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Science Government Politics

Creationism Museum Opening in Kentucky 1166

Posted by Zonk
from the see-where-you-are-wrong-is-everywhere dept.
Noel Linback writes "A new creationism-espousing museum is opening in the state of Kentucky. According to a New York Times article the museum depicts humans and dinosaurs living together in traditional 'diorama' style exhibit. 'Whether you are willing to grant the premises of this museum almost becomes irrelevant as you are drawn into its mixture of spectacle and narrative. Its 60,000 square feet of exhibits are often stunningly designed by Patrick Marsh, who, like the entire museum staff, declares adherence to the ministry's views; he evidently also knows the lure of secular sensations, since he designed the Jaws and King Kong attractions at Universal Studios in Florida. For the skeptic the wonder is at a strange universe shaped by elaborate arguments, strong convictions and intermittent invocations of scientific principle. For the believer, it seems, this museum provides a kind of relief: Finally the world is being shown as it really is, without the distortions of secularism and natural selection. '"
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Creationism Museum Opening in Kentucky

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  • by conigs (866121) on Saturday May 26, 2007 @04:42PM (#19285585) Homepage
    Just remember: not everyone who partakes in Christianity (big C or little c) believes the world was created 4,000 years ago. Some of us actually believe in evolution. (Well, us non-fundies anyway.)
  • by kennygraham (894697) on Saturday May 26, 2007 @05:19PM (#19285909)
    several groups (both religious and secular) will be protesting [rallyforreason.com]. come join us!
  • by arthurpaliden (939626) on Saturday May 26, 2007 @05:31PM (#19286009)
    In there examples the closest thing to a cave drawing was only mineral stains on rock. The rest were 'modern' illistrations of accepted legends of the time. And as to the foot prints, a walking foot print does not look like any of those depicted.
  • by Belial6 (794905) on Saturday May 26, 2007 @05:51PM (#19286209)
    Hey now, you neglect the possibility that disobeying was the perfect thing to do, and hence god is punishing humans for behaving perfectly. Which leads to the simple logical conclusion that God is evil.
  • An appeal (Score:5, Informative)

    by Puff of Logic (895805) on Saturday May 26, 2007 @06:05PM (#19286315)
    I'm attaching this as a reply to the first post in the hopes that it will be seen by people entering the thread and thus head off some inevitable posts. Creationists, this is addressed to you.

    Here goes:

    The word "theory" is not synonymous with the word "hypothesis" in science.

    Please, please try to remember this when you instinctively want to cry "but it's only a theory!" when talking about evolutionary theory. As has doubtless been explained to you ad nauseum by the scientifically-inclined, Theory is a designator that must be earned and requires a reasonable body of supporting evidence. So while indeed the colloquial allows the use of "I have a theory" to mean a hypothesis, this is not correct in science.

    Make whatever other arguments you will, but please stop making this elementary mistake. cheers.
  • Really, like what? (Score:3, Informative)

    by benhocking (724439) <benjaminhockingNO@SPAMyahoo.com> on Saturday May 26, 2007 @06:09PM (#19286359) Homepage Journal

    fortunately science consists of more than theories

    Sure, it consists of laws (i.e., observations), hypotheses, theories, as well as methods that allow us to test theories against observations. The theory of evolution invokes the law of natural selection, and has withstood the scientific method quite well. Is there something else you have in mind for what science consists of?

    Please, please, be sure to understand that laws are not "above" theories. If anything, they are beneath theories in that they are only descriptive, whereas theories are also explanatory.

  • by Wavicle (181176) on Saturday May 26, 2007 @06:12PM (#19286389)
    Okay, here's one of Hovind's arguments against the Pangea theory:

    "I bet they never told ya they shrank Africa 40% to make it fit."

