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The Critic's Resource on AntiEvolution

Deposition of Dr. Francisco J. Ayala - Day Two - Page 4


they quote me. And says, "The creationists,
on the other hand," and that's where they
start to go wrong, when they say "on the other
hand," so...

A. In my frank opinion, it's
intellectually very soft, to put it that way.

Q. Did they incorrectly quote you at
all in this?

A. The quotations themselves -- I have
not examined every word of the quotations.
They seem to be all right in there.

If you wish, I will check. I'm sure I
will detect any misquoting, if such has taken
place, by just going through it.

Q. You should be somewhat complimented,
they refer to you as one of the "younger
leaders" of evolutionary thought.

(Short break taken)

MR. WILLIAMS: Q. In your preparation
of the Seagraves case, did you prepare any
documents for the Attorney General?

A. No.

Q. And have you prepared any for
presentation in this case?

A. No.

MR. WILLIAMS: Can I have this marked as


an exhibit.

(Document more particularly
described in the index marked
for iden. Defendant's
Exhibit No. 8)

MR. WILLIAMS: Q. You have in front of
you a copy of what's been marked as
Defendant's Exhibit 8, Dr. Ayala.

Can you identify that document?

A. It's my handwriting for sure, and I
recall what is in there, yes.

Q. Could you translate this for me?
Start at the top.

A. Okay. "Pending, by FJA" -- that's a
note to myself that I still have to do
something about it, and the things which are
marked with arrows --

Q. Right.

A. "Society for the Study of Evolution,
9-24-80" -- that probably is the day when I
had some telephone conversations, September 24,
'90, concerning business of the Society for
the Study of Evolution.

I remind you that I was president of the


society at the time. Michael Clegg was the
secretary at the time, and Guy Bush was the
president elect; so I have reason to believe
that I just had telephone conversations with
them to discuss the matters.

The first one says, "Evelyn Hutchinson
for 1981 National Medal of Science." That is a
possibility that it was discussed by the
council at the time of the meeting that
Professor Hutchinson from Yale University be
nominated so as to receive the National Medal
of Science from the President of the United
States. The previous year we had nominated a
person, and that person was awarded such Medal
bu the President of the United States.

Q. That's fine.

A. Do you want me to go on?

Q. If you could just translate some of

A. "Possible people to prepare" -- that
is, to prepare the nomination. "Deevey Brooks
from NSF, James and Karen Porter. Clegg will
talk to the Porters and call me."

I'm making notes to myself to know what
happened. Clegg is at the same university as
the Porters.


Number two says, "Have to be personal
member of AIBS." Now, this concerns, now, a
second matter; that is, the nomination for
Distinguished Service to Biology in the United
States, which is a nomination -- I mean, an
award -- given by AIBS, which is the American
Institute for Biological Sciences. So, I was
discussing with them who we might want to
nominate, and we were discussing Mayr as a
good possibility.

Yes. And it must have been the case;
although I don't recall that. I had checked
his membership in the society -- AIBS, not
Society for the Study of Evolution -- and
probably found out that Mayr was not a member
of AIBS; and obviously we came to the
conclusion that I could make him a member of
the society, AIBS, and then proceed with the

And then I think our discussion came to
the following points; namely, that Karen could
be the candidate for the following year, but
we should start right now to work on it --
that is, in preparing the nomination -- and
that also Raven could be an additional
candidate. And that, you know, I should


consider Steve Gould or R. C. Lewontin as

Finally, reminding myself I should
prepare the nomination of Solbrig. This is a
professor at Harvard University who has agreed
to be nominated.

Q. I take it this has nothing to do
with Creation Science?

A. I think not. But this Harvard
traces back to the same meeting of Society for
the Study of Evolution, which is why I thought
you might have interest in it.

MR. WILLIAMS: I'd like to have this
marked as 9.

(Document more particularly
described in the index marked
for iden. Defendant's
Exhibit No. 9)

MR. WILLIAMS: Q. This is Exhibit 9.
Dr. Ayala. If you could just -- without
editorial comments -- just tell me what is on
here, and if I have any questions, I can ask
you for it, because if it's not relevant to
this lawsuit we can move on.


A. Okay.

(Reviews document)

I take it the first message is that -- I
am fussy -- the first message is telling
myself to get copies and send them to this
person. Somebody must have told me he is
interested in these matters.

Now, I don't think this refers to the
following three pages --

MS. STURM: Could you hold on one second?

A. Yes

(Short break taken)

A. The message on top is addressed to
my secretary, and obviously this has been
stapled -- I don't know by whom, maybe by me --
to the wrong pages.

My guess is that these were not -- the
following three pages were not the three I was
asking my secretary to xerox.

