At Age 180, Darwin’s Theory of Evolution a Materialist House of Cards

By Tom Bethell Published on January 31, 2017

Little known fact: The year 2017 is likely the 180th anniversary of Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution. If that number sounds high, it’s because while Darwin had worked out his theory of evolution by 1837, he didn’t go public with it until 1858.

Why the delay? Evolution itself wasn’t the problem. Earlier in the century, it was openly discussed. Darwin’s own grandfather had broached the subject. The problem, according paleontologist Stephen Jay Gould, was that Darwin’s theory of evolution was distinguished from others by its materialism.

Previous writings on evolution were softened by a reliance on vital forces, organic striving, teleology and the like. Not Darwin’s theory. It argued that even the mind was nothing but a special configuration of matter operating under blind processes. “No notion,” Gould wrote, “could be more upsetting to the deepest traditions of Western thought than the statement that mind — however complex and powerful — is simply a product of brain.”

Darwin’s theory needed a climate of opinion more favorable to materialism, one that didn’t exist in the 1830s.

So, to be acceptable to his contemporaries, Darwin’s theory needed a climate of opinion more favorable to materialism, one that didn’t exist in the 1830s. Indeed, throughout Darwin’s youth, materialism had been actively repressed. Lectures were proscribed, publication hampered and professorships denied. “Fierce invective and ridicule appeared in the press,” wrote Howard Gruber, author of Darwin on Man. “Scholars and scientists learned the lesson and responded to the pressures on them.” Sometimes they recanted and sometimes they published anonymously or “delayed publication for many years.”

In one notebook Darwin reminded himself to “avoid stating how far, I believe, in Materialism.”

A generation later, the landscape was more favorable for materialists. And for those committed to materialism, Darwin’s theory was a lifeline. After all, if materialism is true, then something like Darwin’s theory must be true. Complex organisms do exist, after all, so molecules must somehow have whirled themselves into the far more complex structures we find around us, whether bacterial or human.

That also necessitates a finely graded series of structures gradually evolving from relatively simple molecules into one or more single-celled organisms, and from there onto multi-celled organisms, the first plants and animals, and so on.

Armed with materialist creed, the true believer is prepared to reject contrary evidence. “We take the side of science in spite of the patent absurdity of some of its constructs, in spite of its failure to fulfill many of its extravagant promises of health and life, in spite of the tolerance of the scientific community for unsubstantiated just-so stories, because we have a prior commitment, a commitment to materialism,” Harvard geneticist Richard Lewontin frankly admitted in the New York Review of Books. “Moreover,” he continued, “that materialism is absolute, for we cannot allow a Divine Foot in the door.”

Thus do they rule out of the court of science everything that doesn’t fit their materialist ideology.

Notice where this leads. If mind is just a special configuration of brain cells, then mind is nothing but matter. How can neurons “decide” to do one thing rather than another? Nerve cells can’t make decisions. So, materialism repudiates free will.

“Our sense of self is a neuronal illusion,” said Jerry Coyne, a fully paid-up materialist and author of Why Evolution Is True.

The consistent materialist sees this, denies free will and dismisses consciousness as a delusion. “Our sense of self is a neuronal illusion,” said Jerry Coyne, a fully paid-up materialist and author of Why Evolution Is True. Molecular biologist Francis Crick said the same thing. “Your joys and your sorrows, your memories and your ambitions, your sense of personal identity and free will, are in fact no more than the behavior of a vast assembly of nerve cells and their associated molecules,” he wrote. Or as he put it more succinctly, “You’re nothing but a pack of neurons.”

 How deeply do materialists believe this? Notice that many of them grow outraged at public intellectuals who reject Darwinian materialism. But why the outrage if beliefs, ambitions and will are “nothing but a pack of neurons.” On that view the person skeptical of Darwinism can’t help himself, so why get outraged at the poor fellow?

The materialists might concede that their outrage is irrational, a byproduct of evolution — the fight-or-flight mechanism run amok. But that explanation opens a can of worms. If mind is a byproduct of an evolutionary process that maybe saddled us with various irrationalities, why trust human reason? Why trust it to lead us to the truth about biological origins?

In my decades as a journalist covering evolution and interviewing some of the world’s leading evolutionary thinkers, I have found that materialists have no good answers to this question, or to many of the evidential challenges that have endured and grown since Darwin’s time.

For me the conclusion is inescapable: Modern Darwinism is built on a foundation of sand — a house of cards, threatened even by the outraged huffing and puffing of its defenders.

It’s time for a rethink.

 

Long-time journalist Tom Bethell is author of the newly released book Darwin’s House of Cards: A Journalist’s Odyssey Through the Darwin Debates. Praised by Tom Wolfe as “one of our most brilliant essayists,” Bethell is the previous author of The Politically Incorrect Guide to Science.

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  • Tom Rath

    One’s inability to understand or comprehend something does not, in itself, provide falsification. But by all means, “rethink” it. Submit your findings. Real science invites skepticism and welcomes the opportunity to be proven wrong by the preponderence of the evidence.

    But “I just don’t believe it” won’t cut it.

    • Daniel Lunsford

      Maybe the more problematic situation is not how life changed or on what scale, but the origin of life or more acuritly the origin of information neccisary to compose life. What do you think?

      • Kevin Quillen

        information is key. Information is not matter. A caterpillar that ate leaves before making it’s cacoon comes out as a butterfly, and immediately heads for the nearest flower for pollen. How does it know to do this? Where does the information come from? It comes from the Creator of the universe. God.

    • John Patrick

      Belief non-belief does cut it. We all live by faith, all of us. The basic underlying assumptions of biology, physics, Einstein’s Relativity are based on dogmas. Beliefs.

      • A scientist accepts General Relativity because of evidence. No need for faith.

        • Kevin Quillen

          Wrong. Evolution is faith based. Not science. No one was there to see first life and the theory cannot be tested or observed. To be real science it has to be testable, provable and observable. Macro evolution is just a theory. One that is dying at that. Irreducible complexity, specific design and soft tissue in dino bones destroys the theory. Irreducible complexity is the best argument against evolution.
          Evolution is kind of like the Oort cloud. Can’t see it but it must be there for our theory to work. (ref: comets and old earth belief)

          • Decisions, decisions. Kevin says that evolution is faith based, but the overwhelming consensus within the field of biology–those people who can actually understand and evaluate the evidence–is that evolution is thoroughly grounded in evidence.

            Golly … which one should I go for?

            One that is dying at that.

            That reminds me of Michael Denton’s Creationism book titled, Evolution: A Theory in Crisis. You know what the 30th anniversary edition was titled? Evolution: A Theory STILL in Crisis!

            He admitted defeat in his own title! “Gol-dang it! Evolution is on its last legs. It’ll be gone any day now, you mark my words! Any year now, it’ll be history. Soon, real soon–any decade now!”

            Have the scientists alert me when your prediction comes true, because I only get my science from scientists.

          • Kevin Quillen

            you might want to also look up the info on Mt St Helens. volcanic rock from 30 years ago dated to 2 million yrs in one case and another at 350,000 yrs. Why is there C14 in diamonds? Should be impossible.

          • volcanic rock from 30 years ago dated to 2 million yrs in one case and another at 350,000 yrs.

            You’ve got information that destroys the entire concept of radioisotope dating? I wonder why the actual scientists disagree. You’ll find that there are error bars on the estimates. I’m guessing that “0 years” was within the error bars.

            Why is there C14 in diamonds?

            Because some diamonds have been near low-level radioactive sources while underground.

            Suggestion: read conventional science in addition to (or preferably, instead of) Creationist/Christian sites.

          • Ryan

            Radioisotope dating is extremely inaccurate. If you don’t know the exact day the isotope you are using was activated, then you will never be able to date anything else with any kind of accuracy.
            Heat speeds up the decay of radioactive material. Question; When rods for nuclear fuel are used for 25 years and then retired, are they just 25 years older? or because of the heat generation are they a million years older? a billion?
            The deeper you go underground the warmer it gets. Diamonds under ground will radiate much faster because of the heat. Radioactive decay will occur whether the material is above ground or under.
            I read both sources for science and find more common sense in creation science versus evolution theology. Creation science goes right along with science, evolution doesn’t.
            Richard Dawkins said; “Every religion has a story. Darwin made it possible to be an intellectually fulfilled atheist. So evolution is nothing more than the story of the religion of atheism.

          • Timothy Horton

            Let me guess – you’re a high school kid who’s never taken a science class in your life, right?

          • Ryan

            Actually, I graduated from college three years ago, I’m 70. After I graduated from high school I joined the Marine Corps, fought in Vietnam, traveled the world, settled down, got married, we had kids and now have grand kids. I have many, many, life experiences.
            In high school I lived for science class, of course they didn’t shove evolution down any bodies throats like they do now because it didn’t figure that much in the realm of science. There were more interesting things to discover.
            Evolution is simply a religion that seeks to do away with other religions, like Islam.
            Have you ever been under ground? I have, 2800 feet under ground, if it weren’t for the vent fans it would be too hot to work safely. I worked in an uranium mine, and found out many interesting things about radio activity.
            Studied geology and learned about the many fascinating things of the earth that point back to the flood of Noah’s time, you ever hear about that?
            I’ve worked in the Oil and Gas industry where I had to learn many things about how they work hard to not destroy the environment. I bet you don’t know anything about that do you? or did you get all your false information from an environmentalist site?
            Actually, I probably know a whole lot more than you think you do.

          • Timothy Horton

            First, thank you for your military service. My two older brothers are Vietnam vets, I was too young at the time.

            Second, your grasp of the biological sciences as well as geology seems virtually non-existent. Saying “evolutionary theory is a religion” has as much veracity as saying “the U.S. Marine Corps is just the kittens in the superbowl sunday Kitten Bowl”. When anyone with a science background hears it all we can do is roll our eyes.

            Thirdly, there are any number of geologic features which are impossible to form in a one-time Flood. Go look up angular unconformities, exhumed river channels, 180 deg. switchback incised meanders carved 1000′ deep in basalt i.e. solidified lava.

            Tell me, do Oil and Gas geologists use a young Earth Flood paradigm to search for oil and gas deposits? Or do they use their knowledge of an old Earth, plate tectonics, and search geologic strata like from the Carboniferous?

          • Timothy Horton

            Looks like Ryan has lost all interest in discussing geology. I wonder why?

          • Radioisotope dating is extremely inaccurate.

            Oh? Show me a conventional science source that says that.

            (Can you believe that, in the 21st century, we must distinguish real science from pseudoscience?)

            Heat speeds up the decay of radioactive material.

            Wow—that’s new science! Prove it and get a Nobel Prize.

            Again: show me that in a real science journal.

            Question; When rods for nuclear fuel are used for 25 years and then retired, are they just 25 years older? or because of the heat generation are they a million years older? a billion?

            It hasn’t been that long since science class in high school, has it? Radioactive decay speeds up in a reactor, not because it’s hot but because all those neutrons change the isotopes into ones with a much shorter half-life, and then they decay.

            Creation science goes right along with science, evolution doesn’t.

            And that’s just what a pseudoscience would say, wouldn’t it?

            If you’re determined to let your fear that science will step on Jesus’s toes, I’m sure nothing I say will change your mind. Just try not to hurt yourself or anyone else.

          • Timothy Horton

            you might want to also look up the info on Mt St Helens. volcanic rock from 30 years ago dated to 2 million yrs in one case and another at 350,000 yrs.

            Look up xenoliths. They’re pieces of older rock that sometimes gets mixed in with volcano ejecta. The dates you mention are both well know cases of Creationist deliberate dishonesty where they knowingly sent sample of fresh lava contaminated with xenoliths for radiometric dating. The labs told the creo liar the samples were contaminated but the creo liars still push the story of how radiometric dating got the age of fresh lava wrong.

            Why is there C14 in diamonds?

            Some diamonds just like some coal may show trace amounts of 14C due to contamination from close-by radioactive sources. This is another case of Creationist willful dishonesty in misrepresenting actual scientific results. Why don’t you email your charlatan YEC sources and ask them why ALL coal doesn’t show huge amounts of 14C if it was buried in Da Flood only 4500 years ago?

          • Kevin Quillen

            go to kgov .com without the space of course. do a little reading, you might learn something

          • Learn something? From a Creationist site? Not likely.

            In years past, I spent a fair amount of time trying to understand Creationist arguments, so I’m not ignorant of the material, but there’s just not much point IMO. There are more interesting subjects. I usually fall back on evolution being the scientific consensus and leave it at that.

          • Timothy Horton

            LOL! Why listen to a proven Creationist liar like Bob Enyart put his dishonest spin on science? Just go to the primary scientific literature to get the real facts. In the last few years science made the really cool discovery that under certain rare conditions trace amounts of mineralized biologic material, mostly collagens, can be preserved in dino fossils. It’s not “blood dripping chunks of red meat” like some creo liars would have you believe. The finds do not cast even the slightest doubt on the old age dating of the fossils or the evolutionary processes that have been working for the last 3.5 billion years.

          • Timothy Horton

            Another amazingly ignorant Creationist pipes up. Science doesn’t have to see an event happen in real time to study and understand it, nor does the event itself have to be repeatable. All that has to be repeatable and observable are tests on the evidence the event left behind. Do creationists think we had to see living non-avian dinosaurs to know they once existed? Or can we tell they were real by examining the fossil and geologic records?
            Science has also demonstrated how Irreducibly Complex biological systems can arise through completely natural processes. What IDiots fail to realize is 1) biological systems can change function over time and 2) biological systems can evolve with redundant parts which can later be lost thru further evolution leaving an IC remainder, a process known as ‘scaffolding”.
            No one ever lost money underestimating the profound scientific ignorance of ID-Creationists.

        • John Patrick

          That’s what the media tells us and what professors tell students, but it’s not what the top physicists say. The underlying assumptions are philosophical.

          • What underlying assumptions are taken on faith? If you mean fundamental principles like “1 + 1 = 2,” that’s tested all the time. As soon as we find a domain for which that’s not true, that limitation will be noted.

          • John Patrick

            If 1+1=2 needs to be changed in order to shore up a sacrosanct theory, they’ll change it. Einstein went one better and made matter shrink and time contract in order to uphold heliocentrism in light of irrefutable evidence to the contrary coming from Mickelson Morely. Nobel laureates poked holes in Special Relativity necessitating the invention of General Relativity, which the same dismissed as tortured absurdity. Einstein himself admitted geocentrism is as valid as heliocentrism but rejected on philosophical grounds, which only became possible through General Relativity, i.e. believing matter and time shrink (for which there is no scientifically proven evidence).

          • I have no idea what you’re talking about. Are you saying that scientists aren’t worth listening to since they select or twist the facts to support their preconceptions rather than following the facts where they lead? If that’s the case, I wonder how it’s possible that we’re communicating with computers over the internet using electricity–technologies all built on science.

        • GLT

          Aww, the logic of evolutionists, you just have to love it.

          If our minds are the result of purely material processes, faith is all anyone has. If an evolutionary scientist holds to materialism he has no way of knowing his mind is telling him the truth. As such, he must act on faith that it is telling him the truth and therefore it follows logically all his beliefs and conclusions are based on faith. Simple entry level logic.

          • Aww, the logic of evolutionists, you just have to love it.

            You mean the logic of science? I do indeed love it. It gave us the foundation on which the internet was built. And without that, how could I have this condescending conversation with you?

            Simple entry level logic.

            … that went over my head.

            Try to hit a baseball with a bat. With practice, you can get good at it. How can we explain that except that your mind is telling you the truth–or an approximation of it, anyway?

            Again: where is the need for faith?

          • GLT

            “You mean the logic of science?”

            Science is not logical or illogical as it is not an animate object. Those who practice science, however, can be logical in their approach or illogical. In the case of those who adhere to evolution in Darwinian terms are woefully illogical in their approach.

            “… that went over my head.”

            I’m not surprised.

            “Try to hit a baseball with a bat. With practice, you can get good at it. How can we explain that except that your mind is telling you the truth….”

            Sure my mind is telling me the truth. However, I am not the one arguing for materialism. you are. And in materialism you have no argument on which to base your assumption your mind is telling you the truth.

          • ?? I’m missing the God/supernatural part of the baseball example.

            And why are we talking about this Evolutionary Argument Against Naturalism? Kidding! Your goal is obvious. You’d rather talk about anything than the fact that the people who understand the evidence have concluded that evolution is the best description of why life is the way it is.

          • GLT

            ” I’m missing the God/supernatural part of the baseball example.”

            Again, I am not surprised. I guess your assumptions regards materialism run so deep you don’t even realize your entire argument is based on the assumption materialism is true. If this was not the case you would understand why your baseball argument is fallacious.

            “people who understand the evidence have concluded that evolution is the best description of why life is the way it is.”

            Then why are there qualified people who interpret the evidence in a way which does not view evolution as the best explanation as to why life is the way it is? Or are all these people just incapable of understanding the evidence?

          • Timothy Horton

            The only people who reject evolution are 1) those with no scientific training or understanding who have no clue how much positive evidence ToE has, and 2) your “qualified” few who reject ToE not because of any physical evidence but strictly because it conflicts with their Fundamental religious beliefs.

          • Ryan

            Did life rise from non-life? That is a violation of the laws of abiogenesis.

          • Kevin Quillen

            go to kgov .com without the space do a little reading

          • Then why are there qualified people who interpret the evidence in a way which does not view evolution as the best explanation as to why life is the way it is? Or are all these people just incapable of understanding the evidence?

            Not incapable. Probably just biased. But clarify your point by providing a couple of names. Jonathan Wells? Michael Behe? Are these the kinds of people you’re thinking of? If you have others, I’d be interested to see a few names, but I don’t have much interest in non-biologists’ opinions about evolution.

          • GLT

            Bob,

            “Probably just biased.”

            Everyone is biased, Bob, even you.

            “If you have others,…”

            Gary Parker, Phd, biologist, (formerly an evolutionist); Robert Carter, Phd, biologist; John Stanford, Phd, geneticist, (inventor of the gene gun, author of Genetic Entropy); Lane P Lester, Phd, biologist; Raymond Damadian, MD, inventor of the MRI.

            Start there, they will lead you to others.

          • Thanks for the list, but I’m not sure what we do with it. If these biologists rejected the scientific consensus, not from an honest following of the evidence but by their own desire to support their religious worldview, they wouldn’t be the first. But I haven’t researched any except Jonathan Wells who (to his credit) admits that he got his doctorate so that he could undercut evolution from the inside.

            So there are a handful of dissenters. Evolution remains the consensus, and I have no option but to accept it as our best guess at the moment.

          • GLT

            Bob,

            “Thanks for the list, but I’m not sure what we do with it. If these biologists rejected the scientific consensus, not from an honest following of the evidence but by their own desire to support their religious worldview, they wouldn’t be the first.”

            Your bias is showing, Bob. As for what to do with the list, investigate it and see what these guys have to say without consideration as to what they believe spiritually. Some people are not honest in their viewing of the evidence because of their evolutionary worldview as well, so that charge cuts both ways.

            “So there are a handful of dissenters. Evolution remains the consensus, and I have no option but to accept it as our best guess at the moment.”

            There was only a handful of dissenters regards geocentrism as well, how did that work out? As for evolution being the consensus, you are correct, but as I said before, consensus does not equal correct. If you wish to go with what you consider the best guess, that is your prerogative.

            As I told Timothy H., I’m gone skiing for a week and won’t be here to discuss things. Perhaps you can use the time to look these gentlemen up.

          • Your bias is showing, Bob.

            Someone noted that we all have biases, and I agree, but I see nothing here that reveals my biases. I’m surprised that anyone would disagree that some people let their religious worldview filter what they’ll see or think.

            As for what to do with the list, investigate it and see what these guys have to say without consideration as to what they believe spiritually.

            I could suggest you do the same with flat earthers, but that would be ridiculous.

