When I was growing up there were studies in the news by various scientists whose research was touted as “proof” that cigarette smoking was not harmful, or at least not as harmful as some would have you believe. Those scientists, we later learned, were funded by large tobacco companies. From time to time when research grants were in jeopardy, there have been those caught faking results to keep the grant money heading their way. None of this should be a surprise. Scientists, after all, are people too.
Research faked to please big companies, or to protect the interests of those who stand to make or lose money based on the outcome is nothing new. And the presence of con men is not exclusive to science. So-called scientists who fake results for reasons other than science are no different than so-called ministers who will say whatever it takes to keep the donations coming in. To echo my previous statement: ministers are people too. Individuals in the lab and in the pulpit are subject to temptation.
What I find interesting in all this is that while some people are quick to understand that you don’t ignore science simply because results have been faked for financial gain, they are eager to condemn Christianity because some so-called minsters proclaim falsehoods for the same motivation.
Shouldn’t the standard by which a discipline is judged remain the same?
What are your thoughts?