Good news - evolution now accepted by majority of Americans!

wiscoaster

Well-known member
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You really need to stop thinking of humans as something different than nature. It is a form of vanity. We are composed of the same stuff as all other animals, and our anatomical and behavioral patterns fall on predictions made from other animals. Our intelligence is exactly what you would predict for a primate with a 1400cc brain.

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Human beings thinking of themselves as just the same as all other nature is the real vanity because it denies the existence of spirit, which cannot be ascribed to mere flesh and blood, and creativity, which cannot be ascribed to mere intelligence, and hope, which cannot be ascribed to mere planning and preparation, all of which, and more, give special and unique meaning to human life. Conceiving of human beings as nothing other than a natural part of nature leads to making a single human life of no special value. These lines of thinking have been used to justify slavery, gas chambers and abortion clinics. No thank you, I'll continue thinking of the individual human life as something special. Joseph Mengele would have agreed with your point of view.
 

roscoe

Well-known member
Human beings thinking of themselves as just the same as all other nature is the real vanity because it denies the existence of spirit, which cannot be ascribed to mere flesh and blood, and creativity, which cannot be ascribed to mere intelligence, and hope, which cannot be ascribed to mere planning and preparation, all of which, and more, give special and unique meaning to human life. Conceiving of human beings as nothing other than a natural part of nature leads to making a single human life of no special value. These lines of thinking have been used to justify slavery, gas chambers and abortion clinics. No thank you, I'll continue thinking of the individual human life as something special. Joseph Mengele would have agreed with your point of view.

I can assure you that genocide and slavery are no more common among atheists than among the religious. And the religious have no greater claim to morality. The Southern Baptists were formed with the stated purpose of providing religious support to Southern slave-owners. The Jesuits were central to the enslavement and destruction of the indigenous Latin Americans. And I am sure I don't have to recite the massacres of the 30-Years War. Or the Crusades. Or look back to the Book of Joshua. Secular enlightenment is only 300 years old, and people have been massacring each other a lot longer than that.

Rejecting scientific explanations in favor of the supernatural would mean abandoning my attachment to rationality, which I have so far been unwilling to do. And even if I were, how would I choose which religion to adopt? Do I just pick up Catholicism because of my schooling (and grandparents)? Or do go to Hinduism because it is so complex and interesting? Or Buddhism for its focus on introspective wisdom? Or do I go right to the source and pick the original and first monotheistic religion, Zoroastrianism?

They all are contradictory on so many things. Even if I decided to leave science, how would I rationally choose where to go? If you pick a religion and abandon skeptical rationality, then as far as I can see, its turtles all the way down.
 
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roscoe

Well-known member
He was a scientist.
I find it interesting that so many people on this website have pushed back against science. This country was founded on Enlightenment and scientific principles. Ben Franklin was a scientist and Thomas Jefferson had the largest library of scientific literature west of London. Even our US Constitution, Article I Section 8, Clause 8 explicitly states the need to promote science. George Washington personally argued science as a public good.

You can be sure that the posters on this forum are pretty glad that science is around when they get a bad medical diagnosis and need an X-ray or MRI or antiviral drug. Or when they use the Internet or use their phone GPS. But when it says something they don't like, suddenly they are opposing it. But if you reject evolution, you should reject gene therapy, the Polio vaccine, and antibiotics. Because that is all of a piece.

And you are trying to pin Mengele on science? Give me a break. That is weak. I can list 1000 evil religious leaders in 5 minutes. So what. Even 7th graders know an ad hominem argument when they see it.
 
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roscoe

Well-known member
. Joseph Mengele would have agreed with your point of view.
No, he would not have. I am a student of the Enlightenment, and am a secular humanist. Secular humanists see the value in all humans. Nazis believe some humans are lesser and should be exterminated. The Nazis, BTW, were very explicitly anti-Enlightenment.

Mengele was a psychopath who happen to have been given the chance to torture people without consequence. Tomás de Torquemada was a Dominican friar who did essentially the same thing. They probably both tortured and killed about the same number of people. Neither has anything to do with science or religion.
 
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I find it interesting that so many people on this website have pushed back against science. This country was founded on Enlightenment and scientific principles. Ben Franklin was a scientist and Thomas Jefferson had the largest library of scientific literature west of London. Even our US Constitution, Article I Section 8, Clause 8 explicitly states the need to promote science. George Washington personally argued science as a public good.

