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Author Topic:   Creationists think Evolutionists think like Creationists.
Member (Idle past 4411 days)
Posts: 39
Joined: 10-11-2009

Message 1 of 485 (531262)
10-16-2009 5:47 PM

Why is debating Creationists so frustrating for Evolutionists?
One reason is that Evolutionists do not understand the Creationist mindset.
Creationists think Evolutionists think like Creationists, and Evolutionists do not take the time to explain the differences to the Creationists.
Here are some examples of differences between the two parties:
Some Creationists think Evolutionists are never neutral.
Since religion answers every question for many Creationists, they might assume that Evolution answers every question for Evolutionists. Evolution takes no stand on whether or not God created the Universe, but some Creationists have trouble understanding this.
I have to fight back the temptation to say, "Don't you know the difference between evolution and abiogenesis? If you don't, I'll buy you a good dictionary."
Some Creationists think Evolutionists follow authority.
Agassiz, Boyle, Cuvier, Faraday, Kepler, Mendel, Newton, Pasteur, and so on and so forth--I'm sure you've seen this procession. Creationists march these famous Creationist scientists before our eyes, always hoping that if they bring just one more, we will fall to our knees in submission.
Conversely, they think that we currently follow authorities who are Evolutionists. In an Internet debate in which I recently participated, the Creationists kept accusing us of clinging to every word Dawkins ever wrote. The fact was that they were the ones who brought his name up. I did a word search through all the pages and found that they used his name more often than we did.
Some Creationists think Evolutionists follow scripture.
Creationists show this assumption in two different ways. Number one, they laugh with glee when this year's science textbook contradicts last year's science textbook. They ask, "Why do you follow a book which changes? Follow our book! Our book never changes!"
Number two, they pretend that scientific opinion, too, is constant. This enables them to quote out-of-date sources. If Edred John Henry Corner said that there was scarce fossil evidence for flowering plants, then so be it. Those words were indelibly etched in black and white, so they must have been just as true in 1976 when Duane Gish quoted him as they were in 1961 when he made that statement.
Some Creationists think Evolutionists regard Evolution as always good.
I used to belong to a newsgroup for piano teachers. One thread had to do with the differences between teaching girls and teaching boys. I made what I thought was an inoffensive and self-evident statement--that males and females evolved differently.
The other newsgroup members immediately pounced on me. According to them, I was a male chauvinist, I was out to degrade women, and I was a "Leave It to Beaver" fan.
Some Creationists think Evolutionists share their impatience for definite answers.
Since sacred scripture does not contain any theories or hypotheses, some Creationists do not recognize the importance of theories or hypotheses. In his review of an Evolutionist book, Gish commented, "One can read page after page of speculations and interpretations by various workers in this field, but speculations are no substitute for definitive evidence."
Sometimes I wonder who coined the adage that "there is no such word as maybe." It could not have been a scientist.
Some Creationists think Evolutionists regard Evolutionary theory as salvation.
In his review of Abusing Science, Duane Gish wrote, "People like Kitcher live in a dream world where evolution is God--nothing is impossible with evolution."
We sometimes hear the Loeb and Leopold case gleefully cited as evidence against Evolution. Those two offenders were taught Evolution! If Evolution is so wonderful, then why didn't it save Loeb and Leopold?
Simple: because Evolutionary is not designed for that purpose. My washing machine will not cook my food or heat my room. Likewise, Evolutionary theory will not explain the origin of the Universe or save a person's soul.
Edited by tomato, : No reason given.
Edited by tomato, : No reason given.
Edited by tomato, : No reason given.

Replies to this message:
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Member (Idle past 4411 days)
Posts: 39
Joined: 10-11-2009

Message 8 of 485 (532049)
10-21-2009 1:31 AM
Reply to: Message 4 by dwise1
10-19-2009 3:00 PM

How old is the Young Earth?
"Now, as YECs, they believe that the earth is no older that 10,000 years, yet they repeatedly avoid committing to that age."
That seems to be the figure which Duane Gish settles for.
Yet he never shows us an instrument which shows a 10,000-year reading.
Instead, he spends full time poking at real or imaginary weaknesses in the Evolutionist argument.
I think it's because he realizes that the more digits he writes, the less ridiculous he will look.
10,000 is only 4,000 more than the 6,000 figure which Bishop Ussher asks for, so that's the optimum figure.
In other words, it's J. C. Penney's $9.98 trick, only in reverse.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 4 by dwise1, posted 10-19-2009 3:00 PM dwise1 has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 9 by dwise1, posted 10-21-2009 3:54 PM tomato has replied

