A. My Debate with an Avid Evolutionaut from TalkOrigins
I wrote a comment to an evolution website. www.talkorigins.com, an excellent and fair evolution website by the way, even though they treated me condescendingly as is usual. Talk Origins treats evolution as if it were an absolute fact. I wrote that they should not get so over committed and demean nonbelievers, because they just might be wrong. I received an email from a frequent user of the site, Tom, and a staunch evolutionaut who was itching for a debate with a creationist, which I was not. I attempted to communicate with him on a respectful level. Actually, at the beginning of our discussion I was still a Darwin believer with doubts. This is my first debate on this subject. I started communicating with him as a devil’s advocate, as if I was a non-evo-believer. The more we discussed, the more I realized how wrong Darwin really was. By the end of our discussion over about a three month period, in my mind, I dropped TOE as a possibility of how species appeared on earth. His emails were rather disdainful and typical evolutionist communication. This is a compendium of an ongoing debate that we had: (My comments are in italics.)
Below my debate with Tom are debates with other evolutionists. The most amazing feature that I have found with believers is that they are angry and sensitive with challenges, they use pejoratives frequently, and they never doubt this dubious science. Never. They are 100% in lockstep. The ones that I have communicated with all have to refer to a paper written by someone else. They can’t do their own thinking, and use their own common sense.
Me: Tom, why did you pick my entry to respond to?
Tom: I use the site frequently and read the feedback every month and pick a few of the more inane posts( no offence intended :-)) (I am offended.) from which to send an email. Your post was answered and the official reply was:
We don’t need to make it look like everyone who attacks evolution is a fool.
They do a good job all by themselves.
(See what I mean about “condescending” and “name calling”?)
As you can see they give short shrift to persons such as yourself. (Condescending.)
Me: My biggest problem with your writings is that your simplistic “either-or” thinking kills any intelligent discussion of evolution.
Me: You must know that nothing in science is “settled”. As new evidence is discovered and tested, models and theories must be modified to fit new information. Try doing a mind experiment and see if you can come up with heart evolution. Draw the steps on a sheet of paper. In actuality, there are no possible intermediate evolutionary steps to a heart system; or eyes, or birds and eggs. A half heart would yield a dead (no) animal and no ev.
Tom: You are presenting Paley’s arguments from incredulity. Just because you can’t see how it can’t happen doesn’t mean that it didn’t. (No one can figure out how it happened; not even a highly educated evolution scientist.) Evolution opponents assume that an organ today had the same functions millions of years ago as they do today and that is an erroneous assumption. (I wonder what other functions they can think of for hearts, eyes, lungs…….) I don’t have long to educate you but the first site I hit in a search was this one: http://www.newsroom.ucr.edu/cgi-bin/display.cgi?id=310You might want to increase your knowledge by researching this. (More condescension. Notice how the question is not answered? Tom spends so much time telling me what a fool I am, but he doesn’t have time to “educate” me on how organs evolved.)
Me: I will look at this site, but I have already searched many evolution sites
that try to explain heart and eye evolution. What a joke all of them are. They make cartoon drawings of hearts and eye chambers gradually closing through evolutionary micro-steps, and becoming functional organs. The evolution that they draw is impossible anyway. Why would this happen? Where is the evolutionary evidence for these drawings? There is absolutely none. These are no more than figments of someones imagination. If you are truly a scientist with an open mind, you would have to agree.
Me: Doesn’t the word “design” just reek of intelligence? (Even dumb design requires intelligence.)
Me: No evidence to support it. The same with evolution.
Tom: That is why I made the comment to you, that if you had a scientific theory to supplant the TOE you need to present it. (The scientific method has never required an alternative theory to falsify an existing one. All that is required for falsification is the evidence that falsifies…nothing more! )
Me: Unlike evolution, the “steady state” theory was supplanted by the “big bang” because of overwhelming evidence and mathematical calculation. Astronomers determined that if the big bang truly occurred, there would be cosmic background radiation. It was found in 1989, further proof that the big bang was the beginning of the universe. With evolution, no fossil or lab evidence required for proof has been found, but it just keeps on rolling along as if there was. I do have a theory to supplant evolution. It’s exactly the same as science’s theory on what there was before the big bang. It’s called, “We Simply Don’t Know, but Here is What We Have So Far”.
