What are Skeptic Filmmakers Afraid of? A Review of HBO’s “Questioning Darwin”
by Matt Rawlings
Skeptics have made effective use of documentaries. Bill Maher’s Religulous, the conspiracy minded Zeitgeist and The Atheist Tapes have all been viewed widely over the last few years, especially by 18-40 year old. Now you can add HBO’s Questioning Darwin to the mix.
The crisply paced one-hour documentary features interviews with neo-Darwinists and young earth creation (YEC) advocates. They do give equal time to both sides but, like Maher’s cowardly Religulous, HBO interviews scholars on the neo-Darwinist side while only giving lay creationists a hearing on the other side.
Maher took his supposed agnatic inquiry into the Christian religion to a truck stop church, a Florida amusement park and a prosperity Gospel church. The one scholar Maher spoke to was noted
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scientist and evangelical Christian Francis Collins. Yet, Maher supposedly led Collins to believe their interview would be about the supposed conflict between science and faith. Instead, Maher launched into an inquiry about the historicity of the Gospels. Dr. Collins suggested Maher speak to an expert on the subject such as N.T. Wright. Maher refused and even cut the suggestion out of the film.
Similarly, the filmmakers behind Questioning Darwin fail to interview one intelligent design scientist such as philosopher of science Stephen Meyer, biologist Jonathan Wells or astrophysicist Hugh Ross. They do not even interview a YEC scholar like philosopher John Mark Reynolds or theologian Al Mohler.
Instead the filmmakers turn to various ministers from evangelical churches and Ken Ham from Answers in Genesis/The Creation Museum. Now, one of the YEC interviewees makes a very good point. Pastor Joe Coffey of Christ’s Community Chapel in Hudson, Ohio raises the problem that if Darwinism is true then there can be no such thing as objective morality. Who knows how many other fine points were left on the cutting room floor…