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 Ira. Excerpts from his letter will be enhanced with our Curmudgeonly commentary and some bold font for emphasis. Here we go!
To solve a problem, the problem must first be clearly defined. The phrase “science vs. religion” fails on several accounts. As a minimum, it doesn’t identify what science or what religion.
BWAHAHAHAHAHA! Yeah, it makes a big difference if we’re talking about astronomy or biology, and if we’re contrasting that with Christianity or Hinduism. Then he says:
Science is founded on the ability to test and observe. For example, if one states that water at sea level boils at 212 F, the statement can be tested any number of times. While this is a simple example, the principle applies even to the most complex scientific statement.
That’s a bit simplistic, but we’ll let it go. However, for more rigorous usage we recommend the definitions is provided by the National Academy of Sciences: Definitions of Evolutionary Terms. There’s also this: Scientific Hypothesis, Theory, Law Definitions. The National Center for Science Education has definitions right here.
After that beginning, Ira tells us:
But when one wishes to determine when something first came into existence (origin), who observed it and how can one test it? For origins, one can only observe evidence in the present and interpret such evidence as to its meaning for the past. Plus, one must first establish suppositions by which the evidence is to be interpreted.
[*Groan*] Ira is repeating one of the most common creationist distortions — Ken Ham’s re-definition of science itself. See Creationism and Science, in which we discuss ol’ Hambo’s bizarre distinction between historical and observational science, with the result that science — as defined by him — can’t tell us anything about the past. But it’s easily rebutted — see The Lessons of Tiktaalik. Ira continues:
The op-ed by George B. Reed Jr. published in the Aug. 5 issue of Rome News-Tribune fails to recognize the nature of science and misrepresents the problem he writes about, and he uses several straw man arguments.
Ira is probably talking about this: An old controversy revisited. It’s the sort of thing that would infuriate a creationist, so Ira attempts to debunk it. Now the fun begins:
He [Reed] states, “the Bible was never intended to be a scientific or archeological document.” True, it is a history document. He writes, “it (the Bible) was written in the symbolic, pre-scientific language of the day, and in parables, allegories, myths, etc.”
Here’s Ira’s rebuttal:
It was written primarily as historical narrative, it does not include myths, and being the word of God, wherever it touches on any scientific topic, it is truth.
[*Begin Drool Mode*] Ooooooooooooh! [*End Drool Mode*] It’s The Truth™. Let’s read on:
He [Reed] includes the canard “They all (Old Testament writers) seem to have written from a flat-earth perspective.” This red-herring has been refuted many times by both Jewish and Christian scholars.
BWAHAHAHAHAHA! See The Earth Is Flat! Another excerpt:
Then Mr. Reed offers a solution to the problem of “science vs. religion:” He states: “Science tells us what, when and how; the Bible tells us who and why.”
Ira doesn’t like that either, as he explains in the rest of his letter:
He fails to recognize that the Bible tells us what, when, how, who, and why and that for origins, science cannot tell us what, when, how, who or why — it can only spin scenarios based on naturalism.
BWAHAHAHAHAHA! Naturalism is so inferior compared to super-naturalism!
Well, dear reader, there you have it. The good people of Rome, Georgia now have much to think about. And so do you.
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