Wednesday, October 19, 2011

God’s Alibi

Andrew Brown at The Guardian dissects a creationist’s seven arguments against evolution.

Something about the word ‘creationism’ robs people of the capacity for rational thought. I had two notable responses to my last piece on the subject, one of which – from a fundamentalist Christian – contains arguments worth responding to. The other, from an atheist too stupid to work out that I have an email address at the Guardian, ended, “you continue the 100% correlation between the character of writers and the ease with which they can be contacted. Honest and ethical writers provide contact information with their words and are not afraid of feedback. Cowards and liars post their drivel without providing a means of contact, or they make it difficult to reply. The fact that I had to search heavily to find one for you speaks volumes and matches the lack of quality in your propaganda.”

But take the creationist, a presumably Penetecostal [sic] deacon from Lancashire, who lives in an alternate universe in which there is scientific disproof of evolution, suppressed by the wicked establishment. He lists seven objections, only two of which seem to me to bear any relevance to the theory of descent with modification; but this makes them more interesting. It’s obvious that what he really objects to is a scientific account of the universe in general, which leaves no room for an intervening God. ‘Evolution’ is just a shorthand for this much greater account.

Read the whole thing, not only to give yourself some ammunition and insight the next time you get stuck at a Thanksgiving chat with the drunk Jesus-freak who insists that evolution isn’t real because we still have apes. But the last line is the takeaway: if God is a loving god, why did he create the parasites that infest our bodies and try with all their might to kill us?

These parasites are unquestionably designed for their purpose, and designed with extraordinary ingenuity. They kill millions of children every year. I really cannot imagine that anyone, knowing the facts of their existence, could believe they were designed by a loving creator for a moral purpose. Evolution is not God’s enemy but his greatest alibi.

HT to CLW.