Monday, 9 February 2009

I Do Not Believe In Evolution

Bet you weren't expecting that were you? But I don't believe in evolution. Believing in something implies that a degree of faith is needed in order to accept something that cannot be proven one way or another. Oooh, like the existence of God for example.

Creationists often use the strawman argument that "evolution is just a theory, even the scientists say so". Yeah, well we also refer to gravity as a theory, but that doesn't mean that we don't think it's a FACT, or that we're happy to have intelligent falling taught in schools as an alternative to gravity!

As the AAAS explains:
A scientific theory is a well-substantiated explanation of some aspect of the natural world, based on a body of facts that have been repeatedly confirmed through observation and experiment. Such fact-supported theories are not "guesses" but reliable accounts of the real world. The theory of biological evolution is more than "just a theory." It is as factual an explanation of the universe as the atomic theory of matter or the germ theory of disease. Our understanding of gravity is still a work in progress. But the phenomenon of gravity, like evolution, is an accepted fact.
So I don't believe in evolution for the same reason that I do not believe in gravity. There is no need to believe in something that is happening constantly, measurably and without us thinking about it. It is as silly to believe in evolution as it is to believe that 2 + 2 = 4.

Sadly this distinction has been lost on the journalist who wrote this report on a survey of evolution versus creationism, and I presume on an awful lot of the people who filled in the questionnaire, whether they are part of the 25% who "believe" evolution is definitely true, or whether they are strongly opposed to it. As for the actual figures reported, that half the people surveyed do not accept evolution, looks like we're in for a battle like the Americans have been fighting.

And because it needs to be said, evolution is a testable scientific concept. We can now see it happening in nature and in the lab. We can see it in our own embryology and that of other animals. It is as real as that force keeping you on that chair rather than atomised in space.
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