Anti-evolutionists often make the claim that Darwin was racist as if, even were the accusation true (we’ll get to its falseness shortly), that a racist stance would somehow invalidate his scientific discoveries. These claims have repeatedly been shown to be incorrect characterisations, generally involving selective quoting (and editing) of Darwin’s writings out of context, a practice referred to as quote mining.
Over at Pharyngula, regular commenter Ed Darrell made a comment on one of PZ’s threads about creationist quotemining, and PZ reposted it in full at this post, also called Was Darwin a racist?
Darrell provides 6 punchy numbered paragraphs that debunk the core of this myth/slur against Darwin – well worth a read, even for those of us who’ve seen this debunked before. Anyhoo, the more links to this excellent debunking, the more likely it is that people searching for information about this claim will find the debunking, thus this post.
For anyone interested in further examples of creationist quote-mining, check out the Talk Origins Quote Mine Project.
(Yes, I know I’ve spelt quotemining three different ways. That’s because all three are common. Sheesh, the things I do for search engines.)