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Discussion 4 to Talk Back 96
Comments on 9 Problems with Evolution

by: jackdaw

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These so called “problems” with evolution are nothing of the sort.  Indeed, Mr. Turnipseed ignores his own advice.  He hasn't studied his enemy.  Instead he has merely parroted the usual creationist claptrap.  He has not addressed the theory of evolution as such.  Instead he has chosen to attack the religious "straw men" versions of the theory.

Indeed, I suspect that the evangelicals misrepresentations are deliberate, because they are all so far from the truth, and don't even begin to show the slightest understanding of any science whatsoever.  Further, they seem to have great trouble understanding the English language as well.  These problems put them at a grave disadvantage.

What I have problems with is the idea that natural selection alone explains why non-living matter, over the course of millions of years, produced all life on earth without any intelligent direction.

All that is needed is a SIMPLE molecule that can copy itself.  (This is the scientific version of abiogenesis,, not evolution.)  These molecules change or evolve. The changes become what we understand as life.  Given that, and a few billion years, we start getting complex creatures turning up.  They seem to appear firstly in the so-called Cambrian explosion..  After another 600 million years or so we can see the results.  Because we are part of those results.

In contrast, the religious claim, that we are too complicated to have arisen by the processes of evolution.  They also claim a stupendously complicated being made everything.   This claim ignores the objections that they themselves put forward against evolution, that it is just too incredible to believe.  Special pleading of the worst kind, dog just happened.

When challenged, the religious refuse to explain how this being came about.  Instead they claim that it was always hanging around with nothing to do.  Presumably he/she/it/they created everything in a fit of ennui.  Apply Occams's Razor, and dog vanishes into oblivion; he/she/it/them are an unnecessary complication.

"Problem A" or "Problem 1" (whatever)

"In the end, most people who believe in evolution are not scientists, therefore they believe in evolution not because they can prove it scientifically, but because someone told them it was so."

This is just a variation of the argument from incredulity.  "I can't understand it, therefore it must come from belief."  Most people have no problems following the logic of evolution, even if they cannot explain all of the details. 

This reasoning applies in spades to those that believe in religion, they were told it was true.  They have been indoctrinated to believe in bronze age myths by a tribe of goat herders.  They have then been further indoctrinated to ignore any contrary evidence, and to claim it does not exist.  Further, they invent evidence to back up their claims. [1]

 Most people cannot "prove" that atom bombs, jet engines, Bayes theory, or quantum theory [2] work either, but that has no effect on the truth - they exist and work.  With evolution, there is ample evidence that it is going on continually.  Creationists and other evangelicals merely ignore the evidence.  They imitate Lord Nelson at Copenhagen and say that they can't see any ships by pointing a blind eye at anything they don't want to see, for rather less reason than the Admiral. 

I do not "believe" in evolution, nor am I a biologist.  I do understand evolution.  It is merely the best theory available to us at the moment.  There is lots of evidence available to support the theory.

 "Ask the average person to prove evolution, and unless they have a PhD in Biology (which would make them far from average!) they can't even begin to explain, much less defend, their position."

Not true and typical of the patronising rubbish I expect from the religious apologist.  The overweening arrogance is evident – Mr Turnipseed knows more than just about any scientist of note, and most sane people as well.

 Darwin's original work is easily understood.  People like Professors Dawkins and Gould have written clear explanations of the modern updates to Darwin's theory.  The only people unable to understand these books are the evangelical.  With their eyes tightly shut they loudly scream "I can't see any evidence."

 So are the evangelical are functionally illiterate or deliberately blind?  Their attitude does not invalidate evolution, nor do the cries that it isn't in the Wholly Babble, Kran, or Baggy Gits mean anything. Bigotry in action best describes their attitude.

"Problem B" or "Problem 2 (whatever again)   Mutations"

"Mutations are the only way to introduce new genetic material into an organism.  Thus, they are considered the driving force of evolution."

Wrong.  The driving force of evolution is environmental change.  As a result, some mutations (mistakes in copying the genetic material) are now advantageous.  Some are irrelevant, and the majority fatal.  One third of human embryos abort spontaneously – in christian terms this is god punishing the unborn for Eve falling for his bit of entrapment in the garden of eden.  In the real world it is bad mutations being weeded out naturally.