You can be sure that the posters on this forum are pretty glad that science is around when they get a bad medical diagnosis and need an X-ray or MRI or antiviral drug. Or when they use the Internet or use their phone GPS. But when it says something they don't like, suddenly they are opposing it. But if you reject evolution, you should reject gene therapy, the Polio vaccine, and antibiotics. Because that is all of a piece.

And you are trying to pin Mengele on science? Give me a break. That is weak. I can list 1000 evil religious leaders in 5 minutes. So what. Even 7th graders know an ad hominem argument when they see it.
Mengele was a scientist. Not sure why you are getting so bent about it.

I am a student of the Enlightenment, and am a secular humanist.
:ROFLMAO::ROFLMAO::LOL::ROFLMAO:
 

wiscoaster

Well-known member
I can assure you that genocide and slavery are no more common among atheists than among the religious. And the religious have no greater claim to morality.
Nowhere in my post did I mention anything about religion. Yet you assumed that was the context of my remarks. Hmmmm. I wonder why? Interesting, no?
 

wiscoaster

Well-known member
I find it interesting that so many people on this website have pushed back against science.
I don't push back against science. I push back against scientists that don't follow science. Evolutionists being one group. They conveniently ignore the Second Law of Thermodynamics, for one. If the universe is a closed system, there is no way that it could progress to a more ordered state without some outside input to alter its entropy. They conveniently ignore that the universe is expanding at an accelerating rate which is completely at odds with the Big Bang hypothesis. What's causing the acceleration? They conveniently ignore or shortcut standard scientific method for another, because it's simply impossible to confirm their hypotheses by controlled experimental results that prove them. Carbon dating fossils to prove they're millions and zillions of years old?!? Don't even get me going. Evolution is bad science. Evolutionists are bad scientists. That's what I'm pushing back against.
 
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roscoe

Well-known member
Nowhere in my post did I mention anything about religion. Yet you assumed that was the context of my remarks. Hmmmm. I wonder why? Interesting, no?
Only because you brought the word 'spirit' in. It is a word not in the scientific lexicon, but is frequently invoked by religions, or at least those who look beyond material explanations.
 

roscoe

Well-known member
I don't push back against science. I push back against scientists that don't follow science. Evolutionists being one group. They conveniently ignore the Second Law of Thermodynamics, for one. If the universe is a closed system, there is no way that it could progress to a more ordered state without some outside input to alter its entropy. They conveniently ignore that the universe is expanding at an accelerating rate which is completely at odds with the Big Bang hypothesis. What's causing the acceleration? They conveniently ignore or shortcut standard scientific method for another, because it's simply impossible to confirm their hypotheses by controlled experimental results that prove them. Carbon dating fossils to prove they're millions and zillions of years old?!? Don't even get me going. Evolution is bad science. Evolutionists are bad scientists. That's what I'm pushing back against.

You are conflating some disciplines here.

First - evolutionary biologists do not address the Big Bang. That is a discipline called Astrophysics. I am an evolutionary biologist by trade, so I am no expert here, but I understand the principle. The Universe is expanding (which we can observe by red shift). If you reel that expansion backwards, you get an origin point calculated to have occurred at 14.5 billion years ago. The logic is pretty clear, at least to my untutored eyes.

The acceleration of the universe is widely accepted to be one of the yet-unsolved mysteries of science. Astrophysicists offer various explanations (e.g. Dark Energy), but the debate continues, as it should. The origin of the energy that caused the Big Bang is also an unsolved mystery, but astrophysicists don't bother to address that one because they know the limits of their inference (although ideas have been offered).

With regard to the process of evolution and the second law of thermodynamics - the second law of thermodynamics only applies to closed systems. The Earth is absorbing 430 quintillion Joules of solar energy every hour. So for creationists to claim that the second law of thermodynamics applies to life on Earth (in any way, not just with regard to evolution) is just absurd.

Carbon dating is not used to date fossils, because at about 60,000 years ago the carbon 12 has pretty much completely decayed into carbon 14. When I date fossils, I use two methods: potassium-argon and argon-argon dating, in which the decay rate is much slower. We can date things into the billions of years.

But let's look at your argument against fossils.