            Why I should pay special attention to any group on the fringe of the consensus? If I had a bias (say, I really liked where this fringe group was going with their conclusions), how could that change the fact that it’s not the consensus? And that the people who actually understand the evidence reject it? Surely you aren’t backing the horse that has the more pleasing conclusion rather than the one that has the superior evidence, right?

            Some people are not honest in their viewing of the evidence because of their evolutionary worldview as well, so that charge cuts both ways.

            Give me strong evidence that evolution, unlike any other branch of science, is full of people who pretty much know that their “research” is just a charade, a house of cards, a façade behind which there is no supporting facts. Maybe then I’ll consider it. Until then, I don’t think it’s me or the evolutionary biologists who have the agenda.

            There was only a handful of dissenters regards geocentrism as well, how did that work out?

            “First base!” And we’ve come full circle, again.

            Like a child who watches the same movies over and over, perhaps you’re amused by repeating the same arguments over and over. Not me, I’m afraid, so if you have nothing else, I’ll thank you for your time and be off.

            On the off chance that you just didn’t get it the last three times and for any potential lurkers who are reading this, one more time: yes, sometimes the consensus view of science is wrong but how would you know? Answer: when science corrects itself. And when it does, I’m on board with the new and improved consensus.

            as I said before, consensus does not equal correct.

            And as I said before, yes, I agree. But what else you got? What else is better than the scientific consensus to put your money on?

            If you wish to go with what you consider the best guess, that is your prerogative.

            And I’m on the edge of my seat waiting for you to give me something better.

          • Timothy Horton

            Gary Parker, Phd, biologist, (formerly an evolutionist); Robert Carter,
            Phd, biologist; John Stanford, Phd, geneticist, (inventor of the gene
            gun, author of Genetic Entropy); Lane P Lester, Phd, biologist; Raymond
            Damadian, MD, inventor of the MRI.

            All YECs who reject evolution solely due to their religious beliefs, not due to any scientific evidence. Many make money out of lying and twisting actual scientific research to sell YEC books and DVDs to their fellow YECs but that’s not the same thing.

            I thought you were leaving for skiing? How can we miss you if you don’t go away? 🙂

          • GLT

            Thorton,

            “All YECs who reject evolution solely due to their religious beliefs, not due to any scientific evidence.”

            . These guys are all qualified experts in their fields but you’re simply going to dismiss them with a wave of your hand and say they are intellectually dishonest because they are Christians? Such accusations are beneath you my friend.

            I am leaving early in the morning. I had so much to do today I did not think I would have time to check in again. Aren’t you lucky I did? I am gone this time, I promise.

          • Timothy Horton

            . These guys are all qualified experts in their fields but you’re simply
            going to dismiss them with a wave of your hand and say they are
            intellectually dishonest because they are Christians?

            No, I am going to dismiss them because of the disgusting and dishonest way they misrepresent science to prop up their beliefs. Being Christian has nothing to do with it. I’d come down just as hard on anyone who lies about and misrepresents science for their own personal ends.

            Where you headed? Whistler? Banff?

          • Kevin Quillen

            just in case the web site I posted is not allowed, go to kgovdotcom

        • John_QPublic

          I disagree. Scientists accept general relativity because it is the most powerful mathematical tool available to describe physics, and has been shown to be able to mimic certain aspects if the observed reality. There is some evidence supporting it, but it is certainly far from fully vetted.

          • I’m not sure what your last sentence means. Are you concluding something that’s based on general relativity being unreliable? And, as far as I understand, there’s a heckuva lot more that just “some” evidence. Are you saying that it’s a shaky theory that many physicists have doubts about?

          • John_QPublic

            I think most cosmologists accept and use GR. I believe there is still some doubt, otherwise there would not be a need to try and extend/modify it. See for instance “Modified Gravity and Cosmology” by Clifton, et. al. GR is a very flexible theory, and can model many different “universes”, possibly including something like our own, as well as ones very much unlike our own. The basic tensor mathematics used in GR can be extended and/or generalized more, and can describe yet more “universes”.

    • Kevin Quillen

      “real science” means that the theory is testable and observable. So much for macro evolution! It really is just a “THEORY”. Soft tissue found in dinosaur bones and irreducible complexity is the death of evolution.

      • Look up “nylonase.” It’s the enzyme that bacteria use to break down nylon. You know about nylon, right? it was invented less than 100 years ago. There was no nylon to break down before that point. And yet there is bacteria today that has evolved to use it as a food source.

        • Kevin Quillen

          evolved or adapted? I bet on adapted.

          • Are you making a macro- vs. micro-evolution distinction? I don’t know that the biology community does it that way. The random mutation and natural selection that Creationists and ID proponents accept to explain adaptation of bacteria to antibiotics (for example) is what causes speciation. Just give it more time.

            As for your “it really is just a THEORY,” yes, the theory of evolution is a theory. And that’s as good as it gets. Scientific theories don’t graduate to become something else.

        • GLT

          Look up the research, you will find evolution in the Darwinian sense had nothing to do with it.

          • Is that how the game is played? I give examples and you say that they don’t qualify? If so, you win.

            We’re still stuck with the people who understand the data in almost unanimity that evolution explains why life is the way it is. Lay people have no alternative but to accept the scientific consensus as the best explanation we have at the moment.

          • GLT

            “Is that how the game is played? I give examples and you say that they don’t qualify? If so, you win.”

            Translation: I have not looked at the research and don’t intend too. I am simply spouting rhetoric. Got it.

          • Sorry–I didn’t know that you needed a translation. No problem–here you go: the idea of two non-biologists debating biology as if we’re going to uncover some new information is idiotic. Evolution has won. You lose. Deal with it.

          • GLT

            ” Evolution has won. You lose. Deal with it.”

            Just read the research, it will become abundantly clear Darwinian evolution lost. I’m afraid it is you who will have to deal with it.

            It really would help if you kept up with what is going on, as this is a long refuted argument for evolution. I’m actually surprised you brought it up as most people have long ago dropped it as an argument.

          • It really would help if you kept up with what is going on, as this is a long refuted argument for evolution

            Yeah, I’m a little slow. So slow in fact that I just need to double check what the heck we’re talking about. You’re saying that evolution is not the scientific consensus? I have some sources that refute that. From one of my blog posts:

            “Evolution is one of the most robust and widely accepted principles of modern science.” Source: American Association for the Advancement of Science, 2006

            “There is no longer a debate among scientists about whether evolution has taken place.” Source: National Science Teachers Association

            “Evolution is not only universally accepted by scientists; it has also been accepted by the leaders of most of the world’s major religions.” Source: National Academy of Sciences, 1999.

            “Based on compelling evidence, the overwhelming majority of scientists and science educators accept evolution as the most reasonable explanation for the current diversity of life on earth and the set of processes that has led to this diversity.” Source: Joint statement of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, National Academy of Sciences and National Research Council, and National Science Teachers Association, 2001

            In response to “Don’t many famous scientists reject evolution?”: “No. The scientific consensus around evolution is overwhelming. Those opposed to the teaching of evolution sometimes use quotations from prominent scientists out of context to claim that scientists do not support evolution. However, examination of the quotations reveals that the scientists are actually disputing some aspect of how evolution occurs, not whether evolution occurred.” Source: Science and Creationism: A View from the National Academy of Sciences, 1999

            “Darwin presented compelling evidence for evolution in On the Origin and, since his time, the case has become overwhelming. Countless fossil discoveries allow us to trace the evolution of today’s organisms from earlier forms. DNA sequencing has confirmed beyond any doubt that all living creatures share a common origin. Innumerable examples of evolution in action can be seen all around us, from the pollution-matching pepper moth to fast-changing viruses such as HIV and H5N1 bird flu. Evolution is as firmly established a scientific fact as the roundness of the Earth.” Source: NewScientist magazine, 2008.

            “…Our magazine’s positions on evolution and intelligent design (ID) creationism reflect those of the scientific mainstream (that is, evolution: good science; ID: not science).” Source: the editor in chief of Scientific American, 2008

            “When theories about chemical & biological evolutions (to produce life & complex life) are examined and evaluated, in the scientific community we see a majority consensus and a dissenting minority.” Source: American Scientific Affiliation: A Fellowship of Christians in Science

            “Research!America supports the scientific community’s unanimous position that intelligent design does not meet the criteria of a scientific concept and thus should not be presented as one in the classroom. Evolution is backed by a substantial body of scientific evidence, whereas intelligent design is a matter of belief and not subject to proof.” Source: Research!America

            Even the evolution deniers at least admit that evolution is the scientific consensus.

            “If there is so much evidence for creation and against naturalistic evolution, why do the majority of scientists believe in evolution? … A number of young and old alike seem perplexed that the creation evidences presented seem so easy to understand—so logical, so obvious—and yet the majority of scientists still profess that the evidence ‘obviously’ fits with evolution.” Source: Ken Ham, Institute for Creation Research.

            “Evolution-rejecting scientists are in a minority.” Source: Jonathan Sarfati, Creation Ministries International.

            “You are claiming that the church should adopt the scientific consensus today (on evolution and long ages)” Source: Jonathan Sarfati, Creation Ministries International.

            “It is clear from U.S. Supreme Court precedents that the Constitution permits both the teaching of evolution as well as the teaching of scientific criticisms of prevailing scientific theories.” Source: Discovery Institute

            “Of course, the ‘scientific consensus’ now holds that Darwinian evolution is true.” Source: Discovery Institute

          • GLT

            “Evolution is one of the most robust and widely accepted principles of modern science.” Source: American Association for the Advancement of Science, 2006

            “There is no longer a debate among scientists about whether evolution has taken place.” Source: National Science Teachers Association…,” etc.

            Thank you for the fine display of a common logical fallacy; ie, the argument from majority. Now I know your understanding of the subject and the discipline of logic is totally wanting. Perhaps you forgot the scientific consensus of 600 years ago was of a geocentric universe. Majority opinion and consensus has nothing to do with the truthfulness of an argument. Perhaps it is time you came to that realization.

            So, I repeat myself, perhaps it is time for you to catch up on the facts a little bit and develop some sharper critical thinking skills and not depend on rhetoric.

            I’m sorry you spent so much time typing all that information for absolutely no reason or result.

          • Timothy Horton

            No one says evolutionary theory is correct just because it’s the consensus. It’s the overwhelming consensus with scientists who actually study and work on the subject because of the quality and quantity of the positive supporting evidence.

            I know you know that. We’ve gone over it too many times.

          • GLT

            “No one says evolutionary theory is correct just because it’s the consensus.”

            I know you don’t, but there was no other way to interpret Bob’s post other than an argument from majority.

            As for the supportive evidence, I can agree there is evidence for evolution if one is inclined to interpret it from that viewpoint. If one is not so inclined to interpret it from that viewpoint the evidence points the other way. Evidence, after all, is neutral, it is always subject to interpretation and interpretation is always subject to presupposition. There are many qualified scientists in the relevant fields who reject evolution from a Darwinian perspective.

            As for Joe Thorton, I could not agree more. For him to be excluded is a joke. But we must remember there is a level of political correctness involved here. They could not let the list become too dominated by Canadians.

            I am now going skiing and will spend my time enjoying my vacation which includes not commenting on blogs. Talk to you soon.

          • Timothy Horton

            There are many qualified scientists in the relevant fields who reject evolution from a Darwinian perspective.

            There are absolutely none who reject it for scientific reasons, only that small handful who reject it due to their religious beliefs.

            I am now going skiing and will spend my time enjoying my vacation which includes not commenting on blogs.

            A wise move my friend! Travel and ski safely, catch you when you return.

          • John_QPublic

            Bingo. Same with geocentrism. If one starts from what we actually know and observe, it is as likely as many other theories. Once philosophical principles get woven into the theories (i.e., FLRW metric is a mathematical expression of ths idea that no place in the universe is special).

          • Thank you for the fine display of a common logical fallacy; ie, the argument from majority.

            Thank you for confusing the Argument from Popularity with the scientific consensus. I have no interest in what the majority says. By contrast, laypeople like me have no choice but to accept the scientific consensus as the best provisional explanation we have at the moment.

            Now I know your understanding of the subject and the discipline of logic is totally wanting.

            Oh dear—tough love coming . . .

            Perhaps you forgot the scientific consensus of 600 years ago was of a geocentric universe.

            I focus on modern science—say, in the last 200 years. Even during that period, of course, science has been wrong. Nevertheless, I stand by my statement that laypeople have no better option. (And if you disagree, I await your explanation of an alternate route to finding truth about the world.)

            Majority opinion and consensus has nothing to do with the truthfulness of an argument.

            Nothing? The consensus is that the nucleus of an atom is positively charged, and that consensus tells us nothing about whether that claim is true?

            So, I repeat myself, perhaps it is time for you to catch up on the facts a little bit and develop some sharper critical thinking skills and not depend on rhetoric.

            So I assume this is your way of saying, “yeah, you’re right—evolution is indeed the scientific consensus.”

          • GLT

            Bob,

            “I focus on modern science—say, in the last 200 years. Even during that period, of course, science has been wrong.”

            Speaking of modern science, from whence did it spring?

            “Nothing?The consensus is that the nucleus of an atom is positively charged,…”

            An argument can be true and supported by consensus, but an argument can be supported by consensus and be wrong. Therefore it follows, consensus has nothing to do with the correctness of an argument. Truth is truth even if 100% of the population rejects it.

            Again, a geocentric universe was the scientific consensus for centuries and all research and conclusions were based on that consensus. But the consensus was wrong and it was eventually demonstrated to be wrong by a tiny number of scientists who rejected the idea of following the consensus opinion.

            “So I assume this is your way of saying, “yeah, you’re right—evolution is indeed the scientific consensus.”

            Of course evolution is the scientific consensus, only a fool would argue otherwise. The true question is whether those in consensus are right. That is the reason one must remain open to views which are contrary to the consensus. Where would science be right now if Copernicus and Galileo had simply accepted the prevailing consensus? Space exploration would certainly not be where it is.

            To be honest, I used to adhere to evolutionary thought, then I actually started to study the evidence with an open mind. It took a while for me to change my position, but eventually I had to do so. All I’m saying is be willing to honestly look at the evidence and make an effort to set aside your presuppositions.

          • John_QPublic

            Actually, geocentrism has never been demonstrated wrong. Unpopular, maybe, but not wrong. Newton seemed to establish it is wrong, but when Einstein came along and elucidated ideas of reference frames much better, it became clear that geocentrism was only wrong under Newton because his cosmology was wrong (not his physics, at least not on smaller scales). Please do see The Principle.

          • Speaking of modern science, from whence did it spring?

            From the Industrial Revolution, IMO. That was the first initiative that seriously pushed and rewarded science.

            An argument can be true and supported by consensus, but an argument can be supported by consensus and be wrong. Therefore it follows, consensus has nothing to do with the correctness of an argument.

            The scientific consensus has nothing to do with the truth? The scientific consensus is as likely to be right as throwing darts at possible answers? Try again.

            The scientific consensus, at least with modern science with its rigors and safeguards, correlates pretty closely with the truth.

            Truth is truth even if 100% of the population rejects it.

            It’s hard to believe you still don’t understand what we’re talking about. The scientific consensus is imperfect, but it’s a very good guess at the truth. We laymen (remember laymen—the ones who aren’t qualified to evaluate the evidence?) have no alternative.

            Again, a geocentric universe was the scientific consensus for centuries and all research and conclusions were based on that consensus. But the consensus was wrong and it was eventually demonstrated to be wrong by a tiny number of scientists who rejected the idea of following the consensus opinion.

            So you’re saying that the scientific consensus changed? Yes, I get it, as I’ve said several times. Science corrects itself. Also, geocentrism was before modern science, and “science” at the time wasn’t as reliable as it is today.

            Of course evolution is the scientific consensus, only a fool would argue otherwise.

            A surprising moment of agreement—that’s worth celebrating. But you might want to check in on the fool who said, “Just read the research, it will become abundantly clear Darwinian evolution lost.”

            The true question is whether those in consensus are right. That is the reason one must remain open to views which are contrary to the consensus. Where would science be right now if Copernicus and Galileo had simply accepted the prevailing consensus?

            One must remain open to view which are contrary to the consensus”? Like you’re going to be someone who might overturn the consensus?

            Copernicus and Galileo were (must I actually spell it out?) scientists. No, they didn’t feel bound by the consensus, and they helped overturn it. In any field in which you’re a professional, I hope you also don’t feel bound by the consensus and help to change it where necessary. And in any other field, you need to get that doctorate before you can flatter yourself that you have something to contribute that might challenge the consensus.

            All I’m saying is be willing to honestly look at the evidence and make an effort to set aside your presuppositions.

            That does sound good before thinking about it, doesn’t it? For us to educate ourselves about science sounds terrific. However, I can find no way to complete this sentence: “I’m a layman with respect to biology (or whatever scientific field), and yet I will reject the consensus view within that field because . . .”

          • John_QPublic

            I think you ought to take a look at the documentary, The Principle. It examines the status of the Copernican Principle relative to today’s theories and observational evidence. Some of today’s top scientists and cosmologists are featured.

          • Ryan

            He is just another troll trying to convince himself he knows something.

  • AndRebecca

    Thank you for this. My godfather was a biologist and one day I asked him if it was necessary to believe in Darwin’s evolution in order to be a biologist and he said “No.” The biology teachers I had in high school and college usually mentioned Darwin’s theory at some point, but rather quickly went on to other subjects. Hardly any time was spent on it. Mendel’s work was more important to them.

    • The biology teachers I had in high school and college usually mentioned Darwin’s theory at some point, but rather quickly went on to other subjects.

      I know–crazy, isn’t it? Science teachers are frightened into minimizing the teaching of evolution because just one irate and ignorant parent can make life difficult for them. Teaching the best science has to offer has become a liability? Things have changed–remember the passion for science we had after Sputnik? You’d think that making America more globally competitive would be something everyone could get behind.

      • AndRebecca

        What an odd take on the subject. I don’t think you had biology in high school or college. They had all sorts of science in the classroom before Sputnik. How do you think we geared up for the space race so fast with out it? And no Darwinism involved. No, there is not any reason except to brainwash the kids to teach Darwinism in the classroom. Anyone using science in everyday life, like in the medical profession or in a lab or in agri-business is not going to need Darwin’s theory because it isn’t used for anything. If you think it is, give me an example.

        • Timothy Horton

          How often do people actively use the atomic theory of matter in their day-to-day work? How about the germ theory of disease? Does that mean those theories are false or a waste of time to teach?

          • AndRebecca

            Can’t back up what you say, can you?

          • Timothy Horton

            Do you always start blithering as an evasion when people point out your basic misunderstanding of scientific concepts?

          • AndRebecca

            Why don’t you quit your blathering and be scientific. It’s a small thing to ask of such a know it all. You haven’t explained in any way, shape or form how I am misunderstanding scientific concepts.

          • Timothy Horton

            Tell me what part of “the veracity of a scientific theory doesn’t depend on how often people use it day-to-day” you don’t understand? I’ll try to explain better using smaller words a teenager might understand.

          • AndRebecca

            I didn’t mention the veracity of scientific theory. I didn’t say anything about it, you did.

          • Timothy Horton

            You started in about “brainwashing kids with Darwinism” because your godfather never used it in his work. That shows me you’re quite ignorant about what scientific theories are in general and what evolutionary theory is in particular. Nothing you’ve typed since then changes that impression.

          • AndRebecca

            I made a simple comment which you, due to your bias misinterpreted. Live with it. I’m sure you don’t understand lots of things.

          • Timothy Horton

            You mean you stuck your foot in your mouth making a really dumb claim about a basic scientific concept you don’t understand. But I’m sure that’s not an unusual occurrence for you.

          • AndRebecca

            What don’t I understand about Darwinism?

          • Timothy Horton

            From what you’ve shown so far almost everything. One easy tell is referring to current evolutionary theory as “Darwinism”. Pretty much only Creationists use that term now. Science hasn’t referred to ToE as that for close to 80 years.

