|Feature Article - August 2010|
|by Do-While Jones|
Some people consider the theory of evolution to be a form of forensic scienceóbut it isnít.
Evolutionists like to frame their argument in terms of science versus religion. They claim evolution is scientific, and creation is merely religious myth. They say evolution must be true because science is reliable, and religion is not.
There are two problems with this argument. First, it presumes only two choicesóBiblical creation or evolutionary theory. If one is false, the other must be true. What if one presumes two different choicesóBiblical creation or the Native American creation story? Proving the Native American creation story false does not prove Biblical creation is true. The fundamental logical error with the evolutionistsí argument is that there are more than two contradictory explanations for how life on Earth came to be, so disproving one does not prove the other. One needs to evaluate the theory of evolution on its own meritsónot the lack of merits of any other explanation.
The second problem with the evolutionistsí argument is that the theory of evolution is scientific, and science is reliable. The fallacy here is that although science is reliable, the theory of evolution is not scientific, and therefore does not inherit the credibility of science.
Evolutionists try very hard to distort the concept of science to make the theory of evolution appear to be scientific. Therefore, it is important to understand what is science, and what is merely opinion disguised in scientific clothing.
Historically, science has referred to knowledge obtained through the scientific method. One makes a hypothesis, devises experiments to test the hypothesis, and confirms or refutes the hypothesis based on the experimental results. This is a reliable way to determine truth because it eliminates human bias. It doesnít matter who does the experiment, it always turns out the same.
Microevolution is scientific. The process of breeding different varieties of dogs, horses, corn, roses, et cetera, certainly has been observed. There is no argument that eliminating particular genes from the gene pool by selective breeding results in different breeds of a particular species. Furthermore, these breeding experiments have shown time and time again that there is a limit to how much change in a species can be produced through selective breeding.
Genetic engineering is scientific. When a gene jockey physically removes genetic material from one species and skillfully inserts it into the DNA of a different species, it can change the characteristics of the target species. New characteristics arise through the will of the scientist who has a particular design in mind. Genetic engineering experiments have shown that a clever designer can create living things with remarkably novel features.
Microevolution and genetic engineering certainly are scientificóbut thatís not what the argument is about. The argument is whether or not macroevolution (the spontaneous origination of new genetic material resulting in a new kind of living thing) is scientific. Macroevolution is not the cumulative effects of microevolution over long periods of time because microevolution works through loss of genetic information; but macroevolution depends on spontaneous increase of genetic information. One canít gain information by losing more and more of it.
Macroevolution, if it happened at all, happened in the unobservable past. Nobody has ever done an experiment in which a dinosaur turned into a bird. There is absolutely no experimental evidence for macroevolution. Science deals with phenomena that can be observed to happen in the presentónot things presumed to have happened in the past.
Evolutionists argue, however, that law enforcement now makes good use of forensic science. Ever since the days of Sherlock Holmes, crime scene investigators have been using forensic science to determine what happened in the past. Evolution, they say, is really just forensic science applied to a grander time scale.
There is a significant difference between the theory of evolution and forensic science. Forensic science really is science because it is based on scientific observation. It is true that forensic scientists donít perform experiments in which they shoot someone in the back of the head to see what kind of wound it produces; but they do observe the results of unintended experiments. That is, they examine the bodies of people who are known to have been shot in the back of the head because witnesses saw the crime, or the criminal confessed to what he had done. Through observation of known actions they can recognize the difference between bullet wounds, knife wounds, and blunt force trauma. And, they can in some cases do experiments. They can drive cars with a known brand of tire across mud, sand, or grass, to see what kind of tire tracks they leave.
The point that we want to make very clear is that forensic science is based on observation. They know the cause and observe the effect. This makes it possible for them to reason from effect back to the cause with a high degree of certainty.
A forensic scientist would never be so foolish as to say, ďIíve never seen a wound like this before. Therefore, it must have come from a Martian Death Ray, which proves there must be life on Mars.Ē The conclusions of forensic scientists are always based on observations of effects with known causes.
Evolutionists routinely find fragmentary fossils (a piece of skull, or a single tooth) unlike any fossils that have ever been seen before. Based on this single type-specimen, they define a new species, and confidently say what creature it descended from, and what creature it evolved into. Thatís not forensic science. Itís not science at all. It is speculation based on the assumption of evolution.
The fallacy in their argument is that they believe they can reason from an effect they have never seen before back to a presumed cause that has never been observed.
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