Creationist Wisdom #434: A Duane Gish Fan

Today’s letter-to-the-editor appears in the Free Lance-Star of Fredericksburg, Virginia. There used to be a lot of such letters in that newspaper, but we haven’t had one for a couple of years — not since #236: “F” for Evolution. The one they’ve got today is cautiously titled by an editor who wants to keep his distance from the writer’s claims: Reader says evolution evidence is flawed.

We don’t like to embarrass people (unless they’re politicians, preachers, or other public figures), so we’ll just use the letter-writer’s first name, which is Ron. We’ll give you a few excerpts from his letter, enhanced with our Curmudgeonly commentary and some bold font for emphasis. Here we go!

In response to Marci Shaver’s May 21 letter, I offer evidence that her viewpoint is shortsighted and flawed.

This is the “shortsighted and flawed” letter to which Ron is referring: Fossil record offers more evidence than faith. It’s brief, but quite good, and it’s the sort of thing that enrages creationists. So let’s see Ron’s reaction:

According to creation scientist Duane Gish, the two most notable gaps in the fossil record are (1) the gap between microscopic, single-celled organisms and the complex, multicellular invertebrates (jellyfish, etc.), and (2) the vast gap between these invertebrates and fish.

Duane Gish? BWAHAHAHAHAHA! Now there’s a reliable source! Well, he has been reliable since he died, because he hasn’t said anything lately. But we want to be fair to Ron, so we’ll consider what he says. He claims there’s a “notable” gap in the fossil record between single-celled organisms and multicellular types. What does he want — a two-celled fossil? Or would he settle for a fossil with three cells? Hey, Ron, those things don’t fossilize. Ah well, on with the letter:

These gaps, wrote Gish, “are so immense and indisputable that any further discussion of the fossil record becomes superfluous.” Further, these breaks establish “beyond doubt that evolution has not occurred.”

How convenient! Because we lack the fossil of a three-celled organism, there’s no need to even consider this list of transitional fossils . We have a new law of creationism: Any “notable” gap in the fossil record invalidates all fossils and the whole concept of evolution. Let’s read on:

Gish explains that there should be billions times billions of intermediates between these major groups, if evolution were true. But there is not a single one!

If Gish actually said that, he was even dumber and crazier than we thought. Ron continues:

Despite the similarities in human and chimp genomes, the scientists identified some 40 million differences among the 3 billion DNA molecules in each genome. Whether similarity is morphological (appearance) or biochemical is of no consequence to the lack of logic in this argument for evolution.

Hey, Ron — do the math. If there were only 40 million differences, that means the genomes are more than 98% identical. Here’s Ron’s last paragraph, and it’s quite unexpected:

If humans were entirely different from all other living things, or indeed if every living thing was entirely different, would this reveal the Creator to us? No! We would logically think that there must be many creators rather than one. The unity of the creation is testimony to the one true God who made it all.

He seems to be saying that totally separate creation, presumably where every organism had an utterly distinct genome, would suggest a multitude of gods (either that, or maybe our planet is a galactic zoo); but the similarity of all life on Earth — which we thought Ron was denying — is proof that it was all created by a single deity. But why is that? Couldn’t multiple gods copy designs from each other?

We can’t figure it out, and Gish can’t explain it because he’s dead, so that’s where we’ll leave it. Nice letter, Ron!

Copyright © 2014. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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8 responses to “Creationist Wisdom #434: A Duane Gish Fan

  1. Maybe Ron has “been away” for a while? Is Gish even used as a reference anymore? He’s certainly not making the top 20 list these days.

  2. This just proves the old adage, “teach a man to Gish…”

  3. And he”ll gallop for a lifetime……

  4. @Dean

    “Is Gish even used as a reference anymore?”

    The fossils say NO!

  5. “Any “notable” gap in the fossil record invalidates all fossils and the whole concept of evolution.”
    Which transforms into MNb’s Law of Creationist Family Tree: any notable gap in Rons family tree invalidates that Ron descends from Adam and Eve; instead the reasonable theory is that he descends from aliens.

    “The unity of the creation is testimony to the one true God who made it all.”
    Yup – and the lack of unity of about 30 natural constants is testimony to all the true gods who fine-tuned the Universe.

  6. vhutchison

    The only thing worth remembering aboutt Gish is the ‘gish gallop.’

  7. “According to creation scientist Duane Gish…”

    Now there’s the perfect example of an oxymoron — “creation scientist”.

  8. The “Intelligent Design” that one sees in a natural object, like a flower, that is not at all useful in archeology or cryptology.
    Because ID occurs in natural objects, that means that to find it in a
    purported artifact or a suspected code, is not to distinguish that from a product of nature.
    If we find that a curious rock has ID, that is not useful to the archeologist, because we know that curious rocks that have not been shaped by humans are also products of ID. The archeologist is interested in whether it a product of humans (or some other primate), as distinguished from the result of erosion by sand, by moss or “some mystical new-age force”. Telling the archeologist that an ID investigation produces the finding no different from the finding when applied to bacterial flagella is a waste of time.
    Telling an agent of signals intelligence that the curious radio waves were ID in the same way as is DNA is of no help at all.