            Why don’t you tell us in your own words what evolutionary theory is and what it entails This should be good for a laugh.

          • AndRebecca

            You are the one with the problem about Darwinism. Now, of course when you think about it, Darwin was wrong about a lot of stuff. So his theory about evolution has evolved. Imagine that. Explain current evolutionary theory then. You brought it up. Go for it.

          • Timothy Horton

            LOL! Creationist bluff called, creationist farts and blusters but she can’t even begin to explain actual evolutionary theory. So typical.

          • AndRebecca

            Now, of course your argument is lost and you language is becoming the talk of a loser. Why don’t you just go away troll?

          • Timothy Horton

            Nah. How about I just stay here and continue to highlight your pitiful scientific ignorance and Dunning-Kruger fueled bluster?

          • AndRebecca

            Actually I enjoy arguing with the ignorant. You’re functionally illiterate and so cannot explain any of your pseudo-scientific beliefs.

          • Timothy Horton

            LOL! Poor ignorant creationist gets all snippy when called on her ignorance. Too funny! 🙂

            Why don’t you show your knowledge of “Darwinism” by explaining what you think it is? You won’t because you’re so ignorant but the excuses you make should be amusing.

          • AndRebecca

            O.K., here’s what I believe is your theory of evolution: Humans started out as slime in a primordial swamp millions or billions of years ago. And as millions of years went by they developed into fish like creatures and then fishlike creatures with legs and walked on land.
            Then your ancestors developed from fishlike creatures into rat like creatures and then apelike creatures and then human like creatures and then into something resembling really hairy humans and then modern man. And, you believe if a biologist does not take this theory seriously, they will not be able to understand anything related to their field, like the Krebs cycle, or tree rings, or how to grow bacteria on a petri dish. Is that about right?

          • Timothy Horton

            BIG LOL! See, I told you having a dirt ignorant Creationist try to explain evolutionary theory would be hilarious! That was almost as good as Mr. Garrison’s “explanation” on South Park.

            “You’re the retarded offspring of five monkeys having butt sex with a fish-squirrel! ”

            Seriously folks, this is what having poor science education in public schools leads to. You get scientifically illiterate people like AndRebecca making decisions on public policy based on their abject ignorance. That’s why science stands up against religious propagandists like Bethell who would drag the country’s science and technology back into the 1800’s

          • AndRebecca

            My explanation is better than your non-existing one. This IS what you believe and you won’t admit it, because it is too ridiculous. Your beliefs are ridiculous. You aren’t fooling anyone and your language will get you thrown off this site.

          • Timothy Horton

            Please stick around troll. Nothing shows the impotence of the Creationist position than having a clueless YEC like you trying to explain what the theory of evolution actually entails. You know in this modern age there’s nothing stopping you from taking a science class or two at a community college. There’s no reason for you to stay barefoot in the kitchen.

          • AndRebecca

            I can’t help it if you don’t understand the theory of evolution. What I stated is what it is. You’re the one with no science background, not me. I put evolution in a language even you would understand.

          • Timothy Horton

            LOL! No, it’s not. It’s nowhere close, sounds more like something an ignorant creationist “Flintstone” version made up on the fly. Actually that’s exactly what you did.

            Evolutionary theory is the overarching set of scientific explanations for the history and mechanisms of change and diverisifcation of life on Earth over the last 3.5 billion years. It includes dozens of sub-theories backed with data from hundreds of different scientific disciplines. Major areas covered include phylogenetics and evolutionary timelines, genomic studies and the relationship of genomes to phenotypes, mechanisms which produce genetic variation, speciation and macroevolution, and the evolution of behaviors. Many scientists and researchers spend their whole careers becoming specialists in just one tiny area of the vast knowledge base.

            But you don’t understand any of that. In your ignorance all you can come with is “man came from slime!”. That’s why science fights against dumbing down science standards and allowing YEC idiocy into public schools.

          • AndRebecca

            Wow, you know how to look up definitions on the web. So, evolution is now used as a cover word for a bunch of different theories. Hey, you now know something you did not know before. Your ignorance is less, but you still don’t understand that evolutionists believe man came from slime! After all that!

          • Timothy Horton

            No, those were my own words. You however were apparently too stupid to even Google a correct explanation for evolutionary theory. You’re not making YECs look too bright here, ya know?

          • AndRebecca

            Those were your own words? LOL! I’m positive everyone on this site is looking at an example of evolution in you from Darwin’s book “The Descent of Man.”

        • Brainwash? Evolution is science, just like atomic theory or the Big Bang.

          What’s the next international space race? Biology will obviously be one area where international competitiveness will be key. “Let’s not teach evolution because it offends my religious sensibilities” is a luxury that we can’t afford.

          • AndRebecca

            As I stated, what an odd take on the subject. How is evolution going to give an advantage to the U.S. in a space race? I think you are mixing up a particular theory with general scientific practices. Feel free to give me your definition of Darwinism.

          • Huh? I’m using “space race” metaphorically.

            Presumably we’re on board with the idea that science is extremely important to US competitiveness, with the space race as a good example. Education became vitally important in the public’s mind, with no tolerance for, “Gee, that particular bit of science annoys me, so let’s pretend it doesn’t exist.”

            I was hoping to move from what I thought would be general agreement to argue that picking and choosing what’s taught in public school science class based on hurt religious feelings doesn’t make sense, particularly if US international competitiveness is important to you.

          • AndRebecca

            That’s not what you said, but anyway, the kids aren’t learning much of any science and the national test scores prove it. They are learning Darwinism though. They are learning some sort of scientific mumbo-jumbo. I’m sorry to hear your feelings are hurt. You obviously do not have a clue as to what is taught in schools today or anything about Darwinism or space exploration.

          • Timothy Horton

            You don’t have the faintest idea in the world what actual evolutionary theory is but your Dunning-Kruger has you dismiss it as “mumbo-jumbo”. If you have any kids I sure feel sorry for them.

          • AndRebecca

            Did I dismiss evolutionary theory as mumbo jumbo? Hmmm. Science seems to be your religion, that’s what I’m getting out of this conversation. And, it is mumbo jumbo in your case, as you can’t explain the beginning or end of it. Can you do a synopsis on either of Darwin’s most popular books?

          • Timothy Horton

            That you’re remarkably ignorant on virtually all aspects of scientific study is what everyone else is seeing. You attacked “Darwinism” yet can’t even describe what it is. It never even crossed your closed little mind to research a topic before spouting off about it.

          • AndRebecca

            Really? You are the one who can’t explain anything and haven’t even read a book on your professed beliefs. You sound as if you are related to the Piltdown man.

          • Timothy Horton

            LOL! Keep up the Dunning-Kruger bluster. Tell us more about all the science you think is just “mumbo-jumbo” 🙂

          • AndRebecca

            You happen to be the poster boy for your Dunning-Kruger idiocy. You learned a new word and have to say it over and over: Dunning-Kruger, Dunning-Kruger….You probably haven’t had so much fun since you got a Star Wars toy. And, I guess the word set mumbo jumbo is unfamiliar to you ( so in your childish way) you have to play with it for a while.

          • Timothy Horton

            Gee, some religious Fundies sure go ballistic when you call them on their scientific ignorance, don’t they? Just imaging if fools like AndRebecca channeled some of their righteous anger into learning instead of just blustering.

          • AndRebecca

            Go away troll. Your posts are ridiculous and so are you.

          • Timothy Horton

            Keep posting troll. Show us more of that righteous YEC science. 🙂

          • AndRebecca

            I see you don’t even understand the definition of a troll. You’re on a website you disagree with trying to get people upset. You are the troll.

          • Timothy Horton

            All I’m doing is showing how little you actually understand about the science you’re attacking. If that gets you upset, tough. It’s your problem, not mine.

          • AndRebecca

            You are on this site attacking Christians, and somehow in your small mind you think you are succeeding.

          • Timothy Horton

            LOL! I haven’t said a thing against Christians. I’m attacking anti-science ignorance and stupidity which hurts the whole country. There are plenty of honest intelligent Christians who understand and accept evolutionary theory.

          • AndRebecca

            I guess you think name calling is not against someone. For such a little man, you’ve taken on a big project, attacking the entire country, on a Christian website no less. And you think evolutionary theory has something to so with honesty now. Marxists have been the main promoters of evolutionary theory.

          • Timothy Horton

            Why do you hate America? Why do you hate science? It’s sad when atheists like you pretend to be Christian just to make Christians look stupid. Shame on you.

          • AndRebecca

            Have you ever heard of Clarence Darrow and the “Scopes Monkey Trial?” Well the atheist Darrow and other atheists/communists used the Scopes trial to go after Christians, so you are hardly the first Leftist to use evolution to bash people of faith. H. L. Menken, another atheist, was also involved in bashing Christians in the name of evolution at that time along with Darrow.

          • Timothy Horton

            AHAHAHAHA!! Amazing. You’re as ignorant of American history as you are of the biological sciences. You have to be home schooled. 😀

          • AndRebecca

            You are making yourself look bad.

          • Since you didn’t/couldn’t respond to anything I said, I think we’re at an impasse.

            Thanks for chatting.

          • AndRebecca

            Ha-ha-ha-ha!

    • Timothy Horton

      The veracity of a scientific theory doesn’t depend on how often people use it day-to-day. Modern geologists almost never use the theory of plate tectonics in their daily work. Plate tectonics however is still the well confirmed scientific theory that explains virtually everything seen in the geologic record.

      • AndRebecca

        How so?

        • Timothy Horton

          How so what?

          • AndRebecca

            You made a statement, back it up. Be scientific.

          • Timothy Horton

            What statement needs backing up? That the veracity of a scientific theory doesn’t depend on how often people use it day-to-day? I already gave you an example and provided two more examples – atomic theory of matter and germ theory of disease – in a post below.

          • AndRebecca

            Oh, so now you are off Darwin completely and on to other things. If you want me to believe what you are saying, give me some proof. I don’t really have time to read all of your posts, below or above. So, since you brought this up, explain it.

          • Timothy Horton

            OK, you do resort to blithering to cover your scientific ignorance. Thanks for clearing that up.

          • AndRebecca

            Ah, by what I’ve stated here, you’ve jumped to the conclusion that I am scientifically ignorant. Am I supposed to care?

          • Timothy Horton

            Just going by what you’ve demonstrated. Of course you could be a PhD evolutionary biologist just playing an ignorant creationist on the web. Are you?

          • AndRebecca

            I’m smarter than you, that’s for sure.

          • Timothy Horton

            LOL! Another creationist poster child for Dunning-Kruger syndrome. 😀

          • AndRebecca

            I would ask the simple question, “Are you O.K?”, except we already know the answer.

          • Timothy Horton

            I’m fine. But then again I’m not the one who made myself look like a scientifically illiterate boob on a discussion board. 🙂

          • AndRebecca

            I guess dumb is in the eye of the beholder. I think you don’t have a clue about much of anything, including science. I think you go to atheist talking points websites and parrot whatever the “latest” is-when you troll. If you want to explain something about science, which you are avoiding, go right ahead.

    • Matt

      Understanding evolution isn’t necessary if you’re cataloguing a species, a headcount of tigers in India or something and so no, not necessary to be some kinds of biologist. In the same way that you don’t need to accept that DNA is the molecule allowing heredity to be a study toad behaviour. It’s a false equivalence. Any understanding of biology lacking in an evolutionary framework is an impoverished one. It’s not some small component of biology but our means of understanding life as it is currently and how it might change in the future. To really progress cell biology, immunology, zoology, ecology, immunology, genetics, microbiology, physiology, animal behaviour, neuroscience, psychology or biochemistry, you’re going to need a well organised knowledge or evolutionary biology.

      • AndRebecca

        OMgoodness. Another one. You have made a statement without an explanation. And, have used an example which does not fit. DNA is not evolution so you have a false equivalence. And, as I have asked repeatedly, give me an example where you need a well organized knowledge of evolutionary theory for any of the biology subsets you have mentioned. I’m waiting.

        • Timothy Horton

          Go ahead Ms. Clueless Creationist. Tell us why doctors insist you finish all of your antibiotic medication in the prescription even if your illness has been gone for a week. This should be hilarious too.

          • AndRebecca

            I’ll tell you, it has nothing to do with evolution. And, if you think it does, you tell me.

          • Timothy Horton

            BZZZT ! Big science FAIL for the Creationist! 😀 Looks like she’s even too slow to Google the answer.

            Anyone else before I enlighten this dimbulb’s ignorance?

          • AndRebecca

            You have real problems. Another thing about evolution is racial theory. The Marxists use it all the time to get the Left wound up.

          • Timothy Horton

            Now you’re going to use the Bible to justify racism? Wow.

          • AndRebecca

            Darwin was a racist. I’m sorry you didn’t know that. His theory on natural selection had to do with some people being way smarter than others. So, look to Darwin for racism. And, try not to look so umm, unknowledgeable.

          • Timothy Horton

            LOL! When called on your ignorance of the science, Creationists can always resort to slander.

            Here’s a hint – even if Darwin was a deranged drug addict mass murderer it wouldn’t affect the veracity of evolutionary theory one iota. 🙂

          • AndRebecca

            Haven’t you taken your medications? Your replies are becoming bizarre.

        • Matt

          Your argument is that you can remove evolution from biology, this is true for an increasingly limited number of biological sub-disciplines. My analogy was that somebody could equally be a denier of DNA being the hereditary material and yet be a biologist, my example was somebody who observes toad behaviour. It would be a false equivalence to draw to use examples of biology where this understanding of DNA is not strictly required to justify excising it from the discipline altogether.

          The same is true of evolution, as all life has evolved the deepest understanding of any biological phenomena is held in how it occurred, equally understanding of biology can be advanced by viewing the data in an evolutionary framework. Much the same as DNA, don’t accept this basic fact and any understanding of biological phenomena can only go so deep.

          Everything that I’ve said is well established and I explained how it’s not some small note that can be taken or left from biology curricula. I could dump literally hundreds of thousands of papers in this comment in response to you…how about antibiotic resistance? Denying evolution there would leave you considerably confused as to how these already existing forms of bacteria, suspiciously similar to others in that same infection but resistant to the course of treatment administered. The phenomena of antibiotic resistance can only be understood through an evolutionary framework. Further evolutionary microbiologists have been able to show how microbial communities demonstrate cheat behaviours, cooperation and competition.

          A few other questions where evolutionary biology is required: how has this giraffe got such a long neck? How do these fish survive such cold weather? Why don’t a penguins feet freeze? How have dogs become domesticated? How has the immune system developed? Where did Homo sapiens originate? How can this mammal fly? How is does this cuckoo egg match the host it’s parasitising. How does HIV develop drug resistance? How did mosquitoes? Where did they go next? The answer is not ‘they’re just like that, created like that’ and if it was it’s some unimpressive and callous work.

          • AndRebecca

            You seem to be the person the article addresses.

          • Matt

            I’m afraid that I am yes. Whether or not thats negative really depends on the substance of the article though. It finds itself completely lacking. Its flimsy assertions and circular arguments are embarrassing avoidances of engaging with the arguments for evolution in order to feed back to and reassure already concreted beliefs formed independently of any serious consideration of arguments that might dislodge their evidence and logic-lacking foundations.

          • AndRebecca

            I think the article was meant to be as it is. And, I have to wonder about your concern over it. It appears you so called scientists of today are more worried about Christians having freedom of speech than you are getting your scientific theories straight. You are completely unscientific and dogmatic.

          • Timothy Horton

            I’ve met some scientifically illiterate YECs before you take willful ignorance to a whole different level.

          • AndRebecca

            You’re back again? How do you know when I post to another person? You must be stationed at the troll war room with your comrades where you can share comments and then troll off in one direction or another… I certainly put my belief in God over anything you say…

          • Timothy Horton

            I certainly put my belief in God over anything you say…

            Like I just noted: I’ve met many scientifically illiterate YECs before but you take willful ignorance to a whole different level. Thanks for the confirmation.

          • AndRebecca

            You don’t know a single Christian who puts a materialistic theory over God.

          • Timothy Horton

            Pity your God is so weak and impotent he couldn’t work through materialistic methods. So much for omnipotence.

          • AndRebecca

            Well, I’m not worried about it. Darwin did not invent the universe, no matter what you think.

          • Timothy Horton

            Darwin did not invent the universe, no matter what you think.

            LOL! There’s a home schooled YEC for ya, thinks science says Darwin invented the universe! 😀

            That’s why you need to get a science education kids.

          • AndRebecca

            Home school kids run rings around public school kids. I hope any of them who want to join their some of their brethren in the STEM fields will do so.

          • Matt

            It should be noted that in all your responses you haven’t addressed a single argument, simply made assertions. I was going to joke in my last comment that I need to be careful because a few logical fallacies have been ticked and ad hominem will be next –here we are.

            I used to join these discussions much more but found that you learn that the same tired assertions dressed up as arguments are made time and time again. The reason I have ever engaged in them because I’m fascinated by this mindset, of starting with the answer and finding the evidence to fit that answer rather than letting the evidence speak for itself.

            That’s dogmatism. You are free to question every single thing I’ve said and do the reading for yourself. Chances are you’ll arrive at the same conclusion as the overwhelming majority of people with a working understanding of evolution. The danger in doing that is that it might challenge what you want, rather than know to be true.

            You’re free to believe whatever you like as long as it’s not affecting others but when it’s dressed up as rationality or science I think it’s worth pointing out.

          • AndRebecca

            Why on earth do you think a comment blog is the place to have some legalistic debate about anything? What next, we need to use Roberts Rules of Order? I am not in a scientific field, and so have absolutely no reason at all to even ponder Darwin’s theory. I don’t really think you are in one either. You’re just obsessed about the subject.

          • Timothy Horton

            I am not in a scientific field

            Tell us something else we don’t already know. It’s a well known fact the volume of YEC bluster about evolutionary theory is always inversely proportional to their actual knowledge of the subject. Hence your science-free diatribes.

          • AndRebecca

            Do you have to write for your fellow troll? Unlike you, I’ve taken it upon myself to learn about evolution as well as what the Bible says on the subject. It’s pure research on my part. I have a high I.Q., due to natural selection you might say, which causes me to read lots of books on all sorts of topics.

          • Timothy Horton

            I’ve taken it upon myself to learn about evolution as well as what the Bible says on the subject

            LOL! Oh, like when I asked you describe evolutionary theory in your own words and the best you could think of was “man came from slime!!” BIG HINT: You’ll never learn about actual evolutionary theory by reading moron YEC literature like AIG and Chick tracts.

          • AndRebecca

            Yes, I was trying to explain a theory to you, which is difficult with you being a functional illiterate. All sorts of information is available to you to read on the net, plus you must have libraries in your area.

          • Timothy Horton

            Yes, I was trying to explain a theory to you,

            That’s going to be tough since you have zero understanding of the actual theory yourself. Probably thought The Flintstones was a documentary, didn’t you? 🙂

          • AndRebecca

            You have no ability to explain anything and do not even know you are incapacitated in this area. And you watch way too much TV. Try reading a book.

          • Matt

            Legalistic? What a strange accusation.

            I’m aware you’re not a scientist, it’s exactly the problem with this blog and your comments. Religious people saying “I don’t like the sound of that so I’m not going to learn about it”. The author and yourself don’t have a working knowledge of evolutionary biology at all and yet you’re the ones arguing that it’s not needed in Biology. As it happens I’m finishing my PhD currently and I’m telling you it’s necessary in Biology, not something you can excise out because you don’t like the philosophical explanations.

          • AndRebecca

            There isn’t any problem with my comments, except that I get snippy with dullards like you, and that’s un-Christian of me. You are very closed minded and boorish.

          • Matt

            It’s strange because I’m the one that’s well-read on the topic we’re discussing and I’m a dullard. I’m the one that has sought to be educated on the topic, assessed the evidence and even conducted new research and I’m closed minded? If I go to the lab tomorrow and find that my results are inconsistent with the view that organisms evolve, tell me, why would I not rush to publish these findings and collect my awards?

