Self-Published Genius #85: Jack Chick Fan

This is a unique addition to our series about Self-Published Geniuses, where we bring you news of authors with a vanity press book in which the author claims to have made paradigm-shattering discoveries, and announces his work by hiring a press release service.

The press release for this one is titled Book Challenges and Exposes Darwinism’s Inability to Explain the Origin of Sex, issued by Cision PRWeb, which describes itself as “the leader in online news distribution and publicity.” It says, with some bold font added by us for emphasis, and occasional Curmudgeonly interjections [that look like this]:

F. LaGard Smith has a passion for critical thinking and is known for asking the hard questions others are often reluctant to ask, especially regarding life’s most important issues. Desiring to put forward a science-based argument against evolution that does not depend on biblical assumptions, Smith has written “Darwin’s Secret Sex Problem: Exposing Evolution’s Fatal Flaw — The Origin of Sex” (published by WestBow Press).

BWAHAHAHAHAHA! The first time we wrote about evolution’s “sex problem” was Jack Chick: Sex Is Evolution’s Nightmare. A year later the same argument showed up at Hambo’s website: Answers in Genesis: Sex Didn’t Evolve, and then another creationist outfit adopted it: Discoveroids: Sex Is Irreducibly Complex.

Hey — wait a minute! We wrote about this guy and that same book in May of last year — see Self-Published Genius #70: The Fatal Flaw. Same publisher too — WestBow Press. We Googled for them. Yup — as before, their website says they’re a religious vanity publisher. So with a vanity press book and the author’s press release, the thing qualifies for our collection — just as it did last May. But why are they still issuing press releases? What’s going on here?

We searched for the book at Amazon — it’s still there: Darwin’s Secret Sex Problem: Exposing Evolution’s Fatal Flaw — The Origin of Sex. It has 13 reviews, almost all of them give it five stars. Wowie! And here’s what they say about the author:

Smith was a District Attorney for Malheur County, Oregon for three years, served as an administrator for the Oregon State Bar in Portland for a year, then spent 27 years teaching at Pepperdine University School of Law in Malibu, California, focusing on Criminal Law, Criminal Procedure, Trial Practice, and Law and Morality.

Okay, so where are we? It’s the same book we’ve written about before, but we got sucked in by another round of press releases. Let’s give F. LaGard Smith what we’ve given no vanity press author before — a double write-up in our list. His argument is so flamingly bizarre that he deserves the honor.

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16 responses to “Self-Published Genius #85: Jack Chick Fan

  1. I peeked. His Chapter 1 is called “Species and Sex; Catastrophes at the Intersections.” This is not (or is not intended to be) a very dirty joke

  2. As usual, I am led to suspect that the author does not offer an explanation for the origin of sex.
    Yes, I know that Genesis 2 tells us that the female human was created from the body of the male. Not telling us what changes were made or how. Let’s play along, not worry about the creation of the female human. The question still remains, about the creation of sex in the male. Genesis doesn’t say a word about creating “Adam” as a male. That’s a significant gap in the creation of human sex. BTW, Genesis 1 says that humans were created male and female, a very vague statement, which has been interpreted as saying that “man” was created as a hermaphrodite. (That would simplify the making of the female, wouldn’t it? Bt, of course, we aren’t told that, just as we aren’t told anythig else.)
    But there’s much more to this. Sex is not confined to humans. There is nothing in the Bible which tells us about the creation of sex in non-human animals. And sex in living things other than animals? Is there even any recognition, anywhere in the Bible, about the existence of plant sex, let alone about its creation?
    And then there are the complexities of sexes. Those animals (like whip-tail lizards) which are single-sex. Those animals which are hermaphrodite. Those which can their sex over the course of a lifetime. And then there are the multiple mating types, as in some fungi. I’m certain that the Bible is silent about that.

    One of the difficulties that scientists have in explaining “such-and-such”, that which makes them vulnerable to the creationist attack “you can’t explain this”, is that scientists feel obliged to explain reality as it really is, in all of its complexity. There is a lot to explain about sex. A creationist has an easier time of it, for there is so little which they are to account for. Of course, the creationist fails even in this simple task. Always.

  3. The reviews at Amazon are worth reading as well. A few quotes:

    “The book, truth to be told, is too long, and certainly in the earlier chapters, seems rather repetitive. But there is so much evidence for Mr Smith’s point of view that the more of the book I read, the more I enjoyed it and appreciated his arguments.”
    Ie the more often arguments are repeated the less important “repetitive” becomes and the bigger the joy and appreciation.

