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Thread: Is the term "evolutionist" a derogatory term?

  1. #1 Is the term "evolutionist" a derogatory term? 
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    I was surprised by this seemingly weak expression on another thread; "Also stop using the derogatory term "evolutionist" its rude".

    Is it really rude?


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    It is rude in certain contexts. It can carry with it a disparaging tone that is set by the context.

    Some evolutionists mistakenly believe that the term evolutionist was coined by creationists in order to insult them. This is ignorant and silly. If Ernst Mayr is happy to be called an evolutionist, then so I am I.

    However, I am not happy to be called that with the snide, patronising, self-deluded, ignorant tone that implicitly accompanies its use by some creationists at some times.

    As to the term creationist, when I use it, I use it as a convenient means of grouping persons with certain similarities of views as to how the world was formed. No disparagement intended. When I say Young Earth Creationist then the term should be considered loaded with venom and disgust.


    Last edited by John Galt; September 11th, 2014 at 04:12 AM. Reason: I am always spelling Mayr incorrectly.
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Galt View Post
    It is rude in certain contexts. It can carry with it a disparaging tone that is set by the context.

    Some evolutionists mistakenly believe that the term evolutionist was coined by creationists in order to insult them. This is ignorant and silly. If Ernst Mayr is happy to be called an evolutionist, then so I am I.

    However, I am not happy to be called that with the snide, patronising, self-deluded, ignorant tone that implicitly accompanies its use by some creationists at some times.

    As to the term creationist, when I use it, I use it as a convenient means of grouping persons with certain similarities of views as to how the world was formed. No disparagement intended. When I say Young Earth Creationist then the term should be considered loaded with venom and disgust.
    I have to say that "evolutionist" is a term I have never come across except when used by creationists to insinuate at best a false parity between evolution and creationism or at worst some kind of religious belief. Wiki comments on this as follows:-

    " Since the overwhelming majority of scientists accept the modern evolutionary synthesis as the best explanation of current data,[7] the term is seldom used in the scientific community; to say someone is a scientist implies acceptance of evolutionary views,[8] unless specifically noted otherwise. In the creation-evolution controversy, creationists often call those who accept the validity of the modern evolutionary synthesis "evolutionists" and the theory itself as "evolutionism." Some creationists and creationist organizations, such as the Institute of Creation Research, use these terms in an effort to make it appear that evolutionary biology is a form of secular religion."

    Well exactly.

    To call someone a "nigger" is considered pejorative, due to pejorative se of it over many years, even though to be accurate, niger is simply Latin for "black". Negro is the Spanish equivalent - also now pejorative through mode of use.
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    I would argue that "evolutionist" seems to have acquired new meaning recently. It seems to be a way of denoting someone who believes in evolution while simultaneously suggesting evolution is a misguided belief.
    "Sometimes I think the surest sign that intelligent life exists elsewhere in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us." -Calvin
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    In the thread below I made a few comments - post 55 is something I still stand by. It's inevitable when discussing Creationism v Evolution that the words 'evolutionist' and 'evolutionism' will come up simply as a matter of convenience and common usage. But then again I am quite common.

    http://www.thescienceforum.com/scientific-study-religion/42686-why-do-you-beieve-god.html


    'Evolutionism:

    1. A theory of biological evolution, especially that formulated by Charles Darwin.
    2. Advocacy of or belief in biological evolution.

    This is the dictionary definition of evolutionism and what I am referring to. As a scientist you may not like my usage of the word but in a creation versus evolution context its usage is apt. So when you call me ignorant for using this word I can only respond by saying that you are not only unnecessarily pedantic but also incorrect. You make the same accusation because I have said evolutionism is doctrinal and a belief. It is true - I know many people (non-scientists) who when asked about their take on evolution on natural selection cannot say much more than "we come from monkeys". They believe in evolution because they have been told to in the same way that people used to believe in God because they were told to. They have not come to their acceptance of evolution via intellectual rigour - and never will. They are as much indoctrinated as people of faith are - perhaps more.'
    Last edited by samsmoot; September 11th, 2014 at 03:05 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by exchemist View Post
    I have to say that "evolutionist" is a term I have never come across except when used by creationists to insinuate at best a false parity between evolution and creationism or at worst some kind of religious belief.
    Then you simply don't read widely enough.

