The Darwinian Gestapo: Censoring Darwin to Protect Neo-Darwinian Theory

by Dr. Jerry Bergman on August 10, 2021

An example of how members of the scientific establishment quashed dissent with authoritarian tactics because it does not align with Darwinian orthodoxy.

In April 2019 attorney Herman Bouma was scheduled to give a presentation at the annual conference of the National Science Teachers Association (NSTA). The topic, “Darwin’s Response to His Objectors and Its Relevance for Today,” was about how Darwin’s book On the Origin of Species set a good example of engaging one’s scientific critics with civility and reason. In short, his presentation dealt with Darwin’s statement that “I look with confidence to the future,—to young and rising naturalists, who will be able to view both sides of the question with impartiality.”1 Darwin, in the 6th edition of his On the Origin of Species, responded to almost 40 objections to his theory.

He responded to his detractors with respect and courtesy, with logic and evidence, thereby setting a good example for us today. If Bouma’s experience is any indication, Darwin’s example—and his hope—of the issue being rationally debated were not in evidence among the conference officials several decades later.

Abruptly, and without warning, three conference officials . . . accompanied by four security guards, entered the room and told him his presentation was canceled, the reason being it was “fake science.”

Bouma’s proposal for the conference was submitted to the NSTA a year in advance, specifically in April of 2018, and was accepted in November of the same year. Bouma drove to St. Louis, Missouri, to deliver his paper, which was scheduled to be given on April 14, 2019, at 8:00 a.m. On that morning he began setting up for his presentation in the room to which he was assigned, along with the audio-visual person who was helping connect his laptop to the projector. Abruptly, and without warning, three conference officials, specifically Delores Howard, Michael Szydlowski, and Eric Hadley, accompanied by four security guards, entered the room and told him his presentation was canceled,2 the reason being it was “fake science.” How they could determine this about a presentation they had never heard was not explained. Bouma then asked if he could give the presentation in the empty room because he wanted to film it, a request they denied.3 They could have at least told him the night before that it was canceled so he would not have had to go through the process of walking for 20 minutes in the rain to the meeting room and setting up his equipment. They evidently felt that Darwin’s cordial comments to critics were a threat to Darwinism, or in their words, “fake science.” The security guards made sure he left the room without talking to anyone. A sign was placed on the door informing attendees that the presentation was canceled, in spite of the fact that persons were beginning to show up.

Bouma attempted to file a complaint with David Evans, the Executive Director of the NSTA, and to set up a meeting with Evans. In the end, Evans refused to meet with him. Evans added, “Beyond that, we firmly oppose advising teachers to ‘teach the controversy’ regarding evolution by natural selection of mutations as there is no scientific controversy.” Apparently all theories of science can be questioned except one: molecules-to-man evolution. This worldview is deemed as irrefutable fact, not to be doubted or debated. Only one side will be taught, thus rejecting Darwin’s own advice quoted above.

Background of the Presenter

Bouma first started having doubts about the merits of neo-Darwinian theory when he took an advanced biology course in high school, and in the years that followed as he researched the “evidence” for the theory, his doubts continued to grow. Eventually, he came to realize the fact that there is no valid evidence for neo-Darwinian theory.

He came to realize the fact that there is no valid evidence for neo-Darwinian theory.

Bouma studied at Harvard, the University of Wisconsin at Madison, and the University of Texas at Austin School of Law, where he earned his JD degree (Doctor of Jurisprudence) in 1979. For the next 37 years, Bouma practiced and was an attorney in Washington, DC. In 2016, he left the practice of law to work full time as the executive director of the National Association for Objectivity in Science (NAOS), a non-profit founded in 1998.

The primary purpose of NAOS is to promote the objective teaching of neo-Darwinian theory in the public schools. NAOS maintains that, at a minimum, biology teachers should be required to teach what Darwin himself considered to be the top ten scientific arguments against his theory. It also maintains that science teaching should include Darwin’s view that the first forms of life were the result of design. NAOS’ hope is the same as Darwin’s in that students “will be able to view both sides of the question with impartiality.”

Based on an analysis of Darwin’s discussion in his book On the Origin of Species (1872 edition), Bouma concludes that Darwin likely would have considered the following arguments to be the top ten scientific arguments against his theory. Darwin did attempt to address each of these problems but did so largely unsuccessfully, and they remain major problems today.

