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A S S O C I A T I O N
Answering Dr. Edward Max Challenge To Dr. Duane Gish
Regarding A Paper distributed At Their 2/22/2001 Debate
by Ross Olson
(For an ongoing debate centered on these issues, see Debate Page.)
Dr. Max wrote the following:
"'Creation science' is non-professional science directed to lay audiences rather than to scientists with training to scrutinize its arguments. Creationist arguments are absent from the professional literature because creationist standards of scholarship are too low for publication in professional peer-reviewed journals. As an example, scientific evidence for evolution from cross-species protein sequence comparisons is rejected by creationists for invalid reasons (bad data or bad interpretations), though these reasons may convince lay audiences. For more examples see: http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/cre-error.html"
Is there any answer for that accusation?
In response to this, Dr. Gish pointed out that articles which present evidence against evolution or propose creation are generally excluded from the mainstream scientific literature. (An exception is the committed evolutionist who points out the lack of evidence for evolution in his own area of study but reaffirms his overall faith in evolution.) Scientist Robert Gentry also published his work on polonium halos in the standard journals until it became clear to the editors that it supported instantaneous creation of the earth's bedrock. (For his website, click HERE.) Furthermore, because of academic peer pressure, it is very difficult to work in academia as an open creationist.
In the history of science, the establishment has often been resistent to change but new understandings grew as outside movements. Those "lay" audiences to which ICR and other Creation groups speak include many scientifically trained people whose testimonials afterwards reflect that they realize how the wool had been pulled over their eyes during their scientific and professional training.
Lay people may misunderstand certain areas or believe something that later needs to be rejected. But professional scientists make foolish mistakes, as in accepting archaeoraptor, the fraudulent bird fossil from China (For an article, click HERE.) Piltdown man was accepted for many decades before revealed as a hoax and the fruadulent embryological drawings of Ernst Haeckel, although shown to be wrong over 100 years ago, continue to be used in new editions of high school and college texts.
Max also appealed to creationists to keep their faith and the Bible, but not to "base it on pseudoscience," and just also accept evolution. That approach comes from well-meaning Christians who think they have to protect the Bible from falsification. But it also comes from secularists who are very comfortable with theistic evolutionists because they find them to be no threat. The believer says, "I think God was behind evolution," and the atheist responds, "You can think so if you like, but I see no need for anything beyond matter and time."