    Towards a New Philosophy of Biology: Observations of an Evolutionist by Ernst Mayr - one of the founding fathers of the Modern Synthesis.

    And if the usage by an evolutionist as renowned as Mayr is insufficient for you, what is your response to its use by the greatest of scientific journals.

    Nature: Hermann Joseph Muller, Evolutionist



    There is no doubt that this is a term that has routinely been used by evolutionists for decades. I have no intention of allowing further usurpation by the creationist camp of a useful term.

    John Galt, evolutionist (and proud of it)



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    on the other hand the term "evolutionism" only appears to be used by creationists - presumably as a response to their brand of belief being called creationism
    "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away." (Philip K. Dick)
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    I certainly don't recall encountering that term outside of creationist circles. (The kind they are always moving in.)
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Galt View Post
    I certainly don't recall encountering that term outside of creationist circles. (The kind they are always moving in.)
    If you call a creationist a "creationist" accept being called an "evolutionist" and accept it with dignity.
    It definitely isn't derogatory.
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    Quote Originally Posted by marnixR View Post
    on the other hand the term "evolutionism" only appears to be used by creationists - presumably as a response to their brand of belief being called creationism
    It seems to be a way to suggest evolution without stating it in a manner which considers it factual. "Evolution" is a solid scientific fact. "Evolutionism" is an ideology to which some people happen to subscribe. Maybe it's just me.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Robittybob1 View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by John Galt View Post
    I certainly don't recall encountering that term outside of creationist circles. (The kind they are always moving in.)
    If you call a creationist a "creationist" accept being called an "evolutionist" and accept it with dignity.
    It definitely isn't derogatory.
    Did you read anything I wrote?
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    Maybe outside Creationist circles, the term ‘Evolutionist’, is about as useful as labelling someone a ‘Gravityist’?
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Galt View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by exchemist View Post
    I have to say that "evolutionist" is a term I have never come across except when used by creationists to insinuate at best a false parity between evolution and creationism or at worst some kind of religious belief.
    Then you simply don't read widely enough.

    Towards a New Philosophy of Biology: Observations of an Evolutionist by Ernst Mayr - one of the founding fathers of the Modern Synthesis.

    And if the usage by an evolutionist as renowned as Mayr is insufficient for you, what is your response to its use by the greatest of scientific journals.

    Nature: Hermann Joseph Muller, Evolutionist



    There is no doubt that this is a term that has routinely been used by evolutionists for decades. I have no intention of allowing further usurpation by the creationist camp of a useful term.

    John Galt, evolutionist (and proud of it)




    Well that is interesting, certainly, John G. I was not being dogmatic, just observing what my own admittedly limited experience has been. But it does seem to have been well and truly hijacked.
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Galt View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Robittybob1 View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by John Galt View Post
    I certainly don't recall encountering that term outside of creationist circles. (The kind they are always moving in.)
    If you call a creationist a "creationist" accept being called an "evolutionist" and accept it with dignity.
    It definitely isn't derogatory.
    Did you read anything I wrote?
    I was agreeing with you, and making a point back to the OP (and Paleo...).
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Galt View Post
    It is rude in certain contexts. It can carry with it a disparaging tone that is set by the context.

    Some evolutionists mistakenly believe that the term evolutionist was coined by creationists in order to insult them. This is ignorant and silly. If Ernst Mayr is happy to be called an evolutionist, then so I am I.

    However, I am not happy to be called that with the snide, patronising, self-deluded, ignorant tone that implicitly accompanies its use by some creationists at some times.

    As to the term creationist, when I use it, I use it as a convenient means of grouping persons with certain similarities of views as to how the world was formed. No disparagement intended. When I say Young Earth Creationist then the term should be considered loaded with venom and disgust.
    I would agree with that except for the very notable propensity for the vernacularly accepted meaning of words to change rapidly. Mayer learned and used the term prior to its shift in meaning, in the same way seniors may still use the term gay to mean happy and Tolkein wrote the phrase "faggot reeking on the fire".

