email - May 2009

Catholic Evolution

Apparently, we can’t say this too many times.

We’ve tried to make the point, repeatedly, that not everyone in every religion has the same belief. Not everyone in the Catholic Church shares that church’s belief on evolution (or birth control, or other issues, for that matter). Furthermore, what churches believe doesn’t matter. All that matters is if it is true or not.

We would not have printed this email, except for the fact that Andrea’s email relates to academic freedom issues as well.

Andrea wrote to us because she (a college senior) was assigned to write a scientific paper. She wanted to write about evolution, but was restricted to certain sources by her professor, and asked our advice. As it turned out, she prudently picked another topic instead. During the course of our correspondence, she said this:

On a more Catholic note, did you know of the conference that was held in Rome in November of 2008, "A Scientific Critique of Evolution"? Interestingly, the press release states that it coincided with one being held by the Pontifical Academy of Sciences, who refused to allow the scientists with the evidence contrary to evolution to participate. Quite the pity. http://sites.google.com/site/scientificcritiqueofevolution/conference2

I found this out through an article in the Remnant Newspaper, a traditional Catholic publication. The article was titled: "The Darwin Delusion" and was also an interesting read, touching on the religious and scientific discrepancies the theory of evolution presents. http://www.remnantnewspaper.com/Archives/2009-0515-wilders-darwin_delusion.htm

It definitely notes the discrepancies in the Church on the view of evolution.

Thanks again for your help and keep up the good work!

Sincerely,

Andrea

This led us to a couple of interesting discoveries. First, when checking out the speakers at the dissenting conference, we discovered that Guy Berthault is still publishing interesting work on sedimentation. More than ten years ago we wrote about his 1986 ground-breaking work that wasn’t accepted by the scientific community until an evolutionist published similar work in Nature 12 years later (without giving Berthault any credit). 1 Berthault now has a really interesting web site at http://www.sedimentology.fr/.

Second, we would have thought that Pope Benedict would have some influence over who is allowed to speak at a conference sponsored by the Pontifical Academy of Sciences. Apparently Cardinal Ratzinger’s promotion has forced him to reverse his view of academic freedom.

The conference, “A Scientific Critique of Evolution,” is being held in response to Cardinal Ratzinger’s (now Pope Benedict XVI) appeal in his book Truth and Tolerance that arguments for and against evolution should be heard with objectivity – “a willingness to listen by both sides.”

The conference coincides with one being held by the Pontifical Academy of Sciences, which refused to allow the scientists with evidence against the theory of evolution to participate in their event.

The scientists participating in the conference at Sapienza University are not creationists. They represent thousands of world-renowned scientists whose evidence against evolution is often downplayed or ignored by academics who support evolution. 2

Salon des Refusés

This notion of a competing conference is how the French Impressionist art movement began. Since the Académie Suisse would not allow Impressionists to exhibit in the Salon de Paris, they exhibited their work in the Salon des Refusés in 1863. “The rest,” as they say, “is (art) history.”

The Pontifical Academy of Sciences refused to allow qualified scientists to present alternative views. Of course, it is perfectly within the rights of the PAS to present only one side, just as art museums can decide which artists may exhibit their works. So, the dissenting scientists held their own Salon des Refusés at Sapienza University.

It is our contention that presenting only one side does not advance science. Last month, we recommended you read a book that is being enthusiastically endorsed by evolutionists (Why Evolution is True) and a creationist book (By Design) that presents the other side. Evolutionists, on the other hand, have gone to court to prevent students from reading books like By Design, allegedly because it contains Christianity. But there is more to By Design than just Christianity.

If you cut all the Christianity out of By Design, you are left with a LOT of fascinating biology which is likely to inspire high school kids to become scientists. You will learn fascinating things about iridescence, various optical designs, flight, navigation, stored energy, stickiness, strength of materials, energy conversion, motors, information theory, and organic chemistry. It makes science come alive. Perhaps even more importantly, it is all TRUE. It is real science, based on experiments and observation.

If you cut all the religious hatred out of Why Evolution is True, you are left with a bunch of excuses for why science can’t prove that evolution is true and some fantastic speculation about how unlikely things might have happened by chance. The speculation is justified by the notion that we will never know the answers anyway, so don’t think too hard about it.

If students are exposed to writings by both sides, it quickly becomes apparent who the real scientists are. It really is no wonder that evolutionists want to censor creationist writings. It is no wonder that creationists aren’t allowed to participate in scientific conferences about evolution held by evolutionists.

If Creationists Ruled the World

Let us propose an interesting experiment. The International Conference on Creationism 3 is held every four years. The next one will be in 2012. Suppose this time they invite evolutionists to participate, too. What do you think would happen? We suspect that the evolutionists would refuse to attend. Our suspicions are based on the fact that evolutionists routinely refuse to participate in debates with creationists. They “don’t want to give creationism credibility.”

The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) has annual scientific conferences. They could invite creationists and Intelligent Design advocates to present papers at one of their conferences. We bet creationists and ID advocates would jump at the chance to participate. But the AAAS would never do such a thing for two reasons. First, Andrea would be able to write her paper on evolution using a source approved by her professor. Second, it would be obvious that science is against evolution.

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Footnotes:

1 Disclosure, December 1998, “Young Rocks”, http://www.scienceagainstevolution.org/v3i3f.htm
2 http://sites.google.com/site/scientificcritiqueofevolution/Home
3 http://www.creationicc.org/