by Dean Dixon
As the debate about ID v Evolution goes on, Dean Dixon describes how they are related.
|Evolution and Creationism
You can see it everywhere: the news, in college, at school. The debate about Intelligent Design and Religious Creationism rages on. Biologists claim ID is religious-based on the highly read and revered Book of Genesis, whilst the ID supporters say evolution lacks evidence. Let's view this shall we.
Intelligent Design is supported by the Bible, all agree that. Except there are several fundamental problems with this. An Anglican bishop in the late 19th century "calculated" that the Earth, according to the Bible, was in and around 6000 years old. Alright, maybe that's correct, but consider this: if a galaxy is situated at between 0.15 and 2 million light-years away (I am of course referring to the nearest galaxy to the Milky Way, Andromeda)*, how can the Earth be 6 000 years old? If we can see it, how can it be so young? Another good example is this. The biblical Book of Genesis refers to dinosaurs, reptiles who are dated to 65-230 million years old, as "living with humans" and "being vegetarian" (Genesis 1:29-30). First of all, how can you explain large, carnivorous beasts with big, jagged teeth like Albertosaurus or Tyrannosaurus Rex?** They were clearly not used for munching leaves and various other vegetation.
Intelligent Design keeps continuously claiming that some items of the living are too complex to have been created via evolution by higglety-pigglety chance. Well, evolution is not based only on chance. It is mostly based if a trait is stressed. Example: When chimps and humans separated in the evolutionary tree, it was because of lack of food. The apes living on the west side of Africa (the location where we found and dated their fossils) were living perfectly well. They had all the food and could climb trees. Australopithecus Affarensis and the pre-humanoid bunch did not have this luxury, living in the quite barren east side in what is today savanna. Thus they began to evolve accordingly, due to the lack of food and to the not-so-hospitable climate.
The United States are currently instituting a "bilateral approach" by teaching both ID and evolution by quoting that the latter is just a theory. It should rather be called fact as to what has been said in the previous paragraphs. Yet, the main argument that still holds sway among the ID side is "some elements of life are too complex to have been created by natural selection". Problem: that insinuates that the creator must have been even more complex, which basically shoots the whole thing in the foot. Considering this, the whole ID scheme falls into itself.
Another fun example of how Intelligent Design falls apart is genetics. According to the Book of Genesis, Adam and Eve had Cain and Abel, two boys, and Cain killed the latter. Cain must have had children with his mother and must have inbred for generation after generation. As noticed over the ages, this led to various genetic malformations and
death after childbirth, most noticeably in the regularly intermarrying Hapsburg family in Europe.
Lastly, the whole ID phenomenon is based only and solely on the Judeo-Christian creation myth. We could as well teach the Hindu creation myth, the Islamic creation myth, the Taoist creation myth and so on. And the problem that the separation of church and state will advocate no particular religion.
Now, all of you theists might be asking me: "But Dean, what created matter and the Big Bang?". Well, that might be a God or another supernatural force. And I agree with you on that. But evolution is a well proven fact, and it is clearly undeniable. Yet one great question remains: At abiogenesis, what happened? The answer might be God, Christian, Hindu or anything. But evolution did happen.
by Dean Dixon