    None of those uses are associated with the images that they are used for today, and neither is evolutionist at this point. The only time is regularly sees usage is as a derogatory term, and it rarely now sees use outside of that.
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    I've been called worse.
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    Question: When someone with a creationist viewpoint wishes to oppose someone with an evolutionary view how should the latter be referred to by the former? Given that the creationist doesn't accept evolution as fact 'evolutionist' seems entirely appropriate. How would evolutionists prefer to be addressed in such a context?
    Scientists and religionists can be easily differentiated: one lot is arrogant, irascible and disdainful, the other believes in God.
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    Quote Originally Posted by samsmoot View Post
    Question: When someone with a creationist viewpoint wishes to oppose someone with an evolutionary view how should the latter be referred to by the former? ... How would evolutionists prefer to be addressed in such a context?
    They would probably be happy with being called biologists or scientists.
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    Quote Originally Posted by samsmoot View Post
    Question: When someone with a creationist viewpoint wishes to oppose someone with an evolutionary view how should the latter be referred to by the former? Given that the creationist doesn't accept evolution as fact 'evolutionist' seems entirely appropriate. How would evolutionists prefer to be addressed in such a context?
    Instead of saying, "I'm not an evolutionist" or "I don't agree with evolutionists" you could say, "I don't accept evolution" or "I don't agree with those who accept evolution."

    EDIT: Personally, I think that's a much better way of addressing disagreement with the fact rather than simply the individual who accepts the fact. Why you would want to do either is still beyond me, though.
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    That implies that all scientists and biologists subscribe to the evolutionary view, which I don't think is the case. And in a creation v evolution discussion it would seem a bit wishy-washy to say 'scientist' or 'biologist' when there's a more accurate and properly descriptive dictionary definition which fits the bill.

    And that still leaves the word 'evolutionism' to be dealt with. Calling it science or biology isn't sufficient.

    Edit: This was a response to RedPanda's post
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    "Evolutionism" isn't a word. It's just evolution. It's not a dogma or set of beliefs, it is an accepted fact.
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    'Evolutionism' isn't a word? The fact of it appearing in dictionaries suggests otherwise.
    Scientists and religionists can be easily differentiated: one lot is arrogant, irascible and disdainful, the other believes in God.
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    Quote Originally Posted by samsmoot View Post
    That implies that all scientists and biologists subscribe to the evolutionary view, which I don't think is the case.
    Well, you could call them rational scientists or rational biologists if you need to differentiate them from anti-evolutionists.
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    This implies that scientists and biologists are rational only if they subscribe to the evolutionary view - which seems insulting to all scientists and biologists who consider creation to be a credible view.
    Scientists and religionists can be easily differentiated: one lot is arrogant, irascible and disdainful, the other believes in God.
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    Quote Originally Posted by samsmoot View Post
    This implies that scientists and biologists are rational only if they subscribe to the evolutionary view - which seems insulting to all scientists and biologists who consider creation to be a credible view.
    I imagine that would be the case. I imagine telling someone "rational scientists understand that the Earth is round" is insulting to scientists who consider the Earth to be flat, but that's life.
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    Nobody really thinks the earth is flat.
    Scientists and religionists can be easily differentiated: one lot is arrogant, irascible and disdainful, the other believes in God.
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    Quote Originally Posted by samsmoot View Post
    Nobody really thinks the earth is flat.
    No real biologists reject evolution.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flick Montana View Post
    "Evolutionism" isn't a word. It's just evolution. It's not a dogma or set of beliefs, it is an accepted fact.
    I sat up listening to a long YT on evolution and it really showed how at any point in history or evolution you don't want to think you've made it for extinction is just around the corner in some cases and in others your so called facts are showed to be wrong. That plus my hallucinogenic yogurt (kefir) made for a very inspiring dream. Far too complicated to write down though sorry.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5sMqFivWTmk "Ape To Man: Evolution Documentary History Channel"

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    Quote Originally Posted by billvon View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by samsmoot View Post
    Nobody really thinks the earth is flat.
    No real biologists reject evolution.
    Don't you mean "no true biologist" rejects evolution?
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    Quote Originally Posted by samsmoot View Post
    This implies that scientists and biologists are rational only if they subscribe to the evolutionary view - which seems insulting to all scientists and biologists who consider creation to be a credible view.
    If they don't like being called irrational, then they should stop being irrational.

