Wed, 27 Oct 1999 06:13:13 EDT

Hi Susan, you said:
>it is mostly biblical literalists who continue to snipe at evolution. It is
>they who are in the dialogue with people like me. If it were Outer
>Mongolians who were making silly claims about the history of life, then
>Darwinists would seem to be hung up on Mongolians.

Neo Darwinists encourage people to believe their critics are all biblical
literalists, but it isn't true. I'm not a biblical literalist and you seem
to engage with dialog with me. Steve Jones, David Tyler, Behe, Denton,
Berlinski, Dembski, Hoyle, Margulis, Kauffman, Phillip Johnson and many
others who are not YEC's, but are dissatisfied with "random mutation and
natural selection as an explanation for macro evolution" are also not
biblical literalists. Yet you continue to characterize all of us as sniping
at evolution". If you are satisfied with Darwinism, fine, but why discourage
people who want to look for something more plausible? I would have no
interested in this controversy if differences of opinion were not attacked as
"anti intellectual" and the equivalent of believing in "fairies and
leprechauns". Look the vilification heaped upon the Kansas school board,
which did nothing more than refuse to state that an explanation for macro
evolution had been established as fact.

>science finds "design" undetectable. You can see an illusion. You can't see
>something you can't detect. And actually abiogeneticists seem to be honing
>in on the origin of life. "Free will" is a religious issue that science can
>never address. Mind and consciousness are things that can be studied and
>are. I don't keep up with that stuff, though. I haven't read anything about
>it since college.

To me and to many others, design is obvious. You see it as undetectable.
Can you live with the fact that others see things differently?
Abiogeneticists have been "honing in on the origin of life" during my entire
lifetime. I would not discourage any who are interested in continuing to do
so. You claim "Free will" is a religious issue. Do you mean whether or
not "free will" exists is a religious issue and of no interest to science?
If it exists it is a part of reality. I'd prefer science to consider all of
reality-even those parts of reality which cannot at present be measured.
Even if they can never be measured, that would not make them less a part of
reality, and I would not place them off limits to scientific investigation.

>Your mantra seems to be along the lines of "don't look, don't ask, don't
>wonder, don't investigate, don't learn." Even after reading your web page I
>can't quite figure out why.

On the contrary, I favor all investigation-not just investigation which might
support the prevailing dogma. The Darwinists are the ones who discourage any
investigations which might downplay the importance of "natural selection".
IMHO, Darwinian just-so stories resemble Freudian psychology. Freud blamed
female emotional problems on "penis envy" and male problems on a suppressed
desire to murder father and ravish mother. ( Did you know the first doctors
who wanted to investigate physical causes for schizophrenia had to leave this
country to do so? They were ostracized by the Freudians, who were firmly in
control of treating mental illness at that time.) Someone found a new jaw
bone of a dinosaur, and from that bone deduced it had feathers and a long
tail , and placed it on the "tree of life" between dinosaurs and birds. I've
heard it argued that "random mutation and natural selection as an explanation
of macro evolution" must be accepted because no one has proposed a more
plausible theory. We still don't have a formula to explain human behavior.
Should we therefore be compelled to accept Freudian explanations? Maybe we
will never have formulas to explain human behavior. Should human behavior
therefore be considered off limits for investigation by science? We may
never completely understand life, but we have discovered a lot. I favor
continued scientific investigation. I am unwilling to settle for "random
mutation and natural selection" and Darwinian just so stories.