Category Archives: Intelligent Design

Creationist Wisdom #847: School Violence

We’ve only used the graphic above this post once before, back in 2010, but we were reminded of it by today’s letter-to-the-editor which appears in the Hiawatha World, a weekly newspaper in Hiawatha, Kansas (population 3,172).

The letter is titled Causes for school violence. The newspaper has a comments section, but there aren’t any comments yet.

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 Bill. Excerpts from his letter will be enhanced with our Curmudgeonly commentary and some bold font for emphasis. Here we go!

I would like to commend the high school students for organizing and expressing their opinions against school violence. However, I would encourage the students and their parents to look deeper into the causes, and the answers to those causes. Are the media correct when they imply that the problem is only guns and mental health, or has there been a change in our culture?

What’s the answer? Bill has looked deeper than you, dear reader, and he says:

Are you no longer taught that there is a supernatural God that we are accountable to (such as “In God we trust”) or are we just here by random chance and have no definite purpose?

Wow — Bill may be on to something! Perhaps he’s reviewed Wikipedia’s List of school shootings in the United States, which goes back to 1840 (not counting some Indian violence in colonial days). He tells us:

Other questions we can ask are:

1. Is Darwinian evolution based on observed evidence or on blind faith?

2. Has the national education establishment been infiltrated by some individuals who have an agenda that is not in the best interests of America?

3. Are stronger locks and doors and armed guards the answer?

I am sure that you probably have other questions. How do we find answers?

Tell us Bill! How do we find the answers? He continues:

To help start a community discussion, there will be a three week series of speakers on video at the Morrill Public Library meeting room at 7 p.m. on Thursdays, April 5, 12, and 19. I would encourage students, parents, teachers, pastors and others to come and listen and see what we can learn.

Ooooooooooooh! A three week series of speakers! It sounds wonderful! Let’s read on:

Topics will be:

1. Evolution vs. God

2. God’s word vs. man’s word – does it matter?

3. Whose agenda are we following?

That sounds fantastic! The rest of Bill’s letter is a phone number you can call to get more information, but you’ll have to click over there to get it.

There’s nothing even remotely that great where you live, is there, dear reader? You probably thought the people of Kansas led boring lives, but now you know better.

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More Creationist Madness in Louisiana

We have previously described Louisiana as a swirling vortex of voodoo and creationism. As you know, in 2008 they were the first state (of only two) to enact — almost unanimously — a version of the Discovery Institute’s anti-science, anti-evolution, pro-creationism Academic Freedom Act (about which see the Curmudgeon’s Guide to “Academic Freedom” Laws). It became the infamous Louisiana Science Education Act (the LSEA). Since then, the legislature has rejected several attempts to repeal the LSEA.

Not only that, but two years ago there was an attempt in the Louisiana legislature to repeal the obsolete bill that required “Balanced Treatment for Creation-Science,” which had been declared unconstitutional in Edwards v. Aguillard back in 1987. That failed too — see Creationism Triumphs in Louisiana Legislature, in which we reported that State Sen. John Milkovich, vice chairman of the Senate Education Committee, said:

Scientific research and developments and advances in the last 100 years — particularly the last 15, 20, 10 years — have validated the biblical story of creation.

It seems that nothing has changed in Louisiana. Our friends at the National Center for Science Education (NCSE) are reporting this: A creationist resolution in Louisiana. Here are some excerpts, with bold font added by us for emphasis:

Senate Resolution 33 (PDF), introduced in the Louisiana Senate on March 20, 2018, would, if passed, commend a former state senator “on his support and endorsement of teaching creationism in public schools.” The resolution would honor Bill Keith, who sponsored Louisiana’s Balanced Treatment for Creation-Science and Evolution-Science Act while serving in the state senate in 1981.

BWAHAHAHAHAHA! They want to honor the Senator whose bill was declared unconstitutional. Skipping all the flowery WHEREAS clauses, the resolution says:

THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Senate of the Legislature of Louisiana does hereby commend former Louisiana state Senator Bill Keith on his support and endorsement of teaching creationism in the public schools.