    Quote Originally Posted by samsmoot View Post
    Nobody really thinks the earth is flat.
    And have you surveyed every living person before coming to that conclusion?

    The Flat Earth Society
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    Flat-Earthers are just having a laugh.

    As this thread is about insulting language it seems a bit contradictory to its point to label all non-believers in evolution as irrational.
    Scientists and religionists can be easily differentiated: one lot is arrogant, irascible and disdainful, the other believes in God.
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    Quote Originally Posted by RedPanda View Post
    ....If they don't like being called irrational, then they should stop being irrational.....
    It starts off with acceptance. Then discussion. No name calling to begin with.
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    You call them by their name or pseudonym, rather then by a derogatory term.
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    Like Harold said, "I've been called worse".
    I will accept being called an "evolutionist", "evolutionism" does seem a little snarky. But, meh. Of course in return I get to say "evolution denialist" and "ratiophobe"*.

    * I made that word up, it's supposed to mean "fear of the rational".
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    Quote Originally Posted by samsmoot View Post
    'Evolutionism' isn't a word? The fact of it appearing in dictionaries suggests otherwise.
    What in the world would "evolutionism" even mean? It's a pointless use of a suffix. That would be like saying Christianityism. It's JUST Christianity.

    I don't know why there's such a fuss about terminology anyways. It's the intent that is important.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flick Montana View Post
    I don't know why there's such a fuss about terminology anyways. It's the intent that is important.
    That seems to be the general consensus.
    Scientists and religionists can be easily differentiated: one lot is arrogant, irascible and disdainful, the other believes in God.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flick Montana View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by samsmoot View Post
    'Evolutionism' isn't a word? The fact of it appearing in dictionaries suggests otherwise.
    What in the world would "evolutionism" even mean? It's a pointless use of a suffix. That would be like saying Christianityism. It's JUST Christianity.

    I don't know why there's such a fuss about terminology anyways. It's the intent that is important.
    All I know today is I am a type of Christian convinced of a type of evolution, which includes Aquatic Ape Theory. So not all Christians are the same nor are all evolutionists.
    There is the potential for wars between the evolutionist factions as much as wars between the Christian denominations. I hoist the flag of the AAT and fly the banner! Down with the Savannah theorists!
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    Quote Originally Posted by samsmoot View Post
    Flat-Earthers are just having a laugh.
    And have you surveyed every living person before coming to that conclusion?
    Do you see anyone laughing on that link I gave?
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    Quote Originally Posted by RedPanda View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by samsmoot View Post
    Flat-Earthers are just having a laugh.
    And have you surveyed every living person before coming to that conclusion?
    Do you see anyone laughing on that link I gave?
    If they aren't laughing, at least I am.
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    For heaven sakes…


    I just located this thread and realized I was the offender. I did not mean anything by my loose use of the terminology.


    samsmoot said it exactly… “evolutionist' and 'evolutionism' will come up simply as a matter of convenience and common usage”that is all…


    Now if I were to post the term of evilution… by the way I have never referred to anyone with that term. It might look like this:


    Theory of Evilution…


    I am publishing here first. I submit the following scientific theory for Peer-Review.
    The GTCethos theory of Evilution.


    My theory is just as scientific as evolution…


    Since you intellectuals can’t stand any criticism of Evolution I am submitting my own theory that explains the evolution of Evil; namely Evilution. Evilution and Evolution are similar in scale but varied in subject. There are major differences in there power of explanation that makes Evilution undeniably true. Let’s explore the evidence of both. Evolution can not explain the origin of life (it has given up the idea) but Evilution can empirically explain the origin of evil. Evolution is deliberately vague on the facts; Evilution is deliberately concise.


