Evolutionary antics

It isn’t often or even at all that I enter the blogosphere with my Nature hat on, but it happened today. Here is a post on the science blog Pharyngula entitled "Nature publishes a crank letter". (Clue, it is about evolution.) There are 54 comments to P. Z. Myers’ typically upfront post so far, many of them splenetic, vitriolic or dismissive — but among them some thoughtful and sensible ones. I was brave and contributed my own, which is here.

The story: Nature published a Correspondence letter (an informal letter to the Editor) by a Polish MEP (member of the European parliament) who is scientifically qualified (Oxford degree, U of Toronto PhD) but who does not believe in evolution. Not for religious reasons, but because he doesn’t think there is any evidence for it. We published the letter — do voters have the right to know that their elected representatives have anti-science views? (Which affect the education system, for example.) Or by publishing this letter, does Nature provide spurious credibility for these unsupported beliefs?