Q. What does page two say?

A. John A. Moore, as you may recognize,
is the chairman, the person I appointed
chairman of the committee on education of the
Society for the Study for Evolution; so this
must be I was conversing with him, and he was
telling me, yes, he was willing to be the



I think he -- we must have started to
talk; although I do not recall, That is my
best interpretation.

Oh, no no. Well, you can continue with
the testimony.

I believe what it is saying here is that
he may have brought up the matter of expert
witnesses that should be identified. That is --
you recall the charge -- we thought that one
thing that should be done is to identify
people in various parts of the country that
could be served -- could be used as witnesses
when they were needed. And then there are a
number of names that probably were his
suggestions as to possible members for the

Then it goes on to say that 12 people
would probably be the right number; that we
should make a clear statement, and then mail
them materials.

Q. What is the next statement there?

A. "The arguments have not changed" --
don't copy that.

Oh, yes, these I recall fairly well. he
was telling me that the arguments that


creationists are using now are the same that
were being used at the beginning of the
century, and also some 20 years ago. And that
we should disqualify the arguments because
they are repeated every 20 years. They seem
to reappear.

Q. Okay.

A. You want me to go on?

Q. Sure.

A. This one is obviously a previous
conversation with the same person. He was
saying -- this must have been the first
contact I was having with him on this matter.

And he was saying this was a serious
problem, remember Reagan's statements on the
matter; and then he was informing me that the
National Association of Biology Teachers has
appointed a similar committee, the chair of
which is Dr. Mayer and it would be a mistake
to, I take it, rely on this committee, but we
could contribute names and resources and
support to Mayer's committee.

Q. I think there's nothing else on that
page that we want to ask about.

(Discussion off the record)

A. The next one is the name of a person


that obviously was suggested to me as a
possible member of that committee.

Q. What's that on the next page?

A. The next one, I think, is a
combination of my notes during the meeting of
the council, that meeting in June, in late
June '80, with additions later, just in a
different pen to, you know, for my own benefit.

Q. What does that first line --

A. "Membership crisis."

Q. You were having a membership crisis
at that time?

A. Different societies are always
having membership crisis.

Q. What society was this?

A. Society for the Study of Evolution.

We should make a campaign, you know, to
members to increase membership.

I was pointing out that our science has
4,000 subscriptions from libraries, maybe we
could get the list from them and send them our

Q. How many Members are in the Society
for the Study of Evolution now?

A. I would say as a rough guess 1500 or


Q. And is that an increase from five
years ago?

A. I would think so, but probably not
by much, because the society has increased the
fees very substantially in recent years --
simply for the increased cost of
publication -- and that simply puts off
people. But you would have to check that if
you would care to.

Then the next point, of course, is
relevant. This must have been when I proposed
to the council that the committee on
Creationism to be a committee dealing with the
issue of teaching of evolution and creation,
and then a number of names that obviously were
discussed at the time, and some suggested
later --

Q. Dr. Ayala, is it -- I notice your
rough notes reflect that you refer to this as
the committee on creationism.

A. Yes. Because that's the way in
which people referred to it, and indeed, I
made a point, to the rest of my recollection,
at that point not to -- that we should not
call it so, and that I very much dislike the
idea of identifying anti-evolutionism as


creationism. Because one can be an
evolutionist and a creationist, and I don't
like the idea of the creationist
appropriating -- the so-called creationist --
because -- you see, I'm trapping myself in
this -- I don't like the idea of
anti-evolutionists appropriating themselves
the word of being a creationist. I think
there are good creationists who believe in
evolution. I believe I made a point of it,
and the note is written that way to remind me
of the argument to be made.

Q. Does this reflect that at the
genesis, if you will, of this committee, that
it was concerned with creationism? That's
what was being discussed there?

A. I think in the minds of many people,
probably so. I think in my mind, very much
the opposite, if I understand the thrust of
your question.

It is and has been my conviction for a
long time that we should not call people who
are anti-evolutionists the creationist. And I
was very much trying to make a point of it.

You may recall that we read some document
before where somebody was describing my having


said so at some other occasion.

Q. Correct.

MS. STURM: Could you wait one second?

(Short break taken)

A. Again, we encounter number six, and
probably the reason that has a number six
there is so I can maintain the connection with
a six, point number six of the meeting of the

And this probably is notes to myself on
things to do or expressions of thoughts, get a
list of resource scientists, prepare a
statement -- I'm scribbling here notes as to
what the charge of the committee should be.
And then I am -- the farther points I don't
think would have any reference.

I'll go on if you want.

