The Jonathan Wells Contradiction.
There are said to be well-documented occurrences of key ID proponents making statements that, even in full context, appear to be outright mistruths. The classic example apparently is Jonathan Wells statements here:
Statement 1:During my years as a physical science undergraduate and biology graduate student at the University of California, Berkeley, I believed almost everything I read in my textbooks. I knew that the books contained a few misprints and minor factual errors, and I was skeptical of philosophical claims that went beyond the evidence, but I thought that most of what I was being taught was substantially true.As I was finishing my Ph.D. in cell and developmental biology, however, I noticed that all of my textbooks dealing with evolutionary biology contained a blatant misrepresentation: Drawings of vertebrate embryos showing similarities that were supposed to be evidence for descent from a common ancestor. But as an embryologist I knew the drawings were false. Not only did they distort the embryos they purported to show, but they also omitted earlier stages in which the embryos look very different from each other.
"Father's words, my studies, and my prayers convinced me that I should devote my life to destroying Darwinism, just as many of my fellow Unificationists had already devoted their lives to destroying Marxism. When Father chose me (along with about a dozen other seminary graduates) to enter a Ph.D. program in 1978, I welcomed the opportunity to prepare myself for battle."
In the Book “Darwins Nemesis” in the chapter entitled “Common Ancestry on Trial” Jonathon Wells gives a more detailed account of his journey of doubts about Macroevolution.
By 1978 Wells claims that he had “become convinced that the neo-darwinian mechanism of evolution was scientifically unsupported.” In 1978 Wells was chosen by Rev. Moon for further study in theology and he entered a Ph.D. program in religious studies at Yale. During this period of study he says that he remained a “theistic evolutionist” Wells says he completed his Ph.D at Yale in 1986. In 1989 he entered the Ph.D. program at UC Berkeley. At this point he says that he “accepted the overall pattern of evolution” but was “skeptical of the neo-darwinistic mechanism”
He claims that his skepticism about evolution jumped a gear when he read Phillip Johnson’s book “Darwin on Trial” in 1991 so that he was at that point beginning to think that Darwinian evolution as a theory was more deeply flawed that he had ever imagined and wanted to seriously ask the question “What is really going on here?”
He claims that it was at UC Berkely that he claims to have experienced the shock of the distorted vertebrate embryo diagrams.
Thus according to Wells the watershed in his intellectual journey regarding Darwinism occurred as he read “Darwin on Trial” in 1991 as he was finishing his coursework and examinations for a Ph. D. in Molecular and Cellular Biology at UC Berkeley. Prior to this point he had been on a mission for Rev Moon to destroy the anti-theistic implications of Dawinism but accepted the “pattern” of evolution while rejecting the “process” as being essentially undirected. Up to the point of reading “Darwin on Trial” he had been comfortable with theistic evolution convinced that the neo-Darwinian mechanism of evolution was scientifically unsupported.
Thus the issue becomes the following:
Are the statements “I believed almost everything I read in my textbooks” and “I thought that most of what I was being taught was substantially true” consistent with a conviction that the neo-darwinian mechanism of evolution is scientifically unsupported.
I believe that they are and that it was the shock of what was actually fraud by a famous scientist which appeared to be deliberately continuing to be presented to the minds of the unsuspecting public which was the textbook shocker that Wells discovered.
The Darwinism that he was determined to attack in 1978 was the view of Dawkins that evolution occurs blindly without intelligence. He was happy with theistic evolution but not atheistic evolution and it was the atheistic version of the story that he was setting out to destroy.