    I'm not going to waste much space here, but it doesn't take a genius to figure out this is incorrect. What Hovind did is fail at the map maker's dilemma. There is no way to draw a proportion-correct spherical surface onto a flat surface. Africa wasn't shrunk except in that its projection onto a flat screen had to be distorted to fit. Cartographers have multiple projections for this depending on what they are trying to express (space-filling, equal area, etc.).
  • by NMerriam (15122) <NMerriam@artboy.org> on Saturday May 26, 2007 @06:13PM (#19286395) Homepage

    He made us capable of making moral choices, but we're not punished for being able to sin--we're punished for sin.


    What sin? She ate a fruit when it was offered to her, by a being that God _allowed_ into the Garden. Yes, she was told not to eat the fruit, but was never told why or what the consequences were, despite God being omniscient enough to know he had created man with curiosity.

    Leaving completely ignorant and unsophisticated children alone with the greatest predator in the universe does not seem like a wise parenting decision.
  • by Mateo_LeFou (859634) on Saturday May 26, 2007 @06:27PM (#19286519) Homepage
    If I weren't already catholic I'd probably steer clear, based on those things you said. Most of them were false, but I imagine you know that.

    The only one I'll address is "their teachings are not Christian and aren't considered so by anyone other than themselves".

    Everyone in the world, except for a few Protestant sects, considers the Roman Catholic Church to be Christian. By that I mean literally about 97% of the world.
  • Re:funding (Score:2, Informative)

    by bruce_garrett (657963) on Saturday May 26, 2007 @06:31PM (#19286561) Homepage
    Grassroots donations, but also a few very friendly right wing billionares, like Howard Ahmanson. He's been a big friend to creationist organizations like The Discovery Institute. I expect some of the other usual names (Scaife, Olin, Bradley, Coors, and so forth) are sending a little money their way too, via one cash teat or another.

  • by solafide (845228) on Saturday May 26, 2007 @06:40PM (#19286619) Homepage
    But the word dinosaur was coined in the 1800s, while the KJV was translated in the 1600s. So it would be impossible to use words that would be coined in the future.

    On the other hand, the KJV does make mention of dragons, and the descriptions given of dragons do, I believe, fit that of dinosaurs.

  • by Wavicle (181176) on Saturday May 26, 2007 @06:45PM (#19286659)
    There are even fossilized dinosaur tracks with human footprints going through them.

    No there aren't

    http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/paluxy/tsite.html [talkorigins.org]
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday May 26, 2007 @06:51PM (#19286715)
    Too bad, this god didn't send his door-to-door salesmen out to all the alleys to pass the memo.

    Anyway, your god, being omniscient, knew what would happen, and did what he did anyway, in effect fixing the result in advance. So that's how "god gave us free will?"
  • by Coryoth (254751) on Saturday May 26, 2007 @06:53PM (#19286735) Homepage Journal

    No real evidence has ever been discovered (or much less reproduced) that one kind of animal can bring forth an animal of a different kind: i.e. a fish giving birth to a frog.
    This is, of course, a straw-man, since evolution suggests no such thing. Evolution claims that if enough small steps are made, the result can be that the accumulated change is large. Your suggestion that no-one has ever observed a fish giving birth to a frog is akin to arguing that a journey of a mile can't be made, because no-one has observed anyone teleporting over that distance.

    Perhaps you are hoping for something akin to the "prime mammal" fallacy though? That argument runs as follows: clearly only a mammal can give birth to a mammal, thus there can have been no "prime mammal" to give birth to the first mammal, because it couldn't have been a mammal itself! It sounds good at first, but it is really just playing with semantics. Our classifications are simply an oder that we impose upon a world that has no such order. And often that imposed order isn't terribly good -- for example, genetically the difference between humans and chimps (which are in separate species) is smaller than the difference between subspecies of certain birds. We carve out arbitrary lines through nature that exist only in our own minds. In nature the lines are not crisp, but instead blurred. See, for example, ring species [wikipedia.org], which provide a continuous range between two separate species. Such continuous ranges stretch back through time as well, over many generations. Moving backwards we would see creatures that were less and less easily identifiable as mammals until the line begins to blur. We would see animals that we would not be able to class an mammals, yet we could neither (using out current definitions) really class them as "not mammals".* Thus there is no "prime mammal" not because mammals don't exist, but because the line blurs, and nature tramples over our artificially imposed order -- there is simply no clear point where some arbitrary threshold (which ultimately exists only in our minds) is crossed, thus no "prime mammal".

