Debating anti-evolutionists is something of a fool’s errand, which makes me something of a fool, especially if you read the reviews of my recent debate with America’s leading intelligent design “theorist.”
Debates are curious events. They masquerade as intellectual contests, but are really just showcases for rhetorical cleverness and public charisma. Richard Nixon is thought to have lost a debate—and the 1960 presidential election—to John Kennedy because he was visibly sweating during one of the first televised debates. In provocative contrast, radio listeners, who couldn’t see what Nixon looked like, thought he had won the debate.
Originally posted on The Daily Beast on April 21, 2014.