    “changes observed within species cannot be extrapolated to justify all species derived from a common ancestor.”
    This guy is not sure whether to accept speciation or not.

    “It [the book] is fair, yet fearless.”
    Kinda like Superman or Captain America, I guess.

    “theistic evolution is shown to be, though perhaps entertained by scientist / believers of good intention as an honorable compromise of science and religion, rather an idea that pays homage to flawed science to give support to flawed religion”
    Take that, silly catholics who refuse to reject evolution!
    From the other side:

    “And if we can’t explain each step in the evolution of sexual reproduction, ALL of evolution falls.
    Yes, he actually argues that.”
    Exactly what we need.

  4. Michael Fugate

    I guess I should read the whole thing before commenting – mea culpa.

  5. I haven’t and won’t read Smith’s screed, but it is worth noting that the origin of sex has and still does perplex biologists. That’s separate from the origin of male and female. Sex appears to have evolved only once in some early eukaryote and has been wondrously successful, producing a huge variety of protists, fungi, plants and animals. Having two sexes, male and female, however, evolved several times. It’s also worth pointing out that the genes for sex, specifically the part known as meiosis, are conserved and present even in many eukaryotes without sex. If sex was designed, the designer wasn’t very creative, using the same set of genes. Also, as some uninformed critics claim, male and female do not separately evolve. As, TomS has already noted, there are many sexual variations. My favorite is multiple sexes (technically mating types), where a species may have three to hundreds; but, it’s only two at a time for the deed itself. Surely, an intelligent designer could have done better!

  6. “That’s separate from the origin of male and female.”
    Not if you’re a good creafundagelical.

  7. Michael Fugate

    How much time do creationists believe their god spent coming up with all the different intromittent organs? Did this god run out of ideas, throw up its hands, and resort to many animals shedding gametes into the water? Why bring pollinators in for plants and not animals? One would almost think they evolved…

  8. I am not a scientist. I have wondered, ever since I heard about multiple mating tyes whether sex could have originated with many sexes and then evolution would have simplified it to two. Or, perhaps, that sex originated with no particular number of sexes – something like conjugation happening only when there is a difference in a certain property. Then the property evolves from a continuum to a fixed number of steps, the sexes.

  9. @MichaelF asks for well known directions: “How much time do creationists believe their god spent coming up with all the different intromittent organs?”
    The creagod being infinite, ie both infinitely small and infinitely large at the same time (which is more mysterious than you and I can imagine), the answer obviously is an infinite time interval that lasted less than a split second.

  10. Oops, double post. Now this is a sin I must expect to be punished, so it’s with humility that I await the intervention from the True Almighty One – the Great Hand from Above.

    [*Voice from above*] You may expect embarrassing digestive problems for the next 24 hours.

  11. @TomS. I don’t know the answer to your musings, but it is an interesting question. In the organisms I’m familiar with binary appears to be the ancestral state with multiple mating types derived through gene duplication and recombination (oh oh, new information!). A population genetics argument for multiple types goes something like this. If there are two equally frequent types, the probability that the next individual is complementary (compatible) is 50%. If there are 10 equally frequent mating types, then the probability for compatibility goes to 90%. In other words, with more mating types available, the chance for successful sex goes up. Of course, in the real world there are evolutionary constraints, so depending on the molecular signals (proteins) that allow two cells to fuse, it may be impossible to evolve multiple types. One of the beauties of nature is that living things are constantly experimenting with their genes and genomes. Some combinations turn out to be wildly successful. But, to a creacrapper none of this matters. G.. did it.

  12. I know quite a few people at Pepperdine, and whenever I bring up Smith, the standard response is a roll of the eyes and something like “he should stick to law since he knows nothing about biology.”

  13. @Scientist
    It sounds like multiple mating types are stable, which would work against my idea.
    The Genesis 2 explanation for the reason for two human sexes has always struck me as odd, from a traditional Christian point of view. But then, much of the creation stories in Genesis seems to be distinctly different from the Christian point of view. If one approaches them with an open mind, and read what is written, rather than what one expects.

  14. Michael Fugate

    Search for Non Sequitur Before Eve – to understand Genesis 2 and how it was spoiled…

  15. The Acknowledgement section of Laggard’s book gives a nod to Phillip Johnson. Presumably, the Master gave his imprimatur to such important concepts as “little-e evolution” and big-E evolution (micro-macro mambo) that Laggard has — through his own travails — added to the unique genre of evolution-take down by professors of Law.