Q. No, that's fine.

A. The next point must have been a
telephone conversation with William Mayer.

Q. Could you just read what it says

A. Says "We have a committed for
evolution education and teaching." That is
the "National Association of Biology Teachers
to help teachers primarily understand


evolution and science. William Mayer is chair.
Would be most valuable to have a committee
from the Society for Study of Evolution. Too
many things to do. Professional evolutionists
are apathetic, do not understand the potential
dangers, our SSE committee would carry most
weight. John Moore is a splendid. B. Glass
is great also."

So this is obviously mostly recalling
what he was saying.

Q. Next page would be just a list --
A. Of possible members, yes. You can
see that somebody added my name -- not in my
handwriting. How that happened, I don't know.

Do you want to go on?

Q. Yes.

A. I take it the next page is the first
page of the one that we have seen before.
"National" -- this obviously is not following
up on matters that have been discussed at our
annual meeting; so I think point one is of no
interest to you. I assume point two either.
We went through it above.

Number three is a point that refers to
the appointment of a Washington representative
of our society. You know, with scientific


societies meeting often in Washington for
business, so that we could have a
representative there.

Number four concerns a prize to be given
to a student, a very young scientist, for
proposing some interesting research.

Number seven is to discuss the meeting of
the society to take place in '82, which would
occur in Sturn Brook. Futuyama, this is a
scientist. Says "Kohn has ascertained that
the university charges no fee." And the
meeting was tentatively planned for June 27
through 30th. That's obviously the
information, the second one, that I got when
following up.

Then about a new secretary for the

Q. Thank you.

A. You are welcome.

MR. WILLIAMS: Exhibit 10, please.

(Document more particularly
described in the index marked
for iden. Defendant's
Exhibit No. 10)


MR. WILLIAMS: Q. Dr. Ayala, you have
before you what has been marked as Defendant's
Exhibit 10 to this deposition.

Can you identify that document?

A. Yes, it's an issue of a journal
called the "Watchtower."

Q. Do you know who that's published by?

A. It says -- I believe it's the
Jahovah's Witness's. It does not say that,
but maybe I'm mistaken.

Q. The other day during your deposition,
I believe you stated, the record will reflect,
that part of the information which you had
considered in making assessments of Creation
Science was some document by someone -- by
Garner Ted Armstrong or the "World Tomorrow."

Was this perhaps what you had reference

A. No. Let me refresh your
recollection by my recollection, and the
record will show which one is more correct. I
believe I was being asked whether I had in
recent times read statements about, you know,
Creation Science or creation explanations of
origins, and I was saying, yes, some articles
that I have read were a series of articles in


the journal, which I forget --
"Plain Truth," which is published by Ted
Armstrong. There was a series of five or six
articles all dealing with this issue.

Now, this is not the one I was referring
to. You want to ask me something about it?

Q. I want to ask you if this is part of
the documents on Creation Science which you
have read and upon which you form your current
opinion on Creation Science?

MS. STURM: You want to divide it into
two questions?

A. This is -- first of all, let me say
it's a document that I have not read. This
was -- I have fairly good recollection of how
this is in my file.

A student from one of my classes came to
me and said, "This might interest you." And I
spent a few minutes with it, probably was '78,
and put it in my file. I glanced through it
and got some notions that indeed are repeated
again by various people, various
anti-evolutionists, and found that it was not
much new or not particularly interesting, and
the arguments were fallacious and the evidence
often wrong.


So, I recall not spending much time and
putting it in my file just in case at some
later time I would have time to get back to it.

Q. So, did you read the article on
"Design Requires a Designer."

A. I glanced through it at the time,
but, you know, I'm sure I didn't read every

Q. Okay.

A. This is what I was referring to. I
don't find anything particularly new or

Q. Okay. I have a copy of something
which is marked "Population and Evolutionary
Genetics," a primer, by Francis J. Ayala.

Is this a book which is in publication?

A. In press, yes.

Q. Who is publishing this book?

A. Benjamin Cummings, same publisher of
that book.

Q. To what level is this book directed?

A. This is intended as an elementary
textbook in population genetics. So it will
be addressed primarily to undergraduates,
either lower-level undergraduates, if they are
interested in genetics, or, perhaps, as


supplementary reading to advanced
undergraduates taking courses in other subject

Q. Okay. Do you presently know whether
you would rely on any information in here in
your testimony at trial?

A. It's very likely that some of the
information that is there, some, may be used;
but I don't have any specific plans as of this

To be extremely cooperative, I could say
it contains redundant information, information
that is not very different from the
information that is in some of the other books;
particularly when we are dealing with an
elementary textbook.

Q. I've been supplied copies of some of
your more recent grants, or, at least, some
evidence of the grants.

A. Some cover pages.

Q. right. For example, this one is
dated 1976 and covers some $250,000 in the
grant itself. Is that somewhat in the range --
I was looking at several of these, and they
all seem to be around $250,000.

