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originally posted by: DexterRiley
a reply to: whereislogic
I don't really watch too many videos. But I understand your points.
The imparting or acquisition of knowledge and skill. Education is accomplished through (1) explanation and repetition; (2) discipline, training administered in love (Pr 1:7; Heb 12:5, 6); (3) personal observation (Ps 19:1-3; Ec 1:12-14); (4) reproof and rebuke (Ps 141:5; Pr 9:8; 17:10).
Unfortunately when I hear something like "Intelligent Design" being taught in schools, that's kind of a dog whistle for me to bristle-up about religion being taught in public school in the guise of science. I think science courses need to be based on the best principles and theories that are based on the best available empirical evidence and experimentation. To that end, I believe that evolution has to be taught as the preferable science of our biological origins.
Reasonable persons agree that the only fair method is to examine the evidence on both sides, both for and against a disputed theory. That is how one arrives at the truth.
Many scientists now admit that this is what should be done with the evolution theory. This was even noted in the foreword of a special edition of Darwin’s famous book Origin of Species. The magazine The American Biology Teacher offered this comment about it:
“W. H. Thompson, who was selected to write the foreword to a centennial edition of Darwin’s Origin of Species had this to say: ‘As we know, there is a great divergence of opinion among biologists, not only about the causes of evolution but even about the actual process.
“‘This divergence exists because the evidence is unsatisfactory and does not permit any certain conclusion. It is therefore right and proper to draw the attention of the non-scientific public to the disagreements about evolution.’”
The biology publication goes on to note another observation by Thompson, a highly respected scientist. He said:
“But some recent remarks of evolutionists show that they think this unreasonable. This situation, where [scientific] men rally to the defense of a doctrine they are unable to define scientifically, much less demonstrate with scientific rigor, attempting to maintain its credit with the public by the suppression of criticism and the elimination of difficulties, is abnormal and undesirable in science.”
The continued attempt to suppress criticism has become unacceptable to more persons. This can be seen by the requests being made in recent times by many scientists, educators and parents that opposing views be given equal treatment in schools.
Such requests have usually met with intense opposition from many evolutionists who fight against any other idea appearing in school textbooks. But, as physicist L. Dolphin wrote to the San Francisco Chronicle: “It is intellectually dishonest to fail to answer some of these problem areas in textbooks, and to exclude other scientifically based models on the grounds that they are merely fundamentalistic religious beliefs.”
Truly it is “intellectually dishonest” not to want any opposing views heard on such a disputed matter. It has to make reasonable persons ask, Why?
Reasonable persons also consider it unworthy of serious scholarship to try to stamp out criticism of evolution by dictatorial methods, by intimidation, or by attitudes such as that of prominent American scientist Isaac Asimov, who said that questioning the theory of evolution is like “attacking the theory of gravity.” He added: “It’s a fact, not speculation.”
But gravity can be demonstrated, tested, and proved in the laboratory and elsewhere. Evolution cannot, which is why so many are challenging it. No one is challenging the idea of gravity.
Trying to insult the intelligence of critics of evolution to silence them is especially “intellectually dishonest” when many evolutionists themselves admit that the theory has not been proved. In fact, Asimov himself admitted that much of evolution is built up, in his words, “from judicious guessing”!
The reality of the situation is aptly described by New Scientist when it reviewed a book supporting evolution. It said that the book “inevitably . . . often has the ‘woolliness’ to be found in recent books on the evolution of man. We frankly do not know how or why man evolved. . . . Yet if such a [book] restricted itself to the facts it would be slim indeed.”
No, it will no longer do to try to browbeat or insult persons who challenge evolution, or to imply that they are intellectually deficient. To get to the heart of the matter, we have to put the “guessing” aside and honestly analyze the facts that are available.
What happens when we do examine the facts, without the “guessing”? Does the evidence support the evolution of life from inanimate chemicals up to an apelike beast and finally to modern man? Or does it support the Bible’s view that God created man, and other kinds of life, directly? Is evolution, as one scientist says, “a fact”? Or is it, as another says, “the greatest fairy tale ever to masquerade under the name of science”?
“Evolution is as much a fact as the heat of the sun,” asserts Professor Richard Dawkins, a prominent evolutionary scientist.16 Of course, experiments and direct observations prove that the sun is hot. But do experiments and direct observations provide the teaching of evolution with the same undisputed support?
Before answering that question, we need to clear up something. Many scientists have noted that over time, the descendants of living things may change slightly. For example, humans can selectively breed dogs so that eventually the descendants have shorter legs or longer hair than their forebears. * Some scientists attach to such slight changes the term “microevolution.”
However, evolutionists teach that small changes accumulated slowly over billions of years and produced the big changes needed to make fish into amphibians and apelike creatures into men. These proposed big changes are defined as “macroevolution.”
Charles Darwin, for example, taught that the small changes we can observe implied that much bigger changes—which no one has observed—are also possible.17 He felt that over vast periods of time, some original, so-called simple life-forms slowly evolved—by means of “extremely slight modifications”—into the millions of different forms of life on earth.18
To many, this claim sounds reasonable. They wonder, ‘If small changes can occur within a species, why should not evolution produce big changes over long periods of time?’ * In reality, though, the teaching of evolution rests on three myths. Consider the following. [*: While the word “species” is used frequently in this section, it should be noted that this term is not found in the Bible book of Genesis. There we find the term “kind,” which is much broader in meaning. Often, what scientists choose to call the evolution of a new species is simply a matter of variation within a “kind,” as the word is used in the Genesis account.]
