May 20, 2008

Skowhegan Schools Debate the Debated

Looks like the Scopes Trial is about to happen again--well sort of.

Skowhegan School administrative District 59 Director Matthew Linkletter wants to ban the teaching of evolution from the science curricula. Linkletter's basis for his ban is that evolution is unprovable theory and so should be withdrawn.

This may surprise many of you who know my absolute biblical world view and that I categorically reject Darwinian evolution out of hand. But Linkletter's attempt to do this on the basis that the theory is unprovable is not the right course of action. How many other "theories" are unprovable? Shall we discontinue to teach Einsteinian physics because they are theory? Actually every theory--by definition--is unprovable; if it were not, it would no longer be a theory but a fact.

Instead, Darwinian evolution should be withdrawn not simply because it is a theory but because it is a particularly BAD theory which not only is missing key supporting evidence, but there is abundance of evidence that mitigates against the very theory. It is such a bad theory that an objective scientist must--if he has any intellectual integrity, admit that any commitment to Darwin's version of origins must be done so in the arena of faith, not science.

The Central Maine newspapers cite David Connerty-Marin of the state's the Department of Education saying "Evolution must be taught because, in the state's view, it's a proven science." If this is an accurate statement the Governor should appoint a new education chief immediately because this man obviously has no idea what constitutes proven science. Honestly, I know of no one of any stripe--Christian or Atheist who would go that far.

Connerty-Marin's next statement is equally troubling: "Evolution", he says, "is not just a belief, or based on faith, it's based on scientific evaluation. The worldwide science community supports it."

If he truly believes that, he is woefully uneducated and need not be leading our state's educational system.

The informed truth reveals that many, very respected, scientists have disavowed Darwin's version of existence. The late Harvard, Paleo-anthropologist, Stephen J. Gould debunked Darwin's theory in virtually all his writings. Gould was an Atheist but a good scientist recognizing the difference between fact and fancy.

But evolution is indeed a religion and when trying to confront religious dogma--well watch out; no matter whose dogma it may be.


Blogger notcon4med said...

You are absolutely right on this one! Coudn't have said it better. BTW, did you ever find a theater showing Expelled?

3:40 PM  
Blogger Mike Hein said...

Having gone through two series of Focus on the Family's Truth Project lessons (once as a small group leader), I must make one important point of clarification:

Scientific theories which are proven to be true (through experimentation that is able to be replicated) are called "laws," not fact. Thus, we have the law of gravity, not the theory of gravity, nor the fact of gravity.

Scientists who believe in evolution have taken to calling evolution a "fact," but are very careful to not call it a "law." That's because evolution cannot be proven definitively, especially by any experiment which is able to be replicated.

Using "fact" and "law" interchangably in scientific circles in not an accepted practice, as they mean very different things. Using them interchangably while describing scientific theory (even in a non-scientific context) is unnecessarily confusing to the non-scientist. Amazingly, evolutionary biologists often do just this in order to advance their belief.

Focus on the Family's Truth Project spends two hours on this topic, and eviscerates the theory of evolution as well as, or better than, Stein's 'Expelled' movie.

It makes sense for those of us with a Christian worldview not to speak the language of the Darwinian evolutionists, just as we do not adopt the language of the abortionists when discussing the value of the life of pre-born children.

Evolution is only a theory, and not a law. It is not even a widely-accepted "fact" (a much lower threshhold) in the scientific community, as the Truth Project and Expelled so competently demonstrate.

8:27 PM  
Blogger PB said...

The point is well taken however the "fact" of the matter is :) that the law of gravity is grounded in factual evidence.

Calling evolution a "fact" is standing language on its head. But I get the point.

8:22 AM  
Blogger David Martin said...

In my group's debates in public and private schools, it is obvious who lacks the bulk of the science: Evolutionists.

Clark's Pond in So. Portland showed Expelled. Atheist-Evolutionists bury themselves by their words.

Theories are based on repeated observations or measurements. Evolution has never been observed nor measured, so cannot be a theory.

When you hear "fact", you can be sure it is anything but.

5:54 PM  
Blogger Inzu said...

I know you probably don't check this anymore and I'm way behind on this debate, but I have a question for you. There are various definitions of the term evolution and various types of evolution. As a biologist who was raised in your church, I'd like to know if you find ALL of the types/definitions of evolution ridiculous. The word itself has become all-encompassing and those who don't know how to use the term or the specifics of what they're referencing tend to just make this problem worse.

Part of the reason I ask this is because microevolution is the term used to describe how bugs become resistant to DDT and pesticides or how some bacterial diseases become resistant to penicillin or other medications. The organisms have changed themselves somehow (through mutations) in order to avoid destruction. These mutations are passed down through generations since those who have it are able to avoid destruction and reproduce. I'd like to know your thoughts on this concept and what about it you argue with. This is the basic premise on which most evolutionary thought is based, and it is observable in our everyday lives.

I will say this, having been raised Christian and now a research biologist, I go back and forth on how much of the theory I believe. I do, however, believe in what I see and dissect and research. I believe in the order found in the chaos of the universe. And, being taught what I was at your church, God made everything, so who is to say that he didn't create evolution? It's an arbitrary term (just like all language) used to describe a concept; it's a theory that is trying to figure out how organisms survive when they shouldn't. Why can't it be a term to describe how God allows us to change and survive in the face of destruction? Why can't it be something to praise God for? Because the person who came up with it was agnostic instead of Christian? We live! Those organisms around us live! Yet the term has been warped and twisted by people who don't know how to use it or use it only for sensationalist headlines and debates that the true concept behind it is now hidden.

This turned out longer than I meant, but as I said, I'm curious. I miss you guys! :)

~Lindsay C.

10:43 PM  
Blogger PB said...

Lindsay--Just saw this today (Oct 12) and would like to answer you.
e-mail me at when/if you get this!

5:54 AM  

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