    I would suggest that what you need to provide to support your argument, is some evidence that an accumulation of change cannot continue indefinitely. What you need to provide is some reason why generation after generation of small changes must, for some reason, result in change stopping, or reversing. Without such an argument simple induction on small changes is a perfectly reasonable argument to justify eventual large changes being the result.

    * This is the sort of place where intuitionistic logic, which doesn't accept the law of excluded middle, starts to make a lot of sense.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday May 26, 2007 @06:54PM (#19286739)
    There are many branches of Christianity. If your branch is not based off of the Anglican branch, you believe in a concept call purgatory where all people go to when they die to be purified before going to heaven (where nothing imperfect may enter). If you're a universalist Christian, you believe that God is merciful and would not irreversibly punish people for eternity for wrongs done in a the short (on the cosmic scale) span of 100 years. So everyone can go to heaven, even Hitler and Stalin. The catch is that the more imperfect you are, the more time you spend in purgatory and it's not at all a pleasant place, so it's best to conduct your life so that you can spend as less time there as possible.

    So getting back to your question about infallibility. Relative to us, God is effectively infinitely perfect, just as relative to us, the universe is effectively infinitely big. While the universe isn't actually infinitely big, it's unknowable with our puny brains if God is actually infinitely perfect.

    But if he is, I'd reason that the reason we aren't perfect is a mercy. Let's face it. Perfection is *boring*. Just imagine. You know everything, so there's nothing to learn or discover. You have no needs, so there is nothing to strive for. There is no uncertainty (either good or bad) so there is nothing to look forward to. Our imperfection makes us exciting so God likely lives vicariously though us the way some parents live through their successful children. If that's the case, then reincarnation might be possible so that we can escape all that perfection...or maybe not and we'd be stuck in God's shoes.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday May 26, 2007 @06:55PM (#19286749)

    Behold now behemoth, which I made with thee; he eateth grass as an ox. Lo now, his strength is in his loins, and his force is in the navel of his belly. He moveth his tail like a cedar: the sinews of his stones are wrapped together. His bones are as strong pieces of brass; his bones are like bars of iron. He is the chief of the ways of God: he that made him can make his sword to approach unto him.
    Job 40, 15-19
  • by NMerriam (15122) <NMerriam@artboy.org> on Saturday May 26, 2007 @07:49PM (#19287203) Homepage

    No real evidence ... i.e. a fish giving birth to a frog

    Such an event would, in fact, completely disprove evolutionary theory, so I can only assume you've been mislead as to what Evolutionary Theory really is. There are literally trillions of billions of events that would disprove Evolution as a theory beyond any capability of repair, yet none of those things has happened.

    Evolution would be the simplest thing in the universe to disprove if it were untrue, since reproduction is one of the few things that happens whether scientists are starting the experiment or not. Think how easy it would be to disprove gravity if it had turned out to only be a local phenomena to our planet or galaxy -- the instant we had good telescopes and launched spacecraft we would have seen how wrong we were. Evolution is even easier -- there are species that reproduce in minutes, where you can fit billions of them in a container in your hand. The planet is running quadrillions of experiments every hour of every day and has been for thousands of times longer than man has walked upright, and you only have to stumble across ONE of them that disproves evolution and it would be completely discredited.

    Everything you claim impossible has in fact been seen, measured, and reproduced. Speciation has occurred and been documented many times in laboratories and the wild. Sorry that mammalian evolution has not been observed, that's simply the nature of our lifespans. It's far more convenient to observe firsthand things that reproduce quickly. Locking 4,000 cats in a lab for a few centuries just is not as practical as it sounds (though no doubt it would be damn entertaining).

