This is a Doonesbury comic that appeared in the Sunday paper a week ago, which I wanted to respond to here.
#1 – All the evidence does NOT massively support a theory of evolution.
Actually, neither do the scientists. If you haven’t heard of it, I’d encourage you to check out the website: “A Scientific Dissent from Darwinism” on this subject. Here’s what the site’s about, in its own words:
During recent decades, new scientific evidence from many scientific disciplines such as cosmology, physics, biology, “artificial intelligence” research, and others have caused scientists to begin questioning Darwinism’s central tenet of natural selection and studying the evidence supporting it in greater detail.
Yet public TV programs, educational policy statements, and science textbooks have asserted that Darwin’s theory of evolution fully explains the complexity of living things. The public has been assured that all known evidence supports Darwinism and that virtually every scientist in the world believes the theory to be true.
The scientists on this list dispute the first claim and stand as living testimony in contradiction to the second. Since Discovery Institute launched this list in 2001, hundreds of scientists have courageously stepped forward to sign their names.
The list is growing and includes scientists from the US National Academy of Sciences, Russian, Hungarian and Czech National Academies, as well as from universities such as Yale, Princeton, Stanford, MIT, UC Berkeley, UCLA, and others.
A Scientific Dissent From Darwinism
“We are skeptical of claims for the ability of random mutation and natural selection to account for the complexity of life. Careful examination of the evidence for Darwinian theory should be encouraged.”
“There is scientific dissent from Darwinism. It deserves to be heard.”
Check out the site and read the names for yourself! I personally was surprised to see a couple of names from my Alma Mater (a very liberal university indeed) on the list.
#2 – Evolution does NOT knit together everything we know about biology.
How can it? 2 reasons why it does not and can not.
A) “Evolution” is a theory about the development of life from one stage to another, and as such by definition does not deal with the question of how life originated in the first place.
So here’s the deal: One thing we know about biology is that life exists. Duh, that’s definitional to biology.
But evolution by definition can not explain how life came to be, because evolution is a theory dealing with the behavior of life, not its origin.*
B) Even if I were to assent that evolution – strictly speaking – does deal with the question of origins (which I do not, but just for argument’s sake), it still does not knit everything we know about biology together in that it fails to offer any coherent argument to explain irreducible complexity.
And what is irreducible complexity? Essentially, it is the idea that some things in creation need 2 or more parts to be brought together at the same time, or nothing happens to propagate functions necessary for life.
We need an example, so watch this video.
Now, all those little pieces? The blue molecule that did the transcription (known as RNA polymerase)? The ribosome that did the translation? All of the molecules holding the amino acids to feed into the growing protein? Each one of those was created in exactly the same way as you just saw the hemoglobin get made.
So wait a minute… without DNA, we can’t make RNA polymerase or ribosomes, but without RNA polymerase or ribosomes we can’t use DNA to do ANYTHING, including making RNA polymerase or ribosomes…
Sound a bit like a catch-22 doesn’t it? Even if DNA were to somehow come together spontaneously on its own, it would be impossible to do anything with it unless RNA polymerase and ribosomes were to spontaneously come into being simultaneously with the DNA. Besides, how could RNA polymerase and ribosomes come together on their own when they need A) DNA, B) RNA polymerase, and C) ribosomes to make them in the first place? It’s simply a case of not being able to have the one without the other; yet we have both – how?
And that’s even oversimplifying it. You can Google irreducible complexity and get tons of great material online.
(In passing I will note that there are several youtube videos dismissing irreducible complexity as an argument, however the 2 that I have taken the time to watch dealt in some logical and biological sleight of hand to make their points and I, personally, did not find them convincing.)
#3 – Intelligent Design/Creationism does NOT have “no evidence whatsoever”.
Note the double negative there. I am saying that there is TONS of evidence for the Biblical account of creation as found in Genesis chapters one and two. Here I will refer you to 2 resources to learn more about our origins from a staunchly Biblical, impeccably scientific perspective.
Answers in Genesis – an absolutely amazing ministry devoted to Biblically and scientifically teaching our origins from the first 11 chapters of Genesis. I highly recommend browsing their store, where they keep readily available a multitude of books, CDs, and videos from some of the best scientists in the business. I myself have a whole bookshelf worth of AiG videos on such topics as A) the geology of Noah’s flood, B) Dinosaurs in the Bible, C) Creation astronomy, etc. Anything featuring Ken Ham, Dr. David Menton, Dr. Jason Lisle, or Dr. Mike Riddle is guaranteed gold.
Creation Truth Foundation – an organization founded by Dr. G. Thomas Sharp, the CTF is second only to AiG in terms of solid scientific resources for the thinking Christian. I have seen Dr. Sharp speak several times, and he is fantastic. He is joined by Dr. Charles Jackson, a man with at least 4 earned degrees in scientific fields and a phenomenal defender of the faith in public debate. I’ve had the privilege of having dinner with Dr. J about a year and a half ago and I must say I have never seen a man so energetic and alive with energy both physical and mental. Dr. J has also been a guest on Table Talk Radio at least twice: listen here to “Creationism vs. Evolutionism“, and here to “Refuting Missing Link Claims“.
The evidence for our position is out there. See for yourselves by checking out the resources I’ve given, and don’t be led astray by the empty rhetoric of the evolutionist camp. Scientific opinion changes every 15 years; God’s word changes never.
*Life is already presupposed at the outset of the theory of evolution; a different theory is needed to explain life’s origins, because evolution is solely concerned with its behavior.
You can think of it this way: using the theory of evolution to try to explain where life came from is like trying to use the theory of general relativity to explain where time, energy, or matter came from. E =MC^2 is predicated on the existence of these components, and exists entirely to explain the behavior of time, energy, and matter. In the same way, evolution is predicated on the existence of life, and exists entirely to explain the behavior of life.
So, just like time, energy and matter are assumed for the theory of relativity, which only deals with the behavior of already existing components, NOT the origins of these components; the existence of life is assumed for the theory of evolution, which only deals with the behavior of already existing components, NOT the origins of these components. By definition.