"Thus it can better outrun its enemies, and passes that trait on to its babies.  Since faster rabbits tend to survive better, soon the whole species becomes faster."

Wrong.  If this was true rabbits would have long since broken the sound barrier.  Their predators would have followed suit, and the arms race would have escalated.  By now, both prey and predator would be able to move at a significant fraction of the speed of light...

Speed is only ONE facet of survival, attracting mates, reproduction (number of offspring and frequency of births), feeding, seeking shelter from predators, bringing up young all require expenditure of energy.  The balance between these requirements limits the top speed.  Incredibly fast rabbits would have no energy left for anything else.

"However, the vast majority of mutations -- like a 1,000 to one -- are harmful."

Nearly correct.  Probably far more than 1,000 to 1 against a good mutation, but along the right lines.  But to repeat, mutations are not the driving force of evolution.  And a disadvantage can turn into an advantage as the environment changes, and vice versa.

"To my knowledge, the only boni-fide human genetic disorder that can be thought of as positive is Sickle Cell Anemia.  Sickle Cell victims are immune to malaria, though they tend to die painfully in young adulthood (which means they can still last long enough to have kids)."

Well, I've got several mutations which can be considered harmful and/or beneficial or irrelevant.  I have very fair skin, hair,  and freckles.  As I and my recent ancestors live and lived in high latitudes, it has been a beneficial mutation. [3]   Were I to carelessly wander around in the tropics without sensible precautions, malignant melanoma, here I come.

Due to the benefits of science and technology, I wear spectacles to compensate from my myopia , astigmatism and an inherited “lazy “ eye.  So what would have been a disadvantage in a primitive religious community becomes irrelevant in the modern real world. [4]

People from Asia or Africa tend to be lactose intolerant and react to dairy products.  But Northern Europeans have included dairy foods in their diet for a long time now, and I have a beneficial mutation as a result.

Wheat products are not a problem for me either (no gluten intolerance).  This grass originated in the middle east and has long been a staple in the diet there and  for Europeans, but not everywhere else

There is some danger in every food, with nuts being another food I can happily eat.  Others may be killed by even tiny amounts.

Well, if you don't look for evidence, you are not going to  find any, are you? 

Typical of the god botherers, the idiot vatiCON has only just admitted that the earth goes around the sun, instead of denying the nature of reality.  It takes a long time to get through to the religious mind set.  If it's not in their dogma, they deny it long after it is patently obvious that they are wrong.  (Waits for another denial, the catholics are not real christians “like wot we am” [5]...)

"Mutations are overwhelmingly bad, yet they are the only way evolution can work."

Wrong again.  It depends on the environment whether a mutation is good, bad or indifferent.  (see fair skin for ONE example).  After a time, any mutation in an adapted species is harmful as long as the environment is constant.  If the environment changes slowly, individuals can adapt with mutations that used to be harmful but are now advantageous.  Over a number of generations, the offspring of the mutated individuals replace the original species.  If the environment changes too quickly to allow enough time for the changes to occur, the result is extinction.  The dinosaurs for example.

This is tough: to a very good first approximation, every species is extinct in the real world.

"Problem 3"  (What happened to Problem C?)

"As it turns out, the fossil record is not kind to Darwins theory."

Wrong.  The fossil record is far, far better than we could expect.    Darwin himself discussed this problem in 1859.  And more finds keep being reported. [6]

"The fossil record reveals no transitional species (animals changing from one major kind to another, like a lizard to a bird)"

Wrong.  For instance, recently, feathered dinosaur fossils (a step on the way from lizards to birds) have been discovered in China.  This is merely one of the latest discoveries.

"Moreover, the fossil record never shows us a neat progression of an ancient animal slowly turning into a modern animal – all such evolutionary trees have so far been shown to be false."

Wrong.  They have been shown to be true.  Because fossilisation is rare, we don't expect to see every step on the way for every species.  Luckily, there are a few steps on the way alive today, the so called living fossils.  Coelacanth and Lung Fish from the sea to land.

Whales and Dolphins show the return trip to the sea.  For Whale fossils with feet try Wadi Al-Hitan in Egypt.  Further, modern humans and the remainder of the land mammals can be considered examples of intermediate species.

