Should the scientific community continue to fight rear-guard skirmishes with creationists, or insist that "young-earthers" defend their model in toto? Donald U. Introduction This manuscript proposes a new approach for science's battle against the rising influence in America of pseudo-science and the Creationist movement. The framework of Creationist Bible-based earth history, focusing on Genesis and the Noachian flood, can be assembled into a single geologic time scale Figure 1 , enlarged by addition of many geologic facts, difficult for Creationists to explain. Figure 1 is an abbreviated version of the time scale outlined in the following paragraph which was redrawn and published by the American Scientist.
This is because no known fossils of these groups have been found in any rocks of any age whatsoever. See also Wieland, C. The fourth of these removal methods is by halite salt deposition which occurs " as a result of river water Creationist model, not Creationisr water. Lawrence Kulp was mentioned above. James Creationist model Creatinoist, now regarded as the father of modern geology, went further and opened up the concept of deep time for scientific inquiry. HuffPost Canada.
Swingers clubs in tn. Helpful Resources
Common Boys virgin top of creation science argument include: creationist cosmologies which accommodate a universe on the order of thousands of years old, criticism of radiometric dating through a technical argument about radiohalosexplanations for the fossil record Creationist model a record of the Genesis flood narrative see flood geologyand explanations for the present diversity as a result of pre-designed Girls taking it doggy style variability and partially due to the rapid degradation of the perfect genomes God placed in "created kinds" or " Baramin " see creationist biology due to mutations. Forster, Roger ; Marston, V. Main article: Day-age creationism. Darwinism Comes to America. Old Earth creationism itself comes in at least three types: . The Ahmadiyya movement actively promotes evolutionary theory. Since the midth century, young Earth creationists—starting with Henry Morris — —have devised and promoted a pseudoscientific explanation called " creation science " as a basis for a religious belief in a supernatural, geologically recent creation. Just as they know from the Torah that God created man Pale redheads trees and the light on its way from the stars in their observed state, so too can they know that the world was created in its over the six days of Creation that reflects progression to its currently-observed state, with the understanding that physical ways to verify this may eventually be identified. About one third of Americans believed that humans evolved with God's guidance and 15 per cent said humans evolvedbut that God had no part in the process. In his article Creationist model Design as a Theological Problem," George Murphy argues against mpdel view that life on Earth, in all its forms, is direct evidence of God's Creaitonist of creation Murphy quotes Phillip E. Archived from the original PDF on April 29, History Neo-creationism. Philo, modrl Alexandria — London: Economist Group. Lamoureux, Denis O.
- Creationism is the religious belief that nature , and aspects such as the universe , Earth , life , and humans , originated with supernatural acts of divine creation.
- Young Earth creationism YEC is a form of creationism which holds as a central tenet that the Earth and its lifeforms were created in their present forms by supernatural acts of a deity between approximately 6, and 10, years ago.
- Made in Estonia , European Union.
Should the scientific community continue to fight rear-guard skirmishes with creationists, or insist that "young-earthers" defend their model in toto? Donald U. Introduction This manuscript proposes a new approach for science's battle against the rising influence in America of pseudo-science and the Creationist movement.
The framework of Creationist Bible-based earth history, focusing on Genesis and the Noachian flood, can be assembled into a single geologic time scale Figure 1 , enlarged by addition of many geologic facts, difficult for Creationists to explain.
Figure 1 is an abbreviated version of the time scale outlined in the following paragraph which was redrawn and published by the American Scientist. Science, rather than using its traditional defensive approach of item-by-item rebuttal of Creationist attacks, needs to take the offensive by challenging Creationists to defend their "scientific" view of earth history as represented by this time scale.
Note that the numbered items in this Time Scale are further expanded in subsequent numbered sections which are keyed to these same numbers. Figure 1. GIF, K Figure 1. Unlike the 4. The entire fossil record of the earth is explained as having been deposited during the year of the Noachian flood 4, years ago. Creationism has its philosophical roots in the Darwinian debates of the last century, but its welding into a potent political movement has been largely a phenomenon of the last half of the 20th century Numbers, In recent years Creationism has grown into a force capable of challenging orthodox science in the arena of public opinion Schmidt, After federal courts struck down attempts to force teaching of creation "science" in the public schools, Creationists have taken a new approach.