Member (Idle past 4411 days)
Posts: 39
Joined: 10-11-2009

Message 10 of 485 (532150)
10-21-2009 4:40 PM
Reply to: Message 9 by dwise1
10-21-2009 3:54 PM

Re: How old is the Young Earth?
Thank you, dwise1.
Just to get a possible misconception out of the way, I'm not Korean; I'm an American English teacher in Korea. So I'm familiar with the "intelligent design" foolishness.
Until recently, I was active in a C/E thread on a forum for foreign English teachers in Korea. The mod's shut down the thread because we were getting so nasty to each other. That was when I joined this forum.
I was interested in your comments about Creationists prizing anti-Evolution arguments, even if they contradict each other. It confirms what I have been suspecting for a long time. I have been writing a manuscript which I shall entitle "Duane Gish's Greatest Hits." It seems that Duane Gish believes in flood geology in one compartment in his brain. However, in another comparment in his brain, he prizes the "billions upon billions" of fossils which allegedly spring out of nowhere in the geologic column. Apparently, the geologic column conveniently converts between a record of flood deposits and a record of geological time.
I never could figure out what the point is about the Cambrian explosion. Let us let the Creationists have their way and agree that God said, "Abracadabra! Let there be a Cambrian explosion." Then all those arthropods and annelids came out of thin air. That still leaves fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals yet to be created. And they are supposed to have sprung out of nowhere, too.
If you ask me, that line of argument supports neither Evolution nor Creationism, but Cuvier's position.
Never mind the technicalities. Evolution is evil, so anything which opposes Evolution is good.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 9 by dwise1, posted 10-21-2009 3:54 PM dwise1 has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 11 by dwise1, posted 10-21-2009 8:41 PM tomato has replied
 Message 13 by Izanagi, posted 10-22-2009 9:40 AM tomato has replied

Member (Idle past 4411 days)
Posts: 39
Joined: 10-11-2009

Message 12 of 485 (532211)
10-22-2009 3:05 AM
Reply to: Message 11 by dwise1
10-21-2009 8:41 PM

Re: How old is the Young Earth?
Hello, devise1!
And thank you for your reply!
I have been neglecting Gish's articles for the ICR Website, and now realize that this is a serious oversight for a person claiming to do research on Gish. I printed out both of your links and shall read them on the bus to work tomorrow morning.
I understand what you mean about the "two model approach." Gish's critics have suggested many alternatives to both Creationism and Evolution. Maybe there were multiple creations, as Cuvier would have us believe. Maybe we are all ET's, as Hoyle and Wickramsinghe would have us believe. Maybe we were created in accordance with some other collection of folklore. A German opera fan might tell us that we populated the earth after Brunnhilde immolated herself.
What you call the "two model approach" brought our Creationist comrades some serious embarrassment on one occasion. They invited Wickramasinghe to testify in the Arkansas courtroom, forgetting that he pronounced a plague o' both of your houses. A lawyer asked, "Could any rational scientist believe the earth's geology could be explained by the single, a single catastrophe?"
He answered "no."
The lawyer asked, "Could any rational scientist believe the earth is less than one million years old?"
He answered "no."
He was asked for his opinion on scientific creationism, and he answered "claptrap,"
He was asked for his opinion on Gish's belief that each form of life was created separately, and he answered "claptrap."
I also understand what you mean by Gish assuming that disproving one position constitutes proving the other. I began my research expecting Gish to show us a dating instrument which would indicate a recent world Flood and a recent creation for all the world's taxons. So far, I have found no such thing.
Now that I think of it, I have run across both of Gish's stands on the archeopteryx--that it is a 100% bird and that it is a forgery, but never noticed the self-contradiction.
Speaking of Gish's shoehorn trick, did you know that Henry Morris called the Homo erectus a man while Gish called it an ape? This has been a source of amusement for some of Gish's opponents.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 11 by dwise1, posted 10-21-2009 8:41 PM dwise1 has not replied

Member (Idle past 4411 days)
Posts: 39
Joined: 10-11-2009

Message 14 of 485 (532272)
10-22-2009 11:51 AM
Reply to: Message 13 by Izanagi
10-22-2009 9:40 AM

Re: How old is the Young Earth?
No, as far as I know, the question of where we came from isn't debated very much here.
In fact, there don't seem to be much religious debate of any kind. The country is about one-fourth Buddhist, one-fourth Christian, and one-half uncommitted. I expected the Buddhists and the Christians to argue, but they don't. I also expected the committed and the uncommitted to argue, but they don't.
In the United States, the religious skeptics protest against the slogan "In God we trust" being printed on the currency. Here in Korea, no one protests against the second line of the national anthem, which translates "May God preserve our land for ten thousand years."