    When you're discussing geological timescales and massive changes, all we can go on is the geological record. Note for the record, my mom is a geologist so I have more than a casual acquaintance with geology, and your dismissal of the science of dating is laughingly incorrect. The idea that it is circular logic to correlate multiple pieces of evidence to build confidence is absurd. We have written documentation of the ages of some locations, we have experimental proof of the decay of every element and every common material used by human civilizations, we have independent physical evidence of the age of major strata, we have experimental proof of the timespans required for geological and chemical actions taking place, if every one of those things agrees across multiple experiments then you've proven as well as anything can be proven that geological dating is reliable. It predicts where things will be well before we ever start digging or drilling, so if it is mistaken, it is mistaken in a bizarrely consistent manner.

    Most importantly, like evolution, nothing has ever been discovered in a geological dig that showed such dating techniques were wrong. Again, this would be a simple thing to disprove, you just find a single iron axe that is 6,000 years old buried in stable rock from 20,000,000 years ago and geology as a science would have a MAJOR problem.

    By your "circular" reasoning, both gravity and the speed of light are suspect because we use each to verify measurements of the other in many cosmological experiments.

    "Missing links"? I don't even know what that is supposed to refer to. There is no such thing as a "missing link" except in Creationist books. In real science there are simply different species, and they all change over time, the greater the timespan, the greater the change. I find it is simpler to imagine evolution working vast change over vast time than it is to imagine why so many species would be so morphologically similar, so genetically similar, and yet have no actual commonality.

    I appreciate the sincerity of your belief, but it really does appear to be based in large part on either a misunderstanding of what evolution is and says, or a misunderstanding of what the state and practice of science is. Unfortunately there are a great many people out there pub

  • by Cstryon (793006) <`moc.liamg' `ta' `noyrtsC'> on Saturday May 26, 2007 @09:53PM (#19288173)
    Well said.
    I myself am LDS. Though I'm not really practicing, I have a pretty good idea of how Gods plan goes, and why it's important to attend church (At least from the LDS view).
    It's ok to just be nice. Do good deeds, live a decent life with out looking to a God/Gods for the OK or to give you reason. We believe that to go to heaven, that's just it.
    Although, if your goal is to live Gods life, to become a your own with spiritual children of your own. Than you need to follow the commands and attend sacrament. That's gods plan. Live a good life, get paradise. Live according to the plan, get Gods life.

    Grand-Parent Poster: You should read the Doctrine and Covenants. Basically will explain everything that LDS members believe.
  • Re:Not going there (Score:3, Informative)

    by king-manic (409855) on Saturday May 26, 2007 @10:50PM (#19288585)

    No, that's is not true. There are absolutes in the universe and the universe exists by a finite set of absolute physical laws. To be more specific, the universe exists by Mathematical laws. When a Mathematical absolute is proven, then it is absolutely true. It is through applied Mathematics, Physics, where modeling of existing observation and prediction of future observation are created using Mathematics. The models can lead to situations where a model is correct for the observation but needs refinement to be correct universally. This is the exact point of the scientific process...to test, verify, retest and refine until a Mathematical model can be defined as an law. Through this method, all absolute physical laws of the universe will eventually be known.
    Actually, NO. Mathematics gives us a tool to define self consistent systems that approximate reality. There is always doubt and margin for error (see the law of gravity's refinement). The difference between a scientific "law" and a scientific "theory" is not the amount of proof or iterations it is simply "laws" are more terse then theories and tend to be called laws simply because people got used to calling it such. Moore's law is terse, and throughly unscientific, while the theory of radiocarbon dating has a lot of scientific back up.
  • by khayman80 (824400) on Saturday May 26, 2007 @10:58PM (#19288637) Homepage Journal
    Maybe the best answer is to say that it's actually a fact and a theory. It's a fact that objects fall to the earth when we release them, and several theories (Newtonian gravity, Einstein's General Theory of Relativity) have been proposed to fit these facts into a coherent whole. It's a fact that species evolve, and several theories (gradualism, punctuated equilibrium) have been proposed to fit these facts into a coherent whole.
  • by physicsphairy (720718) on Saturday May 26, 2007 @10:59PM (#19288653) Homepage

    If there is a salvation to be had, here is the secret: Be kind to each other. What else could possibly matter?

