By Dr. Jerry Bergman, published by Master Books
Back in November I got to meet Dr. Bergman for the first time. I recognized him right away from his picture. He was as nice as could be, even to a slightly starstruck stranger lady. 😀
When I told him about my website he asked if I would be interested in reviewing one of his books. I wasn’t too excited about a book on the results of Darwin’s worldview on people’s lives. I knew plenty more than was comfortable already.
Plus, I write for kids.
So, I told him thanks, but no thanks.
He said this book was written with high schoolers in mind, it would be fine. Would I please take a copy? Getting reviews up on Amazon is crucial.
OK. He’s right, and I’ve got a heart for teens, too. I took a copy (should’ve had him autograph it, but didn’t think of it).
I started on the first few chapters right away. Sure enough, the whole thing is about how thinking like an evolutionist leads to all kinds of misery. It is seriously depressing. Soon the book just sat in my book pile making me feel guilty.
Until last week.
My 4th and 5th graders are studying the Industrial revolution in history. We were reading all about how horrible the big company leaders were to their workers at the end of the 19th Century and into the 20th.
- Sneaky business deals that undercut small competitors
- Exhausting hours
- Low wages
- Dangerous working conditions
- Heartless abandonment of workers and families injured or bereaved on the job
- Using the legal system to squash protest, up to and including having protesters hung
It’s enough to make you embarrassed to be part of a society that still honors the names of the biggest of these culprits (Rockefeller, Carnegie, anyone?)
What we didn’t run into anywhere were why those robber baron capitalists decided to act the way they did. But I’d heard ages ago about their motivation. I got to wondering if Dr. Bergman’s book talked about this.
It did. There was a whole chapter called Darwin’s Critical Influence on Ruthless Capitalism.
I pulled out the book, collected my kids and we started reading. We broke the chapter into two sessions since it was a bit long, but I was impressed.
Everything in this book is well documented. In fact, the biggest bother I had with the chapter was how it kept hammering the same point home as Dr. Bergman quoted expert after expert.
The book does mention how unprotected equipment led to dismemberment and even death for many workers. It pointed out that having a job in an American factory of the time was as risky as being a soldier in a war. But nothing was so graphic I skipped it. This seems to be true throughout the book.
Dr. Bergman’s vocabulary wasn’t a problem for my kids, but the quotes were full of big words you need a high school knowledge to handle. For example, we learned and reviewed “laissez faire capitalism” several times since the phrase kept coming up.
It didn’t take much reading for us to understand just how deeply these men were influenced by evolutionary, survival of the fittest, red in tooth and claw, thinking. There were even quotes by Carnegie himself showing how “the light came as in a flood” to have a worldview endorsing his rejection of God and self centered business practices.
There was a brief section at the end of the chapter pointing out how differently Biblical thinking leads us to view our competitors.
- Every man for himself
- If you win, I lose
- Competition is there to be crushed and overcome
- The weak need to be eliminated to strengthen society
- If I succeed it’s because I’m more fit
Biblical view of business:
- There’s enough room for everyone
- If you win, I can win, too (Dr.Bergman pointed out there’s room for all in heaven)
- My own sin nature is to be crushed and overcome
- The weak need to be strengthened, God cares for them as much as me
- If I succeed it’s because God made it possible
This review covers one of 17 topics Dr. Bergman discusses. There are the inevitable chapters on Nazism, Communism, and Eugenics, along with Male Chauvinism, Genocide, and even Criminality Theory.
It’s a heavy duty book, sure to make you miserable.
But it’s something our young people need to be keenly aware of by the time they leave for college.
Ideas have consequences. Your worldview matters.
He that oppresses the poor reproaches his Maker: but he that honors him has mercy on the poor. Proverbs 14:31
Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book from the author in exchange for my review. He didn’t tell me what to say, just to post something, please. 🙂