Messel pit in Germany gives pygmy horses and early primates  There are many other clues.  The falsification comes from the creationists side "My eyes and mind are tightly closed  so I can't see a thing.  Therefore there is nothing there". 

For more evidence, “throwbacks” add to the evidence.  Julius Ceasar’s horse had toes.  Others include whales, porpoises, and snakes with legs, humans with tails..  Research atavism for more, but not in the religious misrepresentations.

"To be fair, let me say, "punctuated equilibria is a model for discontinuous tempos of change (in) the process of speciation and the deployment of species in geological time."  In other words, a species is going along changing very little when suddenly, it changes a whole lot really fast.  Sudden leap, indeed.  So where is the evidence for punctuated equilibrium? It is LACK of evidence -- the missing transitional species!"

Wrong.  All evolution is gradual on the molecular level.  The changes in the phenotype can happen comparatively quickly (in evolutionary terms, hence the so-called punctuation) and we do not expect to find fossilised remains for them.  Fossilisation relies on a series of co-incidences such as a predator trap being buried under suitable conditions.  It doesn't happen very often - to repeat -

The record is better than we could expect

 "Isn't it just as likely that the transitional species are missing because they never existed?"

Wrong.  It is far more unlikely that god exists.  The evangelical accept biblical rubbish without any proof whatsoever and in the teeth of the evidence.  In spite of this, they insist that science works to a million decimal points or more of proof.

 Please produce one talking snake, a cud chewing hare, an angel, a cherubim, a four legged insect, a unicorn, a leviathan, a mustard tree, or dead seeds germinating for a few instances of the lunatic biblical creatures.  These species must be less than 6,000 years old if the load of old tosh is true.  There hasn't been time for them to mutate significantly, so the creationist should be able to produce a few.  Why haven't they?

And why can't I book a guided tour to visit the gates of the garden of eden in the Euphrates valley?  I'd like to see that flaming sword turning every which way.

People in glass houses shouldn't, they really shouldn't, should they?

 "Problem 5"

"Why does Joe the Fish to evolve, but leaves Bill the Fish a fish?"

The creatures that haven't changed are fitted to their environment.  Those that have changed were forced into it by changes in said environment.  Following an earthquake, Joe the Fish found himself in shallows that were drying out.  Change or die, and most of Joe's pals and their offspring died.  Joe's offspring found that they could make a living out of the water, and became lizards.  Bill the fish's progeny remained in deep water where they were perfectly adapted, so had no reason to change.

"So what's wrong with the other primates?  Why is it that Bob the monkey is still a monkey but Bill the monkey has become a man?"

Wrong again.  Both Bob and Bill are both descended from a creature that was neither a monkey nor a man, and their offspring are still monkeys.  Our nearest relative is the chimpanzee, which was another result of environmental changes.  Our ancestors found a different way of surviving from the chimps, who were different again from the monkey though we all share a common, not chimp, nor human, nor monkey, ancestor.

 "Problem 6"

"Evolutionists say that the fact that all life is based on the same basic chemical makeup is evidence that we all evolved from a common ancestor."

Basic chemistry.  There are only about 92 chemical elements long lived enough to consider in the first place.  Carbon is very common and can combine with many other elements in vast numbers of ways, and can form stable compounds at the sort of temperatures found on Earth.  So surprise, surprise, organic creatures are based on this substance!  (Silicon, for example, is not as reactive, although it is used by some plants for some biological purposes.)

Once reproductive collections of atoms form after several aeons, all the other usable chemicals will quickly get snaffled up, effectively shutting out any other base elements from starting a rival line.  So surprise, surprise we would inevitably expect one common base for living cells.

 "It's just as explainable to say that all life is similar because all life has the same Creator?"

No.  There is no evidence to support this theory.  Carbon compounds form easily under simulations of conditions we understand to have been around on earth following the initial cooling of the planet.  There is no comparable evidence for the god hypothesis.  Apply Occam's razor, gEntities should not be multiplied beyond necessity.h  The ancient of days is not necessary, as we have a simpler explanation for why life forms follow the same patterns and evolve.

"Thus, if other species did not have the same basic chemial building blocks as we did, we could not EAT them -- we'd have to eat each other!"