Tom: ID must explain features which are poorly designed, such as the eye. ID can’t do it, but evolution can. (Only an evolutionist would think that an organ as miraculous as the eye is poorly designed.) They aren’t absolute. They do involve some speculation. It simply isn’t known how many of the evolutionary processes of specific organs occurred. (Then why is this a science that is not to be doubted?) There is much evidence that evolution occurred without the specifics of the evolution of each specific organ. You argue against a strawman which you have constructed while ignoring the larger evidence that it did occur. As I like to tell my creationist buddies, once life on earth didn’t exist. Today it does (And evolution can’t come close to explaining how life did get here. 100% of their lab tests have been failures..) and evolution explains that diversity and distribution of the flora and fauna on earth better than any other potential theory.
Me: That the universe has a purely scientific intelligence somewhere is probable, and I think necessary for development of species.
Tom: Probable under whose theories? (Can’t evolutionists come up with their own thinking without needing to refer to some one else’s thinking?) The new evidence from the last 150 years has supported the TOE. If the TOE were as fragile as you think, it would have collapsed years ago. There is no theory on the horizon to supplant the TOE but you are certainly encouraged to introduce the first. (TOE is correct because there is no other theory that they can think of? Sorry, but that’s not objective science.)
Me: It is completely obvious that there needs to be another scientific model
besides evolution to explain the appearance of species.
Me: The “we simply don’t know yet but here is the evidence that we do
have” would be a far more defensible scientific model than evolution.
The problem with your thinking is that you can only accept theories that
have already been proposed and accepted by someone else. Is my choice
only model A or model B? Can I think on my own?
Me: Thanks for the compliment. Try opening your mind. You too could look
like a fool. We both know that many famous inventors and scientists were
mocked as fools before they were taken seriously. Also, thanks again for
taking the time to communicate. I love the discussion, and am completely
interested in the subject. Actually I was a firm believer in evolution
for many years. Recently I started making it a study, and POOF! Evolution
became extinct (in my mind) as a possible theory for development of
species. When I saw how impossible evolution really is, I became even more
fascinated with the subject than I was before. How we got here is a
subject that I think about frequently, study a lot, and get very
frustrated by. It is a fun puzzle that will never be solved, but trying
is a kick. (I continue writing respectfully to Tom. Appeasement never works!)
Tom: I’ll be honest with you Stephen, I don’t believe that you ever understood evolution or that you even studied evolution. (I majored in Biology in college.) The framework which you have used as your discussion indicates that you don’t understand the basics of evolution, much less the details. (Oooh, more condescension!)
Me: Why didn’t T Rex’s arms (or any other part of T Rex) evolve in the twenty million years that it roamed the earth? Wouldn’t NS and SOTF have evolved longer arms for T Rex, since that would have been a huge advantage in fighting and seeking food? For this species, there was virtually no evolution for twenty million years, ten times longer than it took hominid to evolve into man. The more I looked at other exhibits in the museum, (I visited the Field Natural History Museum in Chicago.) I noted that other species for which there were fossils over millions of years showed virtually no evolutionary changes.
Tom: Evolution isn’t a directed process that must proceed in a certain direction
and in a certain time. (Tom knows this because he is actually God in disguise.) Did the arms of T Rex prevent him from functioning in his environment? Evidently it didn’t because he existed quite well right up to his extinction. As to other species I would need to know what they were before commenting upon them. Cockroaches haven’t evolved either. (Thanks! Another great example of non-evolution.)
Me: Massive changes would have to show in the fossil record for Darwin’s theory to be correct. Where were they? Were evolutionary changes specific to only fossils that haven’t been found? I started reading and studying to update myself on the subject, as it is a subject that I am obviously fascinated with. (Again I try respect.)
Me: I HAVE spent a lot of time reading and on pro-evolution websites. I thought they would answer a lot of my questions, but they only created more. Some notes on
your reply: You say that TOE is the only theory on the horizon, so it must be true.
Sorry, that is not science, that is belief. Science simply cannot come up with a model
that really fits the fossil finds, and lab evidence, so evolution wins by
default, not by scientific proof. Plus, ev scientists have so completely
committed to ev that they cannot even entertain the obvious fact that it
is poppycock. They cannot back out of their huge over-commitment.