They have begun pushing laws requiring that any teaching of evolution in the public schools be balanced against or accompanied by teaching of the "evidence against evolution. Such laws, if enacted, would have chilling effects on science teaching and textbook content and would lend governmental support to one particular religious interpretation.
The real battles Schmidt between traditional science and Creationism are likely to be fought on a state by state, school board by school board basis in a form that will require active, grass-roots participation by large numbers of American scientists.
A notable exception was the late Robert Dietz of Arizona State University who used both science and humor of the cartoons of John Holden Dietz and Holden, to actively debate the local Creationists. Excellent descriptions of methods used by Creationists to win such debates, at least in the public mind, are given by Thwattes and Awbrey , Fezer , and Arthur To develop any level of preparation for such arguments and methods, one requires copious time as well as access to the diffuse mass of "gray" publications, religious tracts, and other in-house Creationist publications.
For those without the time or access to such resources, this article is intended as a "crash-course" introduction to Creationist history, ideas, and methods as well as some factual tools to oppose Creationist claims and a few of the best cartoons to inject a bit of humor into any discussion Figure 2. Figure 2. Creationists offer a cartooned view of science that is often hard to address in public debate. Creationism, itself, meanwhile, has tempted a few cartoonists to take up their pens.
John Holden, a paleontologist by training and co-author with R. Numbers gives a massively documented history of the Creationist movement from which much of the following is excerpted. The ASA focused on the interplay of Christianity and science whereas the DGS sought to bring interpretations of the geological record into accord with a strict Biblical interpretation.
Lawrence Kulp. Kulp studied C 14 dating methods with Urey at Chicago and then set up the second C 14 lab in the country at Columbia University. The result was a permanent rift. In the s Ph. Morris, and broadly educated seminarian and Bible teacher, John C. Whitcomb, Jr. Morris believed the ASA " was too permeated with evolution ever to be reclaimed.
California removed its accreditation in but had to restore it two years later under orders of a federal judge Numbers, The Institute publishes many books and articles and sponsors its own Bible oriented "research" studies and symposia.
Currently it is reputed to operate on an annual budget of 3 million dollars Scott, One of the greatest anomalies in the history of scientific creationism and flood geology has been the near non-presence of well educated geologists Numbers, Lawrence Kulp was mentioned above. Donald Eckelmann, a Wheaton alumnus, ultimately became chair of Brown University's geology department and Christian evolutionist.
Davis Young, the son of an eminent Old Testament scholar, studied geology at Princeton and moved on to M. During his Ph. Kunen, who submitted a manuscript on cataclysmal sedimentation for publication by the CRS. Van Houten and A.
He finished by accepting organic evolution and forsaking the faith of his family, going on to Oxford and a career in the history of science. Harold James, Jr. James, after earning his doctorate in geology at Princeton, was found to have been "so indoctrinated" as to require dismissal by the GRI. Lugenbeal studied prehistoric archeology at Wisconsin before resigning from GRI citing "the emotionally and ethically debilitating attempt to bolster our peoples' faith by telling them a series of partial truths about science" Numbers, A very few young evangelicals did manage to survive graduate education in geology with their Biblical fundamentalist faith intact.
Steven Austin earned a B. During his Penn State time he also wrote creationist articles under the pseudonym of Stuart Nevins. Currently he is chair of the ICR's Department of Geology and a major contributor to their in-house publications and articles on geology. His Grand Canyon: Monument to Catastrophe , Austin, is a slick, full-color volume designed both as a guide for Austin's fundamentalist field trips into the Canyon Figure 3 and as a potential text for fundamentalist college-level geology courses.
In these publications his scientific philosophy is never in doubt: " The real battle in regard to understanding the Grand Canyon is founded not just upon Creation and Noah's Flood versus evolution, but upon Christianity versus humanism.
Figure 3. Grand Canyon geology the sweeping history of earth told in rock that has inspired generation of geologists has recently been rewritten by creationists. In the alternative view the canyon was not formed by layers of sedimentation atop ancient metamorphic rock deposited over millions of years, followed by volcanic flows into the canyon and the downcutting action of the powerful Colorado River.
Some million years of the canyon's history are explained in this view labels at left as taking place during the Noachian flood year, a feat that would require massive layers of wet sediments to be deposited and harden at astounding rates over the course of weeks, leaving them solid enough to be incised into mile-high cliffs by receding floodwaters.