  1. The Complexity of Eyes: Darwin wrote, “To suppose that the eye with all its inimitable contrivances for adjusting the focus to different distances, for admitting different amounts of light, and for the correction of spherical and chromatic aberration, could have been formed by natural selection, seems, I freely confess, absurd in the highest degree” (168).
  2. Parts with Little Importance: Darwin wrote, “I have sometimes felt great difficulty in understanding the origin or formation of parts of little importance; almost as great, though of a very different kind, as in the case of the most perfect and complex organs” (181).
  3. Darwin acknowledged that “Many instincts are so wonderful that their development will probably appear to the reader a difficulty sufficient to overthrow my whole theory.”
  4. Complex Instincts: Darwin acknowledged that “Many instincts are so wonderful that their development will probably appear to the reader a difficulty sufficient to overthrow my whole theory” (228).
  5. Neuter Ants and Their Different Castes: With respect to the difficulty of explaining the existence of neuter ants, Darwin states it is “one special difficulty, which at first appeared to me insuperable, and actually fatal to the whole theory . . . for these neuters often differ widely in instinct and in structure from both the males and fertile females, and yet, from being sterile, they cannot propagate their kind” (250).
  6. The Eyes of the FlatFish: Another objection Darwin considered involves the eyes of the flatfish (Pleuronectidae). During its early youth, the body of the flatfish is symmetrical with one eye on each side. However, as the body matures, one eye “begins to glide slowly round the head” to the other side (pp. 209–210). Darwin agreed that his theory of natural selection could not account for this feature and, instead, he attributed it to habit.
  7. General Inability of Species to Interbreed: Darwin wrote, “It may be urged, as an overwhelming argument, that there must be some essential distinction between species and varieties, inasmuch as the latter, however much they may differ from each other in external appearance, cross with perfect facility, and yield perfectly fertile offspring. With some exceptions, … I fully admit that this is the rule” (278).
  8. Absence of Transitional Forms in the World Around Us: Darwin admitted that “the distinctness of specific forms, and their not being blended together by innumerable transitional links, is a very obvious difficulty” (287).
  9. Absence of Transitional Forms in the Fossil Record: Darwin wrote that under his theory, “[A]s this process of extermination has acted on an enormous scale, so must the number of intermediate varieties, which have formerly existed, be truly enormous. Why then is not every geological formation and every stratum full of such intermediate links? Geology assuredly does not reveal any such finely-graduated organic chain; and this, perhaps, is the most obvious and serious objection which can be urged against the theory” (p. 287). Darwin admits that “though we do find many links—we do not find interminable varieties, connecting together all extinct and existing forms by the finest graduated steps” (335–336).
  10. Absence of Transitional Forms Even Within Particular Geological Formations: Darwin admitted, “[I]t cannot be doubted that the geological record, viewed as a whole, is extremely imperfect; but if we confine our attention to any one formation, it becomes much more difficult to understand why we do not therein find closely graduated varieties between the allied species which lived at its commencement and at its close” (p. 298). Darwin confesses, “But I do not pretend that I should ever have suspected how poor was the record in the best preserved geological sections, had not the absence of innumerable transitional links between the species which lived at the commencement and close of each formation, pressed so hardly on my theory” (304–305).
  11. Sudden Appearance of New Forms of Life: Darwin wrote, “The abrupt manner in which whole groups of species suddenly appear in certain formations, has been urged by several paleontologists—for instance, by Agassiz, Pictet, and Sedgwick—as a fatal objection to the belief in the transmutation of species. If numerous species, belonging to the same genera or families, have really started into life at once, the fact would be fatal to the theory of evolution through natural selection” (305).


This review of the incident at the NSTA annual conference eloquently illustrates the intolerance typical of the Darwinist establishment today. Darwin himself, and many other scientists as well, would have been appalled at what happened. Neither Darwin nor scientists, who take the mantra of science seriously that nothing in science is written in stone, would tolerate the anti-tolerance existing today. Everything in science is open to revision, or even falsification, as knowledge advances.


  1. Charles Darwin, The Origin of Species (New York: NAL Penguin Inc., 1958), 444. In the 1859 edition, it is on page 482.
  2. Evolution News, “It Was Like the Darwinian Gestapo,”
  3. Herman Bouma 2021. Interview by Sarah Chaffee.


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