[asa] re: deck of cards, chance and design

From: Cameron Wybrow <wybrowc@sympatico.ca>
Date: Tue Oct 20 2009 - 09:18:01 EDT


See my interspersed replies below.

----- Original Message -----
From: John Walley
To: Cameron Wybrow ; asa
Sent: Sunday, October 18, 2009 5:46 AM
Subject: Re: deck of cards, chance, and design (was: Re: [asa] ID question?)

" The question is why the improbabilities associated with the origin of
life, or with a purely neo-Darwinian account of evolution, are not treated
in the same way by scientists. Generally speaking, inconsistent treatment
points to an external motivation."

Yes I agree there is external motivation but I don't necessarily disagree
with it. Although it is overly simplistic to say the YECs started it, it is
a fact that they have their external motivations as well.

> CW: I agree; they do.

Why don't you demand the same consistency you require of science from them?

> CW: I do. And I have the internet bruises to prove it.

Granted the atheists have their agendas at one extreme as do the YECs at the
other and truth and true science is the casualty caught in the middle. Why
can't we all just be TE's? :)

> CW: I could be a TE if the "TE Statement of Faith" was the minimal one
> provided by Ted Davis (belief in God + belief in evolution). So could
> Mike Behe and so could Denyse O'Leary. (We Anglicans and Catholics are an
> easy-to-get-along-with lot!) Unfortunately, many TEs here and elsewhere
> seem to demand also signing on to one or more of a whole bunch of riders:
> design is not in fact detectable; design is not detectable scientifically;
> design is detectable only by faith; design must not be detectable for
> theological reasons; evolution must be entirely due to natural causes;
> Darwinian mechanisms and other stochastic mechanisms have been proved
> capable, without the addition of either guidance or advance planning, of
> turning a bacterium into Beethoven; God must not be responsible for evil;
> the Bible didn't really mean it when it reported miracles, except for the
> Resurrection and maybe a few others from the Gospels. And they also seem
> to demand a set of emotional attitudes -- reflexive hostility toward YEC,
> and automatic suspicion that all ID people are closet YECs or at least
> evolution deniers. Finally, they seem to endorse and excuse poor reading
> habits and inaccurate reporting habits, e.g., not reading Behe carefully,
> guessing what he probably means instead of paying attention to what he
> actually says, misreporting what he says to others, and even when
> corrected persisting in the misreading and misreporting. It's for all of
> these reasons that I can't sign on to the "ASA-TE Statement of Faith".
> It's got more doctrines and attitudes that I object to than even the
> Westminster Confession. :-)

The fact is that the atheists serve a purpose and God is using them against
the church to debunk creationism.

> CW: Highly unlikely on general grounds, and even more on historical
> grounds. The atheists, and various types of liberal Christians, were
> around long before Ken Ham, Duane Gish and Henry Morris. "Creationism"
> (meaning not merely belief in Creation, which all Christians accept, but a
> particular form of American Biblical literalism) is a reaction (misguided,
> I concede) to atheism and/or secular humanism and/or liberal
> Protestantism. However, I have a theory of my own, and that is that God
> is using ID to debunk atheism, and that TEs are getting in the way. :-)

If you don't like them then quit creating the problem and empowering them.
That is the message to the church here. Regardless of Eugenie Scott's
personal beliefs and agendas, I am glad she is defending the truth of
science in the schools.

> CW: Her organization does very little in the way of genuine science
> education; it is narrowly focused on defending Darwinian evolution and
> attacking creationism and intelligent design. She is also completely
> uninterested in truth in science in the schools, because she wants to
> block not only ID from being taught in the schools, but even criticisms of
> Darwinism drawn from peer-reviewed scientific literature. In every State
> where such "teaching Darwinian evolution critically" language is
> introduced into new education legislation, even when the legislation
> explicitly renounces the teaching of ID as an alternative, the NCSE is
> there with its propaganda machine, misrepresenting the purpose and intent
> of the legislation as a theocratic plot. This is not the action of
> someone interested in genuine science education. This is the action of
> someone who does not want students to know that there are actually
> scientific, as opposed to religious, criticisms of Darwinian evolution.
> And why doesn't she want the students to know?

If the leaders of [the National Apologetics Conference] all got together and
apologized for
YEC then I think you would see a lot of this resistance defanged. People
tolerate Dawkins

> CW: Which people?

because he is a counterbalance to YEC.

> CW: Unlikely. Admirers of Dawkins don't think he is a "counterbalance"
> to YEC; they think YEC is rubbish, and doesn't need a counterbalance but
> needs to be annihilated. And haters of Dawkins don't tolerate him. And
> is there anyone who is neutral toward Dawkins?

But if YEC went away most people wouldn't support him

> CW: YEC may provide more grist for Dawkins's mill because its statements
> are such easy targets, but if it did not exist he would go after Catholic
> authoritarianism, the Anglican hierarchy, Islam, etc. He is against "God"
> period, not just fundamentalism. And the same with Dennett, Harris, etc.

and this debate would center back to the middle somewhere around TE.

> CW: Yes, we should seek the moderate middle position: one that says
> (against the atheists) that unguided evolution is false, or at least
> without anywhere near adequate detailed confirmation; and one that says
> (against the YECs) that Genesis 1 need not be taken literally and that
> things could have arisen via planned or guided evolution; and one that is
> open to Deists, Jews, Christians, Muslims, Hindus, and thoughtful
> agnostics alike. So you meant to type "ID", didn't you? :-)


> CW: Cameron.

To unsubscribe, send a message to majordomo@calvin.edu with
"unsubscribe asa" (no quotes) as the body of the message.
Received on Tue Oct 20 09:19:12 2009

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.8 : Tue Oct 20 2009 - 09:19:12 EDT