            Now consider what that evidence might consist of? If I found that in my biological data there was something inconsistent with evolution as we understand it. Would that mean that the only other possibility is the Christian God? Rather than some other not yet discovered physical phenomena, or after that some other myth? There’s no reason to believe in the Christian God in the first place except wishing too, that’s closed mindedness. Starting with the answer closes your mind to anything inconsistent with it. In science inconsistencies cause us to excitedly re-evaluate. There is no understanding of reality that I am emotionally attached to, I would love if scientists until me had been wrong.

          • AndRebecca

            Well, you sure haven’t shown and evidence of any knowledge of anything. Nothing from nothing is nothing. Ever considered that? Your attack has been against Christianity from the beginning because you are an atheist, not a biologist. You are too dull to understand Christianity.

          • Matt

            Have I ever considered that nothing from nothing is nothing? Evolutionary biology deals with how organisms change and adapt over time, how new ‘forms’ emerge. How biologists can demonstrate that all life converges back to a single origin or how humans have evolved from a common ancestor with apes does not require at any point for something to come from nothing.

            If instead you’re talking about the origin of life as some creationists do (or more often proponents of intelligent design) then your argument has receded 4 billion years to accept that we don’t know how life started but we not that the present forms evolved. Religion constantly recedes in this way as knowledge advances and that’s fine, the pursuit of knowledge doesn’t care for the maintenance of myths.

            This ‘your are not a biologist’ business is getting a bit strange, I literally am a biologist. Naturally I’m an atheist, just as you’re an atheist of all other religions apart from yours, yours is definitely the correct one.

            My attack is against irrationality and dogmatism especially when it seeks to hold back the progress of science. That means some Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Krishna, Thor, Odin, Zeus…

          • AndRebecca

            I looked up the two Darwinists you mentioned. I sure wouldn’t follow either one of them or Darwin. The religion and philosophy of Christianity is superior to a Darwinist secular humanist view.

          • Matt

            To follow people is a religious framework, scientists learn from the evidence and a consensus is reached as a result. There’s no argument from authority.

          • AndRebecca

            Never heard of the Zeitgeist, have you? Some scientist you are. And, there have been plenty arguments regarding Darwin, Dawkins, and Ripley which anyone can easily find on the net.

          • Matt

            Again, I’m sure there are lots of people you can find that agree with you. I’m arguing against arguing from authority, I’ve studied biology for the past 9 years, I’ve definitely evaluated the evidence myself. You’re free to too.

          • AndRebecca

            Yes, the schools have gone down hill. It takes 16 years to get less than a basic old time American education. It’s sad.

          • AndRebecca

            The writer of the article above, wrote it in order to let the readers know of his book on the subject. So far, you appear to be unaware of that fact…And that is what we are talking about. So, get off your high horse, and get in the real world. If you want to write a book on evolution, go ahead. You are the dogmatist and are unaware of it.

          • Timothy Horton

            Bethell didn’t write a book on evolution . He wrote a book of religious propaganda filled with as many quote-mined quotes, misrepresentations, and outright lies about actual evolutionary theory he could find. Big difference.

            Anti-science crap like his is all the Discovery Institute ever produces. They’re professional Liars For Jesus.

          • AndRebecca

            I take it you read his book- not. You really are a low life, brainwashed hater.

          • Timothy Horton

            Actually I did read the first four chapters which are available as a free preview on Amazon. It’s the same horsecrap Bethell has been pushing for the last 40+ years. He had an article published in Harper’s with the almost verbatim nonsense over 40 years ago. In a pinch his book may be good for toilet paper or kindling but that’s about it.

          • AndRebecca

            Ah, you are a troll. You get your troll material off of the atheist and Marxist websites and go to the Christian sites fully armed with your garbage. Who knew?

          • Timothy Horton

            LOL! What a funny little child you are. Anyone who presents evidence you can’t explain or points out your scientific ignorance and incompetence must be a troll or a commie.

          • AndRebecca

            Well, yes, or just plain atheists. You are a troll and an atheist. And most likely a Marxist and scared of God.

          • Matt

            There are lots of books on evolution and they’ve changed over time as understanding has advanced. The bible to its adherents already has all of the answers. The reality is that it contains no scientific understanding that is more advanced than the stone age understanding from which it was written.

            If the evidence for reality proposes a different reality to a stone age book, unaware that the earth is flat, the big bang, neanderthals or kangaroos; it’s time to ditch the stone age book, not the modern science.

            You have no right to demand that you comment publicly and not be challenged for your views. Your views too are clear, even Biology has no need for evolution, this is false and you’ve demonstrated that you don’t have the requisite knowledge (same as the author of this article) to challenge evolutionary biology at all. Yet it’s clearly a house of cards? A delusion maintained by the likes of myself?

            I’ll consider joining the real world of necromancers and demons and witches though, I really will. I’ll give some consideration to Odin, Thor and Zeus too.

          • AndRebecca

            Glad to hear about the books on evolution that you’ve read. Would you care to name a couple of them that I could check out of my local library? I suggest you join the Deep Ecology Movement, and follow the Swami Deepak Chopra, it is modern paganism at it’s best. And, you can go to almost any university campus and hear Chopra and other scientific pagans give lectures. You really are out of touch with reality.

          • Matt

            A scientific pagan? Like your so-called scientific Christian friends it’s really one or the other. Chopra is not even on the radar of the scientific community and when he does come to the attention of scientific communicators such as Sam Harris and Micheal Shermer they laugh at his talk of woo.

            Like Christians cherry picking what evidence they want to be true, Chopra cherry picks the evidence to shape his weird reality. What’s the difference?

          • AndRebecca

            You truly are out of the loop. They have been teaching Chopra like garbage in the schools with Earth Day for many years.

          • Matt

            No they haven’t and if they were it wouldn’t make your point less absurd. Chopras view of the world is an unscientific one he just pretends that it’s derived from science in the same way that the religious claim there is science in their books.

          • AndRebecca

            You truly don’t know what is going on in the schools. And Chopra is part of the “Deep Ecology Movement.” The climate change nut-jobs like him and he is invited to speak all the time on university campuses.

          • Matt

            He is in disagreement with the scientific consensus for his magical backwards thinking, just the same as religion.

          • AndRebecca

            He is cashing in on the scientific community which has abandoned judgment for feelings and money.

          • Matt

            Lmao, you have no idea how little most scientists make. Much better being a religious or pseudo-scientific demagogue. Choirs has grasped that.

          • AndRebecca

            I don’t know how little scientists make.

          • Matt

            And yet you just attempted to undermine the entire establishment claiming that they had sold out? More ignorance.

          • AndRebecca

            As far as I know, scientists make an average salary. Many of them are teachers and many get government funding for research, or work directly for the government. They work on the taxpayer’s dime. Your inability to comprehend what I am writing is amazing.

          • Matt

            Oh and Evolution by Mark Ridley is a good one, I highly recommend it. The Blind watchmaker by Richard Dawkins too communicates evolutionary biology really well and the associated documentary.

          • AndRebecca

            Mark Ridley and Richard Dawkins are your experts on evolution. O.K.

          • Matt

            They literally are experts on the topic?

          • AndRebecca

            You brought them up.

          • Matt

            I know because they experts particularly of communicating evolutionary biology. Why not try reading about something before disagreeing with it. I’ve provided plenty of examples of evolution and you don’t have an argument against a single one of them.

          • AndRebecca

            They communicate their hatred of Christianity and their substitution of Darwinism for religion. You should try reading them or watch their videos.

          • Matt

            Why would that impact their understanding of evolution? One has either grappled with the evidence or not. You have not so whatever your opinion on them or theirs on Christianity you’re in no position to criticise the validity of evolutionary biology. Feel free to assess the evidence yourself

          • AndRebecca

            Now you wonder why emotions would impact a study? Do you know Dawkins is all over the net. Anyone can access the outspoken atheists. His spiel is that he is an atheist before a scientist. Darwin himself communicated his hatred for Christianity. And you are arguing against Christians using Darwinism. You don’t even know what you’re doing, you’re so blind with hate, an emotion.

          • Matt

            “Why would that impact their understanding of evolution? One has either grappled with the evidence or not. You have not so whatever your opinion on them or theirs on Christianity you’re in no position to criticise the validity of evolutionary biology. Feel free to assess the evidence yourself”

            None of that was expressed in my comment prior to your response. Again, feel free to assess the evidence yourself. Facts are facts however much you don’t feel like them being true. If you want to imagine an alternative reality you’re free to do so but you cannot then conclude that the facts are not facts.

          • AndRebecca

            Oh, now emotions are not part of being alive and part of coming to conclusions. Your “facts” regarding evolution are in dispute by scientists all the time.

          • AndRebecca

            Did you read the article? You are the person the author is talking about. Many of the examples in your last paragraph were explained to me in science in grade school without the mention of evolution even once… Of course we did not discuss HIV… I’ve known people who have taken biology classes where evolution was taught, who do not have a clue as to how anything you’ve mentioned here has come about. People can and do believe in DNA without believing in evolution.

          • Timothy Horton

            Wow. I’ve never met someone who thought ignorance was a virtue. It is true you can be a lab janitor or a test tube washer and not have to know any evolutionary theory. But it you actually work in any of the biological sciences and want to understand how and why things in biology function the way they do then you have to have an understanding of evolution.

          • AndRebecca

            Another off the wall comment.

          • Matt

            I read the article and found it entirely lacking in substance, it didn’t address a single argument and it’s message was materialism is bad, Darwin was a materialist, therefore Darwinism and Darwinists are bad.

            My point about DNA is this, your assertion is that evolution is not needed to study biology. While true that you could be a biologist in certain areas of biology without accepting evolution the same is also true of DNA. I’ll try another example because you keep bizarrely accusing me of conflating DNA and evolution. You could track elephant migratory routes and you’re a biologist, you could be a denier of vaccines and this would not impact your work as an elephant migration biologist.

            As for the rest of your comment it seems you’re trying to argue from a position of authority, but very weak authority. You have a basic understanding of biological concepts and lack the knowledge of them in an evolutionary framework required to understand greater than grade school complexity and you have friends who have taken biology classes who don’t know how any of those topics would be benefited from an understanding of evolution. Firstly there’s a problem with arguing from authority because in this case you would have to accept my authority of much beyond a few classes education in genetics and genome evolution in particular. Rather, we can discuss these things logically and you can consider how phenomena such as drug resistance would be confusing without accepting evolutionary biology.

            Once again, your assertion that these phenomena can be understood without evolution is a false equivalence, there are many phenomena in biology where a working understanding of them up to date is either derived from an evolutionary framework or would be inconsistent and confusing without first accepting evolution.

            As in my first comment too, the real problem is that without evolution there would be a real poverty of depth and understanding of the natural order. Why don’t penguins feet freeze? because they were created not to. Why are giraffes necks long? They were created long. How does HIV develop drug resistance, or bacteria or mosquitoes? Magically resistant forms very similar to the original, susceptible population simply appeared that already existed. Did God created bacteria with resistance to modern drugs that managed to go undetected until the opportune moment of a few decades of overuse in those drugs? Did God make sure that these pre-formed bacteria would be concentrated in countries and regions of the planet were these drugs would especially be over-used in the future?

            To not except evolution is to not accept how all biological phenomena came to be and how they might yet change. Plus while this conversation continues biologists use an evolutionary framework to hypothesise about and understand increasingly complex biological phenomena. To argue then that a friend has taken a class and lacks the understanding I’m expressing or that you can understand non-evolutionary phenomena such as ‘viruses exist’, ‘bacteria exist’, ‘giraffes have long necks’ without evolution is to really play hide the ball. It’s absolutely necessary for the fullest understanding of biology.

            All of these argumentative inconsistencies aside, how does someone who doesn’t accept evolution explain a long term evolutionary experiment such as Richard Lenski’s?

            Ultimately you’re free to believe whatever you like and however it flies in the face of established facts but you’re only limiting your own intellectual freedom. This should be no less obvious with denying evolution than with denying that the earth is round or that there are other planets. Evolution is correct and fascinating, if that highlights how further inconsistent your beliefs are with science then you cannot remove it from the spectrum of scientific understanding, especially as its central to all biology. Rather, it’s your beliefs that should be scrutinised.

          • AndRebecca

            Get a life.

          • Timothy Horton

            That childish response seems to be your favorite dodge when people make points you have no adult answer for.

          • AndRebecca

            That is a childish dodge. I have to wonder about someone being so caught up in “science” to where it has become a religion for him. That is a sad state of affairs.

          • Timothy Horton

            Another childish “neener-neener” response from AndRebecca. Since she’s way too ignorant to discuss any scientific topics I guess she has to play to her only strength.

          • AndRebecca

            You don’t understand scientific topics or God and are unable to discuss them. So, I just try to appeal to your childish nature which reflects your mental age… That’s all you have. There’s no discussing anything important with you.

          • Timothy Horton

            LOL! There goes AndRebecca again with the neener-neener-neener! I wonder if she ever has to interact with grown ups in real life? 🙂

          • AndRebecca

            Well, I have to go interact with grown-ups right now. Talk at ya later.

          • Matt

            I always find this disappointing. Rather than re-evaluate the basis of ones opinions there is always a sticking point in these conversations about evolution where the religiously motivated is either lacking in knowledge to proceed or finds the implications of what is plainly true to be unacceptable.

          • AndRebecca

            I evaluate all of my opinions, but not because a commenter on a blog tells me I need to. I’ve read Darwin and the Bible and the religion in the Bible trumps the philosophy of Darwinism. What I am trying to get across, is that many Christians have careers in scientific fields and the fact that Darwinism is there, shouldn’t hold them back. People can and do live without a scientific theory, but they certainly don’t live well without the Bible, as we see in today’s America. Crime rates up, mental illness up, out of wedlock births up, test scores down, society degraded due to the 70 year attack on Christianity by people like you.

          • Matt

            Not sure what relevance any of this has to the validity of evolution within biology to be honest. But while we’re here atheists are underrepresented in the prison system so I’d have a think about your opinions on religion in society.

            My argument is that the author and yourself do not understand evolutionary biology and as such are in no position to argue that it’s not necessary within biology or that the entire field needs a rethink. You have to first understand it to make those comments. This article skirts around all of the arguments and starts with the answer.

          • AndRebecca

            Oh right, the people in prison are Christians…give me a break…How would you know what the author of the above article believes when you said yourself, he didn’t say enough in his article for you to figure out he meant? And, get this I do understand evolution!

          • Matt

            Atheists make up 0.07% of the US prison population. That should roundly dismiss your view that a decline in religiosity is a bad thing.

          • AndRebecca

            You don’t even have any modern statistics. The atheists are in the schools teaching the kids. No morals are being taught. They’ve been making a concerted effort to get rid of Christianity in the public schools since Truman’s decree on education in the 1940s but of course the atheist John Dewey had an effect on the schools before that, and a Mr. Bloom and his taxonomy had a great effect starting in the 1950s until today. And, due to their efforts we have an immoral society and a high crime rate. And, of course there are the other atheists like Madalyn Murray and the ones with websites today. Madalyn got her just desserts, didn’t she?

          • Matt

            Would you make the same argument for Islam in schools? You specifically want your God in schools. Get them while they’re young and impressionable, let people grow to a reasoning age and they might, in absence of brainwashing, easily identify your nonsense.

            Did you seriously just celebrate someone’s murder because they have a different viewpoint to you? And you’re the one to casually make accusations of totalitarianism? Thought crime, there’s the perfection of totalitarianism. Have a quick read about the dark ages or the pogroms, lots of people have made the folly of disagreeing with the Christians and their just ‘desserts’, do you celebrate those murders too when you’re not preaching about morality?

          • AndRebecca

            They teach Islam in schools in America. They teach all sorts of things except Christianity. They used to teach Christianity only. You call mentioning Murray being killed by one of her own, celebrating her death? How ridiculous you are. Marxists are atheists and they have gone all over the world killing people and installing dictatorships. And they do it today. Christians are the most persecuted people in the world today and more of them are killed for their religion than any other group. Why don’t you do some quick searches before you start in with the lies. Pogroms, that’s a Russian word. Did the communist atheists have pogroms? Many Christians have been involved in getting persecuted Jews out of Russia for quite sometime now.

          • Matt

            Look up the pogroms and the protocols of the elders of Zion. Your historical ignorance is as profound as your scientific. You cannot change the facts to fit your dogma.

          • AndRebecca

            Pogroms and the protocols of the elders of Zion? Now you’ve really flipped out.

          • Matt

            So you’re denying decades of Christian anti semitism? Did you know the Catholic Church were officially anti-Semitic until long after WW2. Your historical ignorance is no less profound than your scientific where it suits.

          • AndRebecca

            The Catholic Church is still anti-Protestant long after WWII. And Russian atheists still go after Jews. Ever heard of the murder of Christians in North Korea or China? And the protocols of the elders of Zion is a hoax. As for pogroms, that’s one of the reason Christians are Zionists. The atheist Jews in Russia were against the czars and for the communists for the most part and did their share of killing people under communism.

          • Matt

            Evolution = materialism = communism = death. These pre-formed arguments to avoid assessing the evidence were tired 20 years ago. You’re free to assess the evidence for yourself rather than regurgitate scientifically and historical illiterate arguments that you’ve been spoon fed because they agree with your dogma.

            Whether religious or not, any person whom disagrees with the science when they don’t understand it just wants to maintain their worldview independent of the evidence to the contrary. Stop pretending this is anything other than wilful ignorance.

            You’ve typed a few hundred words at this point, argued from authority, attacked me, made absurd accusations of dogmatism and even totalitarianism, celebrated the murder of someone who campaigned to free children of brainwashing, and spewed about communism –absolutely anything to avoid the conversation at hand.

            Creationists simply play by their own rules in debate while the science goes on uncaring. You can enjoy all the delusions you want but don’t pretend it’s some enlightened, controversial position. It’s not. You’re profoundly uneducated on the topic actually being discussed. Come back when you have even a basic understanding of evolution. In the mean time you’re wasting everyone’s time and energy as you already have all the answers, however inconsistent they are with the evidence.

          • AndRebecca

            At least you’re starting to get it. Yes, all of the atheist mass murderers of the late 19th and the whole of the 20th century liked Darwin’s writings. There are quotes, and they were made longer than 20 years ago. .. Right, you and Dawkins are uncaring about creationists, sure.

          • Matt

            Once again, what you’re doing is the well established creationist technique of non-argument to conflate your deep scientific ignorance with your deep historical ignorance. To respond to your false claims I would have to educate you on 180 years of biology and nearly 100 years of history and political theory.

            It should be obvious to anyone reading this that all you’re achieving is bolstering your delusions and directing the conversation away from the evidence, which you’re ignorant of

          • AndRebecca

            You’ve got atheism denial. You are a brainwashed fool.

          • Matt

            I am an atheist, but to state such is completely uninformative. I am just like you rejecting millions of religions for lack of evidence except for the one you subscribe to, similarly lacking in evidence. Your faith is a feature of your geography, early life brainwashing, that’s all. If you were born to Mormon parents you’d be a Mormon, to Hindu’s, a Hindu. It’s that simple.

            I was raised a Catholic and then I began reading and thinking for myself. In that sense I’m an atheist, but only in the sense that I’m also an atheist of sea monsters, fairies and vampires.

            Any other views I’ve espoused are as a scientist when religious ignorance asserts that the evidence is lacking when it’s not or as a secularist when religious exceptionalism is being demanded. The same exceptionalism that you’ve expressed indignation about when it’s other faiths but your own. Your lack of empathy then who want religion(s) to have no part in public life is due to you wish for your religion and your religion only to be treated differently.

            And I have to say, I always find it really bizarre when the religious believe atheists to be brainwashed. Why is your religion true? Bible says so. Why is the bible true? Bible says so? Where is the evidence? The Bible? Where is the evidence the Bible is special? In the Bible. A complete lack of independent thinking is required.

