DOCTORS, DOGMA AND DISEASE
There's been some discussion on Megan McArdle's blog
about Intelligent Design and evolution. Megan states that people who reject evolution due to religious convictions aren't a threat. I'm not so sure about that.
The Germ Theory of Disease
has been called the greatest boon to humanity ever. It's pretty hard to argue with that. The theory states that specific diseases are (mostly) caused by a specific micro-organism. Vaccines and anti-biotics have been developed using this theory, and literally billions of lives have been saved. The evidence that this works is overwhelming. So why is it still called a "Theory"?
One of the reasons is that we can never close the book. New strains and disease causing organisms are found almost weekly. Some benign organisms mutate in to deadly forms, while other diseases that are on the verge of being eradicated make a comeback because the organisms that cause the disease mutate in to anti-biotic resistant strains. It's a continueing process that will never stop.
This is just like Darwin's Theory of Evolution
. Critics like to point out that it's just a theory, never proven absolutely, it has to be taken on faith like religion, gaps in the fossil record and all that. But every time there's a news report about new anti-biotic resistant bacteria
, evolution is proven. After all, how did the bacteria become resistant in the first place? It evolved, right?
So where's the threat? No one in their right mind would deny that medical science is good. No one but some crackpot nut would deny the benefits and effectiveness of medicine, even if it is partly based on evolution. It's absurd to think that a major religion with a billion members would denounce modern medical science