A tough call.

Ben Stein described the brouhaha over his selection as commencement speaker at the University of Vermont as “laughable” on Tuesday called the whole episode “pathetic.”…

“I am far more pro-science than the Darwinists,” Stein said later in an e-mail. “I want all scientific inquiry to happen — not just what the ruling clique calls science.”

Stein’s comments came a day after UVM President Dan Fogel announced that Stein, whom Fogel had invited to address UVM’s commencement in May, would not be coming after all. Fogel said that his selection of Stein generated an intense protest, that he received hundreds of angry e-mails over the weekend, and that after he shared these “profound concerns” with Stein, Stein “immediately and most graciously declined our commencement invitation.”…

Stein called the university’s response to the furor “chicken sh**, and you can quote me on that.”

“I like Dr. Fogel,” Stein wrote, “and feel sorry he is caught in the meat grinder of political correctness. My heart goes out to him. He’s a great guy trying to do his best in difficult circumstances.”

I don’t care that he’s a creationist any more than I’d care if he were a phrenologist. It’s goofy, but so long as he doesn’t turn the speech into a lecture on the subject, I’m willing to tolerate his eccentricity. What I wouldn’t tolerate is his egregious bad-faith attempt to equate Darwinism with social Darwinism. Why would an audience filled with scientists and science majors want to be addressed by a guy who believes “science leads you to killing people”? Better yet, why would that guy want to address them? It’d be like inviting a liberal who believes conservatism is inherently racist to guest-blog on Hot Air. I get enough flak for linking HuffPo occasionally in Headlines that I can imagine how that’d go down with our readers.

Exit question: Can it really be that we’re creeping up on 9 p.m. on the east coast without a post yet on this from LGF?

Tags: Vermont