Tom: Of course you have mountains of evidence that the TOE is ‘poppycock’
Me: Try to envision an eye evolving when all species on the earth were blind. How
did evolution know that if the pre-eye continued to evolve into a complete
camera system, there would be incredible images at the other end? How
did a heart evolve when there were absolutely no pumps in existence on
earth? Even if evolution were fact, intelligence still had to be part of
the puzzle. Evolution would have to also be an incredible inventor. In
my case, I absolutely accept the time line given by science for appearance
and disappearance of species, and the age of the earth and universe. That
the earth is billions of years old, as well as the universe, is proven
beyond doubt. Evidence for evolution, on the other hand, is non-existent.
Tom: Evolution doesn’t envision anything. Natural selection selects the desirable traits and not all traits are desirable by all species. (Natural Selection sure is smart!) Again, I don’t intend to engage you in a rehash of the evidence supporting the TOE because it is painfully evident that you haven’t studied the TOE enough to formulate supported evidence for your position. Do me a favor Stephen. Instead of spouting such bullshit, go to the web sites of the journals Science or Nature or to Pub Med and do a search on ‘evolution’. The enormous amount of information should keep you busy for the rest of your days. (Tom’s suggested sites:)
Me: The framework of your discussion shows that you believe evolution because
that is what you were taught, lots of people believe it, and it is the only thing “on the horizon”. The really great thinkers were able to “think out of the box”. You are locked in it. And, they would certainly feel like they were giving in to religion, because, like you, everyone seems to think the only choices are Adam and Eve or evolution. Can you imagine what an OOOPS that would be? The number of textbooks that would have to be dumped? It’s far easier to continue with the TOEBS than trying to look elsewhere, and look foolish in doing so.
Tom: Textbooks are revised all of the time. I know when you were
studying biology they changed course textbooks frequently. I know that it seemed to me
like my textbooks were changed every quarter and I had to shell out big
bucks for new ones.
Me: Evolution theory in textbooks has not changed a lick since I was in
school. (I’ve seen my kids college texts: same as mine.) No new
information supports evolution, but evolution marches on with the same
BS just as if there was lots of proof. Like you, I sincerely thought people that didn’t believe in evolution were either uneducated, or somewhat religio-nuts. (The people you think are my bedmates.)
Tom: Actually I am more concerned with the fundamentalists who believe that the earth and universe are young. These people, the vast majority of whom arereligious fundamentalists, use biology to further their religious views because biology is perhaps the least understood science by the general public. If the creationists had their way in biology they would be turning their attention to the other sciences. Any science that contradicts the Genesis version of creation must be destroyed. By the time the public realizes what happened we may be in the dark ages. You have heard of the dark ages, haven’t you Steve? It was the last time that religious fundies ruled the Western world.
Tom explains evolution to me (at last!): Your vision of how evolution works is seriously flawed. The best analogy I can use is this. If you start with a series of organisms named AAAAA and went to ZZZZZ you would have a progression chart like this:
AAAAA, AAAAB, AAAAC, AAAAD……..ZZZZX, ZZZZY, ZZZZZ.
Pretend (I love this word. It’s evolutionists motto! I had to highlight it, as it is the centerpiece for TOE.) that these are organisms and we see that AAAAB looks almost identical to AAAAA. AAABA would still look almost identical to AAAAA. When you get to ZZZZZ he looks almost totally different from AAAAA but there is a resemblance. At any point if you look into this progression you will find all of the organisms fully functional and like the immediate organisms around him. AAAAA is a fossil that we have found and ZZZZZ has been found.
There are many intermediates but many of them would not be immediately
recognized as AAAAA or ZZZZZ. MMMMM, if we were lucky enough to find him,
might be recognized as an intermediate. If we had a rich fossil record it
would still be difficult to recognize the changes because soft body parts
change more quickly than hard parts, thus it would be many generations
before we recognized what was happening. As it is we are lucky to have
fossils at all.
Me: (I finally get condescending back.): Wow! This is really scientific! This is the perfect example of the BS that evolution is based on. Did you make this up yourself?