          • AndRebecca

            You’re an apostate. And I doubt you were instructed much in the Christian faith. And, most atheists today are admitted Marxists and they propagandize continually. Propaganda is a legitimate part of Marxism. I find it bizarre that you are so unaware of what is going on around you. And, I guess you have never read the Bible or compared it to any other works and so you would not know what makes it different and special and true.

          • Matt

            “I’ll tell you what you did with Atheists for about 1500 years. You outlawed them from the universities or any teaching careers, besmirched their reputations, banned or burned their books or their writings of any kind, drove them into exile, humiliated them, seized their properties, arrested them for blasphemy. You dehumanised them with beatings and exquisite torture, gouged out their eyes, slit their tongues, stretched, crushed, or broke their limbs, tore off their breasts if they were women, crushed their scrotums if they were men, imprisoned them, stabbed them, disembowelled them, hanged them, burnt them alive.

            And you have nerve enough to complain to me that I laugh at you.”
            ― Madalyn Murray O’Hair

            If we manage to avoid an apocalyptic war brought on my religious maniacs of all stripes that future humans will marvel at how after the genome project and the moon landings people still clutched at ancient middle eastern myths. How they managed to be so powerful and so endangered our entire species for so long. How in 2017 they could still revel in the tribal barbarism their cult had so long enjoyed. History will treat views like these very poorly indeed and many of us already do.

          • AndRebecca

            O.K., more lies… We don’t have to worry about Christians starting WWIII because the Socialists like H.G. Wells stated Socialists were going to start WWIII if they don’t get rid of Christianity. And, READ Darwin, you fool! He stated why Christians are so powerful. They are ten times smarter than everyone else, according to him! And they should stay together because of that, according tp him!

          • Timothy Horton

            Wow, somebody needs a diaper change and a nap.

          • AndRebecca

            Wow, I know more than you ever imagined. BTW, according to Darwin as well as Marxist racial theory, not all white people are superior. In the 1850s race was used to designate tribes, not what we think of as race today. Celtic Western Europeans, the ones who took to Calvinism, were the superior people- ten times smarter than other whites, including Germans and Slavs, according to the theory. Their range, according to Lenin and others (and this part is true), was from the British Isles, through middle Europe crossing France, northern Spain, Italy and Greece and north into Poland, Germany and Czechoslovakia. When the Thirty Years’ War broke out in Europe, many of these brilliant Celts were either wiped out or fled to America to join their Celtic tribesman. The Lutherans to the north and the Catholics to the south were both trying to wipe them out – for materialistic reasons- their success in this world. These Celtic peoples together, invented Western Civilization and everything in it. And so, you have the basis of Marxist racial theory and the reason why the Marxists (originally the other white people) are obsessed with WASPs, dead white guys, living white guys and anything American or having to do with Western Civilization… Anything Gaul, Gael, Brit, Bret, or any of the first nations having windmills or cheese making are Celtic nations… And, this is true: under all of the large cities in Europe today there are signs of Celts having been there first. They founded the cities in Europe ages ago.

          • Matt

            You were clearly celebrating her death because she got rid of brainwashing from schools. It’s a disgusting position that demonstrates Christians deep intellectual insecurity. Atheists will never forget how the religious behaved when they were in charge.

          • AndRebecca

            No, you celebrate her death. She was killed by her fellow immoral atheist. It’s ironic. She’s become a martyr for you… I guess…

          • Matt

            I don’t identify as an atheist any more than I identify with not believing in fairies. You literallly said she got her just ‘desserts’.

            Martyrs are for the religious. Her ideas endure as a securalist and unashamed of critic of religious exceptionalism in society.

          • AndRebecca

            Yes, many atheists have replaced religion with science, so science has become their religion. Dawkins says that is what he did. And you have set up the lying Murray O’Hair as an idol. How sick of you.

          • Matt

            I have no idols, I judge each argument on their own merits. It doesn’t matter who makes them.

            Science is not in any sense a religion, it’s a method of questioning and discovering and is therefore always changing, expanding and by definition open to being wrong. When the evidence suggests something else, that something else is instead accepted. Religion is to accept a particular supernatural dogma that claims to explain the natural world and why we’re here, requiring no evidence and that is fundamentally unfalsifiable. In that sense they’re equally likely to be true.

          • AndRebecca

            According to you.

          • AndRebecca

            Your stats aren’t up to date. And, atheists call themselves all sorts of things besides atheists, like secular humanists. It seems they are hiding themselves.

          • Matt

            They are up to date. At any rate if they were true at any point in time where the prison population as a proportion didn’t match the general population then it rubbishes your view that you can’t be good without Christianity. There have been good and bad Christians, good and bad atheists, religiosity doesn’t necessarily generally impact on ones ability to be good. It does on the other hand provide an unnecessary means of division in society and seemingly limitless justification for cruelty. Religions can provide a moral framework based on unsubstatied beliefs that can –like all good dogmas– allow otherwise morally normal people to say and do disgusting things. The argument that you can’t be good without god is flawed in principle and well evidenced to not be the case.

            In the case of a prison census it questions religiosity or lack thereof. Whether someone is a secularist or a humanist is a different and you can also be either or both of those and be of faith, where they’re simply the belief that religion has no part in public life and should neither be exceptionalised nor discriminated against by the state and that people are the source of good or bad independently of God respectively.

            Again this is the tricky thing about science and where the facts become ‘controversies’ where they show religious dogma for what it is. It seems now that humans were knocking around for nearly 200,000 years before Christ showed up –seems they managed that far. In the bible itself the Good Samaritan had grasped the golden rule (as the Chinese did centuries before too) prior to the teachings, much less sacrifice of Christ.

            Religions make factual claims, when the real facts, determined by the same measures you accept from your physicians or airplane engineers, disagree with religion then it’s the religion that needs a rethink.

          • AndRebecca

            More than a hundred million people were killed in the last century alone by atheists. That’s more than all of the religions all over the world for the last ten thousand years. And atheists are still murdering people today.

          • Matt

            You’re as ignorant of history as you are evolutionary biology.

          • AndRebecca

            Ah, a communist denier. Rrright, Stalin, Lenin, Hitler, Mao, and Pol Pot did not exist.

          • Matt

            I never said that. You’ve been spoonfed this ‘atheist bad guys’ line and done no research into their regimes. They also accepted Newtonian physics, should we abandon gravity now?

            This is all silly talk and simple avoidance of grappling with the evidence because the learned conclusions disagree with your religious dogma. The religious are dreadfully insecure. That’s why when they’re in power blasphemy laws, witch trials and inquisitions rule.

          • AndRebecca

            Anyone can get on the atheist talking point websites, and also see videos of them on you tube and make up their own minds on what they are up to. It has nothing to do with the avoidance of anything, except on your part. Now you think witches are scientists and blasphemers are scientists. Go figure.

          • Matt

            No you intentionally misdirect the conversation in your response again. Your argument was that atheists accept basic facts about the world such as evolution, there have been brutal dictators that are not subscribed to a major religion, therefore evolution is crap. I imagine these dictators also accepted Newton’s laws, are we to abandon those now too? Because that’s the logical next step.

            Your arguments make no sense they’re the tired creationist arguments I’ve heard a million times. Don’t get me wrong they’re very successful if you want to avoid talking about the facts, or the evidence but that’s become very obvious to people now and they have the internet so they’re looking it up for themselves. No need for atheism or atheists and no need for creationists.

            It’s absolute avoidance, you have outright denied every single evidenced example of evolution I’ve provided.

          • AndRebecca

            Karl Marx stated he used evolution for advancing Marxism. And, you haven’t given any evidence of evolution.

          • AndRebecca

            I don’t know how many times I have to say it: I’ve READ DARWIN. I’ve read other books on the subject. I know what I’m talking about, and do not feel the need to make this blog spot a classroom.

          • Timothy Horton

            I don’t know how many times I have to say it: I’ve READ DARWIN.

            (facepalm) Origin Of Species was published in 1859, over 157 years ago. Descent of Man was published in 1871, over 145 years ago.

            Do you think maybe, just maybe science has added to our knowledge and support of evolutionary theory in the last century and a half?

            Gotta love YECs whose science knowledge stopped in the 19th century.

          • AndRebecca

            Yep. His theory has evolved. Except, not by much. Obviously you have a way of studying scientific theory that doesn’t include reading books, unlike any scientist! Don’t you have a library where you live? If not, many books are on the net, free to read.

          • Timothy Horton

            His theory has evolved. Except, not by much.
            LOL! That’s like claiming airplanes haven’t changed much since the Wright Brothers. Never mind the thousands of major scientific discoveries since 1859 advancing evolutionary theory, like the entire science of Genetics.
            Do keep demonstrating that YEC ignorance. You’re a hoot!

          • AndRebecca

            Your lack of any evidence of what you are talking about speaks volumes. Science has advanced since 1859, but has the theory we are talking about? Or is it a question of putting other discoveries under Darwin’s theory.

          • Matt

            You’ve demonstrated repeatedly that you don’t know what you’re talking about. Your argument is that Biology and Biologists need not consider evolution. This is as false as a flat earth geologist, climate change denying climate scientist, big bang theory denying physicist, vaccine denying physician…I could go on.

            Placing what you wish to be true in priority over the arguments formed from evidence is no science, has no place in scientific literature, classrooms or laboratories. To argue that evolution, indeed Darwin, has no relevance to Biology is deeply ignorant. To even treat is as a fringe subject, a sidenote, is deeply ignorant.

            You cannot say equivalently, “I’ve read book on physics, I know what I’m talking about, I just really really feel like Einstein’s relativity is garbage”. In that case, the reasonable conclusion would be that you don’t know what you’re talking about.

          • AndRebecca

            Well, good for me. I have known all sorts of people with degrees in science and medicine who are not evolutionists. And there is nothing scientific to walk in lockstep behind a theory.

          • Matt

            That’s literally how science works. When a theory stands up to falsification it’s excepted, in the case of evolution due to the mountains of evidence behind it, by the scientific community. The key thing with Darwinism is that it’s the basic observation that forms can change over time, in the same manner that other physical forms such as rocks change over geological timescales. Darwin was ignorant of Mendel’s work but together became the modern synthesis later on. Evolutionary biology is now enormously more complex than Darwin could have perhaps even imagined and many facets are counter intuitive at first if you had only an understanding of Darwin’s theory. It’s advanced and has been constantly challenged over time, that’s science. The basics that Darwin put forward have stood up to scrutiny, there are however many phenomena, not just natural selection, driving evolution that Darwin didn’t know about. Again, that’s how science works.

            You’ve repeatedly referred to those who accept evolution now as some sort of ‘other’ group to be reviled, such as ‘evolutionists’. It’s not some wacky philosophical standpoint, it’s a major part of the biosciences and again, to be involved in the biosciences you really have to accept it. Unless you can challenge it in a meaningful way (and collect all the subsequent scientific acclaim for doing so) then you can’t pick and choose which facts you accept. If you don’t like the idea of a round planet you can’t just declare that there’s no scientific reason to accept it’s round and revile those whom disagree as round-earthers and tell them that they don’t know what they’re talking about, probably aren’t even scientists and tell them all about how you know loads of scientists who aren’t round earthers.

          • AndRebecca

            So why are you protesting so much against people who disagree with you if the science stands up? You are on this website trying to “educate” people because you are scared of something. Your ideas are totalitarian.

          • Timothy Horton

            Thick headed YECs like yourself have demonstrated many times over they are not educable. Scientists and science supporters tend to post on these forums mainly for the unaware lurkers to show them how dishonest and scientifically impotent the ID-Creationist position really is.
            You’re just cannon fodder and comic relief.

          • AndRebecca

            People in science don’t have time on their hands like you. You most likely live off your parents and have a problem with your daddy.

          • AndRebecca

            You are not a scientist, but science is your religion. Matt mistakenly let it out about Dawkins and Ridley. You are laughable.

          • Matt

            You misunderstand totalitarianism. If I find evolution to be rubbish tomorrow, I’ll be shouting about it. I’ll demonstrate my reproducible methods and the scientific community will come to a new concensus.

            Why do a protest disagreement if the science stands up? I’m protesting the lack of disagreement, this article and the assertions you’ve made are dogmatic tactics. You have no actual challenge for the scienc, you don’t even understand it in the first place. The aim is to muddy the waters, make it seem as if evolution isn’t relevant or legitimate. They’re slippery motives achieved by all manner of logical fallacies, ad hominem, false equivalences, arguments from authority and conspiratorial thinking.

            I’ve cited any number of observations that demonstrate evolution and you don’t have a response to them. Look at sickle cell aneamia and malarial resistance in humans, look at flightless birds, the thousands of well adapted different types of ants, take your pic. The data is clear on evolution and you don’t have a response.

          • AndRebecca

            Oh, now I misunderstand totalitarianism. I understand you hate Christians just as much as Dawkins says he does, and that is why you are on this site spewing you garbage. And I saw your “drug resistant HIV” you mentioned here, on Wikipedia in the article about Mark Ridley, you just copied it to make it look like you thought about it yourself. LOL!

          • Matt

            What are you talking about? You have no understanding of evolution yet you disagree with it because your fairy tales don’t stand up to it. You haven’t made a single argument against evolution here

          • AndRebecca

            You don’t understand evolution. There’s Darwin’s theory of natural selection and Darwin’s theory of evolution. What examples did you give?

          • Matt

            Ok, Darwin conceived that organisms may change from generation to generation. He identified that in selective breeding traits could be exaggerated over time and imagined that in nature this could happen due to natural pressures of environment or competition –natural selection.

            In nearly 200 years we now much better understand how this happens not just by natural selection by various complex phenomena in evolution biology. You know nothing of the modern synthesis, of genetic drift or codon bias yet here you are denying the basic fact that organisms change and over enough time change into different forms, or species.

            Read Mark Ridleys Evolution cover to cover, it provides much evidence of evolutionary biology as do the examples I’ve provided. Feel free to evaluate the evidence yourself, if you’re not too insecure in your faith.

          • AndRebecca

            You are exactly right. I believe organisms change in some ways from generation to generation, but not from one species to another. What has been in the news lately, GMOs? And pig-human body parts? And, there is no proof that organisms change from one species to another. And, when looking up Mark Ridley, I found that many scientists, maybe all the ones who read his book, have a problem with his conclusions. And, I’m not insecure about anything.

          • Matt

            So then you admit that evolution happens? Evolution is the change in frequency of traits from one population to another. Provided enough time and the right conditions it explains how you can end up with flightless birds for example. That’s one species to another. The evidence is clear how there is a common ancestor of hippos and whales, of humans and chimps and in fact, of all organisms on this planet.

            The change you admit to being real, you wind that back and you end up with ancestral forms. Needless to say this admission is confusing because you’ve outright denied all of evolutionary biology so far.

            So rather than continuing to waste time why don’t you tell me what is wrong with the evidence for speciation? Or for human ancestry? Again, blanket denial is not disagreement, it’s blanket denial.

          • AndRebecca

            I admit that both people and animals pick mates and have offspring (natural selection). I admit that if two blue-eyed people have a child, the child will be blue-eyed. Flightless birds are not another species, they’re still birds. And there isn’t a common ancestor of all organisms on this planet. A species consists of related organisms capable of interbreeding- I believe that’s true.

          • Matt

            Well that’s evolution. Flightless birds are in fact another species.

            There is variation within a population and due to, for example, sexual selection (as you mentioned) or due to positive selection certain traits may be more likely in the next population. Naturally individuals sexual attractiveness, ability to compete for a mate, to survive, to digest certain foods, to live in certain temperatures will vary from others in the population. If it provides an advantage in survival to breed or directly the ability to attract a mate then those traits will be more frequent in the population. This can be observed in humans heterogenous for sickle cell in malaria countries or in a cuckoos eggs ability to blend in with the parasitised nest.

            Now imagine a population gets divided, they become isolated from reproducing with each other and exposed to different pressures to survive and breed. They evolve differently. You can observe this artificially in the variety of dogs. Naturally this has occurred in cats resulting in the variety we observe in the wild. As such there is a common ancestor, long extinct of for examples tigers and lions and further back of tigers and lions and domestic cats. Equally there is a common ancestor of all mammals, of all animals, of all eukaryotes if you wind the clock back far enough. To arbitrarily start the clock somewhere is inconsistent with your acceptance of evolution from the common ancestor of a species of flightless birds and all other birds. I’ll come back to this point.

            The same has happened with humans, we have a common ancestor with Homo neanderthalensis and further back with Homo erectus further again with chimpanzees.

            Firstly we’ve come to an agreement that flightless birds have evolved from an ancestral bird, their wings now vestigial. They, penguins for example, are now a new species. The common ancestor of all penguins is at its most recent estimated to be 17 million years. Humans and Neanderthals split an estimated 500,000 years ago (the Neanderthal genome has been sequenced so this is well supported). Where the lineage split that would lead to chimps in one instance and humans in another is estimated to be as recent as 5 million years.

            That means you have first accepted natural selection and evolution and unknowingly, speciation but the very example you accept, the divergence leading to the variety of penguin species we observe today is actually a much older evolutionary split than that of Homo sapiens and apes.

            Similarly polar bears have diverged from brown bears but they related enough to interbreed still. So you concept of species is a little rigid but accepted at times. The divergence between humans and Neanderthals wasn’t too great that when humans reached Europe there was a relatively small amount of interbreeding. As such people of European descent have some amount of Neanderthal DNA. These conclusions are reached by the same analyses you’d accept to catch a criminal with DNA evidence.

          • AndRebecca

            So if I believe the obvious, that animals mate, then I believe in evolution… right…And,please, don’t give me some grade school lecture on evolution. I believe God created the universe, period. You’ve pretty well stated your case over and over and it is nothing I haven’t heard before.

          • Matt

            No believing that animals mate does not mean you accept the facts of evolution.

            However, accepting that the frequency of certain traits may change from generation to generation is evolution. That’s all there is to it. Over enough time changes can be drastic, but evolution describes even the smallest often neutral changes. You seem to be confused to what it is exactly that you’re denying.

            If you want to move the goalposts to simply deny speciation then refer back to my previous comment. If you want to move the goalposts to simply state that humans didn’t evolve, refer back to my previous comment. If you want to say ‘well we don’t know how life started’ that’s not evolution, evolution has occurred since then and you will have conceded 4 billion years.

            Equally if you have a single scientific or logical disagreement (not coz the bible sez so) then feel free to state those too.

            Otherwise, once more, you’re simply denying scientific discoveries achieved by the same methods that you’d accept from another field simply because you don’t want them to be true.

          • AndRebecca

            I believe you use evolution as a cover word for all sorts of science which has nothing to do with evolution. And, you repeat yourself.

          • Matt

            Is it not necessary to repeat when the response is to attempt to distract and deny?

            Evolution is substantiated by the same evidence discovered through the same methods that you’d accept from any other idea in science. If there was something fundamentally different creationists would have that to point to, but there isn’t. The only difference is that creationists wish it to not be true.

          • AndRebecca

            The big problem with evolution is that it has been used by atheists, as I have mentioned before, to get rid of Christianity. Here’s a quote from a American Unitarian back at the start of the country, before Unis evolved into secular humanists: “Erase all thought and fear of God from a community, and selfishness and sensuality would absorb the whole man. Appetite, knowing no restraint, and suffering, having no solace or hope, would trample in scorn on the restraints of human laws. Virtue, duty, principle, would be mocked and spurned as unmeaning sounds. A sordid self-interest would supplant every feeling; and man would become, in fact, what the theory in atheism declares him to be, — a companion for the brutes.” I think these sentiments from Channing show what Darwinists, like yourself, are trying to accomplish. Wm. Ellery Channing 1780-1842. Now, don’t get the idea that this in the only problem with evolution, just the biggest one. In our post-Christian society we see the effects of atheism in the purposeful degradation of people, which includes thinking of people as nothing more than animals to be herded.