Creationist ages, left , after Austin , with basic geology after Coney John Morris, Henry's son, earned a Ph. He has led several expeditions in search of Noah's ark and has worked on the supposed coexistence of human and dinosaur tracks in the Paluxy River bed of Texas. His book, The Young Earth J.
Morris, , has an initial 35 pages which might just as well be the lesson book for a fundamentalist Sunday school.
This is followed by about 75 pages of a mixture of geologic interpretation and Biblical themes. The final 70 pages are view-graph masters designed to "be shared with your church or Bible study groups. Kurt Wise was raised in a fundamentalist Baptist family in rural Illinois and accepted flood geology as a teenager while attending a conference for Christian youth run by Bob Jones University. He graduated from University of Chicago with honors in geophysical sciences before going on to Harvard and his Ph.
He has been the focus of a number of articles in the popular press Campbell and Scroggins, , and Hitt, and currently teaches at the fundamentalist William Jennings Bryan College in Tennessee near the site of the Scopes trial. He minces no words about his scientific philosophy and agenda. Until recently "Creation Science," as presented by the likes of Henry Morris and Duane Gish, was such a hodge-podge of geologic ideas, floating loosely in time and space, that it was nearly impossible to obtain an overall picture of how their Bible-based model might fit into the fabric of generally accepted geologic and paleontologic observations.
This has changed or at least been modernized with the rising influence in ICR circles of the likes of Austin, Morris, and Wise. All three are familiar with some of the geologic literature but are highly selective about which portions they decide to use.
The current thinking of the young creationist geologists is perhaps best shown in a paper co-authored by six of them, including Austin, Morris, and Wise Austin et al. Their "tentative" model of " Catastrophic Plate Tectonics: A Global Flood Model of Earth History " starts about 6, years ago with a pre-flood earth differentiated into core, mantle, and a crust with horizontal segregation into granitic continents and basaltic ocean basins.
This was initiated as slabs of oceanic floor broke loose and subducted along the edges of continents. Deformation of the mantle by these slabs raised the temperature and lowered its viscosity into a runaway convection system which overturned the whole mantle. Upwelling mantle plumes created the mid-oceanic ridges, drove plate tectonics at rates of " meters per second ," and discharged magmatic steam into the atmosphere to cause the flood.
Tidal waves washed the continents and piled marine sediments into great mountain systems along the edges. In a few hundred years after the flood, residual heat from the cooling ocean floor warmed the oceans and climate into a system characterized by efficient atmospheric transport of moisture to the poles to create glaciation and ice caps.
The thermal problems of this model are mind boggling. At the start, gravitative energy released by earth's differentiation into core and mantle would raise average temperature of the entire globe by 2, degrees Birch, To this must be added the frictional heating of the runaway subduction plus the massive heat of condensation of a collapsing vapor canopy.
Then brand new basaltic ocean floors at minimum temperatures of 1, degrees C. Austin's book in particular and to some extent Morris and Morris and J. Morris are not to be taken lightly.
Before entering into confrontations with Creationists any scientist, even one with extensive geologic training, would be well advised to read these publications very carefully to see where and how the record is cleverly distorted or how obscure literature citations or in-house Creationist studies are expanded into general principles concerning a global flood. In reading such literature, a traditional geologist has difficulty keeping the time scale in order.
Time and again, I found myself confusing pre- and post-flood events or mixing creation week events with flood events. In order to minimize my confusion and get the overall Biblical chronological sequence in order, I found it necessary to go through conflicting ideas in many Creationist papers before being able to build my own version of their geologic column.
Once this framework of Creationist geologic time was in place, many of their speculations could be added to other valid geologic observations which they generally ignore to produce Figure 1. Not included are items from even the lunatic fringe of Creationism such as the flat earth based on the Biblical description of its having "corners" Flirpa, or a geocentric solar system harking back to pre-Copernican days Schadewald, or Henry Morris' hollow earth.
After a creation seminar on October 24, , Morris was asked about the bottomless pit of Revelations His answer was " Whenever Hades or Sheol is referred to in the Bible, it's always down in the earth, the depths of the earth. So right there in the center of the earth, apparently there's a great opening that we can't really deal with in terms of our seismic instruments or other instrumentation.
