Tuesday, November 23, 2004

An Explanation

In the comments for this post, Kirby states:

I have to stand up and say that "evolution" as a theory has NOT been supported by evidence. There is some evidence that points to it, yes, but there are just as many questions as there are answers. There are plenty of dotted lines on the charts.

I'm NOT saying that creationism has any fewer problems, or anything like that.

But evolution is not fact.
I feel I have to explain myself here, because I like Kirby. More than that, I respect him for his sincere faith -- even though I don't share anything like it -- and admire him for the way he acts on that faith.

Contrary to Kirby's position, though, I would argue that the theory of evolution is, in fact, awash in evidentiary support. There is abundant fossil evidence consistent with the theory, and I'm frankly (and blissfully) unaware of any fossil evidence that contradicts it. Whether "there are just as many questions as there are answers" depends on somebody counting both. Clearly there are plenty of gaps in the fossil record, and I don't know anyone who would claim otherwise. However, that's a far cry from saying that evolution isn't supported by the evidence.

On the other hand, I'm not aware of any objective evidence that supports the theory of creationism. Please point me to some. I'm perfectly willing to entertain the possibility that the theory of intelligent design has merit -- though I have issues with a God who would design something as inherently flawed as the human knee, to say nothing of my lower back -- but that's not at all what I was talking about in my previous post. I was specifically referring to the "[f]orty-five percent of Americans [who] believe that God created human beings pretty much in their present form about 10,000 years ago." To the best of my knowledge, there's absolutely nothing to support this assertion but blind faith, and plenty of evidence to the contrary.

I was unnecessarily blunt, and inconsiderate, in my previous post. I don't mean to say that people of faith are, by reason of that faith, stupid. But when that faith leads them to deny abundant empirical evidence in favor of a book that claims to be the word of God (and has no obvious support for that claim outside of the claim itself), I frankly think that they're veering away from rational thought. And now I've insulted them again. But there it is; that's where I stand on it. And to me, it helps explain a clearly irrational (and frightening) decision by the voters of this nation.

Next week, MeanMrMustard insults Taoists. Don't miss it!