    That is indeed the crux of Christianity, although it is stated a bit more strongly than that: (this is just one verse of many)
    My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.
    and even
    But I say unto you whi hear: Love you enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, and pray for those which spitefully use you.

    If you can obey that wholeheartedly, welcome to heaven.

    The problem happens when you decide you are going to be selfish and step from the path of the redeemed to the path of the sinner. Suddenly, you have crossed the chasm which leads to imperfection, and we're left with two big questions, (1) How can an infinitely just God forgive the trangression when justice requires that it be punished? (2) How is it possible to unite a wayward, sinful creature, which has chosen selfishness, with a perfect and Holy God?

    The Christian answer to both of these questions is the same: Jesus Christ. In regard to question (1) God remains just because he doesn't forgive the penalty of the sin... he pays it himself on our behalf. In regard to question (2) because God has paid our penalty we are able be spiritually reborn through our faith and acceptance of God's offering of free grace.

    The big catch which you appear to take issue with is that freewill is still in the equation. Before you chose to be selfish, and so God paved the way for a second chance, but you still have to choose to accept God's offer. And you have to do so sincerely. (Which is to say, if you have what Christians call "faith" you will try to fulfill God's commandments--embodied wholly in showing love to one another--even knowing that you're now covered for mistakes. Just saying the words 'I am a Christian' doesn't prove anything to anybody, least of all God.)

    This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.

  • by DShard (159067) on Sunday May 27, 2007 @12:04AM (#19289055)

    Sure, it's pretty hard to set up an experiment to test evolution.
    No, it is very easy to set up an experiment. I do it all the time when I reuse yeast on many consecutive brewing sessions. Yeast rapidly evolves due to it's simple nature, and six generations is enough to change it's behavior. This results in a very different beer that can change a nice cream ale into a poor chimay. The thing that is hard is understanding what is happening, not finding the examples of it in your daily life.
  • by Lord Apathy (584315) on Sunday May 27, 2007 @12:12AM (#19289093)

    Evolution is a science. Why is it a science? Because it follows the scientific method. There is evidence and rules what can be treated as evidence. When the evidence no longer fits the model the model will be changed to fit the evidence. An this goes on and on until the evidence and the model fit together like a fine wine and cheese.

    Creationism on the other hand cannot follow the scientific method. For one thing there is only one theory and that theory can never be modified. Where on the other hand the theory of evolution has changed in the last 150 years since is formulation. Creationism is just the opposite of science. Since you can't change the theory you have to change the evidence. You can't do that in science. You have to go by what the evidence says.

    My friend as Penn & Teller say, "Creationsim is Bullshit!"

  • by Phroggy (441) <slashdot3NO@SPAMphroggy.com> on Sunday May 27, 2007 @01:23AM (#19289529) Homepage

    but was never told why or what the consequences were
    "You will surely die" wasn't specific enough?
  • by DreadHarn (946926) on Sunday May 27, 2007 @01:25AM (#19289543) Homepage
    Actually the more you "think" about it, the less you actually think and the more you listen to everyone else. Study the Bible and you will see that the God of the old testament is pre-covenant. With the sacrifice of Jesus, a covenant was made that all the actions God had to take prior to Jesus would not be needed anymore.

    You have to understand that God saw humans as unredeemable before Jesus made His sacrifice. Thus the justification for destroying tribes and having plagues etc. The definition of evil is the exact opposite of God. Thus God can never be evil.

    The way you are approaching the idea of good and evil is as if darkness is only black when someone say's it is dark. When in fact the color black is the absence of white light. The same with God, evil is the absence of God's goodness. Whatever action God takes is always considered the correct action. A moral absolute.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday May 27, 2007 @03:23AM (#19290103)
    No, there's no logical mess. Replace right and wrong, good and evil by "God's nature" and "not God's nature".