But apparently it is there. You can take the Bible to mean what it says. Creationists will undoubtedly challenge or try to confuse arguments concerning individual items on Figure 1. The detailed discussion that follows attempts to arm the scientific community with some real data and references and to warn of typical Creationist attacks on particular points. For additional geologic discussion, a scientist would be well advised to read Heaton's A young Grand Canyon?
History Creation myth Public education "Teach the Controversy". Minneapolis, MN: Fortress Press. Evolution Beliefs. Some groups call their belief evolutionary creationism. Horsham, England: Global Publication Ltd. Huffington Post Religion Blog. Great Essays in Science.
Creationist model. Navigation menu
People without a background in science frequently wonder whether we have put together a physical model of creation, something along the lines of a model airplane, an object that can be seen and studied. But this is not the case. Some scientists use the term model in a mathematical sense, to refer to a set of equations, for example. Other times they use the word to refer to a series of empirical observations such as a sequence of chemistry experiments or physical processes such as the formation of the Grand Canyon.
Simply put, a scientific model is a conceptual framework that offers a simplified view of a large, complex reality. Models help researchers organize vast amounts of information into a conceptual structure so as to better understand and interpret the data, ask good questions, and identify anomalies.
It's a scenario that offers reasonable explanations for the entire scope origin to ending of a particular system, as well as for its relationship to other natural phenomena. Using a model approach supplies researchers with enough detail to assist in further study. It offers explanations for how, when, where, and why the phenomena or system occurs. The best models also yield specific suggestions for how near-future research may help improve understanding of the systems or phenomena they attempt to explain.
Reasons to Believe uses the term model in reference to our effort to summarize physical observational and biblical data relevant to creation into a coherent explanatory framework. The following foundational beliefs help shape how we interpret the data.
We can then evaluate its accuracy in light of scientific advances. In his article "Intelligent Design as a Theological Problem," George Murphy argues against the view that life on Earth, in all its forms, is direct evidence of God's act of creation Murphy quotes Phillip E. Johnson 's claim that he is speaking "of a God who acted openly and left his fingerprints on all the evidence. Murphy argues that this view of God is incompatible with the Christian understanding of God as "the one revealed in the cross and resurrection of Christ.
Murphy observes that the execution of a Jewish carpenter by Roman authorities is in and of itself an ordinary event and did not require divine action. On the contrary, for the crucifixion to occur, God had to limit or "empty" himself.
It was for this reason that Paul the Apostle wrote, in Philippians Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.
Just as the Son of God limited himself by taking human form and dying on a cross, God limits divine action in the world to be in accord with rational laws which God has chosen. This enables us to understand the world on its own terms, but it also means that natural processes hide God from scientific observation. For Murphy, a theology of the cross requires that Christians accept a methodological naturalism , meaning that one cannot invoke God to explain natural phenomena, while recognizing that such acceptance does not require one to accept a metaphysical naturalism , which proposes that nature is all that there is.
The Jesuit priest George Coyne has stated that is "unfortunate that, especially here in America, creationism has come to mean It is rooted in belief that everything depends on God, or better, all is a gift from God.
Other Christians have expressed qualms about teaching creationism. The National Science Teachers Association is opposed to teaching creationism as a science,  as is the Association for Science Teacher Education,  the National Association of Biology Teachers,  the American Anthropological Association,  the American Geosciences Institute,  the Geological Society of America,  the American Geophysical Union,  and numerous other professional teaching and scientific societies.
Science is a system of knowledge based on observation, empirical evidence, and the development of theories that yield testable explanations and predictions of natural phenomena. By contrast, creationism is often based on literal interpretations of the narratives of particular religious texts. Therefore, these can neither be confirmed nor disproved by scientists.
Some scientists, such as Stephen Jay Gould ,  consider science and religion to be two compatible and complementary fields, with authorities in distinct areas of human experience, so-called non-overlapping magisteria. Other scientists, such as Richard Dawkins ,  reject the non-overlapping magisteria and argue that, in disproving literal interpretations of creationists, the scientific method also undermines religious texts as a source of truth.
Irrespective of this diversity in viewpoints, since creationist beliefs are not supported by empirical evidence, the scientific consensus is that any attempt to teach creationism as science should be rejected. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. For the movement in Spanish literature, see Creacionismo.
History Neo-creationism. Old Earth Day-age Gap Progressive. Book of Genesis Creation narrative Framework interpretation As an allegory. Created kind Flood geology Creationist cosmologies Intelligent design. History Creation myth Public education "Teach the Controversy". Main article: Young Earth creationism. Main article: Old Earth creationism.
