The evolution debate is reminding me of the Catholic/Protestant debate. Much of it is arguing over the definition of words.

Equivocating "Evolution"

The word "Evolution" is popularly used to refer to any of:
  1. natural selection (survival of the fittest)
  2. origin of the species (ape becomes human)
  3. spontaneous generation ("origin of life" - chemical soup becomes living cell)
(a) is often called "special evolution" because it involves living things specializing - turning various preexisting genes on/off or swapping them with other bacteria to adapt to an environment.

(b) is often called "general evolution" because it involves living things generalizing - creating new gene functions that did not exist before.

(c) has nothing to do with evolution, but is a critical premise of "no creator" thinking.

"Special evolution" and "general evolution" are opposite processes. Specialization corresponds to configuring a computer program - turning off undesired features or loading optional modules. Generalization corresponds to writing code to implement new features.

Special evolution is well documented and can be confirmed in your home school by experiments in the back yard.

General evolution has never been observed, directly or indirectly. However, neither have there been any observations that would completely rule it out. On this question, science has no definite answers. The various "missing links" offered by evolution marketeers have all turned out be hoaxes (Piltdown man, Peking man, Java man, etc), or not missing links at all (Archeopteryx). Amazingly, even one of the classic experiments confirming special evolution turned out be a hoax: the grey and white moths on the tree in england were glued in place! This needless desperation betrays an inner sense of the folly of their position.

Spontaneous generation is impossible according to any known science. Louis Pasteur thought he had put this to rest when he showed that grain does not spontaneously turn into mice when covered with a screen. But because of a philosophical dedication to materialism, many scientists continue to search for a physical process that could cause spontaneous generation.

Using the unqualified word "evolution" to refer to opposite or unrelated concepts (special or general evolution or even spontaneous generation), and then pretending that they are the same thing because the same word is used, is called "equivocation". This is a logical fallacy. Here is a funny example of equivocation:

  Proof that a cat has nine tails:

   Premise: no cat has eight tails
   Premise: a cat has one more tail than no cat
   By induction: a cat has nine tails
Here the phrase "no cat" is used to mean two different things. In the first premise, it means "there exists no cat that". In the second premise it means "zero cats".

The slogan of evolutionists proposed by Scott is:

"Evolution happens, evolution happened."
Logically, this is saying the following:
   Premise: evolution (the special kind) happens (true)
   Implied premise: all things continue as they were since the beginning
        (a questionable premise, but commonly used when trying to apply
	science to non-repeatable events)
   Conclusion: evolution (the general kind and spontaneous generation) happened
This is pure drivel. To be fair, it comes from the "marketing department" of the evolution establishment (Carl "billions and billions" Sagan) - not real scientists. The real scientists are diligently looking for confirmation that evolution (the general kind) did (or did not) happen (or in rare cases trying to objectively determine whether it did), and a few are trying to find some physical process that could produce spontaneous generation (sans designer).


It should also be noted that attempts to answer questions about non-repeatable events are not classic "science". The scientific method relies on the ability to try something repeatedly in order to determine how it happens. A court of law often must try to determine details of past events. A knowlege of science can be used as evidence in the case, but whether a reported past event did or did not take place is ultimately not a scientific question (until someone invents a time machine).

There are other disciplines whose methods are devoted to finding the truth about past events: history, forensics, archaeology.

Science tells us that the sun rises every morning, and according to our best models the sun has risen every morning for the last 4 billion years and will continue to do so for a few billion more. However, history (Joshua) tells us that on at least one morning, the sun did not rise.

Science tells us that dead people do not come back to life once a certain level of decay has set in, and our best model, the Law of Entropy, makes the odds against this ever happening or ever having happened astronomical. History tells us that several people have in fact come back to life - even after 3 or 4 days of decay at middle eastern temperatures.

Science tells us that dead matter does not spontaneously spring to life, and the Law of Entropy makes the odds against this ever happening or ever having happened astronomical. History, to my knowlege, makes no mention of this ever happening either.


It would be handy for the present debate, if God had mentioned how old the earth or the universe is. All He offers is, "In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth". Thanks to the many geneaologies, we can make an order of magnitude estimate of when Adam and Eve were created. By making questionable assumptions about the precise meaning of 'yom' in that context, we can place the creation of all other life in the preceding 5 days. This and the flood of Noah provide plenty of controversy with the prevailing scientific orthodoxy.

Since this is all the Bible has to say, we ought to stop there and offer corroborating evidence. For instance, genetic studies of mitochondria (which are always inherited from the mother) show that all women are descended from a single female individual within the past 10,000 years. This woman's mitochondria were most similar to women of black African descent today. Studies of the male Y chromosome (which is always inherited from the father) show that all men are descended from a single male individual within the past 10,000 years.

Unfortunately, some well meaning people make the patently false statement, "The Bible says the earth and the universe were created 10,000 years ago." Maybe the "the beginning" was 10,000 "years" ago, but the Bible says nothing of the kind.


One of the problems with phrases like "10,000 years ago" is that there are many reasonable ways to define "year".

Does it mean one revolution around the sun? What if interaction with another large body has altered the orbit?

Does it mean 365.25xxxxx rotations of the earth about its axis? The rate of rotation is constantly changing, which is why we add or subtract leap seconds every few years.

Does it mean the time light requires to travel a certain distance? The distances within the universe are expanding as we speak. The moon is receding from the earth by 3.8 centimeters every year as measured by laser ranging. According to our best models, this means that either gravity is getting weaker, or light is getting slower (most scientists are opting for the former).

Does it mean the time required for a certain fraction of certain isotopes of Uranium to decay into Thorium and Lead? By this measure, the earth is billions of years old. This measure may or may not have had the same relation to the preceding measures as it does today.