The Wonder Of Creationism

The people I take some of the greatest delight in seeing on Twitter are deluded creationists.  Most of them are hilariously brainwashed and incorrigible, but it gets amusing when a number of them get in on calling them out – some great minds I’ve come across tend to enjoy them too.

What’s funny is looking at the “evidence” they come up with to support their claims.  It’s usually so ridiculously full of logical fallacy that we only need debate which of its claims are most foolhardy.  Usually they revolve around a few tactics.  They’ll present some famous frauds like Piltdown Man in order to claim that they prove the entire concept false.  That is, of course, ridiculous… but they don’t seem to mind that at all.

Another one they’ll use is presentation of debunked pseudoscience.  One of these folks did that lately with a video featuring Dr. Michael Behe, the chief proponent of “irreducible complexity”, which is the “scientific” foundation for Intelligent Design, the creationist movement’s effort to gain credibility to support their “teach the controversy” strategy.  They of course hate the idea of being attacked on the basis that irreducible complexity has been debunked and is not considered to hold scientific merit.

Someone I’ve just encountered posted the Discovery Institute’s list of about 700 scientists who “reject Darwinism”.  What’s interesting is that other than the list there’s little background.  Many of these esteemed academics are in fields totally unrelated to life sciences.  And there’s 700 of them.  Out of hundreds of thousands of scientists who in fact do not find themselves disagreeing.  Or at least, who don’t actively oppose the ideas.  I’m sure many scientists question aspects of the Theory of Evolution and all related ideas, but few scientists simply reject it outright – they use the scientific method to explore their doubts.  It’s quite telling that there is to my knowledge no established, journal-published peer reviewed scientific research which refutes the theory of evolution.  If there was, well, we’d all be forced to reconsider everything with think.  Journals would all be fighting over the chance to publish such a study.

This particular person is one of the more disturbed people completely wrapped up in the fraud of creationism, and to watch her repeatedly try to defend her untenable position is a mix of humour and tragedy.  This is someone who has displayed tragic evidence of being unable to think for herself in any critical manner – but then actually states that it is us, those who reject the idea of creationism, who cannot think for ourselves.  It’s a statement so richly ridiculous I don’t even know how to answer it.

It got better after I posted this entry originally, which is why I decided to come back to it.  I sent this individual, who’s a big fan of YouTube videos, a link to one of my favourite ten minute explanations of evolution and the science that underpins the theory.  Its basic premise is an explanation of why virtually all scientists understand evolution to be true, or at least, to be the best explanation of the diversity of life.  If you’re interested, the video is here: http://bit.ly/dphBpz and I had nothing whatsoever to do with its creation.  I’m just not that smart.

Her response was absolutely brilliant.  Here goes: First she said: “he said some untruths from the beginning- that is a dead giveaway”.  I don’t know which statements she’s referring to, of course.  I pointed out that her videos all start with tremendous, ridiculous creationist bias.

So I wondered, what specific thing are you referring to?  She answered before I even asked: “Phylogenetic Tree does not have to be drawn the same way- many models- Darwinistic faith is used by Darwinists 2 fill in THEIR blank” (note, I’m copying and pasting this from Twitter, the grammar and spelling errors are hers.  Never mind the substance.)  The whole point of the video, if you haven’t watched it, is that the phylogenetic tree – the tree of life, as it were, comes out the same using a variety of methods to assess it.  That’s the wonder of evolution, you see – the evidence, gathered from different sources, in different ways, all points to the same conclusion.

