Monday, November 13, 2006

A Sane Persons Guide to Creationism – Apollos Chariot

Too often, normal, sane people don’t think they can speak up when confronted with Creationism in every day life. Aunt Polly says something that just doesn’t sound right. Billys teacher says something fishy. But Sane Person doesn’t feel they have the ability to stand up against Creationist behavior because they don’t have a PhD in biology. Luckily, all you need is common sense.

I got to see Richard Dawkins presentation on ‘The God Delusion’ on CSPAN2 this weekend. The Liberty University kids thought it would be cute to bum-rush him, but alas, theyre retarded, and Dawkins patiently trounced them with classical British manners. But I think he missed one big point, and its one of my favorites—Apollos Chariot.

Huh? There are Greek Creationists too? No, but modern Creationists are using similar logic regarding various topics, and I think its an effective example for the silliness of a Creationists prized argument: “Well how does evolution explain ____????” Insert whatever you want in the blank. Consciousness. Altruism. ‘Morals.’ Origin of life. Origin of the Universe. Eyes. Immune systems. Whatever gap in our current knowledge some Creationist thinks he/she cleverly discovered.

Lets pick one—How about, “How does evolution explain the origin of life????” Well, weve got some ideas, but we don’t know what happened for sure on Earth 4.5 billion years ago. “AH HA!” says Creationist “Well how do you KNOW my god didn’t do it then???” Easy. When has a supernatural explanation been right? Thor doesn’t control lightning. Mental illness isn’t caused by demons. Miscarriages aren’t caused by witches’ hexes. The sun isn’t pulled across the sky by Apollos chariot.

Making up supernatural explanations for natural phenomena is what ancient civilizations do. They didn’t have the technology, they didn’t have the math, they didn’t have the foundation to understand what caused lightning, mental illness, miscarriages, or why the sun appears to move across the sky. Humanity has worked hard to improve chemistry, physics, biology, and medicine over the course of our history. Pathetic, to think weve made it this far, only to give up at ‘our eye.’ Why should we give up? When has the supernatural explanation been the right answer? When has giving up been the right action?


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