Another reason to drop "Darwinism".

New Scientist book reviews editor Amanda Geftner describes some of the red flags that she has come to recognize as indicating a hidden religious agenda in pseudoscientific books. Here is one relevant excerpt:

When you come across the terms “Darwinism” or “Darwinists”, take heed. True scientists rarely use these terms, and instead opt for “evolution” and “biologists”, respectively. When evolution is described as a “blind, random, undirected process”, be warned. While genetic mutations may be random, natural selection is not. When cells are described as “astonishingly complex molecular machines”, it is generally by breathless supporters of ID who take the metaphor literally and assume that such a “machine” requires an “engineer”. If an author wishes for “academic freedom”, it is usually ID code for “the acceptance of creationism”.

The usefulness of “Darwinism” as a linguistic marker of anti-evolutionism is another reason for biologists to drop it — that is, if we don’t use it and they also stop using it, we gain because we get a more accurate description of evolution, whereas if we don’t use it and they continue to, we gain because it identifies their anti-evolution agendas. (I already consider it in this manner, but have to make special accommodations for people like Coyne and Dawkins who insist on using it to mean “modern evolutionary biology”, or for historians who mean it specifically in terms of Darwin’s ideas).


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