This person, I’ve decided, is so lost in the delusions of her religion, that there’s no real point in trying to show her reality.  She is indeed hopelessly lost, and I may as well abandon her.  I wish it was so simple, because watching these deluded souls is like watching a terrible trainwreck.  You shouldn’t watch, you know it’s wrong, but you do anyhow.  You stare in awe at the tragic mess.  She didn’t disappoint, either.  This next quote, this one’s my favourite: she posted a link to this: “Put your affairs in order, biologists. Your time is nigh!” http://scienceblogs.com/pharyngula/2009/06/put_your_affairs_in_order_biol.php

Note the author.  P.Z. Myers.  A biologist who believes like most of his peers that creationism in any form is utter bilge.  I think this woman just saw the headline, didn’t realize that the post makes fun of just how stupid creationism, especially “intelligent design”.  Myers in particular mocks the 2004 claim of the Intelligent Design set that evolution will be “dead” in five years.  That obviously has been true.  He then notes the only really truthful thing they point out – that they have no theory that holds up.  They have “intuition” (religious blindness, surely), and a couple of concepts like the totally discredited “irreducible complexity”.  They have nothing at all.  They know this, they know that since Kitzmiller vs Dover Board of Education in the USA they have very little chance of getting their drivel into classrooms, and they are scrambling to assert something, anything of scientific merit.  And they can’t.  They can make all sorts of claims about scientists dissenting, but take a look at that list.  700 or so – up to 2000 I’ve heard claimed.  Look at their fields.  Many of them are not in any field related to life sciences.  None of them that I know of has a single peer-reviewed, journal-published article that takes down evolution.  So I reiterate, they have nothing.

My friend, this evening, made one more amusing tweet on the matter.  “Purpose of science -bring all facts to light-follow evidence wherever it leads- Not so n Darwinism”.  This I think is the very summation of everything that is wrong with creationists.  They don’t follow this process.  Biologists and other scientists studying the origins of life do.  They start with hypotheses, and test them.  The tests become evidence for the theory, or, if applicable, they create gaps or problems with the theories that require further study.  They ask questions and seek answers that fill in the blanks to the best of their abilities.  Creationists seem to follow a completely different, and totally intellectually dishonest process.  They start with their outcomes defined.  They are trying to prove what Dawkins eloquently termed “the origin mythology of a certain group of Bronze Age tribesmen” – at least it was something to that effect, I don’t have the book handy for the exact wording.  They have what they assert to be the “truth” and they will thus try to shoehorn anything they can in to fit the story.   That isn’t science at all.

While we are at it, take a look some time at the story they’re trying to prove.  It’s rather ridiculous, and out of reasonable sequence, at the most basic levels.  If you want a good read, I’ll put in a plug for the Skeptic’s Annotated Bible, an interesting project.  It’s at http://www.skepticsmannotatedbible.com .  They have a tremendous amount of interesting, irreverent, and amusing commentary on the supposedly inerrant word of god.  In particular, though, look at this page – Absurdities in the Book of Genesis.  http://www.skepticsannotatedbible.com/gen/abs_list.html Things like the fact that plants were made before there was sun to support photosynthesis.  That light appeared on the first day, but the Sun didn’t until the fourth, and so on.  It makes absolutely no sense – and this is what these folks want to base the story of our origins on?  Ridiculous.  The whole thing is just plain ridiculous.

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2 comments so far

  1. P. J. Colley on

    I just have a couple of questions: Why is the issue of evolution so important to you? Do you believe in God–of any faith?

    • warriorbanker on

      Why it’s important it rather simple. It’s not that I begrudge anyone believing it personally/privately. Well, beyond thinking they are willfully deluded since the overwhelming abundance of evidence supports an evolutionary process. Even though the mechanisms for the first origins of life aren’t totally clear and will likely never advance beyond theory stage no evidence has been advanced to show any other explanation. When creationists realized their ultimate agenda, putting their story in schools on an equal footing with actual science – wasn’t going to happen, they then invented their pseudoscience, intelligent design. They admit in the posted article quoting PZ Myers that ID only has concepts (which are debunked anyhow) and no complete theory. So it’s going nowhere fast.

      My problem – I alluded to it above – is the advancement of non-scientific nonsense into school classrooms and its impact on children. The imposition of religious ideas as equivalent to scientific evidence to the contrary, including their insidious “teach the controversy” ideas are wrong. First there isn’t a controversy in the scientific community, and second there is no science to creationism. If parents want to fill their own kids’ heads with conflicting nonsense that’s their prerogative but schools – secular public schools – must not do so.

      Second question – no. I do not believe in gods in any way, shape, or form.


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