Tom: The many examples of eyes in many species of today shows that there are
many variations of the eye and that they arise from the evolution of the eye,
especially for a person like you who believes that life began as a single
Me: Tom, there are no examples of eye evolution today, or in past fossil
records. But, I am sure you will continue to play pretend, like all ev
“scientists” do. It’s the only thing they have to do battle with religion.
Me: Here you are absolutely correct. It is hard to be an expert on something that cannot happen. No highly educated scientist has a clue either. They universally make up fairy tales as to how the eye evolved. Then they present their tales, and people like you agree and worshipfully accept them without question because they are so “educated” (by people that also believe evolution fairy tales). I do commend you on your self-initiated interest in a very fascinating field. However, advancement of science requires a completely open mind. Current models of any science need to be constantly tested and questioned, no matter how locked in they may seem. If this was not the case, scientists would be just as guilty of stifling scientific advancement as the religious zealots that you hate so much.
Tom: What more can I say Steve? You simply stick your head in the dirt and refuse to acknowledge anything which supports evolution. When the evidence supports a theory other than evolution, then you might have a case. Until then, you have absolutely nothing except your personal incredulity of evolution. There is so much wrong with the assumptions you make about biology that it isn’t worth my time to refute them.
(Translation: Tom can’t answer them.)
Me: The trouble with your communication is that you are unable to refute what
I say, so you put the answers off to me sticking my head in the dirt. Or
you refer me to a website that has imaginary answers no better than your
lack of answers, or you don’t have time to “educate me”. My questions are
very reasonable, and a person not so locked into their belief system
would see that they are, and be able to discuss them reasonably.
Me: I am rather amazed that you picked my writing to respond to. There are so many more inane feedbacks than mine (your word), I really wonder why you chose mine. Do you respond to all? Here is my problem with so called evolution scientists: they are completely condescending, like yourself. They think they are so smart, and everyone else that doesn’t believe is a fool. They and you suffer from severe tunnel vision, and to pin down any reasonable questions that any doubter has is like catching a greased pig. They, and you, completely skip over or ignore reasonable questions. Notice the response that I got from the TO site? No intelligent discussion, he simply calls me a fool. Like you, the replier must not have time to educate me either.
Me: (weeks later) Hi Tom
I hope all is well with you and your family. For the fun of it, I made a blog inspired by our debate. Since you were the inspiration I thought you might like to see how inane my thinking really is! Anyway, if you have time: http://evillusion.blogspot.com/
Either way, have a great holiday……
I think you need to consult with your legal counsel. (Now that’s real science!)
I wrote the following paragraph regarding a YouTube video promoting evolution. I got the following responses from reasoned evolution believers. Pretty amazing……..
Me:Darwin’s ideas are absolute BS.You have to believe in miracles to go for this sucker deal. A heart/lung/blood vessel/blood/nerve/brain system cannot possibly evolve in small steps. Adam and Eve are the same; pure fantasy. It is not possible that species arrived by either scenario. Why does Dawkins (atheist/evolutionist speaking on YouTube.com) think that if you don’t believe in Darwin, you must believe religion did it. Time to look somewhere else!
Edwib22: Read a book on evolution, then come back and apologize for your ignorance.
Me: I used to be a sucker believer like you. I did read and study evolution and cosmology. Sorry, but there are just so many things that can’t possibly evolve in small steps that it is ridiculous. People like you believe this nonsense because lots of people do, not because it makes any sense. The god of evolution is “millions of years” the prophet is Darwin; no different than religion. Read it yourself, and do some independent thinking, rather than just believing.
Roger: Brilliant satire of creationsts’ attempts at turning the argument back on the evolutionists. “I used to be a sucker believer” – Hilarious! “People like you believe this nonsense because lots of people do” – cheeky! “The God of evolution” – OK, this one is rather trite. “Do some independent thinking” – LOL!Anyway, way to go, buddy! Excellent lampooning! Can you imagine how stupid someone would have to be to actually posit this as legitimate criticism? Ha Ha!
Me:Roger: What in my writing could possibly make you think I am a creationist? I guess your brain hasn’t evolved enough to think clearly and logically. Way to go buddy. You are a typical evolution sucker. You make huge conclusions out of nothing.
