Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Evoluion vs. Creation: Proof?

WARNING: Long post. Read when you have time to think.

How much of our knowledge is based on fact?

I'd say quite a lot. Pretty much all. And if we know something isn't based on fact, we don't store it as positive knowledge, but rather tentative. A great man (who I'm not going to name because of where this article is going to go) once said: "Every scientific statement in the long run, however complicated it looks, really means something like, 'I pointed the telescope to such and such a part of the sky at 2.20 a.m. on January 15th and saw so-and-so,' or, 'I put some of this stuff in a pot and heated it to such-and-such temperature and it did so-and-so.'... why anything comes to be there at all, and whether there is anything behind the things science observes-something of a different kind-this i not a scientific question."

If that went in one ear and out the other, what I believe he is saying is that the purpose of science is to make observations, and figure out the earthly reasons. Not make predictions about why the earthly reasons exist. Here's the point I'm trying to make.

Today in Biology, we were taking notes on "evidence of evolution." Mrs. Fehres's points were the following:

1) Biogeography- the fact that marsupials being restricted to Australia proves they developed completely post-Pangea. Another example would be Darwin's finches. However, I would like to ask how this proves anything? Just because I don't believe man developed from apes doesn't mean I don't believe in variations in species. I breed dogs, for goodness sakes. I know how easy it is to create something that is completely original by tweaking traits. I would agree that this proves micro-evolution (evolution within a species) but not macro-evolution (evolution from species to species, from whale to horse). It is not as though it takes millions of years to change a species either. There have been scientific studies done that prove these changes occur 10 000 to 10 000 000 times faster than evolutionists previously thought. How you can say that because there are different species in different areas proves adaptation that crossed from a monkey to a man, with rational thinking and a unique language, is not proof. It is doing what the quote-speaker said above, and putting too much guesswork into science.

2) Fossil Record- all I have to say on this is the following quotes from evolutionists:

"The extreme rarity of transitional forms in the fossil record persists as the trade secret of paleontology. The evolutionary trees that adorn our textbooks have data only at the tips and nodes of their branches; the rest is inference, however reasonable, not the evidence of fossils." (Stephen Gould, Harvard evolutionary geologist)

"However, the gradual change of fossil species has never been part of the evidence for evolution. In the chapters on the fossil record in the Origin of Species Darwin showed that the record was useless for testing between evolution and special creation because it has great gaps in it. The same argument still applies. ... In any case, no real evolutionist, whether gradualist or punctuationist, uses the fossil record as evidence in favor of the theory of evolution as opposed to special creation." (Mark Ridley, Oxford University)

3)Morphology- the fact that bat wing skeletons look like human arms, and whales have femurs. This is a very interesting "proof" for evolution. I hope by this point, you are getting the gist of what I am saying: Though I obviously believe in Creation, my goal is not to persuade people to this (at least not in this article. just be patient...) . It is merely to point out that the "evidence" for evolution is not solid. It does not prove evolution or Creation in itself, and yet it's being taught as proving the evolution "theory" (which is rarely treated as a theory).

Anyways, back on topic: Morphology. Just because there are similarities between animal structures does not have to lead to the fact they developed from each other. What about the idea that they developed from the same Creator? Why couldn't God have used something that He found worked in several, if not all species? Just shining a different light on it, and saying that it isn't proof. It's just an observation.

4) Embryological development- the fact that many embryos look the same in very early stages. Again, if it worked why not use it repeatedly in Creation? However, a famous evolutionist, Ernest Haeckel exaggerated these drawings. The first is a drawing by A. Ecker:

Now by Haeckel:

Leading embryologists have agreed that he drew these inaccurately. From a site: "[Prof His] sarcastically pointed out that Haeckel taught in Jena, home of the then finest optical equipment available, and so had no excuse for inaccuracy. He concluded that anyone who engaged in such blatant fraud had forfeited all respect and that Haeckel had eliminated himself from the ranks of scientific research workers of any stature.

5. Artificial selection- the fact that by ourselves using evolutionary methods in breeding and farming, it proves evolution occurred. What? Does that make sense? By proving it's possible, we are not proving it occurred. We are proving the possibility, and not even the possibility of macro-evolution, but micro-evolution. Furthermore, I would like to see someone use selective breeding to turn a snake into a frog- things that are "closely related." I would say this in no way justifies macro-evolution.

6. Biochemistry- similarities in molecular biology in nonidentical species.

Mrs. Fehres gave the example of respiratory enzymes. She said that humans have 48% of the same respiratory enzymes as bacteria. Humans and chickens share 86%. Humans and rabbits share 92%. Humans and chimps share 100%. However, I ask again, what is the point of these enzymes? If different species use them and they work to their purposes, then why not use them in multiple species? This does not prove gradual development. It proves something higher. I mean, bacteria? Actually, the amount of change that would have had to occur and the length of time it would have taken for bacteria to develop into humans would have included so many mutations, that it would have probably resulted in much less than 48% (I don't have anything to back that up, I'm just thinking out loud).

I am not trying to prove Creation [here]. I am merely expressing the concern that evolution is being treated as having a higher amount of proof than Creation. Because the evidence is proving both, I would venture to say that this particular evidence proves nothing. It is observations, which is what it should be. It is not meant to prove evolution or Creation- what is supposed to decide that for you is your personal beliefs. It is difficult for Christians to stand up for what their beliefs are telling them when their blatant proof is being treated as meaningless. If Biblical evidence is not solid evidence, I would call it weak evidence to non-Christians. However, proof for evolution is weak evidence to everyone. What I originally meant to write this about is how unspecific evidence can be modified to suit whichever case you're going for to begin with. If you are gung-ho for evolution, you can find fallacies in my arguments. If you're gung-ho for Creationism, you can find fallacies in evolution. It's scary how that works, but it is very difficult for a person to make a completely unbiased observation of the two. And in a way, I think that's best.


Ken Wichert said...

"evolution vs creationism" is not a valid comparison. it's kind of like comparing sunlight to spirit.

first, when scientists speak of 'evolution' it is the short form for 'theory of evolution.' so yes, as you methodically point out in your blog, the bits of evidence don't yet add up to a 'law.' The scientific method depends on a progression of hypothesis, theory, and then, if it's ever possible for science to prove, law. The only 'law' i can think of is the law of gravity.

Creationism is not a theory but a statement of ideology that cannot be proven using the scientific method.

for what it's worth, i'm happy to accept the theory of evolution (based on the mechanics of natural selection and adaptation) to explain the diversity of species. and, creationism is a suitable explanation for how the whole universe was set up to begin with. of course, you might get into the logical knot of: if god created the universe, who created god?

Archaeopteryx said...

You seem like someone who is intelligent, and who has given some thought to what you are being taught, but what you are demonstrating is a lack of understanding of evolutionary theory. All of the "fallacies" you speak of are the same old tired creationist arguements dusted off and trotted off again. Look here for scientific rebuttals of the creationist talking points.