Thursday, March 23, 2006

Creationists Create Wry Arguments

When creationists and evolutionists argue with each other, metaphors, analogies, and similes fly faster than Dan Rather fleeing from accusations of forged documents.

The creationists are especially creative and witty. One of my favorites was when biologist Edwin Conklin said, "The probability of life originating from accident is comparable to the probability of the Unabridged Dictionary resulting from an explosion in a printing shop." I really doubt that Professor Conklin actually calculated the probability of such a work of literature resulting from such an explosion. I think he was just trying to make a point of absurdity.

Actually, I thought that the correct absurd comparison had something to do with a room full of monkeys typing the complete works of Shakespeare. Now there's  a thought!

I've often thought about hooking up a random-number generator to a php program and making millions of dollars with a web site that claims to read tarot cards. Don't laugh; it's been done.

Back to the creationists. Cambridge University's Sir Fred Hoyle once said that the chance of a simple cell evolving from primordial soup was about the same as a tornado passing through a junkyard and producing a fully functional Boeing 747. Ya gotta admit, that'd be pretty hard to imagine. A two-seater Cessna, perhaps. But not a 747!

Here's another one. Hoyle also compared the chance of obtaining even a single functioning protein from the random combination of amino acids to a solar system full of blind men solving Rubik's Cube simultaneously. Yikes. I'm sure a solar system full of blind men could eventually type Shakespeare, so I suppose each of them could eventually solve Rubik. But, doing it all at the same time? Man, I'd like to see that.

Heck, I'd like to see myself  solve it just once. My son got "Instant Insanity" for Christmas last year and I'm scared to even remove it from the plastic box it came in. ("No, just leave it in there, son. It's a work of art. If you ever remove it, you'll never see it in that pristine state again.")

Evolutionists don't like this in-your-face kind of humor. They claim they are "straw men" arguments, which refers to the practice of setting up a weak argument, defeating it, and then claiming victory over your enemy. It would be like two men who are in a fight where one builds a man from straw, throws punches at it, and says he beat up the other guy.

Gee, that would be like throwing a deck of cards up in the air and having them land on the ground all neatly forming a mosaic of the Mona Lisa.

Eh. Maybe this analogy stuff should be left to the professionals.

No comments: