Monday, June 4, 2007

Sam Brownback attempts to explain his thoughts on evolution, makes fool of himself

from Secular Skeptic: Sam Brownback attempts to explain his thoughts on evolution, makes fool of himself

Presidential candidate Sam Brownback, whose admission of not "believing" in evolution I mentioned here, and who may or may not believe that the Earth is at the center of the Universe, has contributed an Op-Ed piece in the NY Times with an elaboration. As is usually the case when creationists try to explain what's wrong with evolution he mostly just demonstrates that he doesn't understand what evolution is (or science at all, for that matter).
The premise behind the question seems to be that if one does not unhesitatingly assert belief in evolution, then one must necessarily believe that God created the world and everything in it in six 24-hour days.

While that's basically true, I know many people who think that "day" = 1000 years, or even that "day" = a really long indeterminate amount of time, this doesn't change anything. Even if you arrange it so that the 6 days of the creation are equal to the 13-15 billion years of reality, the story just doesn't work. Things were created way out of order, and Adam and Eve are still involved. Anything with Adam and Eve in it is complete fiction. Sorry Sam. Either way, the point is that the only reason why anyone refuses to believe in evolution is for religious, not scientific reasons. If you are forced by your beliefs to deny the obvious, your beliefs are stupid.

Here's my favorite part:

I am happy to let the facts speak for themselves.

Followed quickly by:

While no stone should be left unturned in seeking to discover the nature of man’s origins, we can say with conviction that we know with certainty at least part of the outcome... Those aspects of evolutionary theory compatible with this truth are a welcome addition to human knowledge. Aspects of these theories that undermine this truth, however, should be firmly rejected as an atheistic theology posing as science.

So Brownback gives lip-service to caring about the facts, but makes it obvious that he cares about the facts only insofar as they conform to his preconceived, fantastical notions about God. I also love the bit about "atheistic theology." It's sort of like "creation science."

If belief in evolution means simply assenting to microevolution, small changes over time within a species, I am happy to say, as I have in the past, that I believe it to be true. If, on the other hand, it means assenting to an exclusively materialistic, deterministic vision of the world that holds no place for a guiding intelligence, then I reject it.
And here he commits the common sin of hijacking scientific terminology and twisting it.


read the rest, and view a funny video of "creation science" in action...

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