 2008)
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To: daniel1212

He was wrong about the theory itself but he is spot on right about the suppression.


26 posted on 02/06/2009 7:09:56 PM PST by Soothesayer (The United States of America Rest in Peace November 4 2008)
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To: blueplum
The liberal anti-God extremists who run the left and the universities have zero tolerance for anyone who assumes that we are "Endowed by our Creator with certain inalienable rights".

All of these leftists spend their lives attacking the assumption of the fact that we have a Creator. (as these God haters are speaking from the true fringe, they falsely label those who accept the Creator as the fringe.)

They want our rights to come from Big Government, and Mr. Stein is a threat to their secular religious fanaticism.

27 posted on 02/06/2009 7:11:26 PM PST by Old Landmarks (No fear of man, none!)
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To: blueplum

You know what’s great about Vermont... Not much... President Bush kicked VT to the curb, not visiting once during his 8 years in office.

VT... go pound some snow.


28 posted on 02/06/2009 7:12:14 PM PST by Trajan88 (www.bullittclub.com)
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To: daniel1212

“a conspiracy-theory rant masquerading as investigative inquiry”

You mean like like a Micheal Moore film?


29 posted on 02/06/2009 7:13:05 PM PST by Soothesayer (The United States of America Rest in Peace November 4 2008)
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To: Robwin

yeah, well, it was AP titling the story after all.

I’d really be curious as to exactly whom was doing the objecting. Personally I think the guy is amazing. There was lack of leadership on the part of the university president imo jmo moo

for those who don’t know much who Ben is:

[Stein] graduated from Columbia University in 1966 with honors in economics. He graduated from Yale Law School in 1970 as valedictorian of his class by election of his classmates. He also studied in the graduate school of economics at Yale. He has worked as an economist at The Department of Commerce, a poverty lawyer in New Haven and Washington, D.C., a trial lawyer in the field of trade regulation at the Federal Trade Commission in Washington, D.C., a university adjunct at American University in Washington, D.C., at the University of California at Santa Cruz, and at Pepperdine University in Malibu, CA. At American U. He taught about the political and social content of mass culture. He taught the same subject at UCSC, as well as about political and civil rights under the Constitution. At Pepperdine, he has taught about libel law and about securities law and ethical issues since 1986...

He has written, co-written and published thirty books, including seven novels, largely about life in Los Angeles, and twenty-one nonfiction books, about finance and about ethical and social issue in finance, and also about the political and social content of mass culture.
http://www.benstein.com


30 posted on 02/06/2009 7:16:50 PM PST by blueplum
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To: DevNet

IBTZ?


31 posted on 02/06/2009 7:19:07 PM PST by Clint Lippo
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To: blueplum

How can we sane people get rid of the Northeastern states?


32 posted on 02/06/2009 7:35:19 PM PST by kittymyrib
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To: blueplum

don’t put us in the position to support a man who supports Al Freaklin........


33 posted on 02/06/2009 8:22:37 PM PST by cherry
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To: daniel1212
First of all, it's no wonder Richard Dawkins doesn't like it. In the film, Dawkins suggests that perhaps noted scientist Francis Crick may be correct and that life came from aliens who seeded the earth.

As for Rotten Tomatoes, one must remember that these "critics" gave Michael Moore's "documentaries" something like a 90% approval rating.

34 posted on 02/06/2009 8:27:33 PM PST by Timmy
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To: billorites

You may not believe in a intelligent design, so are you saying that you believe in Darwinian evolution? That is like being a flat earther. No one takes Darwin seriously anymore.


35 posted on 02/06/2009 8:46:13 PM PST by gscc
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To: blueplum

This controversy is not now nor has it ever been a debate about “science”. It is about metaphysics. It is a philosophical struggle between those who hold a naturalistic/materialistic worldview and those who believe in a higher power. The materialists have been largely successful in framing the debate as “science” vs. “anti-science” (or superstition, ingnorance, etc.), but this simply is not true.


36 posted on 02/06/2009 8:50:37 PM PST by Ranald S. MacKenzie (Its the philosophy, stupid.)
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To: blueplum

Buncha thugs. They clearly are INTOLERANT of those who hold different viewpoints than their own.


37 posted on 02/06/2009 8:52:06 PM PST by SuziQ
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To: gscc

Except for those using genomic research to develop better crops and cures for diseases.