Main article: Gap creationism. Main article: Day-age creationism. Main article: Progressive creationism. Main article: Creation science. Main article: Neo-creationism. Main article: Intelligent design. Main article: Geocentric model. Main article: Omphalos hypothesis. Main article: Theistic evolution. Further information: Genesis creation narrative and creation—evolution controversy. Main article: Hindu views on evolution. Main article: Islamic views on evolution.
See also: Predestination in Islam. Main article: Jewish views on evolution. Main articles: Level of support for evolution and Creationism by country.
Main article: Creation—evolution controversy. Americans believe that:  Public schools should teach evolution only. DeYoung, for example, states that "Similar terminology is often used today when we speak of the sun's rising and setting, even though the earth, not the sun, is doing the moving. Bible writers used the 'language of appearance,' just as people always have. Without it, the intended message would be awkward at best and probably not understood clearly. When the Bible touches on scientific subjects, it is entirely accurate.
Handbook of Evolutionary Thinking in the Sciences. Dordrecht: Springer. Creationism is not a single homogenous doctrine Evolution, as a process, is a tool God uses to continually create the world. Other Christians, called 'progressive creationists,' accept the scientific evidence for some evolution over a long history of the earth, but also insist that God must have performed some miracles during that history to create new life-forms. Intelligent design , as it is promoted in North America is a form of progressive creation.
Still other Christians, called 'theistic evolutionists' or 'evolutionary creationists,' assert that the scientific theory of evolution and the religious beliefs of Christianity can both be true.
Retrieved 6 May Oxford Dictionaries Definition. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Retrieved The belief that the universe and living organisms originate from specific acts of divine creation, as in the biblical account, rather than by natural processes such as evolution. Retrieved 29 April The Guardian. London: Guardian Media Group.
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Creationists are repackaging their message as the pseudo-science of 'intelligent design theory. Dover Area School District , 04 cv December 20, He implies though never explicitly asserts that he and others in his movement are not creationists and that it is incorrect to discuss them in such terms, suggesting that doing so is merely a rhetorical ploy to 'rally the troops'. The basic notion of creationism is the rejection of biological evolution in favor of special creation, where the latter is understood to be supernatural.
Beyond this there is considerable variability Rutgers University Press. Talk Reason. Archived from the original on August 23, The Sydney Morning Herald. Sydney: Fairfax Media. District Judge John E. Jones III's ruling in Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District , dated December 20, Knopf ]. Religion News Service.
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Intelligent Design or “No Model” Creationism Part I | Skeptical Inquirer
This is the second time that Kansas has been in the spotlight in this connection. For years, and throughout the U. They were asking for equal classroom time for their message, in competition with standard evolutionary biology and the other historical sciences.
A western Missouri group of Biblical literalist Creationists provided much of the impetus for this. Evolution and the Big Bang were definitely out. After a considerable brouhaha, non-Creationists became the majority on the Board in the next election in , and evolution got back in the standards in A group of 25 individuals was originally assigned the job of developing the new science standards. Concerning the above-mentioned arguments for teaching ID, and as will be shown below, the ID advocates have produced no scientific evidence for design and no real evidence against evolution.
All three of these positions are minority views advocated by, among others, people with genuine academic credentials. Also, court decisions have repeatedly affirmed that evolution is not a religion.
Is the especially intense media spotlight on Kansas justified? As a native Kansan, I frequently encounter non-Kansans who smugly give me flack concerning the manifest backwardness of all us hayseed types found in the Great American Middle. I thought this especially amusing when I lived, for a time, among Illinoisans who are mere Easterners according to my view of things. Inhabitants of many other states are likewise oblivious to what has happened or is happening in their own backyards.
The fact of the matter is that ID and Creationism in general have been and are now making inroads in education all over the U. If their claims were justified, they would have proved, by scientific means, the existence of God.
Since at least some ID advocates believe that they, personally, are responsible for making this revolutionary intellectual breakthrough, their egos have waxed as might be expected. All are completely devoid of any actual scientific content. Real Science is made up of contributions to knowledge. The knowledge is gained through developing and testing of hypotheses about what sorts of entities exist in nature and how they work and are interrelated.
