Re: [asa] Rejoinder 3B: Reply to David Opderbeck

From: Gregory Arago <>
Date: Tue Sep 30 2008 - 17:58:33 EDT

Hi Dennis,

Thanks for chiming in. Since you've volunteered your background as a biologist, could you please answer†a clarifying†question. Do you consider yourself a 'Darwinist' or accept 'Darwinism'?

This is important because you teach biology at a Christian university. Timaeus has said a 'theistic Darwinist' (and 'theistic Darwinism') is a contradiction in terms. You may certainly be a 'theistic evolutionist' or an 'evolutionary creationist' since these terms are more ambiguous to represent. I don't think you've made your views on this clear at ASA yet, or at least I've missed it if you have.†Darwin obviously considered himself an 'agnostic' and not a theist.

Secondly, is there anything at all about 'Darwinian mechanisms' that you are skeptical about?

This would seem to get at the questions Timaeus is asking.

Cheers, Gregory

--- On Tue, 9/30/08, Dennis Venema <> wrote:

From: Dennis Venema <>
Subject: Re: [asa] Rejoinder 3B: Reply to David Opderbeck
To: "Ted Davis" <>, "" <>
Received: Tuesday, September 30, 2008, 10:37 PM

The volume that Tim puts out is amazing Ė one suspects he is retired. Tim, I would appreciate shorter, more concise posts! Isnít there some quip about not arguing with those who buy ink by the barrel? :)

I donít have a lot of time at present, so this comment will be brief.

I am a biologist. I am trained in to the PhD level in genetics, cell/molecular biology and developmental biology. Ted, you were asking for biologists Ė well, so far Iím chiming in. Maybe Steve Matheson will drop in eventually as well. Iím not sure who else you have in mind.
Timís argument has certainly shifted emphasis Ė now itís that RM+NS cannot produce complexity, and that the available evidence for common descent does not qualify as evidence for a mechanism. This was essentially Beheís tack at the Kitzmiller trial: when things arenít looking good for your argument, demand an infinite level of detail before you will accept the evidence. Does Tim really think it is possible to determine the step-by-step progression, one base pair change at a time, with all the selection pressures, allele frequencies in the population, etc, for any ďgainĒ in complexity or function? Yet that is what Behe (and Tim) wants. This is in striking contrast to ID, which proposes no mechanism, makes no statements about how or when design was implemented, or any ďpathetic level of detailĒ whatsoever. This line of argumentation didnít work at Dover, and it still doesnít work now.
Beheís latest book, Edge of Evolution, tries to argue this approach as well. The book is riddled with logical flaws, but you need to know a thing or two about genetics to see them.


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Received on Tue Sep 30 17:59:05 2008

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