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Still No News

Entry 904, on 2008-12-04 at 21:21:17 (Rating 4, Religion)

On a blog entry of 2008-11-30 titled "Where's the News?" I asked why mainstream news services never include news items about new discoveries supporting the truth of creationism. I pointed out that discoveries which support evolution turn up regularly but the entries related to creationism only talk about the associated political and social controversies, not the real evidence creationists claim exist.

I contacted my creationist friend about this but he rejected my conclusion on the basis that I had chosen the BBC as my source. Even though that site seems to enjoy a lot of respect amongst the general population apparently it isn't good enough for creationists (they do have high standards after all).

So I challenged him to provide me with a mainstream news site which did meet with his requirements, where I could research the articles relating to creationism and evolution. I pointed out in the blog entry that I didn't necessarily expect a reply regarding this, and so far I haven't got one.

So I did a search on the phrase "respected news sources" and chose three from different parts of the world: the Telegraph from Britain, the New York Times from the US, and the International Herald Tribune. It probably won't surprise most people to know that I got about the same results here as I did at the BBC: my search (which was admittedly brief) found no stories at all which described new discoveries supporting creationism. On the other hand there was a steady stream of evolution stories.

I guess I might have chosen another three sites with some sort of anti-creationism bias. Actually I think maybe I have because I specifically looked for respected sites. No site which commands any real respect would be seen to contain creationist lies. Maybe I should do a search on the least respected news sources, or the most delusional, or maybe those with the greatest proportion of lies. I'm sure that would lead to a different result!

One of the entertaining aspects of reading about the creationism-evolution controversy is that you often come across advertising which promises to show absolute proof that a god exists. I found one during my search called "Darwin Busters". I thought this should be good, so I had a look at their "proof".

So here it is: "Where would humankind be if we did not have fire? And the wheel? Or glass? Our ancestors learned to make fires and to use fire to make glass from sand. Without glass, we would have no windows, telescopes or microscopes and no glasses. To this day, without glass, we would have no light bulbs. You could not start a fire or make glass on Mars, or on Venus, or on Jupiter or on any other planet. Fire, wheels and glass are some of the many Divine Gifts that God gave us when he created the Earth."

This is supposed to be "busting" Darwin? Excuse me if I find that slightly less than totally convincing! The only people who would find that sort of thing convincing are those who have either made up their minds already or those who are just plain dumb! (note that these two categories certainly aren't mutually exclusive!)

It goes on in much the same vein: "And did you ever think about cotton? We get that from a plant and that is a Divine Gift, with love from God, our Father. 92 elements are found naturally on Earth, including iron, nickel, copper and aluminum. Copper is used for electrical wiring and we all know we need iron in order to make steel."

Here's some advanced mathematical analysis: "Randomness and chance almost always lead to failures. Chance creates mistakes and problems more than 99.99999 percent of the time. For example, if you need 15 balls to fall into a perfect circle, and you throw up the 15 balls, they may fall into a perfect circle once in a trillion tries but all the other times the 15 balls will not form the perfect circle. That is how useful chance is it works once in a trillion times, or even less."

And this is interesting: "But all the other times, chance makes a mistake and you do not get what you need. Logically, this means that if all of the Divine Gifts on Earth came by chance, there would be evidence of failures and mistakes. But there is no such evidence."

Really? The fact that 99% (a real statistic which you can find in many scientific sources) of species which ever existed are now extinct isn't evidence of failure? Wow, I 'd hate to say how bad things would have to get before we did have evidence of a failure!

Creationism is just so pathetically childish. Its so bad that its hard to debate against. Its like using logic to convince a child that monsters don't live under their bed. If the person you're debating isn't even prepared to raise the debate to a level with a certain minimum standard of intelligence then you're really doomed from the outset!

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