          • Matt

            And again, however you feel or whatever you imagine would be the outcome of accepting the plain evidence for evolution it doesn’t matter. Facts don’t care for whether you believe them or not.

          • AndRebecca

            Again, I agree with science and biology. I have problems with Darwin’s theory along with a whole bunch of other people, including scientists. And, I have a problem with people like you using Darwinism to attack Christians, which is the whole point of the subject for you. You don’t give a rip about facts or about proving anything. You are just anti-Christian. You aren’t fooling anybody.

          • Timothy Horton

            Doesn’t having that huge chip on your shoulder make your back hurt? Or do the crocodile tears you cry over being a poor persecute Christian victim soothe the pain?

          • AndRebecca

            Once again you show your inability to comprehend the English language. How is it in la-la land?

          • Matt

            The same science that establishes somebodies guilt or innocence with DNA also demonstrates, with no additional assumptions that people of European descent have neanderthal DNA in their genomes.

            Now you have a few options with that example:

            1. Accept the first as science and the second as anti-Christian propaganda revealing again how you’re simply selecting facts you don’t like.
            2. Re-imagine creation but then also a bit of neanderthal interbreeding.
            3. Accept the facts however you might feel about them.

            So far your responses have all been of the first category and in doing so you’re in disagreement with biology, science and scientists. That is also a fact. (97-98% of scientists and 99.9% of biologists to be exact).

            You’re never going to agree with evolution whatever the evidence, this by definition then is not an argument. For an argument to take place both parties have to be open to changing their minds. If you haven’t accepted the evidence so far then there is clearly no amount of evidence for evolution that will convince you.

            *Before you remind me that your friend Sue took a biology class one time and still disagrees with evolution, remember the 99.9% figure I just gave you. Claims such as “I agree with science and biology” are simply not up for argument, you literally don’t agree. Again, that all living things change over time is not some niche sub-discipline of biology but its fundamentals.

          • AndRebecca

            Well, I’ll have to do a net search on DNA tests and Neanderthals. The only DNA tests that I know of which go back in time to haplo-groups do not show Neanderthal blood- We’ve had them done a few years ago- And, I thought the ones for forensics can only tell immediate relatives… You do not have an open mind and that’s why you troll Christian websites, we’ve been over this before.

          • Matt

            Interesting that you mention haplogroups, it’s by the genetic distance in mtDNA that migration out of Africa were humans originated can clearly be demonstrated.

            The exact same principles underlying a forensic DNA test shown by comparison of the Neanderthal and human genome that Europeans have Neanderthal DNA in their genomes.

            I did not bring myself to a Christian website, a web scraper I was using picked this up as if it was about evolution. I think the abundance of this nonsense on the internet is concerning and worthy of challenging. Nothing public should be free from challenge, this is not some safe space.

            Look up the evidence from endogenous retroviruses for speciation then and tell me your issues with that.

            Once again though there is no evidence you would accept for evolution.

          • AndRebecca

            Actually, haplogroup/mtDNA testing doesn’t go back to Africa. The testing only goes back a few hundred years, the rest is conjecture. And, as for substituting a narrow field of scientific study for Christianity seems more absurd the longer I think about it. Christianity is multi-dimensional and covers theology and morals and ethics, for starters. Evolution is one dimensional and covers a small area in the physical arena, with claims that it is actually something more. As I stated in the first place, a Christian can certainly study the biological sciences without substituting Darwinism for Christianity. It would be a poor choice to give up the larger for the lesser, but for the shallow and uneducated, Darwinism would be appealing.

          • Matt

            Studies of mtDNA, basic genetics demonstrate a coalescence back to African haplogroups and all of the migratory stops between. Whether you’re native Australian, America, Siberian, European it all goes back to Africa.

            Science is simply the processing of better understanding the natural world. You’re free to personally believe whatever you like, however it might be in violation of logic, reason and our physical understanding of the universe. However, some religions, including but not limited to Christianity, make specific claims about the physical universe. That’s when it comes into conflict with science and Christians especially feel deeply insecure about what science has to say about our origins.

            In reality the bible is vague on creation, but it’s clear that God created the universe. By reasonable measures and evidence that you would accept for any other facet of the physical universe evolution has occurred and we have evolved. If there is a God, evolution must be how he achieved creation. Just the same as if there is a God he decided water would have two hydrogens and all organisms on earth would be carbon based.

            The point I’m making is there are people, scientists, who spend a lot of time in education, a lot of time educating, a lot of time researching because they want to find out more about the natural order of things. They’re not interested in attacking your beliefs, they’re much too busy for that. Creationists such as yourself are made so insecure by the facts that you attempt to create the impression that there is a controversy, repeatedly you’ve lied about a disagreement within scientists for example (that in reality is 0.1-3%). You free to deny whatever facts you like but don’t attempt to deprive the next generation of these discoveries. At the very least learn the basics before you attempt to condescend people who do understand the evidence in the future.

          • AndRebecca

            As I stated, the DNA only goes back so far and the rest is conjecture. Science was invented by Christians and given a place in their schools. Physical truths don’t take the place of metaphysical truths, and some of the Darwinist “truths” are questionable on a physical level. And they sure don’t make it on a metaphysical level. Darwin and Dawkins, two Christianophobes, wanted to replace Christianity with Darwinism and they both said so. You have been attacking Christian beliefs from the time you got on this site, using evolution, and now your tune is different. Just more lies.

          • Matt

            I at no point have hidden my dislike for religious dogma, or religious zealots but the question of evolution is a separate one. As I’ve explained the evidence is plain, if you’re belief is too insecure to survive it in your view then keep denying it and avoiding it, just try not to deprive other of these discoveries with lies and misinformation.

          • AndRebecca

            Well, excuse me. Yes, from the beginning you have been on this site expressing your Christianophobic nature, but for an instant, I thought you had faked a mellowing out.
            You are a die hard Darwinist and think your inferior worldview is superior. No, you are here trolling a Christian site, and even lie about that. Agreed.

          • Matt

            We seem to have reached an impasse here that you’re rather happier with, debating the manner of debate itself. You’ve stacked logical fallacies, false equivalences, demonstrable lies, half truths and false equivalences up and I’ve knocked them down summarily and fought so that this conversation might be about evolution, which is actually of interest to me. I think that’s the “mellowing out” you’re referring to. I have had no intention to be rude or to “troll” and your accusations of such have been at their height when the conversation “mellowed out”, that is it turned to discussing facts. At such a point a creationist is exposed, all distractions stripped away all there is to discuss are the facts. The options then are to re-evaluate, double down on the distraction or plainly deny the facts without first establishing what’s the matter with them.

            As for your (I hope intentionally funny) accusation of “christianophobia” your logic is that evolutionary biologists hate christians and that’s the only reason that they pursue knowledge in the area. Because you can’t establish a basis for denying, for example, Neanderthal DNA in human genomes evidenced by the same methods you would normally accept you instead propose a conspiracy theory. I’ll explain.

            You can’t say “I can’t explain what’s wrong with your argument so it must be false and this is demonstrated by the fact that I suppose you don’t like me and so have motive for it to be false”. This is a logical fallacy aimed at avoiding having to establish the falsehood of the claims. It doesn’t matter what imagined motives there might be the claims are either true or not and only evidence may differentiate.

            As for your wider conspiracy that the entire discipline is set up to piss Christian’s off, this too is absurd. If somebody wanted to attack Christianity evolution certainly does provide it some problems in that it’s first claim is shown not to be true as far as most Christians understand it, that of creation. To suppose that the entire discipline and continued discipline is to attack Christianity is an absurd conspiracy for two reasons:

            1. Religiosity is dying out anyway, life has changed a lot and people have less of a need for it. As peoples situations become more hopeful they tend to ditch myths.
            2. Darwin’s ideas dispelled the idea of creation and others had questioned the sensibility of it long before Darwin too

            Instead evolutionary biology continues because of the enormous benefits there are to understanding how organisms have changed and how they might yet change with regards to entire ecosystems, endangered species, antibiotic resistance, immunology etc. Its benefits are massive and nothing to do with attacking Christianity. The most bizarre part of this claim of course is that Richard Dawkins has never demanded a church be shut down, he’s never called for a ban on religion (he’s called for secularism which is the exact opposite and exactly what Christians in Muslim majority countries need). Creationists are in the classroom on the other hand. If Christians were still in charge there would be much less science contrary to your absurd claim earlier. It is evolutionary biologists and science educators who are being pestered by creationists, when we attempt to argue with you, you cry victim? Please.

            If Christians were in charge all of the benefits of biology that rely upon people being educated in evolutionary biology would be stopped. It would be stopped because of your intellectual insecurity and deprive future generations of the greatest story ever told and how we know it (how we got here) and of all of the potential advances. It would be stopped by people whom have made no attempt to understand it in the first place, instead wrapping themselves in cotton wool, closing their ears and feeling comforted in their echo-chamber of denial. While no longer a possibility in developed countries as people have become educated it is happening at the school, community and even state level.

            That’s why I’m arguing it and while I’ll never convince you as you have all the answers, maybe those more curious, those interested in learning will stumble across this thread and research for themselves what I’m talking about, Christian or otherwise.

          • AndRebecca

            We certainly disagree on everything. Anti-Christians like yourself have been using “science” since the Enlightenment to attack Christian beliefs. Christians have no problem with science and in fact have promoted it for the comfort of all people for centuries, which you must know… And, you are a troll and a Christianophobe. And your have weird worries, like whether I have certain thoughts on the DNA of Neanderthals. You are obsessed with what Christians believe or don’t believe. And you are even projecting your hateful feelings onto them, and are accusing them of future actions which have no basis in fact whatsoever. You’ve got a real problem, and it has nothing to do with Christians. I feel sorry for you.

          • AndRebecca

            So you are saying that flightless birds cannot mate with other birds and have offspring due to genetic differences.

          • AndRebecca

            I have no idea what your evidence is for one species changing into another. And, I am wasting my time as far as you are concerned. So, soon I will say goodbye.

          • AndRebecca

            Yep, humans get bigger and smaller according to their environment, like their access to food… The amount and type of food available to them affects their stature. They are also healthier and live longer when they have homes with heating and cooling. And, I think I stated it before, scientists have a problem with Ridley’s book.

          • AndRebecca

            Oh, so now to belong to your cult, it is necessary to read a specific book explaining genetic drift and codon bias.

          • AndRebecca

            You’re very repetitive.

          • Matt

            You seem especially confused here. I have a degree a masters and am writing up my PhD. I’ve not only studied these examples but work on them presently. I could download those DNA sequences and run the analysis myself, with no requirement to believe anyone else.

            Again you’ll say anything to avoid admitting that you have no idea what I’m talking about, you have no response you’ve just learnt the same tired stock arguments as all creationists that you’re unable to see are irrelevant.

            If you were actually interested you’d assess the evidence yourself. Instead you bash scientists because the evidence doesn’t agree with your dogma

          • AndRebecca

            You seem to be confused here. What does DNA have to do with Darwin’s theory? He never mentioned DNA, did he? Give me an example of his DNA theory.

          • Matt

            Darwin never mentioned DNA, it wasn’t known at that time that it was the basis of heredity. It’s one example of how science progresses we can now without fossils or other ever simply look at the DNA of organisms to determine their evolutionary relationships. For example it clearly demonstrates that we’ve evolved from a common ancestor with chimpanzees. It shows that Homo sapiens originated in Africa and migrated, it shows that early anatomically modern humans in Europe interbred with our now extinct cousins the Neanderthals.

            Before you ask me for evidence of this it’s all available on the internet, read ancestral genetics scientific papers, go to a museum and see the complementary fossils of various Homo species, read about the out of Africa theory. There are hundreds of thousands of scientific publiclications on this topic and books such as Out of Eden that make it accessible.

            Again, you’re coming from a position where you’re blindly denying evidence that you’re not even aware of. Feel free, as all scientists do, to evaluate the evidence for yourself. If you don’t trust the experts that’s fantastic, check the evidence for yourself. It’s all out there.

          • AndRebecca

            Exactly. Darwin never mentioned DNA, it wasn’t known at the time. And, there are no known missing links, including Lucy. And, as far as finding ancestors, if you take a DNA test, it only goes back so many generations…if you are European you will not come up with an African ancestor, or a Neanderthal ancestor.
            I’ve been to museums, and have read the out of Africa THEORY. Along with many scientists, of which I am not one, I find it hard to believe.
            I tried to get you to show a connection between Darwin’s theory and DNA and you failed.

  • LYoung

    How about a clean debunk.

  • Rob

    I teach philosophy and advocate for a non-Platonic dualism much in line with St. Augustine. This article is one of the most brilliant, concise criticisms of materialism I have ever read! I am not sure the author will read this, but if he does, hats off to you!

  • There are problems related to the Theory of Evolution. However it is very clear that all cellular life on this planet has a substantial amount of similar genetic material. So it is difficult to say that evolutionary explanations don’t help us understand a lot of things about biological life.

    On the other hand, evolution can’t happen until life starts. And even the very simplest living cells are incredibly complex. So much so that we cannot create them in a laboratory from available chemicals, using all the knowledge, skills and technology that researchers have developed over more than 100 years. We can’t create them even though available cells could be used as a pattern to reverse engineer them.

    There are a lot of ideas about how life could have started, but very little about those ideas can be demonstrated in a laboratory setting. And the great complexity of even the simplest living cells makes it unlikely that they could have originated by random natural processes.

    However we do know that human intelligence can create functional artifacts composed of many different parts which can do quite complicated things–for example naval aircraft carriers, computers, and computer software. Although humans can’t (yet) create living cells, a greater intelligence should be able to do so.

    If you think that random natural processes really could produce something as complex as life on the prebiotic Earth, consider the following. One popular idea for how life could have started is the “RNA World” hypothesis. It suggests that the RNA molecule, which is kind of like half of a DNA molecule, could have formed by natural processes and evolved into living cells.

    But it seems unlikely that a molecule as complex as RNA could develop on its own by natural processes. Something simpler should be more plausible as a starting point for life. However such a precursor might need more extensive capabilities than RNA has in itself.

    * It would have to reproduce itself without assistance—a lot.

    * It would have to catalyze the production of mostly “left-handed” amino acids and possibly separate them from existing mixed stocks.

    * It would have to catalyze the production of many different complexly foldable proteins, which are adaptable to perform necessary functions in cells, from those amino acids.

    * It would have to organize those proteins into much more complex assemblies: either into simple cells or aggregates at least complex enough to maintain their existence and evolve into such cells.

    Thus the precursor molecule would have to be able to do a number of things that only existing cells with hundreds of functional proteins can naturally do now. A molecule (or just a few working together?) with such extraordinary capabilities might seem to be far beyond any that have ever been observed in nature. In other words, maybe even “supernatural?”

    How should we refer to or describe such a molecule? Although the descriptor has been used before in a different context (try a web search), perhaps we should call it a “God molecule.” And if we’re going to let our imaginations run wild, maybe this molecule could bring itself into existence through some kind of retro-causality?

    Or maybe we should instead speculate about proteins being randomly formed in a special location on the early planet. Or possibly being brought together by natural processes from separate locations. But then these proteins plus other molecules would need to get organized or assembled into functional structures which can also reproduce themselves. And all this has to happen without the leadership of a mighty, master molecule as described above.

    Or maybe there really is “a Divine Foot in the door” as Lewontin feared.

    • “even the very simplest living cells are incredibly complex”

      And … ? Show us the first life form and let’s see how complex that is. That’s the issue, after all, not the simplest cell we know of today.

      • Hi Bob:

        Could you show us evidence that the original life form was able to maintain and reproduce itself with much less complexity than the simplest life forms we see now? For example, creating a comparably simple living organism in the laboratory would be a nice “proof of concept–evidence, typically derived from an experiment or pilot project, which demonstrates that a design concept, business proposal, etc., is feasible.”

        • Ryan

          He can’t and he knows he can’t. You sure ruined his extremely weak unsubstantiated argument.

        • I did reply. Are comments with links not allowed?

          Craig Venter’s artificial life project produced a living bacterium with fewer genes.

          • Timothy Horton

            The comments with links I posted showed only to me with the note “awaiting moderation”. The posts never showed up so I assume links are taboo.

          • Yes, that was my experience as well. Much better if they simply made it clear that links were disallowed.

    • Matt

      Once God created all life, then it was demonstrated that life changed drastically –diversifying– over billions of years into the (still changing) forms we see today. So creation recedes 4 billion years. Science will continue uncaring and religion will recede further to another gap.

  • Gary

    Evolution could only be real if God made it happen. But the Bible says God made everything in six days. Every evolutionist I ever read or heard says evolution happens over long periods of time. Reconciling long periods of time with six days is unreasonable. For those who believe the Bible, evolution is a joke. We know it could not happen unless God made it happen, and we know God denies doing it.

    • Bezukhov

      Proving a First Cause is one thing. Proving your version of this First Cause is the correct one is something else entirely.

    • You’re just going to go with “God sez so”? What good is science, in your opinion?

    • Matt

      And here lies the motivation for creationism I suppose. Cursory reading of modern evolutionary understanding will show you that it’s irrefutable and therefore God was wrong. God can’t be wrong so it’s more likely that actually the bible isn’t the word of God. If it isn’t the word of God, there’s no reason to believe that there is a God of the bible.

  • John Smith

    Darwin himself admitted that his theory required “intermediate species” for it to be valid. Sadly, there aren’t any. Evolution is a lie.

    • Timothy Horton

      My goodness but there are some dirt ignorant Creationists out there.

      Google “Wiki list of transitional fossils”. Stream won’t let me post the link.

      • Ant

        When wikipedia is your source, you know you have failed.

        • Timothy Horton

          Feel free to explain why all those transitionals listed at Wiki aren’t really transitionals. All can be found well documented in the primary scientific literature too.

          Watch the creationist run when his bluff is called.

          • GLT

            Thorton,

            What makes a fossil a transitional fossil?

          • Timothy Horton

            If it can be placed in a transitional series and exhibits traits common to both its ancestral group and its derived descendant group. Note that a transitional fossil doesn’t have to be placed in a direct lineage to still be considered transitional.

          • GLT

            Thorton,

            “If it can be placed in a transitional series and exhibits traits common to both its ancestral group and its derived descendant group. Note that a transitional fossil doesn’t have to be placed in a direct lineage to still be considered transitional.”

            So, it is purely a case of definition then. How can it be proven these fossils are actually of an animal transitioning to some other type of animal?

            Answer, it can’t.

          • Timothy Horton

            (facepalm) No, it’s not just a matter of definition. It’s a matter of comparative morphology of dozens of different traits. And you know very well science doesn’t “prove” things. Science offers positive supporting evidence. In the case of transitional species there is more than enough evidence to demonstrate beyond any reasonable doubt that evolution through common descent has occurred.

          • GLT

            Thorton,

            ” It’s a matter of comparative morphology of dozens of different traits.”

            And the assumption is these traits came about because of common descent, is that not right? If that is correct, it most certainly is a matter of definition, for as you say science is not in the game of proving things. Therefore the idea of a fossil being a transition is based on the assumption of common descent which defines the nature of fossils as transitionary or non-transitionary.

            “more than enough evidence to demonstrate beyond any reasonable doubt that evolution through common descent has occurred.”

            But you’re simply begging the question. You assume common descent to be true, and you also assume the only reason fossils would share common characteristics is due to common descent. Therefore, when you find fossils sharing common characteristics you hold them up as evidence for common descent, while at the same time holding up common descent as the explanation for common characteristics. It’s classic circular reasoning.

            Yes, Auston Matthews does look like the real deal, I just hope they don’t burn him out. It does not matter how good you are, the transition to the NHL is a big step.

            How about the Saskatchewan boy Marleau hitting 500? That makes three from little old Sask. in the 500 club. Not too shabby.

            I will somehow hook up with you when I get back. Take care my friend and I wish you and your family all the best.

          • Timothy Horton

            And the assumption is these traits came about because of common descent, is that not right?