    It breaks down like this:


    Major forces of Evolution:


    Natural Selection
    symbiosis
    Mutation
    Horizontal gene transfer
    Genetic drift


    Major forces of Evilution:


    Natural rejection of the truth
    symbiotic relations of the unmarried
    Mutation of the Bible
    Horizontal hate transfer
    Moral drift



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    Quote Originally Posted by GTCethos View Post
    For heaven sakes…


    I just located this thread and realized I was the offender. I did not mean anything by my loose use of the terminology.


    samsmoot said it exactly… “evolutionist' and 'evolutionism' will come up simply as a matter of convenience and common usage”that is all…


    Now if I were to post the term of evilution… by the way I have never referred to anyone with that term. It might look like this:


    Theory of Evilution…


    I am publishing here first. I submit the following scientific theory for Peer-Review.
    The GTCethos theory of Evilution.


    My theory is just as scientific as evolution…


    Since you intellectuals can’t stand any criticism of Evolution I am submitting my own theory that explains the evolution of Evil; namely Evilution. Evilution and Evolution are similar in scale but varied in subject. There are major differences in there power of explanation that makes Evilution undeniably true. Let’s explore the evidence of both. Evolution can not explain the origin of life (it has given up the idea) but Evilution can empirically explain the origin of evil. Evolution is deliberately vague on the facts; Evilution is deliberately concise.


    It breaks down like this:


    Major forces of Evolution:


    Natural Selection
    symbiosis
    Mutation
    Horizontal gene transfer
    Genetic drift


    Major forces of Evilution:


    Natural rejection of the truth
    symbiotic relations of the unmarried
    Mutation of the Bible
    Horizontal hate transfer
    Moral drift

    How does this post not fall into the category of preaching?
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  43. #42  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paleoichneum View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by GTCethos View Post
    For heaven sakes…


    I just located this thread and realized I was the offender. I did not mean anything by my loose use of the terminology.


    samsmoot said it exactly… “evolutionist' and 'evolutionism' will come up simply as a matter of convenience and common usage”that is all…


    Now if I were to post the term of evilution… by the way I have never referred to anyone with that term. It might look like this:


    Theory of Evilution…


    I am publishing here first. I submit the following scientific theory for Peer-Review.
    The GTCethos theory of Evilution.


    My theory is just as scientific as evolution…


    Since you intellectuals can’t stand any criticism of Evolution I am submitting my own theory that explains the evolution of Evil; namely Evilution. Evilution and Evolution are similar in scale but varied in subject. There are major differences in there power of explanation that makes Evilution undeniably true. Let’s explore the evidence of both. Evolution can not explain the origin of life (it has given up the idea) but Evilution can empirically explain the origin of evil. Evolution is deliberately vague on the facts; Evilution is deliberately concise.


    It breaks down like this:


    Major forces of Evolution:


    Natural Selection
    symbiosis
    Mutation
    Horizontal gene transfer
    Genetic drift


    Major forces of Evilution:


    Natural rejection of the truth
    symbiotic relations of the unmarried
    Mutation of the Bible
    Horizontal hate transfer
    Moral drift

    How does this post not fall into the category of preaching?
    Because it is a joke.
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  44. #43  
    ▼▼ dn ʎɐʍ sıɥʇ ▼▼ RedPanda's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Robittybob1 View Post
    Because it is a joke.
    Aren't jokes supposed to be funny?
    SayBigWords.com/say/3FC

    "And, behold, I come quickly;" Revelation 22:12

    "Religions are like sausages. When you know how they are made, you no longer want them."
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  45. #44  
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    Quote Originally Posted by RedPanda View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Robittybob1 View Post
    Because it is a joke.
    Aren't jokes supposed to be funny?
    They are supposed to be, but have you looked at mine?

    I read it the same way - as humour. I would be interested to hear from GTC what his intent was.
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  46. #45  
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    First they insult you. Then they attack you. Then you win! -Ghandi-
    Sure, I'll be an "evilutionist". The use of the term is a sign of discomfort on the part of ratiophobic persons. I take some pleasure in that.

    Oh, by the way, it is obvious to me that the denialist GTCethos is attempting to use the device of humor in his post.
    I was some of the mud that got to sit up and look around.
    Lucky me. Lucky mud.
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