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Member (Idle past 4411 days)
Posts: 39
Joined: 10-11-2009

Message 27 of 485 (568512)
07-06-2010 11:25 AM
Reply to: Message 17 by Huntard
07-06-2010 9:36 AM

Theodoric, thank you for informing me about Poe's Law.
(That is, that fundamentalism is so ridiculous that a parody of fundamentalism can be mistaken for the real thing.)
I've never heard of it before.
The law can work in reverse, too.
The first time I saw the Banana Guy video, I thought surely that it was a parody.

This message is a reply to:
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Member (Idle past 4411 days)
Posts: 39
Joined: 10-11-2009

Message 38 of 485 (568560)
07-06-2010 2:39 PM
Reply to: Message 16 by Big_Al35
07-06-2010 9:31 AM

The only place where I have run across the slogan "anything goes" is from Creationists putting those words in the mouth of Evolutionists.
If Evolutionists believed in disorderly behavior, it would show up in their behavior. Such does not seem to be the case. I used to belong t a skeptic group in Tennessee. If they ever had any drunken orgies, they didn't invite me and they didn't announce them in the newsletter.
Evolutionism does not imply disorderly conduct. Animals of all species live in an orderly society and every savvy Evolutionist knows that. Animals of many species practice monogamy. Our own species practiced monogamy long before religion coined their lofty rhetoric about "holy matrimony."
Big Al, if you know of any Evolutionist who said or wrote that "anything goes," then let's see some documentation.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 16 by Big_Al35, posted 07-06-2010 9:31 AM Big_Al35 has replied

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Member (Idle past 4411 days)
Posts: 39
Joined: 10-11-2009

Message 39 of 485 (568564)
07-06-2010 3:01 PM

Theodoric, you're right, that's Poe's Corollary.
But speaking of Poe's Law, is it possible that Big Al is an Evolutionist who is just having fun by teasing us?
Big Al, here are some reasons why I regard Evolution as optimistic:
We are free to refer to a model which helps us understand each other and ourselves.
We are free to refer to a model which allows us the challenge of exploring the world for truth rather than having it all handed down to us.
We are free from the obligation to worship an unjust God who blesses or curses us for beliefs which don't really make any difference.
We are free from the obligation to hold beliefs which don't make any sense to us.
Anyway, Big Al, thank you for bumping my thread.

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Member (Idle past 4411 days)
Posts: 39
Joined: 10-11-2009

Message 41 of 485 (568587)
07-06-2010 10:52 PM

Is belief in an afterlife really optimistic?
That can go two ways.
It's more pessimistic than hopes of going to Heaven,
but it's more optimistic than fear of going to Hell.
Or is it optimistic even to imagine going to Heaven?
I have a few questions:
We are told that God is infinite in love. Yet we are told that God is so vain that he created us just to worship him. I would have difficulty in worshipping a God who is so vain.
I would feel good if someone sent me a message saying, "Oh, Tomato! Your posts on the EVE Forum are brilliant! I enjoy reading every one of them!" But there is one important difference: I don't claim to be infinite in love.
Heaven is described as a place of perfect bliss. But we are all evolved to adapt to a world in which perfect bliss is impossible. That's why even the arts and entertainment abound with fictional settings, complete with crises and complications. Even conservative music abounds with dissonances and resolutions. Wouldn't Heaven be a boring place?
I understand that loving and benevolent people go to Heaven. Then how could they be happy, knowing that millions of other people are in a place of everlasting torment?
There are gazillions of religious groups, each claiming to be the only path to salvation, and each claiming that all the other groups are mere Satanic counterfeits. We are expected to imagine which bandwagon is the right one in the eyes of an omnipotent God, and we are expected to make this decision with our finite brains. That is impossible.
The result, then, is that salvation depends on sheer luck. You are saved if the right bandwagon happens to pass by your house.
Suppose that the Mormons are right and the Moonies are wrong. The Mormon bandwagon passes by my house and I hop on. I'm saved. But suppose that the Moonie bandwagon passes by your house and you hop on. However, you would have hopped on the Mormon bandwagon if it passed by your house. You're doomed. Is that fair?
I think I am being optimistic for not having to worship such an unjust God.