 We can't eat all them all, some are poisonous.  Try eating cane toads or death cap mushrooms, if you don't believe me.  But we can eat enough to get by, they are part of the environment in which we have evolved.  In the same way, many can eat us.  Indeed, the role that we fulfil for many billions of our fellow creatures is that of dinner.  So god made us to provide food for worms?  Ah!  That would make god a hermaphrodite worm, wouldn't it? 

 The worms go in,
The worms come out,
They go in thin,
They come out stout.

 Q.E.D.

 "Problem 7"

 "Let's put all the components of a flashlight in a big bucket – battery, plastic housing, bulb, switch.  Now letfs stir or shake the bucket until a flashlight emerges turned on.  How long do you think that would take?  Remember, we have to shake the bucket until a battery slides the right way into the housing facing the right direction with the bulb screwed in on top of it the right way – simultaneously."

One of the main parodies of evolution that evangelical clowns use is the 747 made by a whirlwind in a scrapyard, and this is just a variation on the theme.  Actually, it is the basic religious theory.  Take away the scrapyard and the whirlwind, (or the flash light bits, bucket and stirrer) and not only do we get a 747, we get Concorde, an Airbus, a F22, a Wright flyer, a Space Shuttle, not to mention the Queen Marys (I and II), Sydney Harbour Bridge and Opera House, the Great Wall of China, Los Angeles and Hollywood, super computers, and search lights as well as flash lights and anything else you care to name for no reason at all.  This amazing collection ex nihilo as one entity gets named god.

The other philosophastery that they use is demanding the outcome of several billions of years of evolution in one jump.  To illustrate, take a parallel example:  the evolution of chemicals.  A sufficient quantity of hydrogen will collapse into a star by gravitational attraction.  This takes a long time in human terms.  Once the pressure rises it starts a fusion process, and hydrogen atoms combine to make more complex atoms, giving off energy.  This continues up the periodic table making new elements until we come to iron. 

After a few eons, iron results in the death of stars. A big star dies in a spectacular explosion, producing lots more elements (up to Uranium, others don't last long enough to worry about here), which is far more complex than the hydrogen at the start.  The whole process may takes some billions of years, how many depending on the size of the star.

We can duplicate part of this process in fusion bombs, which means the creationists have to accept scientific explanations for uranium.  Other examples of complex patterns from simple beginnings include Julia and Mandelbrot sets from mathematics, and snowflakes from freezing water.  Complexity from simple processes – no gods needed. 

"Amino acids, which are the basic building blocks of life, have been formed in the laboratory out of conditions thought to represent an early earth. It cannot be stressed enough that not only are these amino acids and not life, "

What the evangelical demand is abiogenesis in the biblical sense, not evolution.  I wish the evangelical would learn the basics, instead of parroting half witted creationist misrepresentations.  Perhaps they should buy a dictionary, instead of the wholly babble.  There is no claim that these amino acids are alive.

 "This means that in order for life to get started at all, ALL parts must SIMULTANEOUSLY come into being at the exact same PLACE in the specific ARRANGEMENT of parts."

Totally and utterly wrong.  That is the discredited religious abiogenesis claim (e.g. Judges 14:14, bees spontaneously arising in a lion's corpse).  What the experiments and processes cited underline is that complexity can arise out of simple starting conditions.  For scientific abiogenesis, all you need is one molecule that can make a copy of itself, then evolution explains the rest.  It doesn't matter how this initial molecule comes to be, once it happens wait a few billion years and bingo, complex creatures.

 In short, "Problem 7" is a problem for the creationists, and has nothing whatsoever to do with evolution.  The religious invented their version of abiogenesis complex critters suddenly appearing.  to explain god, mice and maggots,  and dead seeds germinating.  Now they are moaning about their own bronze age fantasies, which have nothing whatsoever to do with scientific abiogenesis theories.  They have even less to do with evolutionary theory.

 The religious claim that some entity, far more complex than anything living on earth just happened.  This entity then created everything in one go (a week!).  WHAT A CROCK OF SOMETHING!.

"Problem 8"

"A single living cell is far more complex than any house!"

True.  But the cell is the result of evolution, the house is not.  Living cells are the results of millions of years of evolution.  Houses don't take that long to build.  And moving from simplicity to complexity is explained by evolution, it's a common process in the real world.