A. They have large grants, which is the


one from NIH, and, as the years go by,
increase in value. It's a collective grant
that four or five independent scientists share.
All the other grants would be considerably
smaller, under a hundred thousand. That is
the ones -- the grants to me individually.

Q. Would it be fair to say that the
grants you have been awarded, you, personally,
but which have been --

A. Part of that is to me personally in
a way, although.

Q. Part of it would pay part of your

A. Oh, no. It's awarded to me as
principal investigator, but none of this money
comes to me.

Q. I understand.

(Interruption, discussion off the record)

MR. WILLIAMS: Q. It would be fair to
state, would it not, that the total dollar
value of grants which have been awarded to
institutions where you have been a principal
investigator would exceed several million

A. It would not be accurate, no, the
part of which I am responsible.


I made a guess the other day, and said it
was a rough guess at the time, of a million
over the last few years. I think this
definitely was not correct in "several million."

I just -- I tried to point out that there
are several people involved in one of those

Q. Do you think science can be the
basis for religion?

A. I think it can inspire people to be
religious. In that sense of being the basis
of, yes.

Q. Well, do you think people can
believe in science the way some people believe
in religion?

A. I think so, but I don't think those
people would be scientists.

Q. I'm not asking you to assume that
I'm talking about that some people might.

A. Yes, some people seem to.

Q. Are you familiar with physics?

A. A little bit.

Q. Are you aware of the parallels and
similarities between modern particle physics
and Eastern mystic religions at all?

A. I have heard that they use some


terms and some symbols which in very many ways
resemble, you know, symbols in terms of
mystical religion.

(Short break taken)



Q. This article that you wrote in the
Journal of Heredity, I take it, is a tribute
or memorial?

A. It's biography, a short biography,

Q. And it sets forth his life as well
as some of his theories, does it not?

A. Yes, to summarize what his main
contributions to science were, as well as
summarizes his personal life.

Q. I have an article, "Genetic
Variations in Evolution." Has this been

A. If I've given it to you that way, I
presume it has not. Not to the best of my

It should appear very soon.

Q. Has it been accepted for publication?

A. Yes.

Q. In what publication?

A. It will appear as a separate booklet
in a collection which used to be called The
Oxford something, and now is called Oxford/
North Carolina something. Just little
booklets in biology. Each one of these will
be an independent sort of booklet, sixteen
pages or so.


Q. As will this one, "The Origin of the

A. Carolina Readers, yes. They are
called Oxford/Carolina Readers.

Q. This is entitled "Origin of the
Species." What do you go into in here?

A. Discussing how species come about,
species originate.

Q. Is this also part of that same

A. No. There are only two, so there
should be no more, no.

This, as it says at the bottom, is a
speech that I gave in Rome almost exactly one
year ago, and they asked me afterwards to
write it down and send it because they wanted
to publish it. So I think it's to appear in
some Italian journal.

Q. Are all of these books still in

A. May I see "Molecular Evolution"?
That is the third one from top.

I think this is out of print now. It's
gone through three printings. To the best of
my knowledge there are no plans to reprint it.

Q. You were a contributor to this



A. I organized the symposium on which
the volume is based, and then I edited the
volume and wrote an introductory chapter.

Q. Are these two still in print?

A. Yes.

Q. Does the handbook for faculty
members of the University of California
contain anything on how to teach courses or
professional --

A. Professional standards, yes.

Q. Is there something on here that
talks about the discretion left to the

A. I'm sure it does.

Q. Can you recall anything?

A. I'm consulted very often, and when I
have to find something, by secretary finds it.
So you're as able to find something as I, but
I'm willing to give it a try.

Q. Dr. Ayala, perhaps you can assist me?

A. Yes; I will try.

MR. WILLIAMS: No further questions.

(Concluded at 7:40 o'clock p.m.)

                                  Signature of Witness


STATE OF CALIFORNIA                           )
                                                           )   ss.

              I hereby certify that the witness in
the foregoing deposition named

                       DR.FRANCISCO J. AYALA,

was by me duly sworn to testify the truth, the
whole truth, and nothing but the truth in the
within-entitled cause; that said deposition
was taken at the time and place therein stated;
that the testimony of said witness was reported
by me,

                KAREN L. WILLIAMS,

a Certified Shorthand Reporter and
disinterested person, and was thereafter
transcribed into typewriting, and that the
pertinent provisions of the applicable code or
rules of civil procedure relating to the
notification of the witness and counsel for
the parties hereto of the availability of the
original transcript of deposition for reading,
correcting and signing have been complied

                And I further certify that I am not
of counsel or attorney for either or any of


the parties to said deposition, nor in any way
interested in the outcome of the cause named
in said caption.

                IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto
set my hand and affixed my seal of office the
       day of                    , 1981.