Amazing, isn’t it? After that, NCSE tells us:

The chief sponsor of the resolution is John Milkovich (D-District 38), who was the most outspoken opponent of the most recent effort to repeal the Balanced Treatment Act, according to the Associated Press (March 29, 2016).

BWAHAHAHAHAHA! Here’s a link to his page at the legislature’s website: Senator John Milkovich. He’s a Democrat from Shreveport. A click on the “Biography” link informs us that he’s a lawyer, but also:

John is committed to his community. This commitment is demonstrated by his ministry throughout the last 20 years to children, including inner city youth, and kids from broken homes. He has assisted in children’s ministries at his home church, taught Sunday school to 5th and 6th grade boys, led devotional services at a juvenile detention center, preached the Gospel at a rehabilitation center for teens, and mentored the young. He has participated in prison ministry and nursing home ministries, served on the Board of the Shreveport-Bossier Rescue Mission, led chapel services at the Mission, and taught leadership in elementary schools. John is a 29-year member of Shreveport Community Church, where he has served on the Board of Directors, under Senior Pastor Denny Duron, since 1998.

Here’s a link to the legislature’s page where you can follow the progress of this incredible resolution: SR33 by Senator John Milkovich. Nothing much has happened so far. It’s scheduled for a second reading on 26 March. We’re not sure what the procedures are after that. The 2018 legislative session is scheduled to adjourn on 04 June, so there’s plenty of time for this thing to get passed. It’s difficult to imagine that it wouldn’t.

We’ll keep you advised. Stay tuned to this blog!

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Ken Ham: No Intelligent Alien Civilizations

As you know, Ken Ham (ol’ Hambo) — the ayatollah of Appalachia, is the world’s holiest man who knows more about religion and science than everyone else. But did you know that he’s also an expert on the existence of intelligent alien civilizations?

It’s true. He just posted this at Answers in Genesis (AIG), his creationist ministry: Study: We Probably Won’t Hear from Aliens (Because They’re Dead). Here are some excerpts, with bold font added by us for emphasis:

Scientists have been searching for signals and messages from intelligent extraterrestrial beings for many years now and so far have turned up nothing. In a recent study [We probably won’t hear from aliens. But by the time we do, they’ll be dead], scientists “updated” the Drake Equation, a mathematical equation that estimates the number of detectable civilizations throughout the Milky Way. They concluded that, if we do receive signals from an alien civilization, the aliens who sent it are probably already dead.

Ah yes, the Drake equation. The estimates it produces are always being updated due to the number of planetary systems now believed to exist, but it’s still unknown how common life — and intelligent life — actually is out there. Hambo says:

Are they dead, or is it simply that they never existed? Sort of reminds me of those people who talk about “missing links”: are the links missing because they haven’t found them, or did they never exist? Well, whether aliens or missing links, I don’t believe either has ever existed.

BWAHAHAHAHAHA! Hambo has written several times telling us that there aren’t any aliens out there. The last time we blogged about it was Ken Ham Says Aliens Are a False Religion. But we’ve never seen him — or any creationist — dismiss aliens and missing links at the same time. Hambo tells us:

The researchers reasoned that if a civilization lasted less than 100,000 years — the time they assume it takes light to cross the galaxy — the odds are almost nonexistent that we will receive that broadcast while the civilization still exists. Essentially, they think these signals would be “ghost signals” from a dead alien civilization.

Yes, if the aliens were at the opposite rim of the galaxy when the signal was sent, and if they all died out since then. Two big ifs. Hambo continues:

[T]he article on this new Drake Equation research ends with the news that one researcher “is now working on a paper about what it means that we’ve found [no signals] so far.”

But Hambo already knows. He announces:

What it means is that there aren’t any intelligent alien civilizations out there! And that’s exactly what we’d expect starting with God’s Word.

Why don’t those fools listen to Hambo? He explains:

The Bible tells us earth was formed to be inhabited, and it’s to earth that Jesus came to save us, not to another planet to save another race of beings. You see, Adam’s sin broke all of creation [scripture reference], so if there are other intelligent beings out there, they suffer the effects of Adam’s sin, but, because they aren’t descended from Adam, they can’t be saved. Jesus came to die for Adam’s race — not Klingons or Vulcans!