Roger: Going against both creationism and evolution is pretty shrewd. You make yourself out to be an independent thinker, an anti-establishment rebel, etc. and you don’t have to risk anything to do so. By simply rejecting everything, you don’t suffer the inconvenience of committing to anything. From this smug vantage point, you get to accuse everybody else of being a “sucker.”If you can offer a plausible alternative to evolution, I’d love to hear it.
No difference between religion and evolution? Are you really that ignorant? Evolution is based on scientific evidence, and the reason that Dawkins and millions of others believe in it is because it is the best explanation of how we got here that currently exists. Religion is not based on evidence or testable hypotheses. If you seriously believe that the two are comparable then i would take a good look at those study materials of yours.
Me:Evolution is based on millions of layers of IMAGINATION, not science, EXACTLY the same as religion. If evolution were real, it would be all over the place today. You would still see fish crawling out of the oceans. Why did it only occur when no one could see it? Kinda like Moses getting the ten commandments. No one could see the event, but lots of believers out there. No diff.
Roger:You jackass, evolution IS happening all around us today. It’s just happening very gradually. Nature isn’t obligated to provide your feeble mind with dramatic instances like fish crawling out of the oceans (which you wouldn’t notice anyway, since it’s an exceedingly rare occurrence). Evolution is based on observation. If you can’t see it, or aren’t willing to see it, then that’s your loss.
Me:Why is it that ev believers are so quick to call doubters names? Is it that you can’t argue intelligently due to your brain not sufficiently evolving? Fish crawling out of the oceans is a non-occurrence. Not in the fossil record, not happening today. But, keep BELIEVING, and never think on your own! Keep looking “all around us”. Let me know if you find anything!
Roger: Listen, ass-clown, evolution is an ongoing process. It is happening right now, it is always happening. Just because something is not in the fossil record doesn’t mean it didn’t happen. Just because you didn’t see something doesn’t mean it didn’t happen. Cut this bullshit about evolutionists being brainwashed, it’s laughable. I call you names because you deserve to be called names. What’s more, you’ll take it and like it.
Showbat44:Hey, you are one bright guy! I guess you went to a good school, attended all your lessons and did your homework on time too! Please don’t disapoint me and say, no, you’re just another dumb idiot! Heart/lung/eye, whatever… can’t evolve in small steps? Are you really stupid or is this a joke?
Me:If you are so goddamm smart, let me know how a heart/lung set can evolve. You can’t, and neither can fake evolution scientists like Dawkins. Ev “scientists” say a throat gene mutated and copied itself and formed another throat that turned into a heart. If you can believe this, you can believe ANYTHING. What would it pump, Kool-Aid? How did it “grow” vessels,connect to the brain? Where did the blood come from. Obviously you are a believer, so writing this is a useless effort.
Edwib22:Of course i can’t tell you because evolution wasn’t a one day event. It’s a continual process that has happened over billions of years. It’s funny how you’re quite happy to criticise existing theories without offering your own. Just because you don’t have the capacity to understand something doesn’t mean it couldn’t have happened.
Me:If it’s a continual process, where is it today? Non-existent. Darwin’s theory is not possible. (Of course neither is religion’s.) I used to be a believer in Darwin. After doing a great deal of studying and seeing the bullshit, I have absolutely no idea how “it” began. On that note, I am a dumb idiot, like you said. And you are a blind faith believer. I would rather be a dumb idiot. I can think on my own.
Roger:I told you, you stupid clown, evolution is observable even today. You just don’t want to see it because you’re an obtuse pain in the ass. I question the quality of your “studying.” You have “absolutely no idea how ‘it’ began?” Well, do some more studying!
I’m glad you agree with me. You are a dumb idiot. Enjoy your “independent thinking” (excuse me while I collapse in hysterical laughter)…
Me: Are you hallucinating? Where is it today? A moth that changes color? Bacteria that are not sensitive to Penicillin? That’s what Dawkins would say is today’s evolution. You question my “studying”, but not what evolution fakes tell you? I’m glad you know how life began as you are the only one in world who does, beside the religious. So keep believing! Adios. You are not worth my time.
Roger:“A moth that changes color,” “bacteria that are not sensitive to Penicillin” – what’s wrong with these examples? These are perfectly compelling instances of natural selection. No wonder you won’t accept evolution. It’s staring you right in your moronic face and you dismiss it. Why? I don’t know, maybe because you’re a giant asshole?
