Today’s letter-to-the-editor (like so many others) appears in the Shreveport Times of Shreveport, Louisiana. It’s titled: Putting fox in charge of henhouse. We don’t like to embarrass people (unless they’re politicians, preachers, or other public figures), so we’ll omit the writer’s full name and city. We will mention that his first name is John, and he’s described as a “guest columnist.” We’ll give you a few excerpts from his letter, enhanced with our Curmudgeonly commentary, and some bold font for emphasis. Okay, here we go:
A poll taken in 1998 revealed that only 7 percent of the members of the National Academy of Sciences believed in a personal God. Biologists had the lowest rate of belief in God (5.5 percent). This number is dropping as it had fallen from 15 percent in 1933.
The National Center for Science Education (NCSE) discussed that poll here, Do Scientists Really Reject God?, and contrasted it with different results from a Gallup poll. NCSE attributes the discrepancy to the very different questions that were asked. But ol’ Hambo’s website had an article that, like John’s letter, doesn’t bother with such distinctions — see National Academy of Science is Godless to the Core – Survey. That’s probably where John got his information. Then he says:
Science has redefined itself to consider only naturalistic or godless explanations for any observed phenomena.
“Redefined”? As we’ve discussed before, the tradecraft of science is incapable of examining supernatural phenomena, so it’s limited in what it can research. Nevertheless, despite that limitation, science has — shall we say — a somewhat better track record for explaining things in ways that can be tested than theology does. Let’s read on:
It was not always so. Many great scientists practiced their science and found it compatible with their personal belief in an omnipotent God as their creator.
Yes. Isaac Newton saw no incompatibility between his laws of motion or his description of gravity and scripture. That’s because there’s nothing in scripture on those subjects. But whenever science discovered anything that was incompatible with scripture — such as in astronomy, geology, and biology — well, we all know how that plays out. The letter continues:
Today, however, a scientist who attributes anything to God is not considered a scientist. Scientific journals will not publish their papers.
Of course not. God-did-it isn’t an hypothesis that can be tested — or even understood — so it’s not science. Here’s more:
Evolution theory is the central tenet of atheism. It opines that all living things evolved from a single common ancestor via zillions of undirected mutations over eons of time. When Charles Darwin first published his theory, he acknowledged that it was speculative and lacked supporting evidence.
Balderdash! As Darwin carefully explained, all the evidence in the world up to that time was consistent with his theory. It still is. Moving along:
He blamed a woefully imperfect fossil record for the lack of supporting evidence. He predicted that future fossil finds would produce evidence of the missing zillions of transitional species that would form traceable chains from a very simple, single cell, common ancestor to all of the diversity of life that exists or has existed on this planet.
More balderdash! Darwin never predicted that a fossil showing every minute transition would — or could — be found. No one imagines that such could ever be done, yet creationists always demand it. Darwin did predict that additional transitional fossils would be found — and they have been. Once more we’ll link to Wikipedia’s list of transitional fossils. Another excerpt:
His prediction was wrong. The present massive fossil record now clearly reveals what was less clear in Darwin’s time, i.e. the abrupt appearance of fully developed species, all appearing within a relatively short period of time (the Cambrian Explosion). These species show no significant change from the time they appeared to the present, or the time they became extinct.
BWAHAHAHAHAHA! Everything appeared suddenly in the Cambrian Explosion, and nothing has changed since then! That’s not worth rebutting. On with the article:
Stasis is data. Science (real science) considers and interprets all data. The existence of a single species appearing abruptly, fully developed, is fatal to the single common ancestor premise of evolution theory.
No, it just means that where the fossil-diggers were looking, that’s all they found. The world is a big place, and aside from the inevitability of missing fossils that may exist a few miles away from a dig, only a minute fraction of things that once lived ever become fossilized. But John isn’t done yet:
Evolutionists ignore the fossil data. When science ignores massive amounts of conflicting data, it is no longer science. Evolution theory is an ideology (religion or non-religion) falsely labeled as science. The fossil record is the only data that can give supporting evidence to the theory, and it refutes rather than confirms it.
BWAHAHAHAHAHA! No, it’s not the only data — there’s also DNA. But what creationist never admit — perhaps because they don’t comprehend it — is that even one transitional fossil contradicts creationism. If creationists ever sat down to think about their “theory,” instead of just drooling over it, they would realize that there’s a prediction that creationism makes — if animals were fully created in the beginning, then there shouldn’t be any transitionals. Ol’ Hambo’s website once tried to explain them away, unsuccessfully in our opinion — see AIG: Transitional Species Are Really “Mosaics”. They’ve avoided the subject ever since. Anyway, we’re getting near the end:
Linking science to a hypothesis that admittedly lacked supporting evidence when it was first proposed, and has since been clearly refuted by an abundance of evidence of abrupt appearance and stasis leaves a stain on all real science.
A stain! Egad! And now we come to the end:
From a theist or Christian perspective, allowing a field of science that is dominated and controlled by atheists to instruct young children is akin to leaving the fox in charge of the henhouse.
John does make one good point — if people like him were in charge of education, it would certainly be different. Nice letter, John!
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