Yeah — phooey on Klingons and Vulcans! One more excerpt:

The belief in aliens (which really comes from an evolutionary worldview) is a huge theological problem. On top of that, all this searching for them is nothing but a waste of time and money, though discoveries about the universe along the way point to the glory of the Creator God if one just looks [scripture references]!

That’s all you need to know about aliens, dear reader.

Copyright © 2018. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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Three Reasons Hawking Was Wrong About God

This timely article appears at the website Christian Today, which has no comments section. They describe themselves as “an independent Christian media company,” located in London. They’re hard-core creationists according to their Basis of Faith, which says: “We believe in: (3) The divine inspiration and supreme authority of the Old and New Testament Scriptures, which are the written Word of God – fully trustworthy for faith and conduct.”

Their headline is Stephen Hawking was wrong: 3 reasons why God must exist. It was written by Will Jones, described at the end as “a Birmingham-based writer, a mathematics graduate with a PhD in political philosophy and a diploma in biblical and theological studies.” Here are some excerpts, with bold font added by us for emphasis:

Stephen Hawking, who is to be buried in Westminster Abbey, was famously an atheist who argued that God is not necessary to our understanding of the universe. ‘Because there is a law such as gravity,’ he reasoned, ‘the universe can and will create itself from nothing’. But this kind of statement begs the question: if you assume the existence of the laws of physics then you are already assuming the existence of the universe. So it isn’t creating itself from nothing – it already exists and is just following through.

Brilliant point! The laws of nature were already there, waiting for the universe to come into existence. Jones says:

What’s more, the laws of physics don’t just need to exist, they need to be precisely correctly specified if the universe is to be the kind of place in which life can exist.

Yeah — think about that! Amazing, huh? Okay, let’s read on:

And this is only the tip of the fine-tuning iceberg. The mounting evidence is that biological evolution is tightly constrained in the courses it can take, with complex structures like the eye evolving multiple times independently of one another. The structures of life appear to be hard-wired into nature, pre-determined to arise through being energetically favourable and not merely relying on the vagaries of adaptive fitness. Nature is indeed a ‘put-up job’ – in every way.

Wowie! Jones continues:

The only other explanation to fine-tuning is that our universe is only one of a near infinity of universes in a vast multiverse, one which happens to be conducive to life. This multiverse hypothesis, however, suffers from a dearth of real evidence, which has led John Polkinghorne to describe it as ‘a metaphysical guess of excessive ontological prodigality’. It is a multiverse of the gaps, then, and little more than an anti-scientific way of avoiding the logical necessity of God.

Got that? The multiverse won’t save your pathetic worldview, dear reader. Now we’ll skip the middle of the article and get right to the three reasons the title promised us. Here they are:

We have already seen one way that we can know that God exists: because the fine-tuning of the universe for the existence of life shows that it must have been designed for that purpose. The odds of it having ended up that way by chance are so vanishingly small that they cannot warrant rational assent.

That’s the first reason. Then:

A second reason we can know God must exist is because, logically speaking, the universe is not and cannot be purely material. Consider how the laws of logic and number are not material, the laws of gravity, of thermodynamics, and of motion aren’t material, and neither are the specifications of particles like the electron or of fields like the electromagnetic field. They are immaterial realities which specify the properties and behaviour of the material world. They are what Plato, Aristotle and other philosophers call forms – immaterial, universal specifications of reality which stand behind the material world and determine its structure and nature.

Ooooooooooooh! Plato’s theory of Forms. Here’s the final reason:

This leads onto our third reason why we know God must exist: because of the existence of consciousness, rationality, free will and morality, all of which require the universe to be more than matter. Morality in particular requires the universe to include ideals – moral ideals like the good human being and the good society – which rational agents may grasp in their understanding and aim at in their conduct. Matter cannot give you morals.

And now, dear reader, we leave you to contemplate the error of your ways.

Copyright © 2018. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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