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An illustration…

An example of how I refuse to be miserable today in search of some hoped-for future reward: I will not be applying for even a temporary job at the school which prominently features the following paragraph in its statement of purpose.

The Christian tradition to which [school name redacted] remains committed recognizes God as the source of all truth, and believes that Jesus Christ is the revelation of that God, a God bound by no church or creed. The loyalty of the college thus extends beyond the Christian community to the whole of humanity and necessarily includes openness to and respect for the world’s various religious traditions. [redacted] dedicates itself to the quest for truth and encourages teachers and students to explore the whole of reality, whether physical or spiritual, with unlimited employment of their intellectual powers. At [redacted], faith and reason work together in mutual respect and benefit toward growth in learning, understanding, and wisdom.

It is my considered (and rigorously argued) opinion that faith is by its very nature the enemy of reason, and therefore the enemy of genuine, intellectually honest scholarship. While well-meaning ecumenical faith makes for better scholarship (and better neighbors) than fundamentalist dogmatism, that’s an awfully low standard to rise above: For example, see the implicit logical self-contradiction in the first sentence of the quoted paragraph.

Even if the hiring panel never thought to Google-stalk me and thereby discovered my outspoken atheism — which I imagine would impede my chances, to say the least — I cannot imagine what would induce me to sacrifice a year of my life to such an institution. My intellectual integrity is worth more to me than whatever fiscal or professional benefits any such job could possibly offer. I’d rather commit myself to adjunct wage-slavery. (Fortunately, there are other options on the table; hopefully, one of those will pan out.)

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Categories: Uncategorized
  1. Michael Fugate
    2011/02/27 at 6:01 am

    Probably 15 years ago, a biology position was open at Westmont College in Santa Barbara. I went out of my way to highlight my strong commitment to teaching evolution knowing I wouldn’t get an interview, but it was kind of fun just sending in the application.

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