I’ve refrained from commenting on the woeful New Scientist cover because I was so angry, and you shouldn’t post stuff when you are angry.
It’s been a few days, but I’m still angry, and comments by the New Scientist staff in a number of blogs, here, here and here, haven’t made things any better.
It’s clear from the comments that the intent of the cover was to sensationalise the story and sell copies, and that the ways in which the cover could be used against evolution were understood, but they didn’t care.
Good people are fighting long and hard to protect science education from the very real threat of creationist ignorance, and New Scientist hands the creationists a propaganda goldmine (as false as the cover is) that requires no misquoting or taking out of context.
The mealy-mouthed distancing from the cover in the editorial and article not only shows that New Scientist knew exactly what they were doing and how the cover could be used, but is also worthless, as the creationists will not read the editorial or the article, and the school boards, that the creationists will use this cover to attack the teaching of evolution with, will not read the editorial or the article.
So good luck with the new sales tactic of flogging your product on street corners with the hack rags, using their tactics, but I will not be buying New Scientist again. I prefer my science reporting with more journalistic integrity that New Scientist can muster.
But hey, there is a potential revenue stream from this. New Scientist could chase all the creationists that will be using this cover in presentations attacking evolution, and invoke copyright. I don’t know how much that’ll bring in, maybe as much as 30 pieces of silver.
Don’t buy New Scientist. Don’t support those that provide support for creationists.
Support those that are fighting to ensure the integrity of science education. Support the National Center for Science Education.