Evolution is driven by a sort of modern version of gnosticism that mandates that the world operate on its own. An obvious motivation for this belief is that it separates god from the evil in the world. We can't believe god created this mess so nature must have done it. David Hume powerfully made this argument in the eighteenth century, helping to lay the groundwork for Darwin and the evolutionists. In addition to providing the evolution theodicy, this gnosticism scratched several other metaphysical itches as well.
Of course there is nothing wrong with people holding to religious beliefs and following them to their logical ends. But evolutionists have always denied any such influence. The result is a bizarre combination of schizophrenia and hypocrisy where evolutionists literally switch from preaching their metaphysics one moment, to insisting they are strictly following the data and castigating others for forcing religion onto science the next moment. The internal contradictions are glaring and the science is absurd.
If the theological claims are true then evolution--somehow, some way--must also be true. So not surprisingly evolutionists have always insisted on the veracity of their theory. It is a fact, though the details have yet to be worked out. In fact, those scientific details are not very cooperative, and they make evolution look rather silly. But evoluionists want it both ways. They insist evolution is true, and they insist that the science must confirm their belief.
The scientific problems must be mere research problems (a sign of good science is that there are research problems, right?). The falsified predictions must simply be signs that we are learning (after all, do you expect science to know everything?). On the whole, the science must support evolution, one way or another.
So evolutionists have constructed the remarkable myth that science proves evolution to be a fact as much as gravity is a fact. It is an incredible over reach, but evolutionists insist that for any informed person even to doubt evolution would be irrational. So evolutionists predict that understanding evolution leads to a better chance of accepting it. Education should lead to concurrence. Enter Tania Lombrozo who has found no such correlation. She explains:
So I think one of the most surprising findings has to do with the relationship between understanding the basics of evolutionary theory and accepting it as our best account of the origins of human life. So most people, I think, [or] in particular scientists, tend to think that if people reject evolution and in particular evolution by natural selection, it's because they don't understand it very well; they don't really understand what the theory is telling us. But in fact, if you look at the data from psychology and education, what you find is either no correlation between accepting evolution and understanding it or very, very small correlation between those two factors, and I think that's surprising to a lot of people and in particular to educators and scientists.
In other words, increasing levels of understanding evolution do not lead to increasing levels of acceptance. This raises an ersatz ethical question for evolutionists: If education alone doesn't do the job, should other means of influencing beliefs be used to straiten people out? Lombrozo explains:
any kind of educational intervention that increases people's understanding of evolutionary theory is not necessarily going to have a consequence to whether or not people accept evolution. I think that's surprising, but it also raises a lot of complicated ethical issues; whether or not it's even appropriate in the classroom for teachers to be trying to deliberately influence students' acceptance of evolution as opposed to whether or not they understand it. We normally think about the role of education as being one to communicate basic concepts, to communicate scientific theories, not to actually change whether or not people accept a particular theory that might conflict with their relative views. So I think it raises some complicated issues there. ...
On the other hand, people's policy making decisions, their medical decisions and a lot of other decisions might depend not only on whether or not they understand evolution, but on whether or not they accept it. So in some sense, I think the public has a lot at stake in whether or not people accept evolution; but I am not sure the best way to proceed given these kinds of findings about the dissociation between acceptance and belief.
I'm glad that Lombrozo is unsure how to proceed, but it is disturbing that she and the evolutionists believe that acceptance, and not mere understanding, of evolution is so important for certain decisions. This certainly has not been the case in science. While Lombrozo may seem appropriately cautious here, the notion that "the public has a lot at stake whether or not people accept evolution" is a chilling thought.