As previously stated, my morning coffee came in a cup with “The Way I See It #220” printed down the side. This is Starbucks’ effort to share “a collection of thoughts, opinions and expressions provided by notable figures” in order to spark discussion. This particular quote is from David Quammen, the author of The Song of the Dodo and The Reluctant Mr. Darwin. He states, “Evolution as described by Charles Darwin is a scientific theory, abundantly reconfirmed, explaining physical phenomena by physical causes. Intelligent Design is a faith-based initiative in rhetorical argument. Should we teach I.D. in America’s public schools? Yes, let’s do it – not as science, but alongside other spiritual beliefs, such as Islam, Zoroastrianism and the Hindu idea that the Earth rests on Chukwa, the giant turtle.”
First, let me state that I’m not a great fan of intelligent design as it is currently being presented. It is often a watered-down version of creationism that removes many essential biblical concepts. Sure, it’s closer to the truth than Darwinian evolution. However, during the past few generations Christians have compromised too many crucial standards. We certainly need to choose which battles to fight. Isn’t the creation of the universe by the word of almighty God a battle worth fighting?
Second, the author perpetuates fallacy by presenting it as fact. He claims that Darwinian evolution has been “abundantly reconfirmed.” The average citizen adds this printed claim to what he has been taught in science class and comfortably embraces evolutionary theory. After all, somebody important said it must be true. Some even claim that is has been “proven,” contradicting even the staunchest of evolutionary scholars. Even creationists sometimes clam up and back down because we are daunted by such “scientific claims.”
A modicum of research will uncover the fatal flaws of evolution as it fails every time the scientific method is applied to it. Richard Milton, geologist and science journalist, asserts in his book Shattering the Myths of Darwinism that evolution “totters atop a shambles of outdated and circumstantial evidence that in any less controversial field would have been questioned long ago.” It rests upon the concept that species developed through almost four billion years of natural selection and arbitrary genetic mutation. However, scientific evidence shows that natural selection produces only limited genetic changes. Modern dating methods do not reveal an earth old enough for single-celled organisms to become complex beings. Not one transitional species has ever been discovered. There are in fact more “missing links” than there are actual fossils. Milton summarizes that Darwinism is “an act of faith rather than a functioning science.”
I bristled at Quammen’s comparison of intelligent design (and no doubt the Genesis account of creation at its core) with the fanciful Hindu concept of the world riding on the shell of Chukwa, the giant turtle, as she swims through the primordial ocean of milk. Certainly, Christianity is built upon faith (Hebrews 11:6). However, following Christ does not require us to ignore or abandon our human reasoning. The records of time – historical, literary, scientific, archeological – have served to reiterate the truth of God’s Word. Likewise, human reasoning will not bring a soul to Christ, nor should it drive one away from faith.
Finally, Dr. Jonathan Wells, biologist and author of The Politically Incorrect Guide to Darwinism and Intelligent Design states, “Darwinism’s impact on traditional social values has not been as benign as its advocates would like us to believe. Despite the efforts of its modern defenders to distance themselves from its baleful social consequences, Darwinism’s connection with eugenics, abortion and racism is a matter of historical record. And the record is not pretty.” For the sake of full disclosure this final quote is “The Way I See It #224.” I was relieved when I found it on starbucks.com. I didn’t want to give up my non-fat caffé latte because of my principles!