    God has identity, personality and freewill. Therefore, there are things that he likes and things that he hates. Because He created human in his image (or in his nature), human also had identity, personality and freewill pretty much like God.

    Man chose to do what God disliked, therefore changing his identity completely, separating himself from his creator. There was no coercion and no threatening to the humankind. Hell is just the state of complete separation.

    The right and wrong, good and evil as we perceive with our corrupted understanding is not necessarily the true nature of God, but gives us some clues of what it is. The sacrificial death of Christ on the cross is the most clear message of God's nature.

    You still have a choice. If you are a person open to ideas beyond science, why don't you temporarily assume that Jesus's death on the cross is an attempt of God to reestablish contact with you and sincerely ask your creator to reveal himself to you. Then, after a reasonable amount of time, if you don't truly experience an intelligent living God, then you go back to science to get your answers. What have you to loose?

  • by jenik (1030872) on Sunday May 27, 2007 @04:53AM (#19290495)
    Your epistemology of science appears to be a little too simple. The anomaly of Mercury's perihelion was known since the beginning of the 19th century but it had no effect on newtonian mechanics whatsoever until Einstein presented a rival theory. Also, all theories require supplementation by the ceteris paribus clause (i.e. everything else is the same). This means that a contradictory observation may ALWAYS be explained as failure of the ceteris paribus clause rather than failure of the theory. And so on and so forth, it's actually worth reading something on epistemology and scientific method (Popper, Lakatos, Kuhn...), you may be surprised by how science actually works.
  • by Weedlekin (836313) on Sunday May 27, 2007 @07:49AM (#19291321)
    "I will point out, however, that Intelligent Design and Creationism are not the exclusive property of theists. Sir Fred Hoyle and the "panspermia" proposal are an example of a prominent scientific atheist and a naturalistic intelligent design theory (limited to chemical evolution in scope)."

    Hoyle's panspermia was nothing like you are presenting it. He believed that the "seeds" for for life are a property of the universe, which his steady-state model claimed has always existed, and will continue to do so for eternity. Hoyle's universe was thus not created intelligently or otherwise, because it's always been there, together with the seeds of life, which were also not created -- indeed, one of the driving forces for his theories was to refute the very concepts you claim he was supporting. Note also that rather than being "limited to chemical evolution", Hoyle thoroughly rejected that concept, although he fully accepted Darwinian evolution because, unlike ID / creationists, he understood the fact that life origins and evolution theory are separate fields, and did not therefore attempt to use one as a straw man against the other.

    "His ideas were not accepted, of course"

    As is always the case with science, he had some prominent supporters and some prominent detractors -- Darwin had a much harder job getting his ideas accepted than Hoyle did. Note also that Hoyle didn't invent the concept of panspermia, because it dates back to at least the 5th century BC, and was quite a popular idea during the 18th and 19th centuries.

    "I wonder whether his audacity in questioning such sacred cows (and providing quotable material to the infidel creationists) didn't cost him Nobel Prize recognition in the end."

    If this was actually the case, then how did Francis Crick, a prominent supporter (and possibly co-originator) of directed panspermia, get a Nobel prize?

    "is that because the ideas are profoundly and obviously wrongheaded, or simply because it's professional suicide for anyone less renowned than Sir Fred Hoyle to confess public doubt in evolution?"

    Fred Hoyle never expressed any doubts whatsoever about evolution - indeed, he proposed the idea that viruses and other organic matter falling on to the Earth and causing new epidemics among species (which either adapt and survive or die out) might act as one of its fundamental driving mechanisms.