There is none , repeat none of this going on in ID. Excuse me, but producing essays is not doing science. Although, as a rule, the ID essayists no longer repeat the familiar Bible-Science arguments supposedly proving the historicity of the Great Flood and of an earth only about 6, years old, they still use all of the timeworn and long-ago refuted Bible-Science arguments against evolution—especially those dealing with the fossil record.
All that has happened to these arguments, in the hands of the ID essayists, is that some new terminology has been developed along with some new and arcane pseudomathematical forms of obfuscation.
An actual scientific theory , however, such as the modern synthetic theory of evolution or the modern atomic theory, etc. As is so often the case, the actual truth seems completely unbelievable to those who have not studied, with understanding, a complicated topic in depth. This simply cannot be , one thinks. But it is so. If we must conclude that the watch was a product of intelligent design, then, the argument goes, we should similarly conclude, when examining the functioning complexity and arrangement of the parts in humans and other organisms, that they are also produced by an intelligent designer—that is, by God.
Although, when it serves their political purposes, the ID essayists will state that they make no claim that the design that they claim to find in nature was put there by the Christian God, even a small sampling of their rhetorical products will show that they talk out of both sides of their mouth on this issue.
They note that there are many intricate systems in living things such that like that watch if any single part were removed, the proper functioning of the system would cease.
This argument, although not the terminology, has long been a staple of Creationism, including the Young Earth Creationism that has been declared unconstitutional to teach in the public schools. Any past or contemporary published and plausible accounts in the actual scientific literature, not merely in essays of how evolution might have brought about or did bring about this complexity are dismissed by the essayists through offhand ad hoc objections, by denial of their very existence, or simply by silence on their part.
At one time, weather phenomena, volcanic eruptions, earthquakes, and the like were regarded as direct and purposeful acts of God —this viewpoint is still reflected in the use by insurance companies of the exact same phrase for the same sorts of phenomena. Plagues, the seasons, the motions of astronomical bodies, etc. With that way of looking at things, God was seen as exercising His all-powerfulness by constantly flexing His Divine muscles in carrying out all the everyday phenomena of nature.
God was still allowed to do His thing directly when it came to the still-remaining but shrinking body of unexplained phenomena—that is to say, only in those cases where there were remaining gaps in our knowledge.
As these gaps got smaller and smaller, however, guess Who also seemed to some to be getting smaller and smaller. How could we expect otherwise? This is just another way of saying that the very, very great majority of people have absolutely no capacity to evaluate these arguments—certainly not the politicians, school board members, journalists and other molders of public opinion who the ID people are primarily interested in convincing.
Because the majority of Americans already accept aspects of the Creationist position and the proposition that Creationism should be taught in the public schools, they are essentially already convinced that Creationism must be a legitimate alternative to evolutionary biology, and so just about any kind of obscurantist pseudoscientific apologetics will work just fine.
Thus the campaign against evolution is merely a means to an end, and the end is political—the rolling back of what they perceive as anti-Christian trends, which will lead to eventual establishment of a virtual theocracy. The scientific community will supposedly be converted and evolution defeated. It is difficult to know whether the ID essayists really believe this or if it is mere propaganda.
As noted above, there has, as yet, been no ID research which has made any contributions whatsoever to science. ID is a fraud. Sometimes they actually come right out and admit this. In fact, at least one prominent ID proponent has stated that such fundamental matters as, for example, whether we have a young earth or an old earth need not be worked out until after evolution has been defeated.
This is putting the cart before the horse. They realize that the primary function of science is to explain things. Evolutionary theory has actual content , and a lot of it. Until the ID proponents stop merely writing essays, garnering publicity, and engaging in aggressive public relations, and start developing a competing and superior account of the past, they will, justifiably, cut no ice with the scientific community. These ID opponents should know better.
In order to straighten out this business, a digression on the scientific meanings of the terms hypothesis , law , and theory follows. Our high school students are constantly being taught that a hypothesis is a prediction. The word is consistently misused in this way by schoolteachers and in laboratory manuals, e. An hypothesis can be as yet untested; can have already been tested; may have been falsified; may have not yet been falsified, although tested; or may have been tested in a myriad of ways countless times without being falsified; and it may come to be universally accepted by the scientific community.
A scientific theory has content , in spades. By this definition and powerful arguments can be made against any other there are only about a dozen scientific theories that I can think of right off the bat, and no scientific theories have ever existed which are not currently accepted. It would be helpful if someone could come up with an alternative term for scientific theory as I have defined it—a term to be used for that concept alone.