Member (Idle past 4411 days)
Posts: 39
Joined: 10-11-2009

Message 42 of 485 (568591)
07-06-2010 11:38 PM
Reply to: Message 39 by tomato
07-06-2010 3:01 PM

Have any of you ever participated in a forum entitled evolutionfairytale?
I recommend it for anyone seeking an exciting adventure.
The rules state that everyone in the forum should be courteous to everyone else.
But they only enforce that rule one way; the Creationists can be as rude as they want to be.
On the other hand, nearly every Evolutionist gets banned for no discernable reason.
I got banned after writing over 100 posts, which is good compared with how most of the other Evolutionists fared.
I made an occasional attempt to be diplomatic.
Whenever a Creationist shared information which I had not known before, I thanked the Creationist.
For instance, one Creationist said that Darwin made a passing acknowledgment to Lamarkianism. (That is, the belief that acquired traits could be inherited. A giraffe stretches his neck and sires a giraffe with a longer neck. An elephant stretches his trunk and sires an elephant with a longer trunk.) I looked that up and found that the Creationist was right.
As you may expect, one conversation got onto Evolutionist hoaxes, such as the Piltdown Man and the Nebraska Man. One Creationist told us about the Archaeoraptor. I hadn't heard of it before, because my reading has been mostly about Duane Gish, and this hoax took place after Gish retired from his debate circuit.
I thanked both Creationists.
However, there were a few times when I got rather nasty.
One of the Creationists said that the Bible must be true because some of the place names and personal names have been found to be names of actual places and actual people.
I said that the same can be said for South Park. Does that mean that all of the South Park episodes are true?
Not surprisingly, one of the thread diverged onto an argument over whether Hitler was a Creationist or Evolutionist. (The Creationists blamed the derailment all on the Evolutionists, but it takes two to tango.)
One of the Evolutionists said that the question was not important, because a claim should be evaluated on its merits, not on the beliefs of someone else.
One of the Creationists said yes, the question was important, because we are seeing what happens when an Evolutionist gets elected.
I did a quick Web search and found that Obama was an Evolutionist. I said that the White people in the United States had better watch out, because they are going to be sent to the gas chambers any day now.

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Member (Idle past 4411 days)
Posts: 39
Joined: 10-11-2009

Message 56 of 485 (568626)
07-07-2010 9:24 AM

****Hello, Big Al!****
Turn it around: suppose that it were the Evolutionists putting words in the mouths of Creationists. Wouldn't you ask for documentation?
I grew up in a church in which the congregation recited an Affirmation of Faith which reads We believe in God the Father, infinite in wisdom, power and love.
Let me go over that Obama argument one more time with a fine tooth comb:
That argument is a reductio ad absurdum, or an exposition of what would happen if the opponent's claims were true.
Firstly, the Creationist on the evolutionfairytale site said that any Evolutionist elected to a high office would behave as Hitler did.
If that Creationist's claim were true, then the following Socrates-is-a-man syllogism would also be true:
MAJOR PREMISE: All Evolutionists elected to high offices act like Hitler.
MINOR PREMISE: Obama is an Evolutionist elected to a high office.
CONCLUSION: Therefore, Obama acts like Hitler.
I am not saying that this argument is true, I am merely saying that it WOULD be true IF that Creationist's statement were true.
In other words, I am arguing from the following modus tollens operation:
MAJOR PREMISE: If the Creationist's statement is true, then Obama will send all the White people to the gas chambers.
MINOR PREMISE: Obama will not send all the White people to the gas chambers.
CONCLUSION: Therefore, the Creationist's statement is true.
Of course, we cannot be absolutely sure yet.
We will have to wait the whole four years and see.
****Hello, Huntard!****
****Hello, Modulous!****
246 posts? You exceeded my record by a wide margin.
****Hello, Percy!****
I don't remember the name Adam Nagy, but I could have seen it and forgotten.
Watch out, you might commit a Corollary of Poe's Law offense.
At first, I wondered if Big Al was an Evolutionist playing the Devil's advocate, but I don't think anyone has enough imagination to make up a character like him.
He's gotta be the real thing.

Replies to this message:
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