To the Editors:
On February 4, 1982, Stephen Jay Gould reviewed Martin Gardner’s book entitled Science: Good, Bad and Bogus in The New York Review of Books. Mr. Gould’s review was recently featured on your website, perhaps as a tribute to the late Martin Gardner.
For many years Martin Gardner published articles and books that were critical of me and of what I do. To the best of my recollection although I may on occasion have picked up the phone to my lawyers, I never responded to his attacks, having always believed in free speech and that a good debate is better than no debate and it is not with the intention of criticizing Mr. Gardner that I am making this communication.
In Mr. Gould’s review, a series of allegations were leveled against me. I am guessing that even Mr. Gould would have been aware of that which he inferred when he used such language. I am making this communication to confirm the fact that I am not in any way culpable as alleged by Mr. Gould. In future perhaps you could urge your reviewers to choose their words more carefully. Perhaps you could also ensure that contributions to your website are edited to a higher standard. I would lastly suggest that a better tribute could have been made to Mr. Gardner, who was a great mathematician and whose passing was noted by me with sadness. As for Stephen Jay Gould my limited knowledge of him would suggest that he was an inventive and productive scholar in the fields of biological and geological sciences and I hope that he will be remembered as such.
October 14, 2010