Creationist Wisdom #492: Evolution Is Mysticism

Today’s letter-to-the-editor appears in the Midland Daily News of Midland, Michigan. It’s titled Mystics. There’s a comments section at the end, and there are a few comments already.

Today’s writer isn’t a politician, preacher, or other public figure, so we won’t use his full name. His first name is Bill. Excerpts from his letter will be enhanced with our Curmudgeonly commentary and some bold font for emphasis. Here we go!

I try to keep up with past and current affairs, but I sure missed something. In Frank Bruni’s column which you published on Thursday, Nov. 6, titled “Republicans, meet science,” he stated “… there are many Americans who still deny what Darwin and other scientists long ago proved. They elect mysticism over empiricism.”

He’s talking about this, which we found in the New York Times: Republicans, Meet Science. Bruni obviously erred in saying that the theory was “proved,” because theories never are — but it’s overwhelmingly supported by all the evidence ever discovered. The thing was probably reprinted in Bill’s local paper, and it has upset him terribly. He says:

Where is the book or article which proves evolution? If Mr. Bruni can provide me a copy I would like to read it.

Hey, yeah! Where’s that book? Let’s read on:

I still refer to evolution as a theory, not a law. The Second Law of Thermodynamics is defined as a law because it can be tested experimentally, and it has never been shown to be inaccurate. Where is the experimental proof that shows that evolution as hypothesized by many scientist is in fact a law?

Aaaargh!! Bill doesn’t know the difference between a theory and a law, nor does he know that one never gets promoted to the other. It’s not that difficult to find definitions — see Scientific Hypothesis, Theory, Law Definitions, and also Definitions of Fact, Theory, and Law in Scientific Work. Bill continues:

There have been many theories brought forth and then continuously revised as scientists discover new data that conflicts with the old, which is the way science is supposed to work. But as these revisions are made, the hypothesis remains just that, an hypothesis.

He doesn’t know the meaning of hypothesis either. Here’s the rest of it:

I am not aware of any empirical proof that evolution of man, or any species for that matter, has evolved from some non-living soup of those “building blocks of life” that are continually presented as the start of life. And without empirical proof, I would suggest that those scientists who continually try to push their theory as fact are mystics themselves.

We can’t fool Bill! He knows we’re a bunch of mystics.

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

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9 responses to “Creationist Wisdom #492: Evolution Is Mysticism

  1. “I try to keep up with past and current affairs, but I sure missed something.”

    Yep, it’s called school.
    But, I’ll give him a few points for slipping the Second Law in, nice touch!

  2. Charles Deetz ;)

    And without empirical proof, I would suggest that those scientists who continually try to push their theory as fact are mystics themselves.

    Ya know, if you listened to these modern mystics Bill, maybe they’d give you the empirical proof you are looking for. Or at least google your questions before you put them in a letter.

  3. Well Bill since the science that proves evilution is true cannot be true because evilution is false then you better throw away your cell phone as it is using the same untrue science that evilution uses.

  4. Another letter showing the writer’s confusion of “origin of life” with “origin of species”. Why so many people (mostly men, for some reason) insist on demonstrating their ignorance by writing letters to their local newspapers, and why those papers persist in publishing those letters, is hard to fathom.

  5. Jason is generous and grants “a few points for slipping the Second Law in”.
    Perhaps a few more because there is no way to measure energy and entropy directly. At the other had pesky little things like speciation and mutations have been observed – directly indeed.

  6. Where is the book or article which proves evolution?

    There are many books and articles which give the empirical evidence for evolution. They are hidden in secret places called “libraries.”

  7. “I am not aware of any empirical proof that evolution of man, or any species for that matter, has evolved from some non-living soup of those “building blocks of life” that are continually presented as the start of life. And without empirical proof, I would suggest that those scientists who continually try to push their theory as fact are mystics themselves.”

    News flash: nobody, but nobody, claims that evolution has “evolved from some non-living soup.”

    Where is the book or article which proves evolution?

    Where’s the one which proves creation? I said proves, not asserts as a given. I’ve read creationist texts, including Duane Gish’s classic Evolution? The Fossils Say No!, and without exception they’re garbage, filled with nonsense any bright high school student can refute (especially in this age of the Internet).

  8. Where is the book or article which proves evolution?

    There is an essay from more than 160 years ago which addressed such a question, by pointing out that, not only is no evidence for an alternative, there is not even a description of an alternative.

    See the essay by Herbert Spencer, “The Development Hypothesis” online in WikiSource.org.

    Of course, the evidence for evolution has increased massively since then, as well as details of the description. But for the “alternative”, surprisingly, it has not been a slight increase, nor even static, but has been reduced to the point of vanishing.

    So, where can one find a beginning for the evidence? See the Wikipedia.org article “Evidence for common descent”.

  9. Where is the book or article which proves evolution? If Mr. Bruni can provide me a copy I would like to read it.

    Start here:

    1) Jerry Coyne “Why Evolution is True”
    2) Richard Dawkins “The Greatest Show on Earth” (two overviews of the convergent multiple lines of evidence for evolution).
    3) Donald Prothero “Evolution: What the Fossils Say and Why it Matters” (the fossil evidence).
    4) Sean B. Carroll “The Making of the Fittest” (the DNA evidence).

    Come back when you’ve finished, and I’ll give you some others.