What I find most irritating about debating creationists isn’t their ignorance of general science; we all don’t know things. What’s most annoying is their apparent lack of curiosity. If I don’t know something I like to do research. But if creationists don’t know something, they often pretend that they do know it, proudly and dogmatically, even if it’s blatantly wrong. This behavior reminds me of something Ron Reagan once said about his father, former president, Ronald Reagan:
He knew what he knew, and he didn’t want to know any more.
Well, I found a post titled The Great Debate: Genesis or Science? by Allen Epling, a man claiming to be a former, public school, science teacher, and believer in the inerrancy of the Bible. He begins by declaring his apathy toward science:
Why is it so important that we know how man got here? To believers it shouldn’t matter so much HOW [his emphasis], as much as WHY.
He then resorts to revisionist history to make religion appear accommodating.
In the past 300 years we have seen several instances where true science has advocated an opinion that is different from the Church’s, with the result that the Church has adjusted its interpretation of the Word of God to reflect a more modern view.
The Catholic Church has adjusted its position, reluctantly and belatedly, on several issues, like evolution. But how have fundamentalist Christians –who believe the Earth is 6000 years old and who think The Flintstones is a documentary– ever adjusted their “interpretation of the Word Of God to reflect a more modern view”? Biblical literalism doesn’t sound objective.
Allan Epling’s continues with another historical inaccuracy:
Galileo was threatened with excommunication from the Church if he didn’t recant his statements that the moon was full of craters, even though his telescope clearly showed their existence.
No, Galileo was accused of heresy for stating that the Earth revolved around the sun in his book Dialogue Concerning the Two Chief World Systems. After being threatened with imprisonment and death, he recanted, and was given the lesser sentence of house arrest, which lasted almost 10 years. In 1992 –350 years later– the Catholic Church apologized for the incident.
And as a former, physics teacher, Allan Epling should know better than to make the following ridiculous statement, which turns an aspect of quantum physics into philosophy.
Many scientists firmly advocate a “certainty” that there is no God, in spite of believing ‘religiously’ in the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principal. In the forefront of today’s science is a body of evidence, catagorized[sic] as Quantum Mechanics, that makes clear that nothing in the entire universe is certain but is determined by a “probability factor”. Any scientist that is certain about anything is admitting hypocracy[sic] to his own field of study.
All Heisenberg’s Uncertainty Principle states is that “the more precisely the POSITION [of a particle] is determined, the less precisely the MOMENTUM is known”. It has nothing to do with the general reliability of scientific evidence.
And where would creationists be without quote mining. Allen Epling delivers with the ubiquitous Einstein citation.
The truth must come from both sides without the barriers that now exist that prevent us from seeing that truth. Einsten[sic] said that “Religion without science is blind, and science without religion is lame”. How true.
It’s fairly obvious Einstein wasn’t specifically paying homage to Christianity, but to the fantastical nature of religion in general, as a source of inspiration and imagination. Nowhere in Einstein’s work will we find the religion variable; there is no equation E=MC2 + God.
The last paragraph of Epling’s post sums up creationism in a nutshell:
Each week a new topic will be dealt with presenting, hopefully, a balanced, educated viewpoint, while ALWAYS upholding the divinity and sanctity of the Bible. The basic tenet of this article is that every word of the book of Genesis is factually, historically, and scientifically true.
What Epling is really saying is that science should accommodate Christianity, while Christianity should concede nothing.