Me:The moth and bacteria are examples of evolution that would produce hearts, lungs, and eyes? Right! I believe that! Makes sense to me. I believe that as much as I believe in the big invisible man in the sky. And, please keep up with the great array of names that you have called me. You seem so intelligent!
Roger: Who said anything about moths and bacteria producing organs? What the fuck is wrong with you? Do you not understand English? Or are you just retarded?
Roger: Don’t flatter yourself, pal. If one can draw conclusions from your posts, your time is worthless. Worse than that, it’s deleterious to humanity as a whole. Please, do us all a favor, and kill yourself!
Me:Me critically looking at “evolution science” is deleterious to HUMANITY AS A WHOLE? WOW! That’s the greatest compliment I have ever had. Really. I had no idea that I was that important. Thanks!
Roger: If you’re desperate for “compliments,” there’s plenty more where that came from…
I debate a Florida Citizens for Science user who names himself PC Bash:
PC-Bash: If the human jaw was designed intelligently, then why do we grow wisdom teeth? (Me: Why did natural selection “select” teeth that weren’t needed? Does PC have any idea how complex the jaws and teeth are? He couldn’t and ask such a question.)
PC-Bash: The damage that Creationism, or its current two political incarnations, “Intelligent” Design and anti-Evolutionism, will cause to children and to science as a whole is much more scary than it is funny.(Me: What damage? Very few people care an ounce about the subject, and few ever give a thought.)
Me: Evolutionists say eyes evolved when there was no vision on the planet earth. How did mutations know that if it continued in one of millions of possible directions, it would wind up with an incredible vision system?
PC-Bash: To go from a light sensitive organ, which is useful to itself, to an eye is not difficult, nor is it any sort of engineering feat. (Me: Right! A very simple task. Anyone could do it with enough time and some cardboard, wires, and glue.)
PC-Bash goes onto a long explanation of how eyes evolved that is less believable than Alice in Wonderland: “Animals with narrower openings would have less debris enter this cavity, and animals that developed sphincter muscle would have additional protection, with the ability to close off this opening to protect it from harmful debris…….Still, the cavity is susceptible to debris. The sphincter muscle helps, but skin tissue could help even more. If skin, or perhaps some other translucent material grows over the opening, then the animal can go places that it would normally have to avoid…….I fail to see how evolution could fail to develop an eye, or how any part of this eye, when approached in this logical order, is too complex to evolve from simple nerve tissue, over millions and millions of years.
PC Bash: Do you believe that animals with better advantage are more likely to survive, or not?
ME: Sure, but why did homo sapiens dis-evolve the ability to survive in the wilderness unclothed? Is that survival of the weakest? Out of billions of species, we are the only specie on the planet earth that cannot survive unclothed in our own backyards most months of the year. Oh, let me answer that for you: I am setting up a straw man, putting the cart before the horse, hand waving, I should get a basic biology book, and I am an idiot for asking.
PC Bash: We no longer needed (the status of being in”need” requires intelligence) fur and hair. Notice that we stand upright, and the most exposed part of our body, our head, still has hair. (Me: What about our shoulders?) If a mutation, such as albinoism or lack of hair, doesn’t harm an animal’s ability to survive, then natural selection will not have the opportunity to cull it. Poor argument. Please try again.
Also, it is fairly well established through anthropology records that humans migrated from tropical regions to temperate regions. Having fur is a distinct disadvantage in a tropical region: fur attracts more parasites, it retains sweat longer (harder to regulate body heat), it is harder to clean (thus leading to more opportunities for disease), etc.
ME: Your answer is so inane, I have to give it one more go.
Let’s see: Apes in Africa (the tropics), as well as lions, and tigers, etc. evolve fur even though they don’t need it. Apes then dis-evolve fur and become homo sapiens. They migrate to where it’s freezing cold, colder than they could imagine, and they don’t re-evolve fur. I get it! The wonders of evolution at work!
PC Bash: We don’t really need fur if we can make clothes, do we? Why spend all of that energy on fur when we have a large enough brain to seek clothing? If anything, not having fur puts us at an advantage, because we can cast off our faux fur when we don’t need it.
I don’t answer on this one anymore, and I give. Why keep on trying……………