    I didn't bother reading the rest of your post, because it's obvious that you are both a liar and a fool. Everybody on Slashdot is by definition on the Internet, and can therefore use Google etc. to check up on Hoyle's ideas for themselves, and then know that you are being completely disingenuous. This type of tripe might work when preaching to the converted, but only an utter fool would post it on a forum where the average IQ is above that of a cardboard box, and people can quickly and easy see for themselves that your argument is built on a foundation of obvious lies.
  • Re:Falsification (Score:2, Informative)

    by mdwh2 (535323) on Sunday May 27, 2007 @01:22PM (#19293443) Journal
    no new species were made.

    Speciation has been observed [talkorigins.org].

    And by "evolution / secular humanism movement", you mean "science".
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday May 27, 2007 @11:12PM (#19297309)

    Before you go to boycott the museum, shouting your precious science minds, please take a look and explain chirality of molecules. ;-)

    Many important molecules required for life exist in two forms. These two forms are non-superimposable mirror images of each other, i.e.: they are related like our left and right hands. Hence this property is called chirality, from the Greek word for hand. The two forms are called enantiomers (from the Greek word for opposite) or optical isomers, because they rotate plane-polarised light either to the right or to the left.

    Nearly all biological polymers must be homochiral (all its component monomers having the same handedness. Another term used is optically pure or 100 % optically active) to function. All amino acids in proteins are 'left-handed', while all sugars in DNA and RNA, and in the metabolic pathways, are 'right-handed'.

    A 50/50 mixture of left- and right-handed forms is called a racemate or racemic mixture. Racemic polypeptides could not form the specific shapes required for enzymes, because they would have the side chains sticking out randomly. Also, a wrong-handed amino acid disrupts the stabilizing -helix in proteins. DNA could not be stabilised in a helix if even a single wrong-handed monomer were present, so it could not form long chains. This means it could not store much information, so it could not support life.

    Now, the question itself about DNA molecule's "cleaner mechanism" while enzyme is moving along DNA fixing its chirality to prevent DNA's immediate death. So, if DNA randomly has been created from an explosion, HOW the molecule "knows" that that cleaner mechanism will be extremely required to prevent it's self death? However, I think evolutionists already constructing Boeing 747 from a pile of its details, using an explosions of "Tomahawk" missles... ;-)

    As to the origin of the optically active enzymes, we can only speculate'. However, if we can only 'speculate' on the origin of life, why do so many people state that evolution is a 'fact'? Repeat a rumour often enough and people will swallow it.

  • by aadvancedGIR (959466) on Monday May 28, 2007 @08:34AM (#19299365)
    "why don't we find fossils/fish remains on the top of tall mountains, usually?"

    Actually, we do. You'd be surprised to see how few million years plate tectonics needed to change some sea bottom into very tall montain (there is one famous example between India and asia, but also many more around the world). Of course, the sediment layers in which fossils usually form tend to be destroyed by erosion when they are in direct contact to the athmosphere.
  • by Copid (137416) on Monday May 28, 2007 @01:27PM (#19301401)

    However, no one has ever breeded two dogs and gotten a cat.
    That would be extraordinarily surprising and hardly what evolutionary theory predicts. Species are a continuum much like colored light. If I start with red light and slowly increase the frequency, I'll eventually reach violet light. The fact that red light only begets more orangy-red light doesn't change that fact. It would be silly to say "I've never seen red light turn into violet light by this method!" In fact, any too adjacent light frequencies will be very similar.

    No new DNA information is created or used. Rather, existing information is scrambled around or duplicated in those cases. I don't think there is any such thing as a beneficial mutation. If you can name me an example, please do so.
    Your post is long on assertions and rather short on evidence. This is a classic case. What do you mean by "information" and how would we measure it? This is important, because without a halfway decent definition of the quantity "information" your whole point falls apart. If you're looking for an example of a beneficial mutation, you might want to look into the assorted mutations that imbue resistance to antibiotics or the now famous "nylon bug" in which a mutation allows a certain bacterium to "eat" nylon. The mutations are understood (i.e. mapped to a particular piece of DNA--the researchers know what happened) and they're clearly beneficial in that environment.