"But we have already seen that in order for evolution to get started at all, a lot of non-living chemicals have to combine spontaneously and precisely in order to form a living cell"

Wrong.  This is nothing to do with evolution.  This is a statement about religious abiogenesis, and an attempt to introduce the god of the gaps.  We KNOW that we can get complex molecules from simple elements, even in fairly short time scales. We can get complex atoms from simple ones in the longer time scales.

We have not duplicated all of the conditions that can occur in half a billion years which are postulated to turn up a molecule that replicates.  We have only been trying for less than a hundred so there just hasn't been the time to fully investigate the scientific version of the theory of abiogenesis.  Note this is NOT the theory of evolution.

One of the reasons that we have only been at it for a short time is the christian religious history of suppressing any alternative theories , and killing anyone who dared to investigate.  The priests rightly  realised that their explanations would not survive contact with the truth.  This would result in a fall in their power and income.

"Problem 9"

Remember when I said the vast majority of mutations are harmful? If thats true, why do we have domesticated animals?

Because we, and the other creatures have a mutually beneficial form of symbiosis with each other.  We feed and protect the species, and breed them for our purposes, whatever they happen to be.  These species survives under the environment the creatures find themselves in; the environment which includes us.

We are not the only creatures to use or join in common cause or exploit another species.  The poppy has enslaved humans using a chemical called heroin, and we slave over the poppy fields to help ensure the survival of that species.  Another plant produces nicotine to the same effect.  Insects such as ants and termites also keep domestic insects and grow crops.

Domesticated animals do not naturally evolve.

Actually, we are part of the environment of the domestic animal, so unless we are not natural, dogs, cats, cattle, wheat, rice and all the rest evolve naturally.  Some ants keep aphids.  Ants are natural, are they not?  Other insects grow crops.  Insect are not natural?  In each case, the two creature interact in some manner.  There is no sign whatsoever of any interaction with god.  This entity or entities is not missing, it was never there.

Some sheep farmers have developed a breed of sheep with short, stumpy legs which prevent them from running fast or jumping over fences. What would happen to these sheep in nature?

Depends what other creatures are part of the environment at the time.  In Britain, an isolated island where most of the big predators have been exterminated by man, they may do well.  There again, they may become extinct, along with most of the rest of the species that have ever existed.  What is certain, as the environment would have changed, the sheep would change.

In short, domesticated animals and plants evolve in an artificial environment and de-evolvein a natural environment. This is evidence that evolution naturally occurs?

Yes.  They will evolve to fit the changed conditions, or go extinct.  Evolution appears to be a one way ratchet – see “The Panda's Thumb” by Steven Jay Gould for an example.  There is no such thing as de-evolution, which appears to be yet another idiot religious invention designed to bolster their beliefs by misrepresenting science.  Unless we consider creationists as an example of de-evolution in action due to their brains atrophying?

Take dogs, for example.

Descended from timber wolves.  Now a different species.  Indeed, there are signs that we may be on the way to causing new species of dogs.  How would you cross a Pyrenean Mountain dog with a Chihuahua bitch, for instance?  What are the chances of a viable litter?  Will the bitch survive the experience?  Humans can interbreed without problems, so we are classed as one species. [7]

"But no matter how much we screw with the species, they are ALL DOGS!"

15 to 30,000 years ago they were wolves. (Wikipedia)  What more do you want?  (It takes a long time to create a new species?  Longer than the bibble babbles time scale of 6,000 years, for certain with mammals.  It's much quicker with insects (q.v. Fruit flies and peppered moths), and even faster with bacteria.)

Because the whole Theory of Evolution rests on the assumption that new species can evolve from existing ones (like say, ape-like creatures turning into humans).

Hurray!  Something right, at last.  And to start the whole process, all we need is a molecule that can make copies of itself.

The evidence suggests that it simply cant be done.

Singing “My eyes are dim, I cannot see, I left my specs in the double-you-see” yet again.  All the evidence is that it has happened.  We don't find human remains in the same strata as those of T.Rex, or in pre-Cambrian deposits.  Once again, the evangelical just ignore the evidence.  And Darwin's finches are only a minute part of that evidence.

In the world of Evolution, fish became amphibians.

True again, welcome to the real world!  For which see coelacanth and lung fish for part way to amphibians, and whales and dolphins for mammals returning to the sea.  Whales and dolphins are NOT fishes in spite of their appearance, they do not have gills nor swim bladders.  Their tail fins operate in a different plane to fishes.  Their ancestors  lived on land and were air breathers.