38 posted on 02/06/2009 8:52:56 PM PST by DevNet (What's past is prologue)
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To: blueplum

Stein really didn’t need to piss off his allies by financing and endorsing Franken. Now, nobody is going to rise to his defense.


39 posted on 02/06/2009 8:54:43 PM PST by Rastus
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To: DevNet
So when did Scientific American start doing movie reviews? Did they review An Inconvenient Truth, and point out any errors in that film? What have they had to say about 'Global Warming'?
40 posted on 02/06/2009 8:55:06 PM PST by SuziQ
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To: kittymyrib

Ask Britain.


41 posted on 02/06/2009 9:28:12 PM PST by daniel1212 ( "O earth, earth, earth, hear the word of the LORD." (Jer 22:29))
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To: mimaw

It’s called degeneration, and one can see 7 basic stages in Romans 1.


42 posted on 02/06/2009 9:31:45 PM PST by daniel1212 ( "O earth, earth, earth, hear the word of the LORD." (Jer 22:29))
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To: DevNet

“That’s where science alone can lead you” would be more accurate. Men who only do what’s seems reasonable to them can be just as dangerous as the Taliban, or worse. Science is good and necessary, but it has no transcendent moral authority, but it can actually help to substitute the wisdom of such.


43 posted on 02/06/2009 9:36:48 PM PST by daniel1212 ( "O earth, earth, earth, hear the word of the LORD." (Jer 22:29))
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To: blueplum

I don’t know how many comedians I have heard who ridicule and condemn religion, and no one utters a peep. But, dare to make fun of Darwin science and you are censored. Unreal.


44 posted on 02/06/2009 9:51:01 PM PST by yazoo
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To: Rastus; cherry

sorry, wasn’t current on the fact that Stein endorsed anyone. :)


45 posted on 02/06/2009 10:21:17 PM PST by blueplum
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To: blueplum

You didn’t do anything wrong by posting this.


46 posted on 02/06/2009 10:29:23 PM PST by Rastus
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To: Soothesayer
The only thing that the left understands is emotion. They look to the personality first and to the intellect second if at all.

so much for universities teaching scientific principles if constrained by such narrow perspectives, and so much for the grading system in those universities, too. Sad.

47 posted on 02/06/2009 10:30:31 PM PST by blueplum
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To: DevNet
His saying that modern science was responsible for the Holocaust didn’t make him many friends.

there's an old adage, goes something like, troops may fight wars, but scientists win wars. Holocaust victims were treated as lesser humans, even animals, because "modern science" deemed them genetically inferior, leading to all manner of 'scientific' experiments -atrocities - in the name of investigating what science termed inferior beings. Science and war have always been intimately connected. imo

48 posted on 02/06/2009 10:50:47 PM PST by blueplum
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To: kittymyrib
How can we sane people get rid of the Northeastern states?

pray for an iceage and let the glaciers swallow them up again ;)

49 posted on 02/06/2009 10:55:25 PM PST by blueplum
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To: blueplum

There are a few, such as myself, who lived in MA (mainly for ministry purposes), who are like voices in the wilderness. Recent news from the MassResistance Update: (http://www.massresistance.org)

1. Transsexual janitor in MA elementary school - school sends letter to inform parents that male employee is now a “woman”.

Written simply in an eerie informational style, the parents were told that one of the male custodians will now be coming to school dressed as a woman, and is now considered a “woman”, and that parents should inform their children of this because the school intended to tell them if they asked about it. “The best thing to tell them is that our custodian used to be a man. She has changed her gender role and is now a woman,” the letter said to parents. It’s extremely Orwellian.

Also, on the back of the letter, the parents were given links to “helpful” resources about “transgender issues” to help them “learn more.”... that also describe CHILDREN changing their sex..

2. Assault on Massachusetts: Homosexual lobby files 8 bills in Legislature to push agenda even further this year.

3. Massachusetts now allows people to declare “gender you consider yourself to be” on drivers licenses and official state IDs.

The madness continues as the “transgender agenda” moves forward. Huge implications in society.

4. MA Legislature continues passing laws with no quorum—contrary to Constitution

On New Years Eve: 3 Senators meet and pass laws! Media just shrugs shoulders, doesn’t consider it newsworthy.


50 posted on 02/07/2009 6:34:03 AM PST by daniel1212 ( "O earth, earth, earth, hear the word of the LORD." (Jer 22:29))
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