Anthony “Tony” Campolo is a sociologist, pastor, author and public speaker, and as former spiritual advisor to Bill Clinton he is something of a celebrity fundie – one of the most influential leaders in the Evangelical left, in fact, and a proponent of progressivism and reform within the evangelical community. He has also become a leader of the Red-Letter Christian movement, and enjoys a career as a popular commentator on religious, political, and social issues.
But deep down, Campolo is in most respects just your standard lunatic fundie. In particular, Campolo is an ardent critic of the theory of evolution. Of course, Campolo doesn’t have the faintest idea what the theory actually says, but he claims that teaching evolution in public schools is problematic at best since Darwin endorsed “an extreme laissez faire political ideology that legitimates the neglect of the suffering poor by the ruling elite” (no, he doesn’t provide references) and that he wished to carry out a genocide to exterminate what he perceived to be inferior races (the idea might be based on the quote mining performed by Richard Weikart). Thus, we “should really fear the ethical implications of Darwinism,” it’s pretty much the Nazi ideology in a nutshell. Every claim is, of course, false, and what Darwin’s personal views, even if they were what Campolo claims they were, which they weren’t, have to do with modern biology is left very open, but I suppose many of Campolo’s readers don’t understand or know modern biology any better than he does. Concludes Campolo: “Personally, I hold to the belief that, regardless of how we got here, we should recognise that there is an infinite qualitative difference between the most highly developed ape and each and every human being. Darwin never recognised this disjuncture. And that is why his theories are dangerous.” Right. Shame on you, reality, for promoting a continuum rather than discrete, eternal kinds.
Diagnosis: Oh, yes, a liar for Jesus engaged in mortal combat with reality, reason and science. That state leaders have ever sought his advice is horrifying.