Some notes and references

To return to the original biblical propaganda part of Mr. Turnipseed's confused peroration, he claims:-

You should educate yourself on Evolution whether you believe in it or not.  You should know your enemy (Sun Tzu quote:  Know your enemy and know yourself) and virtually all people who dont believe in God believe in evolution.

In practice, he has not learnt the first thing about evolution and does not know his enemy.  From his total lack of understanding, he has instead preferred to parrot creationists parodies and misrepresentations of the theory.  His research seems to be based on discredited creationist misrepresentations.

My suggestion is that he throws away the writings of a bunch of bronze age goat herders and look up the words he doesn't understand.  He will find a good guide here.

http://dictionary.reference.com/

Rather than repeating the creationist's futile misrepresentations, I suggest that he checks the clap trap he peddles against this site for the evolutionary story.  That way he might come to understand the strength of the evolutionary theory.

http://www.talkorigins.org/indexcc/index.html

This site refers to extended explanations of how evolution works.  Coin tossing for beginners from this site is extremely instructive.  In the unlikely event that he can come up with a criticism that is NOT covered by that site, he would be in line for a Nobel prize.

Another site to investigate would be

http://richarddawkins.net/

This guy was a Professor in biology, and taught PhDs, so the usual ignorant religious trick of patronising others about intelligence and qualifications will be obviously invalidated.  Dawkins wrote several popular books about evolution, “The Selfish Gene” and “The Blind Watchmaker” are well worth reading for a 'Man on the Clapham Omnibus' introduction to the theory.

To complement this, the works of Steven Jay Gould (another Professor, note) give an alternative view (“The Panda's Thumb”, “Wonderful Life” and an appearance on TV in “The Simpsons”).  Note that while both agree on the wider implications of evolution, they differ over some of the details.  These differences were misrepresented by the religious as showing evolution as “unscientific”.

Whilst different opinions are common to religion as well as science, there is no call for an auto-da-fe and subsequent bonfire in science.  That sort of total lunacy is left to the religious to implement.  Science will correct wrong theories and frauds.  Religion perpetrates them.

The “Piltdown Man” fraud was corrected by science, as were other frauds.  Wrong theories, such as the phlogiston explanation for burning were disproved by science.  What the creationists do is equivalent to insisting that phlogiston exists, in spite of the simpler and testable oxygen theory.  Evolution is a testable theory, phlogiston and god are not.

If, after extensive study of these answers, a theologian can manage to come up with a valid criticism of evolutionary theory, this may be considered a miracle in it's own right.  (And unlike the biblical ones it could be confirmed and widely documented.)  It would certainly be a change to get a positive contribution to humanity from an evangelical.

Of course, had Mr Turnipseed even bothered to research a bit about his own stupid faith, he might have come across this little homily from an erstwhile Bishop of Hippo, and reconsidered his half baked claims:-

“It not infrequently happens that something about the earth, about the sky, about other elements of this world, about the motion and rotation or even the magnitude and distances of the stars, about definite eclipses of the sun and moon, about the passage of years and seasons, about the nature of animals, of fruits, of stones, and of other such things, may be known with the greatest certainty by reasoning or by experience, even by one who is not a Christian. It is too disgraceful and ruinous, though, and greatly to be avoided, that he {the non-Christian} should hear a Christian speaking so idiotically on these matters, and as if in accord with Christian writings, that he might say that he could scarcely keep from laughing when he saw how totally in error they are. In view of this and in keeping it in mind constantly while dealing with the book of Genesis, I have, insofar as I was able, explained in detail and set forth for consideration the meanings of obscure passages, taking care not to affirm rashly some one meaning to the prejudice of another and perhaps better explanation.”  ~  Augustine (emphasis added) [8]

The religious have ignored this – "Kill them!  They said something that isn't in the bibble babble so they must be wrong!" (e.g.  Bruno amongst many others.   But there again he had committed heresy (by foreshadowing Einstein amongst other things):-  Everywhere there is incessant relative change in position throughout the universe, and the observer is always at the centre of things .  Why god is at the centre of everything! (according to the religious, that is.)  Burn him!) [9]

But even Augustine falls into the very trap he warns others about.