            No, it’s not right. In fact it’s dead wrong. Common descent is the conclusion drawn from the evidence. ALL the evidence. We have clear patterns of morphological change over time in the fossil record, patterns that form a distinct branching nested hierarchy. We also have clear patterns in the genetic record which also form the same distinct branching nested hierarchy, virtually identical to well over 99% congruence. We have identified known evolutionary processes that are empirically observed to form the same type of distinct branching nested hierarchy. Common descent is the conclusion which best explains all the evidence taken as a whole. It was never an assumption.

            I’ve been following Patty Marleau since he first broke into the league. He was never the flashiest guy, just the consummate professional, prepared and played hard every game. I sure hope he and Joe Thornton get their rings. Couldn’t believe Thornton got left off the NHL top 100 list. He’s one of the best passers the game’s ever seen. Best I ever saw in person were 99, Joe, and Adam Oates.

          • Ant

            The list is pathetic. Most of it is just cartoons of extinct creatures, which is laughable because it’s just an artist’s rendition of what they think the creature looked like.

            Secondly, most of them are just “earliest known example” of such-and such a creature, which is not a transitional form. It’s just another form of a distinct type/kind of creature. For example they say “oldest known seahorse/shark/turtle/etc…”. Those aren’t even transitional forms. Some of them don’t even say “oldest known”, they just say something like “fish” or “amphibian”. Just because it’s extinct doesn’t mean it’s a transitional form.

            Lastly, there is no scientific way to prove that a single one of those organisms are related to or the ancestors any modern species of any kind of animal. It’s just guessing and speculation, there is no other way it could be because no one was there “millions of years ago” to see what the descendants of those creatures were. Thus it’s totally unfalsibiable, and totally unscientific. Just because something looks similar to a modern organism doesn’t mean it’s a transitional form. Some of the examples are just hilarious and clearly only an insane person could believe it. In the “evolution of whales” section there is a cartoon of something that looks like a weasel swimming through water called “Kutchcetus”. It’s actually makes me laugh you think this is “evidence” of anything besides how gullible people like you are.

            Sorry your wiki list provides proof of nothing.

          • Timothy Horton

            I see you cowardly ignored the fact every last one of those examples is described in the primary scientific literature. Like most creationists you are too lazy to do the slightest bit of research before spouting off your usual hand-waving excuses.
            Sorry Pismire but to the scientific community those are examples of transitional species whether you like it or not.

          • Ant

            And they can pretend their fantastical speculations are examples of whatever they want, it doesn’t change the fact that they can’t prove a single bit of it in any objectively empirical way. Thus it’s nothing more than imaginative story-telling.

            But it sure seems to do a good job of deceiving gullible people like you because it’s presented as “SCIENCE!!” and it’s done by SCIENCY SCIENTISTS DOING SCIENCE! I’m glad I’m not fooled by such tactics but if that’s what impresses you then I don’t claim to be able to pierce your delusions so carry on.

    • No one cares what Darwin said. That’s for the history of science category. Let’s turn to modern biologists to understand evolution, not Darwin.

      • Ryan

        Do you have proof that dead chemicals became living cells? Has that been proven in a biological laboratory?

        • It has not been, nor will it ever be. Science doesn’t prove things, ever.

          But if you’re asking if there’s a consensus view of the mechanism of abiogenesis, the answer is no. But you probably already knew that. Are you going somewhere with this?

          • Ryan

            If science doesn’t prove anything, why do you stick up for it? You have a losing argument.

          • I’m trying to help you understand what science can and can’t do. Its statements are always provisional. It might be wrong. It never proves things (math and logic is where proofs are).

            Science follows the evidence, and it obviously delivers. Some people in the 21st century are living in caves, but you obviously aren’t since we’re communicating with the internet.

          • Ryan

            Love the internet.
            Do you by chance know who it was who discovered the black holes in space? or how about the novas that suns do? And how long ago was that? because both are spoken of in the Bible. How’s that for the Bible not being a book of science?

          • Timothy Horton

            Er, the Bible doesn’t mention either black holes or novas. It also doesn’t mention dinosaurs. Some Bible literalists today twist and interpret Scripture to try and force fit passages into modern scientific knowledge but that is not the same thing.

          • Ryan

            Of course it does, they just didn’t know how to describe things in todays language. The only people I see twisting the scripture are those who don’t want anybody to believe what they read, unless it is ordained by people like you.

          • I’ve researched this question, too, and have written about it at my blog.

            I’m pretty convinced that the Bible is not a book of science. How do I know? Because the papers that talked about the discovery of black holes or novas didn’t cite the Bible.

            Some Christians are so desperate to have the Bible precede science that they will paw through it, looking for some vague kind of precedent. But since no one found new science in the Bible, it’s just like looking through Nostradamus to find overlooked “predictions.”

          • Ryan

            The scripture identifies what happens when a black hole is created, because they didn’t have modern terms they used what they had to describe what they knew. Global warming is also described, right along with a nova of the sun. The terms they used were different but with the knowledge we have today it is easy to see what was described.
            True, those late comers didn’t use the Bible to know what they have discovered, but they weren’t the first. I find it strange you think people from 3000 years ago wouldn’t know how to describe things of this day and age with the same language you know, one would think you would know better.
            There is nothing desperate about me, but looking at things going on in the world today it is easy to see who will find themselves in desperate straights in the near future. You really ought to take a sober look through the Bible, there is far more about todays world than you obviously think there is.

          • Show me one scientific discovery that came from the Bible first (not one that was read back into the Bible after science discovered it).

            The scripture identifies what happens when a black hole is created

            What verse are you thinking of? And what possible reason could God have had for telling them about black holes when he didn’t bother teaching them how to make something useful and life-prolonging, like soap?

            I find it strange you think people from 3000 years ago wouldn’t know how to describe things of this day and age with the same language you know, one would think you would know better.

            Perhaps I have a higher standard for God’s communication ability than you do.

            There is nothing desperate about me, but looking at things going on in the world today it is easy to see who will find themselves in desperate straights in the near future.

            Oh? Tell me more. Make a prediction that you can’t run away from.

            Here, let me show you how it’s done. I’ll make a prediction right now: You will reject the opportunity to make a prediction. You’ll say that God’s timetable isn’t precise or that Man isn’t allowed to know or that, if Jesus can’t know, how could you? And then I’ll ask how you can be so wishy washy about this when you’re sure that I’ll soon be in desperate straits.

            Decide.

          • Ryan

            Matthew Maury used Psalm 8 to discover the pathways of the sea to bring about the scientific knowledge of the ocean currents all over the world.
            The verse describing what happens when a sun goes into the state of a black hole is in the old testament, I found it and figure if you are as smart as you think you are, you would find it as well.
            The description of warming and a nova of the sun is in the new testament, you will find it if you look for it. I won’t tell you where it is because it would take away from the intelligence you proclaim, to find it yourself.
            I predict you will find yourself in great distress when you see what is coming on the world and you know you will have to call on the one you so foolishly mock and show disdain for.
            Decide? I made the decision a long time ago under fire in a foxhole, hopefully, you won’t wait until you face the same thing or simply wait until it is too late.

          • Timothy Horton

            The scripture identifies what happens when a black hole is created,
            because they didn’t have modern terms they used what they had to
            describe what they knew. Global warming is also described, right along
            with a nova of the sun. The terms they used were different but with the
            knowledge we have today it is easy to see what was described.

            None of those things are mentioned anywhere in the Bible. That’s one of the loopiest set of post hoc rationalizations I’ve seen in some time.

          • Matt

            God could have given us a heads-up on all manner of wonders, including those yet to be discovered. He didn’t. The book is actually what to expect from people of that time (or few hundred year time period over which it was actually written) and the burden of proof lies still with the Christians.

            If anyone is going to subscribe to something fundamentally unfalsifiable then at least choose a more interesting myth.

          • Ryan

            He did, it’s obvious you haven’t read, the book.

          • Matt

            Feel free to cite that part.

          • Ryan

            Feel free to read the book, then you won’t need any citations.

          • Timothy Horton

            That’s bizarre. When I post Bible passages the board SW blocks my post

          • Timothy Horton

            I’ve read the Bible several times. There are no passages describing black holes, novae, or global warming.

            That’s bizarre. When I post Bible passages the board SW blocks my post.

          • Matt

            As I was raised Catholic I think I’ve read it enough, thanks.

            But now imagine you were arguing that in the doctrine of fairies there is clear ahead of its time science on the dynamics of fairy flight. Surprised by this revelation I asked you to cite the volumes where there was such comprehension of aerodynamics, you’d respond and say read the doctrine of fairies?

            Seems kind of absurd that I would need to have good comprehension of what fairyists believe doesn’t it? Especially given the limitless potential for people to make things up.

            Also, back to the bible, I’ve read it, you’re a religious person so might have read it (but statistically, probably haven’t) and yet we seem to disagree. So please, prove me wrong, let there be no question and cite the part where there’s good science.

          • Ryan

            I have cited Ps. 8 below about the scripture being used to discover and chart the currents in the seas of the world. There is more but you aren’t really looking for more than an argument.
            Being raised Catholic doesn’t mean you are a Bible scholar, I have spoken to Catholic priests and found they didn’t know the scripture either.
            I have taught the Bible for over 40 years, I am not new at it. I am also familiar with the arguing points people like you present to push your agenda to disrupt and destroy peoples faith.
            There are some times coming on the face of the earth that are going to try your faith as an atheist and you will return to what you once thought as a fairy tale looking for answers that you know won’t be found in your current faith.
            Good luck in your new quest.

          • Matt

            You’re an atheist of all other religions, except yours, yours is definitely correct.

            I’m still waiting, bible scholar, for you to guide me to this science in your book.

          • Ryan

            Read Genesis 1-11, that will be your guide to the rest of the book. The Bible isn’t in chronological order, the reason for that is that mankind has grown lazy and wants everything handed to them. God knew that would happen after the fall. the hints at the workings of this planet are throughout the book. Scientists beginning in the dark ages were mostly clergy, because they read the book and caught on to the hints. More of the early science through the ages to the nineteenth century also came from the Bible.
            The Bible mentions nuclear science and how man will use it against each other in the last days, it also mentions the globe warming and the cause, it mentions a nova but not in the words of nova because they didn’t know what it would be called in those last days far in the future.
            There are also mentioned chariots of fire, what would a chariot of fire be likened to in these days? How about a vehicle whose power came from a wheel within a wheel?
            Hell is described many times in the Bible, adding those descriptions together and fitting them to a verse in the old testament describes a black hole in space. There are many more things brought out in scripture that the religion of atheism and Darwinism likes to accuse people who read the Bible of putting together after these thing come to pass. The only ones guilty of that are those atheists and Darwinians, they like to accuse everyone else in hopes of diverting attention from their failings.
            Read the book, if all you want to do is argue because you have settled it already in your mind that you have all the answers, you won’t read it. IF, you really want to know, read and use the study helps available and you will actually see what it says, not what someone else tells you.

          • Matt

            Once again Ryan, I’ve read the bible multiple times. Still no science in it, if you could point me to the sections that you believe contain science feel free.

          • Ryan

            You are just trolling for an argument, nothing else.

          • Matt

            You seem to make no distinction here between being engaged in discussion and ‘trolling’. There are so many issues with this, firstly ‘trolling’ suggests that somebody has been victimised. You are not being victimised by being asked to back up your claims, even if you’re asked repeatedly –this is a result of your avoidance no a signifier of victimisation.

            Also, articles such as these and your comments which spread misinformation, otherise and condescend those whom disagree with you and peddle distraction and shut-downs so not to assess the topics freely, openly and critically. Who then is ‘trolling’?

            Lastly when you use terms such as trolling or otherwise claim victim status when you’re not being victimised causes these terms to lose all meaning. Many of the voices in public debate today are a result of this culture. You attempt to have a reasoned debate citing and demanding evidence and you’re a troll. There’s very little incentive then at that point not to be a troll and needlessly mock Christians for example, as I’m aware some atheists do.

            All that has happened is that I’ve straightforwardly disagreed with you. The bible contains no science beyond it’s time unless you start with the answer and attempt to make bible passages fit the facts and the science disagrees wildly with the bible. These are factual claims, not points of victimisation. You want to set the bar that low for ‘trolling’ and the bible with all of its obscene and abhorrent passages would be banned immediately. Be careful of the culture you create when you’re policing what is ok to say and what’s not.

          • Ryan

            The scripture describes what happens to people in a nuclear explosion, how long ago was it when science described the same scenario? You are right, I’m not a victim. There are a lot of people like you who don’t like it when you can’t destroy someone on the internet.
            I give you information as much as I had when studying and found the information. It seems you don’t have the same capabilities I thought you might have. I was wrong.

          • Matt

            The scripture describes an apocalyptic scene with lots of fire etc etc. If we were having this conversation 500 years from now and the deadliest weaponry we had was laser beams with the same outcome you’d be telling me how the bible clearly described apocalyptic laser beams destroying the planet. If we were having this conversation before the advent of nuclear weapons you’d be explaining to me how the bible clearly describes incendiary bombs.

            There is this same similarity when disagreeing with the religious that baffles me. How can you in one comment claim to be a victim of ‘trolling’ because somebody has disagreed with you and then be so rude in your response? It’s amazing that you don’t find it embarrassing in that it betrays how flimsy your arguments are. Throughout the comments to this article I’ve just met desperate attempts to do anything but talk and discuss logically about the evidence.

            A survey was conducted a few years ago that demonstrated that atheists knew more about all the major religions than religious people of those respective religions and also more about each religion than its members. This ignorance of comparable myths is necessary to provide the appearance of legitimacy (ignoring how illogical your argument is anyway). Without this ignorance you’d be forced to confront how plenty of other myths describe a scene that could just as well be a nuclear apocalypse.

            In any case, the entire point of this was your claim that the bible contains plenty of good science. It doesn’t. And it demonstrates a deep scientific illiteracy throughout too, hence the requirement for the above article.

          • Ryan

            OK, lets take a look at the faith atheism has in the science of the origin of life using the laws of chemistry, biology and physics. Atheism says; life rose from non-life, which is a violation of all the laws of abiogenesis. That is where you are with science, great start, Eh? You as an atheist have more faith than I do in the realm of science that violates its own laws, even the phrase; “God said,” has more science than violating the laws He created and used correctly. Something humanist scientists don’t do.
            another part of atheistic science is the part where; “nothing exploded and nothing was created.” That is except, evolution. I guess it could be said that nothing exploded and created, evolution.
            BTW, evolution isn’t a science, but you knew that didn’t you. Evolution is a religion, even the most uppity up in the evolution realm have admitted to that as a truth. Since evolution isn’t a science, what science do you believe in?
            Oh, I almost forgot, atheism is also a religion, it is a religion based on relativity where there is no foundation for morality, no foundation for ethics, there is no purpose for humanity, no design for life, no evil, no good, lets look at that one real quick. Atheism assumes that humans are good, but that is an assumption, it doesn’t work in science, it depends on observation, have you observed that humans are good lately?
            Atheism likes to believe there is no free will for humans, is there free will for animals? Do you not have free will to believe as you do?
            Atheism, evolution, are both religions, they have everything any other religions have, even churches. In reality they pose as the opposite of Christianity, and Judaism. But you like to think they are a form of science, even though they have less form than any of the sciences have. If there is any illiteracy at all, it would have to be in the non-science called evolution backed up by atheism.
            I am an avid believer in science, but I also believe in the Bible. Perhaps science can tell you what is coming up in history in the next few years, perhaps not, the Bible has been very accurate over the last few millennia, how about science? What has it told you about the future? What does it tell you about what is going on in the world today?
            Science is limited in many ways, the Bible isn’t.

          • Matt

            You must appreciate how you haven’t actually said anything in your previous comment. There isn’t a coherent argument in there. All I can make out is that atheism, materialism and science are bad, they rely upon each other and so are each bad as the others they rely on are bad and the bible is good. You haven’t established why the bible is good or true or why they’re bad or not true.

            We’re attempting to discuss good science in the bible and you haven’t brought any. I can’t even respond to your previous comment because it’s an incoherent tirade about how great the bible is and how bad atheism and science are (two things you demonstrably know nothing about). Scepticism of one claim (in this case Christianity) does not constitute an ideology in itself capable of informing ones worldview or approach to science.

            The only manner in which science is limited is that it has to deal with reality. The bible is indistinguishable from any other claim without evidence.

            If you want to attempt to reconcile your faith with science that’s fine, you’ll draw plenty of inconsistencies. You haven’t however substantiated that there is science in the bible, simply made further unsubstantiated claims.

          • Ryan

            We have established one thing, you want to argue. I don’t have a lot of time to spend on these boards. I take care of my disabled wife and all our concerns in this world. I will be on these boards when I can and arguing with someone who doesn’t get the idea that his beliefs are the only thing in this world worth anything, is not what I come to these boards for.
            Another thing we have established is that you can’t discern the truth. If you could, you would find it in more than just science. Science is only good until another find comes along, then it is outdated. The Bible is permanent truth, established, science is temporary at best.

  • David Kane

    “The Kingdom Of
    Speech”, Tom Wolfe’s newest non-fiction book debunks Darwin and does it simply:
    there is NO EXPLANATION for “speech” in Darwinism or any evolutionary
    theory. …It kinda BLOWS Darwin to Smithereens…
    Put your
    Faith in the “God” of your choice, but He is there…

  • Timothy Horton

    It’s amazing how when one scientifically illiterate “authority” begins spouting off all the little minions pop up to voice support.

    Maybe one of you geniuses could give us an example of a science, ANY science, which does not rely 100% on materialism to produce verified results. Chemistry? Geology? Paleontology? Genetics?

    Please tell us how to do science when you have to make allowances for a supernatural Loki God randomly fiddling with your results on a whim? Tell us how to produce a vaccine when Loki God makes it safe and effective one day then be a deadly poison the next?

    • GLT

      Hey, Thorton, how are you doing?

      “Maybe one of you geniuses could give us an example of a science, ANY science, which does not rely 100% on materialism to produce verified results.”

      Way to miss the whole gist of Bethell’s argument. If materialism is true and our minds are simply the result of irrational, unguided processes, how can we trust any results whatsoever? How can irrational materialism produce reliable, rational results? If all we experience is the result of materialistic forces arising through blind, irrational processes, how can we know anything to be true? If chemistry, geology, genetics, etc., are disciplines developed my a materialistic mind which came about via mindless, irrational processes, how can we even begin to assume they are rational disciplines? Darwin understood this dilemma, why do not modern evolutionists grasp it?

      GLT, aka Nic

      • Timothy Horton

        Hey Nic, long time no chat!

        “If materialism is true and our minds are simply the result of irrational, unguided processes, how can we trust any results whatsoever?”

        So no science anywhere that doesn’t rely 100% on materialism. Got it. Why does Bethell single out evolutionary theory for his rants then? BTW you should be aware Bethell is a well known 100% certified loony crackpot. Besides being an evolution denier he’s also an HIV/AIDS denier, AGW denier, has even attacked Einstein’s Theory of Relativity. I wonder how many rocks the DI had to turn over to find him?

        • GLT

          Thorton,

          “So no science anywhere that doesn’t rely 100% on materialism.”

          Science may well function on 100% materialism, but that does not mean materialism is all there is or that science is capable of explaining everything.

          “Besides being an evolution denier he’s also an HIV/AIDS denier, AGW denier, has even attacked Einstein’s Theory of Relativity.”

          I thought science was all about questioning. Or are you saying that questioning is equivalent to denying?

          How about my Leafs this year? Not bad for a team full of rookies.

          • Timothy Horton

            OK, have a great trip. Auston Matthews sure looks like the real deal.

            There’s no point in trying to discuss evolutionary biology on a limited blog like this. The board won’t even let me post links to papers which support what I say. Then we get morons like Ant just screaming and regurgitating the same dumb PRATTS.

