You know we don’t debate creationists, and you know why: Debating Creationists is Dumber Than Creationism. We don’t even want to talk to them. But it’s still fun to imagine such an encounter. So let’s assume that such a thing happens, and the subject is Ebola — a virus which is usually fatal to humans, and which has no known cure.
Creationists claim to know the reason for all things. Although they have no idea how to cure someone suffering from Ebola, and no way to develop a vaccine (they leave such things to godless scientists), creationists should at least be able to explain why Ebola exists.
But before we begin our imaginary conversation — which will be brief — we’ll give you a bit of news. This is from the website of Nature: Ebola virus mutating rapidly as it spreads. They say:
[Augustine Goba] his colleagues have now decoded the genetic sequences of 99 Ebola viruses collected from 78 patients during the first 24 days of the epidemic in Sierra Leone. The work, published online in Science, could help to inform the design of diagnostics, therapeutics and vaccines, says structural biologist Erica Ollmann Saphire of The Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, California. “This paper is terrific,” she adds.
Here’s a link to the paper: Genomic surveillance elucidates Ebola virus origin and transmission during the 2014 outbreak. Back to Nature:
The Ebola epidemic in West Africa has already killed more than 1,400 people — including five of Goba’s co-authors from Kenema. The paper is dedicated to their memory.
Verily, this is a perfectly designed world. Let’s read on:
By comparing their data to the Guinean sequence data, Goba’s team confirmed that Ebola was probably imported to Sierra Leone by 12 people who attended the funeral in Guinea, and that the West African outbreak originated in a single event in which the virus passed from an animal into a person. Further comparisons suggest that the virus that caused the outbreak separated from those that caused past Ebola outbreaks about 10 years ago. It had accumulated more than 395 mutations between that time and June, when the researchers collected the last samples included in today’s analysis.
“The longer we allow the outbreak to continue, the greater the opportunity the virus has to mutate, and it’s possible that it will mutate into a form that would be an even greater threat than it is right now,” says Charles Chiu, an infectious-disease physician at the University of California, San Francisco.
Okay, that’s enough. Now let’s start the imaginary dialogue with a creationist. To be fair to the Discoveroids, we’ll treat them as they wish — in a different category from the bible-based creationists:
Curmudgeon: Can you explain why the Ebola virus exists?
Bible Creationist: Of course — it’s because of the original sin of Adam & Eve in the garden. We live in a sin-cursed world.
Discoveroid: The designer — blessed be he! — sometimes does things like that. You will note, however, that in spite of all those mutations, the intelligently designed virus is still Ebola. It hasn’t evolved into anything else.
Bible Creationist: Yeah, molecules to man evolution is a Satanic lie!
Curmudgeon: But why would this outbreak occur in Africa? What did those people do to deserve it?
Bible Creationist: We are all sinners. It’s a lesson to everyone. Repent!
Discoveroid: Our theory doesn’t attempt to explain why the designer does what he does. All we can do is point to the virus as clear evidence of intelligent design theory.
Curmudgeon: Okay, what should we do about it?
Bible Creationist: Repent!
Discoveroid: Abandon Darwinism!
That’s enough. We can’t endure even an imaginary dialogue with such people. If you want to suggest any further exchanges, feel free to tell us about it.
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