Perhaps a word based on Latin or Greek could be manufactured or maybe one already exists in some foreign language and could be adopted into English. A scientific law is a mere statement of the way things happen to happen. Laws are not explanations of anything, they just describe what happens or they acknowledge the existence of particular repeatable patterns of what happens. No theory ever becomes a law. No law ever becomes a theory. They are apples and oranges.
A theory can cause a law to be discarded. Although every scientific theory started out as a hypothesis or as a group of related hypotheses, only one hypothesis in a million or so has the potential to ever become a theory. A given hypothesis may be as universally accepted as a given law or a theory is. Any relative degree of tentativeness is not implied by the three terms. It should be quite clear, on the basis of the above discussion that there simply is no such thing as an ID theory.
There is merely the ID assertion. The ID assertion has no substantive content. He makes the same claim for the bacterial flagellum—a structure which allows bacteria to move about in a liquid medium. As far as I know, the ID essayists are unanimous in following Behe concerning the unevolvability of both the clotting mechanism and the bacterial flagellum. The precise blood clotting mechanism of humans is found only in humans and, perhaps, in certain anatomically similar vertebrates.
Likewise, the bacterial-type flagellum is found only in bacteria. Because the exact same blood clotting mechanism in humans is presumably found only in certain vertebrate animals, and the bacterial-type flagellum only in bacteria, and if each of these two characteristics has been separately designed by a Creator, then it might seem to follow that, at the very least, humans, along with their apparent vertebrate relatives on the one hand, and bacteria on the other hand, had to have been separately created.
By this I am by no means conceding that complexity of this sort is unevolvable. Actually, however, some conceivable ID-consistent schemes allow for some degree of lineage-thinking in regard to megadiversity, but a huge number of miracles is still called for. Once upon a time God miraculously created a single, original, ancestral living thing that possessed every single irreducibly complex system and irreducibly complex anatomical structure that exists now in any present-day living thing or that ever existed in any extinct form that lived subsequent to the creation of the aforementioned original ancestral form.
By some sort of devolutionary process, starting with this common ancestor, a devolutionary phylogenetic tree then gave rise to all other living things, with different suites of irreducibly complex systems and structures lost along the way on the various limbs of the tree.
As far as I know, no ID essayist has suggested this scenario, and the fossil record is certainly at odds with it. The original created kind is unimaginable and impossible in my view. Creationists who keep arguing as do the majority of the ID essayists that contrary to fact there are no transitional forms in the fossil record should clearly be prejudiced against this scheme, because it predicts the existence of just such forms. Unless the proposed devolutionary process has now stopped, owing to exhaustion of all genetic possibilities inherent to it and presumably because the intended end state of humans having arrived on the scene has occurred , then evidence of its operating at present or the potential for it to keep on operating in the future should be detectable, it seems to me.
That would smack too much of doing actual science involving ID. Once upon a time God miraculously created a single or a few common-ancestors of all life and, subsequently, He carried out a near infinitude of miraculous tinkering continuously throughout geologic time in order to put in place and often later miraculously dismantle the countless irreducibly complex systems, countless non-irreducibly complex systems, and countless simplicities found at different times in all the different subsequent lineages of living things.
As far as science has been able to discover, this process does not appear to be operating at the present. Once upon a number of times God separately and miraculously created all living things at the species level, or close to the species level, but in separate episodes of mass creation Punctuated Creation or spread out evenly or at random over geological time.
For some reason presumably the eventual miraculous creation of humans—the desired final objective , this process seems to have stopped and is no longer operating in the present. The intermediate forms that are actually found in the fossil record would have been, of course, also separately created coincidentally at about the time we would expect them to have been present if evolution had actually occurred.
If one were at exactly the right time and place, for example, one might see one or two or perhaps a whole herd of brontosauruses suddenly appearing in puffs of smoke.
Once upon a time God created all living things separately and miraculously and simultaneously or nearly simultaneously—three episodes of organism creation over a period of four hour days would do , with the separate creations all being at the species level or close to it.
How long ago this might have occurred is up for grabs but some would favor a figure of about 6, years. Were they created in vain? As will be noted below, huge gaps in the fossil record argue strongly against this scenario. I challenge them to do so. If you can think of any additional ID-consistent schemes, other than one of these combinations, then let me know.