    We can't even know for sure how long ago it died, since modern dating methods have been proven unreliable.
    No, they haven't. You're just not looking deeply enough into those specific examples and understanding why they are the way they are.

    If I recall correctly, a freshly killed seal ( or some such animal ) was measured using Carbon Dating, and it was found to be thousands of years old... which was false because it had just died. That is a proof by counter-example that Carbon Dating is unreliable.
    It's very important to note that it was a seal or some such animal and not something else. The effect that whoever told you about this didn't mention to you (I'll be charitable and assume that it was an honest mistake) is called the "reservoir effect." For radiocarbon dating to work, the organism should be at equilibrium with atmospheric carbon. This isn't the case when organisms get most of their carbon from "old carbon reservoirs" like the seal in question did. The classic example is mollusk shells, which can often be constructed from the carbon in limestone to which the creatures are attached. In that case, the amount of "old carbon" from the rock will dwarf the amount of "new carbon" from the atmosphere, causing old dates. The same is true for the seal example (from Wakefield's "Mummified seals of southern Victoria Land"). The seal in question lives in an area where large quantities of old carbon are known to be in the food chain.

    Basically, you've taken a well-understood special case and made a hasty generalization to completely discard a huge pile of evidence to the contrary. It's important to understand that knowing how to use the tools is just as important as the accuracy of the tools themselves. Organizations like AiG often exploit this in their "research" and forcibly "break" the dating methods and pretend to be surprised. I recommend reading into the topic a little bit before discarding good research and essentially calling the vast majority of scientists incompetent based on stuff you read on the Internet.
  • by Copid (137416) on Monday May 28, 2007 @06:22PM (#19303305)

    I attended a lecture by a member of the scientific community a couple years ago concerning two invalid assumptions Radio-Carbon dating makes (wow, a scientist who disagrees with Evolution! We don't hear much about those... I think more of them disagree with evolution than the average North American thinks).
    I think that this is an important section to respond to because C14 dating gets a really raw deal in the general populace. There are some really important details that a lot of these debates gloss over, and people leave with the impression that C14 dating is little more than witch doctoring.

    I'm scraping the dregs of my memory, but as I recall, the first assumption was that we know how much c-14 was contained in the animal when it died... there's really no way to prove that, at least not that I know of... unless someone invents time travel.
    A common technique to deal with that is calibration with tree ring data. Most organisms are at equilibrium with the atmosphere when they die, so the question is, how much C14 is in the atmosphere? If you can get your hands on wood from old trees, you can trace back the years and then measure the carbon ratios for a given year. After that, you have a very good measure of what to expect to find in organisms from that year. As it turns out, C14 dating has been very successful when proper calibration is done. This field of research is called dendochronology [wikipedia.org]. It should also be noted that for timeframes longer than a few tens of thousands of years, we have to go to something other than C14 dating, so C14 is really not relevant to anything but the "last mile" of evolutionary theory. Even so, I think it's important to point out that it's not the mess that most people seem to think it is.

    Second, the dating method assumes that c-14 decays at a uniform rate. This is also open to question. Basing an entire dating method on these two assumptions seems a bit shaky to me.
    Well, as I pointed out, the first assumption is testable for more than 10,000 years back. The second assumption is a consequence of atomic theory and has serious consequences if it's not true. Nobody has proposed an alternate atomic theory in which decay rates change in appreciable amounts. You'd be fiddling with some fundamental values in physics. That's not to say that it's not possible. It's just highly unlikely. The constancy of radioactive decay is not the house of cards so many people make it out to be.

    Another fact is that the radioactive dating methods tend to agree with each other, even systems that are based on different types of decay. Changing one type of decay would not be expected to have any effect on other types of decay. Likewise, different elements would be affected differently. We don't observe anything to support this, unless all of the decay rates have been fiddled with and tuned in such a way as to completely negate any measurable effects. Having an open mind is one thing, but essentially discarding most of modern physics simply because you're not comfortable with dates that C14 dating produces takes epistemological nihilism a bit too far, IMO.

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