One of the creationists’ “best” arguments against the theory of evolution is that it has no answer to the question of how life began. Their argument is a classic example of a claim based on the God of the gaps fallacy, which we sometimes simplify like this:
In other words, if something isn’t yet fully understood, then the answer must be … Oogity Boogity! The problem with such an argument is that, well, it’s worthless. The theists’ claim about a miraculous creation may indeed be a true one. Nobody knows, because they have no evidence, but no one can disprove it. Such is the nature of theology. Then why don’t creationists just say that they choose to believe it, and let it go with that? Why do they claim that they have “proof,” when it’s so obvious that they have none?
We don’t know why they behave as they do. For a good example of such behavior, see Klinghoffer Defends the God of the Gaps. The best part of that post is our quote from Albert Einstein, taken from Science and Religion, which we’ll repeat here:
To be sure, the doctrine of a personal God interfering with the natural events could never be refuted, in the real sense, by science, for this doctrine can always take refuge in those domains in which scientific knowledge has not yet been able to set foot. But I am persuaded that such behaviour on the part of the representatives of religion would not only be unworthy but also fatal. For a doctrine which is able to maintain itself not in clear light but only in the dark, will of necessity lose its effect on mankind, with incalculable harm to human progress.
All we can do is point out that, one by one, each of the creationists’ claims is being eroded by scientific discoveries. What probably frightens them most (other than the discovery of life on some other planet) is an undeniable demonstration that life can come into existence by natural means. And that demonstration is coming closer.
If you have three minutes to spare, take a look at the video at the top of this post. It’s about the work of Georgia Tech biochemist Nicholas Hud and his team at the Center for Chemical Evolution.
Ultimately, creationism’s biggest nightmare is knowledge. That’s why they hate science.
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