Myth 1. Mutations provide the raw materials needed to create new species. The teaching of macroevolution is built on the claim that mutations—random changes in the genetic code of plants and animals—can produce not only new species but also entirely new families of plants and animals.19
The facts. Many characteristics of a plant or an animal are determined by the instructions contained in its genetic code, the blueprints that are wrapped up in the nucleus of each cell. * Researchers have discovered that mutations can produce alterations in the descendants of plants and animals. But do mutations really produce entirely new species? What has a century of study in the field of genetic research revealed?
In the late 1930’s, scientists enthusiastically embraced a new idea. They already thought that natural selection—the process in which the organism best suited to its environment is most likely to survive and breed—could produce new species of plants from random mutations. Therefore, they now assumed that artificial, or human-guided, selection of mutations should be able to do the same thing but more efficiently. “Euphoria spread among biologists in general and geneticists and breeders in particular,” said Wolf-Ekkehard Lönnig, a scientist from the Max Planck Institute for Plant Breeding Research in Germany. * Why the euphoria? Lönnig, who has spent some 30 years studying mutation genetics in plants, said: “These researchers thought that the time had come to revolutionize the traditional method of breeding plants and animals. They thought that by inducing and selecting favorable mutations, they could produce new and better plants and animals.”20 In fact, some hoped to produce entirely new species.
Scientists in the United States, Asia, and Europe launched well-funded research programs using methods that promised to speed up evolution. After more than 40 years of intensive research, what were the results? “In spite of an enormous financial expenditure,” says researcher Peter von Sengbusch, “the attempt to cultivate increasingly productive varieties by irradiation [to cause mutations], widely proved to be a failure.”21 And Lönnig said: “By the 1980’s, the hopes and euphoria among scientists had ended in worldwide failure. Mutation breeding as a separate branch of research was abandoned in Western countries. Almost all the mutants . . . died or were weaker than wild varieties.” * [Mutation experiments repeatedly found that the number of new mutants steadily declined, while the same type of mutants regularly appeared. In addition, less than 1 percent of plant mutations were chosen for further research, and less than 1 percent of this group were found suitable for commercial use. However, not one entirely new species was ever created. The results of mutation breeding in animals were even worse than in plants, and the method was abandoned entirely.]
Even so, the data now gathered from some 100 years of mutation research in general and 70 years of mutation breeding in particular enable scientists to draw conclusions regarding the ability of mutations to produce new species. After examining the evidence, Lönnig concluded: “Mutations cannot transform an original species [of plant or animal] into an entirely new one. This conclusion agrees with all the experiences and results of mutation research of the 20th century taken together as well as with the laws of probability.”
So, can mutations cause one species to evolve into a completely new kind of creature? The evidence answers no! Lönnig’s research has led him to the conclusion that “properly defined species have real boundaries that cannot be abolished or transgressed by accidental mutations.”22
Consider the implications of the above facts. If highly trained scientists are unable to produce new species by artificially inducing and selecting favorable mutations, is it likely that an unintelligent process would do a better job? If research shows that mutations cannot transform an original species into an entirely new one, then how, exactly, was macroevolution supposed to have taken place?
Myth 2. Natural selection led to the creation of new species. Darwin believed that what he called natural selection would favor those life-forms best suited to the environment, whereas less suitable life-forms would eventually die off. Modern evolutionists teach that as species spread and became isolated, natural selection chose the ones with gene mutations that made them capable of surviving in their new environment. As a result, evolutionists speculate, these isolated groups eventually developed into totally new species.
The facts. As previously noted, the evidence from research strongly indicates that mutations cannot produce entirely new kinds of plants or animals. Nevertheless, what proof do evolutionists provide to support the claim that natural selection chooses beneficial mutations to produce new species? A brochure published in 1999 by the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) in the United States refers to “the 13 species of finches studied by Darwin on the Galápagos Islands, now known as Darwin’s finches.”23
They also noticed that some of the different “species” of finches were interbreeding and producing offspring that survived better than the parents. They concluded that if the interbreeding continued, it could result in the fusion of two “species” into just one.25
So, does natural selection really create entirely new species? Decades ago, evolutionary biologist George Christopher Williams began questioning whether natural selection had such power.26 In 1999, evolutionary theorist Jeffrey H. Schwartz wrote that natural selection may be helping species adapt to the changing demands of existence, but it is not creating anything new.27
Indeed, Darwin’s finches are not becoming “anything new.” They are still finches. And the fact that they are interbreeding casts doubt on the methods some evolutionists use to define a species. In addition, information about these birds exposes the fact that even prestigious scientific academies are not above reporting evidence in a biased manner.
Myth 3. The fossil record documents macroevolutionary changes.
I find a video presentation of the relevant body of facts, the evidence, to have additional benefits over a textual presentation (even when using images). Cause if we're talking about machinery, it's more convincing if you can see how they operate in action. And personal observation is a big part of proper education.
..) They also noticed that some of the different “species” of finches were interbreeding and producing offspring that survived better than the parents. They concluded that if the interbreeding continued, it could result in the fusion of two “species” into just one.
So, does natural selection really create entirely new species?
Myth 1. Mutations provide the raw materials needed to create new species.
The teaching of macroevolution is built on the claim that mutations—random changes in the genetic code of plants and animals—can produce not only new species but also entirely new families of plants and animals.19
19. Nobel Lectures, Physiology or Medicine 1942-1962, 1999, “The Production of Mutations,” by H. J. Muller, 1946, p. 162.