So - let's say someone working in Tanzania finds an Australopithecus fossil between two layers of ash whose feldspar crystals date to 3.4 million years ago (upper ash layer) and 3.3 million years ago (lower ash layer). We can see the ash, and we can see the volcano, and can test the chemical signature of the ash to match the volcanos. We know that volcanoes in East Africa toss out feldspar crystals in their ash today, and that the radioactive decay starts at the moment they leave the heat of the volcano. What are we to infer? Do we reject all the scientific evidence that points to the same explanation? That this particular Australopithecus individual lived and died between 3.4 and 3.3 million years ago?

What evidence would we reject? The radioactive decay model for the ash crystals? And on what grounds would we do so? We use radioactive decay in the US NIST atomic clock in Boulder and it seems to work OK. Do we reject the fossil itself, which looks like an upright ape with a larger brain? Do we just toss all the clear anatomical features that show Australopithecus was human? Do we reject the widely accepted geological law of superposition, in which objects covered by layers of sediment are older than that layer?

I don't understand where in the logic chain there is an error.
 
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wiscoaster

Well-known member
You are conflating some disciplines here.

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I don't understand where in the logic chain there is an error.


First - evolutionary biologists do not address the Big Bang.

Your objection irrelevant because we're talking science, and Astrophysics is science, but science is cross-disciplinary and a contradiction to a given principle acknowledged by one branch of science by another branch of science is bad science.


The acceleration of the universe is widely accepted to be one of the yet-unsolved mysteries of science.

Exactly. So scientists shouldn't pretend they understand the beginnings and end of the universe.


With regard to the process of evolution and the second law of thermodynamics - the second law of thermodynamics only applies to closed systems.

Exactly. The Big Bang, ie "science", treats the universe as a closed system. If it is not, what's beyond that's accelerating it? What's beyond that organizes it into more complex structures? Why is the universe not just an amorphous and uniformly dense volume of elementary particles and radiation?


But let's look at your argument against fossils.

At least one case where science admitted they were wrong and cannot date stone containing no carbon by carbon dating, but there was a time when it was accepted. Which of the other evolutionary "proofs" about which they're wrong will eventually be refuted?
 
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roscoe

Well-known member
Your objection irrelevant because we're talking science, and Astrophysics is science, but science is cross-disciplinary and a contradiction to a given principle acknowledged by one branch of science by another branch of science is bad science.




Exactly. So scientists shouldn't pretend they understand the beginnings and end of the universe.




Exactly. The Big Bang, ie "science", treats the universe as a closed system. If it is not, what's beyond that's accelerating it? What's beyond that organizes it into more complex structures? Why is the universe not just an amorphous and uniformly dense volume of elementary particles and radiation?




At least one case where science admitted they were wrong and cannot date stone containing no carbon by carbon dating, but there was a time when it was accepted. Which of the other evolutionary "proofs" about which they're wrong will eventually be refuted?
When was carbon dating applied to a rock? Carbon molecules with C14 are organic.

I don't even understand the logic you are applying. Some scientist at some time in the indeterminate past was wrong about something, so all other scientific conclusions are wrong?

Certainly you can see the flaw in that logic.

But here is your opportunity to explain your objections. You specifically called out evolutionary biologists, and I am one, so here is your chance to tell me why I am wrong. Take a look at the common paleontological scenario I described above and tell me the error in scientific reasoning. And please be specific.
 
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wiscoaster

Well-known member
When was carbon dating applied to a rock? Carbon molecules with C14 are organic.

What is a fossil: https://www.britannica.com/science/fossil
...or for us simpletons: a fossil is a rock.

When has carbon dating been applied to a rock (aka a fossil)?

Fossils and carbon dating have been (correctly) dissasociated for some time, but I recall there was a time when it was a given that dating dinosaur fossils to millions of years by that method was reliable.
 
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roscoe

Well-known member
Oh, man, you're too easy.

What is a fossil: https://www.britannica.com/science/fossil
...or for us simpletons: a fossil is a rock.

When has carbon dating been applied to a rock (aka a fossil)?

What? That's my point. You are the one who claimed C14 was used. You said: "there was a time when it was accepted". It isn't. It is used in archaeology, because organic artifacts or human and animal remains are young enough. As I said in my post above, after 60K, it doesn't work.

We use potassium-argon or argon-argon. Here is my relevant quote (from my post above):
"Carbon dating is not used to date fossils, because at about 60,000 years ago the carbon 12 has pretty much completely decayed into carbon 14. When I date fossils, I use two methods: potassium-argon and argon-argon dating, in which the decay rate is much slower. We can date things into the billions of years."

Please do go through the scenario above and indicate the flaws. Since we don't use C14, that is not relevant.
 
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