 Let us, then, omit the conjectures of men who know not what they say, when they speak of the nature and origin of the human race. For some hold the same opinion regarding men that they hold regarding the world itself, that they have always been... They are deceived, too, by those highly mendacious documents which profess to give the history of many thousand years, though, reckoning by the sacred writings, we find that not 6000 years have yet passed.

 6,000 years indeed!  But he didn't have the benefits of science.   Further according to Augustine's scientific or theological investigations, the male foetus gets its soul 40 days after conception, the distaff side has to wait for 80 days.  He forgot to mention how he arrived at these conclusions.  Well, no one is perfect, least of all the religious (by their own admissions).

 I have no illusions that Mr. Turnipseed (or any of his creationist ilk) will take any heed of this tract, they will keep their eyes firmly shut, their ears covered, and their brains switched off.  (Perhaps the creationists should also consider imitating the 3rd wise monkey until after they learn something about evolutionary theory?  A vain hope I suspect, there's too much money and power involved in the god business for them to back off.  They've been doing it since Soapy Sam's day)

It just might however come to the attention of some of the teenagers that he is attempting to indoctrinate with ancient misunderstandings of the world.  It may even cause them to question the creationist rubbish that he is propagating, and investigate for themselves.  Who knows, some of them may become useful scientists and benefit mankind!

 What this sort of deliberate misrepresentations is, is just another pious fraud.  That the religious lie is not a surprise, their whole world view is based around the lies in the holey books, and their whole history is one of suppressing the truth.  That they have to resort to such tricks underlines the weakness of their position.  That they seek to inflict these lies on children and adolescents can only be considered another form of religious abuse.  As such, it is as reprehensible as any other form of abuse.

 Of course, the evangelical are merely following the advice of a couple of well known christian religious leaders:-

Make the lie big, make it simple, keep saying it, and eventually they will believe it  ~  Adolf Hitler

 The most brilliant propagandist technique will yield no success unless one fundamental principle is borne in mind constantly...it must confine itself to a few points and repeat them over and over.  ~  Joseph Goebbels

They didn't know, and the evangelical obviously don't know, the African saying:-

 The end of an ox is beef, and the end of a lie is grief

 

jackdaw

Footnotes:

  1. Examples include, but are not restricted to the Turin shroud, miracles at Lourdes, prayers coming true, the Arko Volume, loose women causing earthquakes, and various prophesies of the end of the world.
  2.  The computer that you are using only works if quantum theory is true, they rely on the so called tunnelling effect.  Pretty hard to reject science when the tools you use rely on it...
  3. q.v. Vitamin D
  4. As well as not being able to reliably see danger from predators or pitfalls, Leviticus 21:20 would ban me from associating with Jews or christians.
  5. The bad grammar is deliberate.  The evangelical don't seem to bother with shift keys, spelling, grammar, paragraphs, clarity of thought or anything else that allows people to communicate.  This is just to demonstrate that others can do the same, as I do in refusing to capitalise lunatic words like god..
  6. Darwin also admitted that (given the knowledge available in 1859), that the theory needed vast amounts of time.  One objection was that the sun could not have burned long enough, there wasn't enough material for combustion.    A splendid example of science's powers of prediction, there just had to be a reason for the long times needed.  Since then, he has been gloriously justified by advances in science and the discoveries of radioactivity.  (Waits for the claim that nuclear fusion and fission are impossible, they are not in the load of old tosh.)
  7. The reverse is as unlikely.  I have seen Bingo, the rescue Chihuahua dog attempting to mount Duffy, the in-season Dalmatian bitch.  Whilst both parties were willing, gravity prevented the mating.  Poor, lovelorn Bingo just couldn't jump high enough... Which was just as well.
  8. This got repeated, but this time without the verbosity:- 

    " The truth of our faith becomes a matter of ridicule among the infidels if any Catholic, not gifted with the necessary scientific learning, presents as dogma what scientific scrutiny shows to be false."  ~   St. Thomas Aquinas

    Mind you the wholly babble breaks this rule itself, for instance with this claim from

    Mark 16:18 They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.
  9. q.v. "Nevertheless, it does move." for another example of the religious in action denying reality.  Stop press (AP) - An Iranian scientific religious claims that earthquakes increase due to immodest women!  Yet another ridiculous religious assertion.  There is no imbecility too asinine for the religious