Letter #1,078: Evolution Is Unscientific Rubbish

After months of rarely seeing a letter we could use, suddenly there seems to be an ark-load of ’em. Today’s letter-to-the-editor appears in the Lewiston Tribune of Lewiston, Idaho, the ninth-largest city in the state. The letter is titled No evidence for evolution, and it’s the third letter at that link. The newspaper has a comments feature, but there are no comments so far.

Because the writer isn’t a politician, preacher, or other public figure, we won’t embarrass or promote him by using his full name. His first name is Fritz. Excerpts from his letter will be enhanced with our Curmudgeonly commentary, some bold font for emphasis, and occasional Curmudgeonly interjections that look [like this]. Here we go!

Professor Don Matteson, your scientific credentials are impeccable and I’m sure you have a “pretty good grasp of what science is.” Thank you for your many years working as an educator. I have great respect for teachers and professors as I have had some great ones during the years.

We searched around and we can’t find anything in that newspaper that Fritz might be referring to. But there is an emeritus professor of chemistry with that name listed at the website of Washington State University — see Don Matteson. Anyway, Fritz says:

In my letter of April 18 [We didn’t look for it!], I cited well-known scientists in different fields of science. More and more scientists are speaking out and standing against evolution because there is no solid evidence. [Gasp!] As a chemist, do you accept Charles Darwin’s idea that under the right circumstances a bear could turn into a whale over time? [Huh?] What is the evidence for that statement in the “Origin of Species”?

Can a bear “turn into” a whale? What’s Fritz thinking of — the transformation of a man into a wolf, or a bat, the way it’s done in the movies? Is that his idea of evolution? We’ll soon find out. He tells us:

That speculation was so outlandish that Darwin’s friends prevailed upon him to leave it out of future editions of “Origin.” What evidence is there that any animal changed into another animal?

The Discoveroids wrote about that whale thing a year ago, and in response we wrote Discoveroids Say Darwin Was a Whale of an Idiot. But Darwin’s bear-whale speculation isn’t even remotely a rebuttal of evolution. Anyway, Fritz continues:

I had a year of chemistry in high school. [Very impressive!] The chart of the elements is real physical science validated by research, observation and experiment. Now compare that chart with the evolution charts.

BWAHAHAHAHAHA! We’re not going to bother with that. Let’s read on:

Every evolution chart from professor Ernst Haeckel’s embryos to horse evolution, ape to man and terrestrial animal to whale chart have all been shown to be invalid. [They’re all invalid!] They are invalid because there is no hard physical evidence for change.

Fritz really wants to see documented transitions like Dracula changing into a bat, and if he doesn’t see it, evolution is refuted. He ends his brilliant letter with this:

Evolution is not science; it is the speculated history of the diversity of life. Is there anything certain about evolution?

Well, dear reader, do you have anything that could convince Fritz that there’s any merit to the theory of evolution? And if you don’t, then why don’t you just give it up and admit that you’ve been a fool?

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9 responses to “Letter #1,078: Evolution Is Unscientific Rubbish

  1. “embryos to horse evolution”?

  2. “Fritz”‘s letter is amongst the most ignorant I’ve ever read on the subject.

  3. Retired Prof

    Classic straw man. Fritz is refuting arguments no serious “evolutionist” ever made.

    By the way, could Fritz’s last name be Katzenjammer? Fritz and his brother Hans got into a lot of silly mischief from the late 19th through the 20th century. Maybe this Fritz is a descendant continuing the family legacy.

  4. chris schilling

    “More and more scientists are speaking out and standing against evolution…”

    Must be all those creationists like Fritz who took a year of chemistry in high school. Maybe a whole generation of ’em.

  5. That more scientists are against evolution makes it more striking that there is yet no alternative described.

  6. Dave Luckett

    It might indeed be striking that no alternative is described, although Fritz probably would mention one – fiat creation – were he moved to do so. But he is concerned merely to decry evolution. It’s probably because Fritz thinks that if he can disable evolution, divine fiat creation is the only possible alternative.

    The rest is mere ignorance and falsehood.

    Bears to whales, for example. Darwin described observing a black bear swimming “for hours” in the sea, its mouth open, scooping up insects from the surface. He speculated that if this were a viable niche, natural selection would favour bears with wider mouths and adaptations for swimming – and thus eventually produce something as “monstrous” (he meant, extremely large) as a whale. Of course this was wrong. Whales are descended – as we know now, but Darwin could not – from artiodactyls, not bears. Darwin’s was a conjecture, no more. He included it in the early editions of “Origins” and was criticised because it was not clear that he was not advocating Lamarckism. He removed it for that reason.

    “More and more scientists are speaking out and standing against evolution because there is no solid evidence,” Fritz writes. It ill becomes one who prates of evidence to make such a statement. There is no evidence for it at all. Dissent from evolution is negligible, among scientists, in general. Among biologists, it is all but unheard-of. Fritz would know this, if he used anything but the creationist noise machine for his information.

    But that is Fritz’s source, pretty clearly. He could have read lies like that one on any number of creationist sites. He believes it, no doubt, and he is spreading it.

    I quoted Jesus, last time around, on the subject of spreading lies about teachings that you don’t understand. The same applies again.

  7. I know that I am not very good at it, but I try to avoid getting into personalities. Thus, I try to turn an argument about how there are scientists who doubt evolution into how there isn’t any science. All of those clever people, from Newton to today are really clever people. But their cleverness has not been able to formulate an alternative to evolution. That should suggest that there is a real problem: it isn’t easy and obvious.
    I’m NOT saying that anyone is dumb or devious in doubting evolution without having an alternative. There are all of those clever people who have failed.
    I’m hoping that this quiet point can be more acceptable.

  8. greenpoisonfrog

    The scientists who demur from evolution are almost all computer science, engineering, and similar studies. There are a handful of actual scientists in the field who may defend creationism but not many and they have, as noted by others here, no credible alternative.

  9. @greenpoisonfrog says “no
    credible alternative”. I make that stronger, “no alternative”.
    One can debate the non-credible.
    But the ID propents, for example, tell us that there is an alternative, without a description of what a design might be like. Indeed, they have often pointed out that life is quite beyond any design that we know about, as if that disanalogy were convincing. Design is not enough to bring something into existence – for example, Utopia. Being designed is not an explanation for any feature – for example, we all may agree that Leonardo Da Vinci designed the “Mona Lisa”, but being designed does not explain her smile. And, of course, a designer might make use of “chance” – not being necessarily an alternative. It has also been pointed out that design is a way of reacting to the natural constraints posed by a problem – quite unlike the action of a super-natural agency: without a clarification of what ID is, it seems unfit for an omnipotent agency to resort to design.