            I occasionally post at CARM in the science/evolution section. It’s not great, they won’t let you post pictures but at least it’s real time. No 24 hr wait for comments to appear. Sadly they do have their share of a-hole YEC trolls. Stop by after the skiing if you’re so inclined.

    • Kevin Morgan

      ALL science, Timothy, relies on mind–mind applied to the reverse engineering of nature. Is it that difficult to recognize the obverse?

  • “In my decades as a journalist covering evolution and interviewing some of the world’s leading evolutionary thinkers, I have found that materialists have no good answers to this question, or to many of the evidential challenges that have endured and grown since Darwin’s time.”

    The experts disagree. I think I’ll go with the people who actually understand the evidence.

    You also quote Richard Lewontin, “we cannot allow a Divine Foot in the door.” I’m curious why you stopped the quote there. Perhaps it’s because if we continue, we find a very different interpretation than the one you want to imagine: “The eminent Kant scholar Lewis Beck used to say that anyone who could believe in God could believe in anything. To appeal to an omnipotent deity is to allow that at any moment the regularities of nature may be ruptured, that miracles may happen.”

    Lewontin wasn’t saying that we must conclude beforehand that the supernatural isn’t possible but rather that using science with a God option is like blowing up a balloon with a hole in it. You can’t get anywhere since everything must have a God caveat. It’s “F = ma, God willing” or “PV = nRT, if it pleases God.”

    • Do you have free will, Bob? Or is everything you do–including your posts here–ultimately determined by external forces?

      • Sorry–I have no interest in the free will argument. I simply haven’t thought about it enough to have an opinion.

        • A guy as intelligent and well-read as you, Bob, doesn’t have enough intellectual curiosity to think about the free will issue? Really? Could it be you realize that if you say you don’t have free will it reveals a huge flaw in the concept of naturalism?

          It’s sad that you don’t have the courage to stand up for your convictions, and that would use such a weak excuse to avoid the question. However if you don’t have free will you couldn’t have done otherwise, could you?

          Here’s a riddle for you, Bob. There’s a person in a mental institution who is convinced that his behavior is being controlled by a device implanted in his brain by the CIA. And there’s an atheist who thinks his behavior is totally controlled by natural causes. What is the most notable difference between them?

          • I don’t know everything. You’ve found my Achilles heel.

            Could it be you realize that if you say you don’t have free will it reveals a huge flaw in the concept of naturalism?

            And that’s one of the things I don’t know. What’s the huge flaw?

          • If everything is a result of natural causes, so is you behavior, Bob. But you know that already. Quit trying to play dodge-ball.

          • Yes, my behavior is the result of natural causes. I see no evidence for supernatural anything, causes included. So where’s the problem? Does this somehow show naturalism to be false?

          • We’re making progress, Bob. Thank you for belatedly admitting you believe that you don’t have free will.

            However no matter what you say to support your ideology, you do know you have free will. You know that you do have some control over your behavior, that it is not totally controlled by natural causes. Thus your knowledge of yourself is a proof by contradiction that philosophical naturalism is false.

            Any luck yet with the riddle?

          • We’re making progress, Bob. Thank you for belatedly admitting you believe that you don’t have free will.

            You’ll have to work on that reading comprehension.

            However no matter what you say to support your ideology, you do know you have free will.

            Scholars have debated both sides of that issue. I haven’t thought about the issue enough to have an opinion. Your facile “You just know” approach is used a little too easily by Christian apologist philosophers.

            Dang—I should’ve mentioned that before. I’m sure that would’ve clarified things in your mind.

            Any luck yet with the riddle?

            Nope. It’s still boring. My interest is in the atheism/Christianity debate. I used to spend more time with the Creationism/evolution debate, but I now find Creationism nothing but a smokescreen, a rearguard action against reality.

          • Free will is the null hypothesis. It is the universal experience of the human race. The only exceptions are people with delusions of brain implants and people like you who can’t admit it because of their commitment to naturalism. Regardless of how much debate there is, it has not been empirically demonstrated that people never can make undetermined choices on their own volition. In other words, the concept of free will has not been falsified.

            You realize of course that if you don’t have free will, you could be converted to a belief in God and wouldn’t be able to stop it. All it would take was an effective set of stimuli under specific conditions, and you’d be singing hymns in a church the next Sunday. But hey, you really would be better off. I tried atheism for a while and it was miserable.

            Being bored with the riddle is a cop out.

          • Matt

            An absence of free will wouldn’t lead you to subscribing to a specific doctrine whatsoever.

            It’s actually perfectly reasonable to accept determinism at whatever level and not find it especially interesting to argue about. When Christopher Hitchens was asked if he has free will he simply responded, “Yes I have free will; but I have no choice but to have it”. Ironically, doesn’t that viewpoint make us freer to get on with our lives regardless of our lowly origins?

            It’s certainly not a life well spent pretending that we’re anything other than a very obvious product of the natural order. Instead it’s amazing that we should be alive in the first place, be present at this very point of history where more than ever before we’re able to explore these questions. Especially as we now realise that the questions are how and not why.

          • Matt said, “Ironically, doesn’t that viewpoint make us freer to get on with our lives regardless of our lowly origins?”

            You really don’t recognize the irony of saying we’re “freer to get on with our lives” without having free will? Amazing.

            By the way, since Bob seems to have dropped out, could you try answering the riddle? What’s the most notable difference between the institutionalized guy who thinks he’s controlled by a brain implant, and the atheist–Hitchens or whoever–who believes he doesn’t have free will?

          • Matt

            That’s why I said ironically at the start, it would seem I did grasp the irony..?

          • How can you be “freer” to get on with your life if you don’t have free will, Matt?

            BTW just using the word “ironically” does not demonstrate you grasped the irony of what you said. “Paradoxically” would seem to fit better. But that would still leave the task of explaining the paradox.

            The riddle is not hard at all–the solution is a straightforward deduction from the characteristics of naturalism and the details of the delusion of the institutionalized person.

            Here’s a big hint: naturalism implies that people never can make free choices, with the emphasis on the word “never.” Now come up with the contrast.

          • Matt

            Paradox doesn’t work here either when you haven’t first determined why it’s paradoxical accept for starting with the answer that there is free will.

            The concept of free will suggests some agency allowing us choice idendepent of how our brains are wired. We know that no such decisions occur and we know that our brains and therefore our decisions are entirely a materialistic product. Determinism doesn’t undermine the obvious flexibility on the other hand.

            Once we appreciate that the choices available to us are shaped by our genetics and environment to this point then I think it makes us freer to come to terms with that and move forward productively, better shaping our future exposure and re-shaping the choices that will be available to us in the future.

            The irony is in that if the nature of reality was something really absurd such as we’re living in the matrix or are simply an experiment of some alien civilisation it wouldn’t much matter to what I’ll have for lunch tomorrow. We have no choice but to feel we do have free will. The delusion is such that we can only operate within that sense of agency.

            But thanks for the excessively condescending response.

          • I apologize if what I said sounded excessively condescending, Matt.

            “Once we appreciate that the choices available to us are shaped by our genetics and environment to this point then I think it makes us freer to come to terms with that.”

            Really? How are you freer? If you have no free will you can’t be “freer to” do anything. Just tossing in a non sequitur about “Paradox doesn’t work here” doesn’t change the rules of logic.

            “We know that no such decisions occur and we know that our brains and therefore our decisions are entirely a materialistic product.” I understand that some atheists think that, but I’m not part of any such We. The agency allowing me choice is my soul, which can transcend how my brains are wired. I can choose to do the right things or the wrong things.

            Here’s the answer to the riddle: The guy in the mental institution is better off–he thinks the implant in his brain can be removed so he will have free will again. The atheist thinks he’s stuck with it to the end.

          • Matt

            No worries Ralph, we can all be friends really.

            “Once we appreciate that the choices available to us are shaped by our genetics and environment to this point then I think it makes us freer to come to terms with that.”

            By better understanding why we think, feel behave certain ways about certain things we can then decide to take positive lifestyle choices, read new books, exercise whatever to reshape our very responses to things. Cognitive behavioural therapy relies on this concept of re-programming where people after cbt now have different options available to them than before, they’re freer to take stock of a situation and respond in a way they’d like rather than in the way they always have.

            I’m obviously arguing for materialism but on the free will debate how does the inclusion of a soul*, help? Was your soul a blank canvas? I’ll assume you’re not a mass murder, Ralph, but would argue you can’t credit yourself with that. For the most part being a mass murderer just isn’t an option available to people? I didn’t wake up one day and decide I won’t murder people, I’ve never been so inclined. Now imagine I have a soul, it would appear my soul was pre-programmed at least to the extent of never presenting me the option of being a murderer.

            “Here’s the answer to the riddle: The guy in the mental institution is better off–he thinks the implant in his brain can be removed so he will have free will again. The atheist thinks he’s stuck without it to the end” So if I’m understanding properly, somebody is institutionalised and believes an implant in his brain is removing his free will? An atheist believes he’s stuck without the implant, but then he would believe he has free will? I’m sorry I don’t think I’m understanding.

            I’ll use the analogy of an implant though, because this is where these conversations get really tricky. Free will ultimately is separate from the brain, in your case its the soul (and I’ve described how my objections extend to that scenario) but the reality is we can’t separate consciousness from the brain. So it’s a nonsensical premise in the first place that there is some ghost in the machine capable of overriding brain functioning and how its determined. In the logical extreme this scenario would mean that mental deficiencies wouldn’t make sense, rather there must be some deficiency linked to the otherwise free agent attached.

            *I’ve always wondered to what extent people whom believe in a soul also believe that animals have souls? Do they not have souls? Their behaviour is more obviously patterned and I’ve never got too clear an answer on whether people who argue that there is a soul, instead think materialistically about animals.

        • Coolant

          It is the foundation to what you supposedly believe. It’s either materialism or a Supreme Designer. You should be able to answer why you believe in materialism, or more accurately, you should be able to answer why you care at all, why there is morality, why there is conscientious, emotions, desire to worship, and how materialism can explain information such as the information language in DNA.

          • Right–I assume free will.

            As for morality, consciousness, information in DNA, and all of that, I’ve written lots of blog posts at my blog “Cross Examined” at Patheos dot com. None of them are arguments for Christianity.

            For some reason, I can’t find your other comment. I said, “Evolution is the scientific consensus. Deal with it.” You replied: “Logical fallacy Argumentum ad populum.”

            It’s not. The bandwagon argument simply says that we should follow the crowd. The people who understand the information about evolution (the biologists, as opposed to the vast, vast majority who don’t) are not “the crowd.”

    • Kevin Morgan

      Bob, your addition only demonstrates Lewontin’s materialistic view. He said first that we must accept absurdities. That is irrational. We will always have to accept that we cannot explain how everything works, but to accept an absurdity is to be absurd. To accept that the marvelous design of life and the universe is indeed designed is to remove the absurdity. It does not remove the wonder or the urge to explore and reverse engineer its design.

      Further the one who is believing in anything is the materialist who damns his intelligence and believes that design just happened–you just have to believe and anything is possible.

      • “We will always have to accept that we cannot explain how everything works, but to accept an absurdity is to be absurd.”

        Quantum physics is absurd. It’s also true.

        “To accept that the marvelous design of life and the universe is indeed designed is to remove the absurdity.”

        It’s designed? Have you started with your conclusion?

        Evolution is the scientific consensus. Deal with it.

        • Kevin Morgan

          “Deal with it.” I am–I am addressing someone who chooses to accept an absurd assumption–that exquisite design made itself without agency or teleology–that keeps him from a sensible conclusion–that design comes from a mind that has an objective.

          “Quantum physics is absurd.” The author wasn’t describing quantum physics, and, no, it isn’t absurd.

          absurd. wildly unreasonable, illogical, or inappropriate.

          • that exquisite design made itself without agency or teleology

            I’d call it more complicated (in a Rube Goldberg fashion) than exquisite. DNA is often used by Creationists/ID proponents as an example that proves their position, but I actually find that the opposite is true. I’ve written more in a blog post titled, “Argument from Design Busted!” that you can find easily in a search if you’re curious.

            As a non-scientist, I have no option but to accept the scientific consensus. When it changes, I’ll happily change as well.

            As for quantum physics, we live in a middle world. The rules of physics at the very small and very large ends are counterintuitive to us. I think that “absurd” is an excellent way to describe the ramifications of quantum theory. Maybe you’re just quibbling with word choice.,

          • Kevin Morgan

            Bob, thanks for coming out of the closet on your relation to science. If you can find that DNA proves the opposite of what many scientists acknowledge as evidence for intelligent design, then what are you saying as a non-scientist? That your position doesn’t have to do with understanding the science at all. Your second statement simply confirms that you are willing to be wrong with the consensus as long as they are. You cannot argue one way or the other.

            I appreciate your candor about quantum physics. I would certainly grant that physics on that level has remained mystifying for most investigators, but the point was that quantum physics wasn’t an issue when the statement that I quoted was made. The absurdities had to do with the field of biology.

          • Bob, thanks for coming out of the closet on your relation to science.

            I couldn’t do it without your support! Knowing that I’m in the bosom of a loving community, I’m able to confess openly and without shame that I’m not a scientist.

            Thank you all.

            If you can find that DNA proves the opposite of what many scientists acknowledge as evidence for intelligent design

            “Many scientists”? I’ll see your many scientists and raise the entire field of biology. Evolution is the scientific consensus.

            . . . then what are you saying as a non-scientist?

            I’m saying that we nonscientists need to rein in the desire to declare oneself the Judge of All Science and select which fields are doing good science and which are doing poor science. Evolution is the scientific consensus. We laypeople have no choice but to accept that as the best provisional explanation of why life is the way it is. Maybe it’ll change; in that case, I’ll change along with it.

            you are willing to be wrong with the consensus as long as they are.

            Yes. Are there other options than to bet on the scientific consensus?

            I would certainly grant that physics on that level has remained mystifying for most investigators

            Richard Feynman said, “If you think you understand quantum mechanics, you don’t understand quantum mechanics.”

            The absurdities had to do with the field of biology.

            I’m missing what’s absurd. I accept the consensus view in a field that I don’t fully understand.

          • Kevin Morgan

            You’ve got a good sense of humor. I like that.

            There is a growing number of scientists who are impressed by the evidence from genetic studies. How many are there? There are a few outspoken ones, but like the folks who didn’t let on in the polls that they were leaning toward Trump, there are many more unspoken students of science who are dissatisfied with the company line on DNA. They have good reason not to speak out … yet.

          • There is a growing number of scientists who are impressed by the evidence from genetic studies.

            Is this referring to the Disco Institute’s “A scientific dissent from Darwinism”? For that, I refer you to Project Steve from the National Center for Science Education.

            But this does nothing to address my point. When the scientific consensus changes, let me know. Until then, every lay person (with respect to biology) has no leg to stand on if they were to reject evolution.

            No comment on my article about DNA?

          • Kevin Morgan

            Bob, I am familiar with “A Scientific Dissent from Darwinism” and “Project Steve.” Are you saying that “Project Steve” has an honesty clause in it from scientists who have reservations about Darwinism?

            What you have given me is (a) an appeal to authority and (b) the what the consensus on evolution is. Neither impresses me when I am aware of the lack of scientific evidence to back the main premises for Neo-Darwinian evolution and the falsification of the “junk DNA” inference. I haven’t read your article about DNA. I am editing a book right now and only popping in when I receive notification from my e-mail account.

          • Are you saying that “Project Steve” has an honesty clause in it from scientists who have reservations about Darwinism?

            No, Project Steve is a rebuttal to the “Scientific Dissent” list. It’s all scientists who support evolution.

            What you have given me is (a) an appeal to authority

            Acknowledging that, as a layman, I have no choice but to accept the scientific consensus. I mean, with what would I reject the consensus in a field in which I’m not qualified to evaluate the evidence??

            This is no appeal to authority.

            and (b) what the consensus on evolution is.

            Do we disagree on what the consensus is? Tell me.

            I am aware of (a) the lack of scientific evidence to back the main premises for Neo-Darwinian evolution

            You have a doctorate in biology? If not, I’m unconvinced by your claim.

            and (b) the falsification of the “junk DNA” inference. I haven’t read your article about DNA.

            I’m sympathetic of overwork, but the next step on the DNA question is to see what I’ve already written on it.

          • Matt

            Well said Bob and you’re absolutely right arguing from authority and scientific consensus are not the same, it’s an absurd false equivalence.

            I’ve simply don’t have the time for a PhD in physics I’ll have to trust that the team in charge of the nuclear reactor down the road are scientific experts. I’ll hope that an experienced, qualified individual is in charge rather than someone who denies the fundamentals of particle stability. That is not an argument from authority, it’s prudent. Until the random person wants to provide reproducible evidence to the contrary.

        • Coolant

          “Evolution is the scientific consensus. Deal with it.”

          Logical fallacy Argumentum ad populum

  • Matt

    You’ve written a few hundred words here without addressing a single one of the arguments you rebuke. Let me help you shorten your next argument:

    Materialism is bad and Darwin was a materialist, therefore Darwinism and anything that comes from it is bad.

  • mbabbitt

    Materialists/naturalists exempt themselves from the very conclusions they assert. Why make an argument if you really have no purpose to convince others. Their use of argumentation refutes their core assertions. Why bother if everything is ultimately meaningless and purposeless.

    • Matt

      Ahh yes materialism is nihilism. My favourite nihilist is Carl Sagan.

    • Dorothy Thrower

      There are other motives than ‘to convince others’.
      Just getting as close as we can to a true description
      (well supported, that is)
      of our universe is wonderful and exciting.
      is a goal that is far from meaningless and purposeless.
      What distinguishes the religious from the scientific approach is that the former does not allow the ‘thinker’ to investigate what appears before his very eyes; he must interpret it in a manner consistent with an interpretation which was made thousands of years previously, by a group of ‘wise men’ whose livelihood depended on the TOTAL acceptance of their claimed True Statements of the nature of the universe — from the tiny particle to the vast universe itself.
      So the ‘wise men’ would threaten with death — in some of the most horrible ways that manunkind has ever invented — anyone who did not accept their ‘inspired’ interpretation of natural events.
      Science rarely threatens anyone, who might say, for example, that influenza is caused by a living organism, and not by the enraged whim of a Great and Absolute Invisible Power, which tells us through His proxies, the various clergymen,
      whom we must not only obey, but provide with a monetary reward.
      (Who oddly do not agree on just exactly WHAT these eternal ‘facts’ are,
      And what we may be permitted to believe, and to teach our children)
      Although I must confess that the scientific community does make its selection of candidates for positions in the scholarly and research areas,
      among those who believe that a ‘conclusion’ must be supportable by tests that can be replicated,
      rather than by fear of torture.
      —————–
      For example, I love it that I can decide to have my children vaccinated against a contagious disease, rather than pay a priest or minister to protect them by prayer alone.

      • Ronald123

        “Science rarely threatens anyone, who might say, for example, that influenza is caused by a living organism, and not by the enraged whim of a Great and Absolute Invisible Power […]”

        So typical for the ‘evolutionist’ to make it look as if there’s only ‘Creationism’ opposing ‘Evolution theory’. To me it’s obvious that evolution theory doesn’t explain the amazing complexity of life (not even of one single cell) and by all means, I’m not a ‘creationist’. although I’m convinced there’s more to Life than science (the human intellect) can possibly grasp. Also, science does nearly ALWAYS threaten anyone who poses a serious threat to it (look at ‘German New Medicine’, for instance, how they’ve refused since 1981 to test this theory about ‘dis-ease’ presented as a post doctoral thesis to the university of Tubingen, revoked doctor Hamers license and threw him in jail a few times even for just talking about his theory with some people – dr Hamer died in exile on July 2nd this year, but his legacy is out there free for anyone who has the common sense to recognize its amazing value – it might not explain everything, but surely neither does ‘school medicine’). And, as the author of this article stated, “why the outrage if beliefs, ambitions and will are “nothing but a pack of neurons.”???

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