Item #1: The series of four letters that appeared in the Daily Bee -
Mr. Knappís first letter to the Daily Bee, 10/2/01:
The recent PBS series "Evolution" was one of the most ambitious evolutionary and anti-Christian propaganda campaigns I have seen to date. The producers of "Evolution" claimed there would be balanced treatment of both sides of the creation/evolution issue. Besides being devoid of real factual evidence for particle-to-people evolution, "Evolution" characterized Christians as ill-informed fundamentalists with no clue how science works or how it can fit within a Biblical framework.
A couple of creationists appeared on the final episode "What about God?" but their scientific arguments supporting creation and refuting evolution were deleted in editing. Criticisms of the evolution theory from other scientists were carefully selected or omitted. Instead, they carefully selected Christians who had no real clue how to defend what they believe, as though this was somehow representative of all Christians and that the only arguments against evolution were religious. There are many highly-qualified scientists, both Christian and non-Christian, who do not see the theory of evolution as scientifically supportable. No opportunity was made for these scientists to state their case.
The series selectively interviewed a Christian student of Wheaton College who began having doubts about what he believed due to the teaching of evolution in what is supposedly a Christian college. This is a sober warning to Christians and the church that they are failing in preparing people for the barrage of evolutionary indoctrination taking place in our public schools, colleges, and on television. Every Christian parent and church should be on top of this issue and should be prepared to counter the claims of evolutionists. For a scientistís critique of the PBS series, visit online at http://www.AnswersInGenesis.org. Also, for rebuttals to many of the so-called proofs of evolution, http://www.trueorigin.org, as well as the previously mentioned website. You may also e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org with your questions or comments.
My first letter to the Daily Bee, 10/10/01:
Tim Knapp (letters, 10-2-01) is disappointed that "scientific arguments supporting creation and refuting evolution" were not included in the recent PBS series, "Evolution." There is a simple explanation. Credible scientific evidence support[ing] creationism and refuting the general principles of evolution was not included because it does not exist.
All the so-called "scientific creationists" have going for them is a line of pseudoscientific rhetoric which, while it is often capable of duping those with limited scientific expertise, has been thoroughly (and repeatedly) discredited by the scientific community at large. As with any scientific theory, there is an ongoing debate among evolutionary scientists regarding the detailed mechanisms involved in the process. Nonetheless, the supporting evidence is so overwhelming that, with the exception of an insignificant (but very vocal) fringe-group of naysayers among them, it has convinced virtually all scientists worldwide that evolution is a fact of life.
With very few exceptions, anti-evolutionists almost always have some kind of religious axe to grind. Mr. Knappís recommended website, "Answers in Genesis," is a case in point. The vast majority of creationists are not on an honest scientific quest to follow the evidence wherever it leads. Instead, they have embarked on an anti-science crusade that involves manipulating the data to try to force it to conform to their religious presuppositions.
The scientific method involves the examination of factual evidence and the development of testable and falsifiable explanatory hypotheses that have predictive value. As far as mainstream scientists are concerned , the theory of evolution is one of the best corroborated and most compelling scientific theories ever developed. Evolutionary concepts underpin the whole of the modern biological sciences.
As with any controversial subject, it is always advisable to investigate both sides of the story. Mr. Knapp provided to[two] pro-creation websites. I recommence www.talkorigins.org and www.ncseweb.org as two mainstream science sites. Treatment of the subject from a religious perspective is available at www.religioustolerance.org/evolutio.htm.
Mr. Knappís second letter to the Daily Bee, 10/16/01:
Jack DeBaun (10-10-01) would have everyone believe the PBS series "Evolution" did not show any evidence that could refute evolution because "the evidence does not exist."
Following this fallacious statement, he continues by saying only an "insignificant group of naysayers" among the scientific community expresses doubt or dissent on Darwinism. I point you to a national poll of 100 scientists across our nation who signed a letter of dissent on Darwinism. http://www.reviewevolution.com/press/pressRelease_100Scientists.php .
This poll included names like Henry Schaefer of the University of Georgia, chemist and five-time Nobel nominee. Insignificant? This evidence invalidates Mr. DeBaunís argument and blows it clear out of the water.
In typical ad hominem attack, Mr. Bebaun [sic] charges those who doubt or reject evolution as always having "a religious axe to grind." The poll mentioned above invalidates that idea. The real reason evidence against evolution theory is suppressed is not that it doesnít exist, but rather it is a direct result of the religious-like commitment to the theory by its followers. This religious-like attitude rears its ugly head in bigoted stifling of critical examination and alternative views from scientists who dare question evolutionary dogma. The PBS series "Evolution" is a good example.
For those who might have questions regarding some of the erroneous comments Mr. Debaun [sic] makes in his article, you may e-mail me at email@example.com. The web sites Mr. Debaun [sic] recommends would better be labeled pro-evolution sites, rather than mainstream science. Check out: www.trueorigin.org or www.AnswersInGenesis.org for another view on the scientific evidence. There are really only two possible explanations for the origin of the universe and life: Evolution and Creation. All other explanations fall under one of these in one form or another. They exhaust most of the possibilities. Only one can be true.
My second letter to the Daily Bee, 10/25/01:
In rebuttal to my comment that scientists who oppose evolution are an "insignificant fringe-group of naysayers," Mr. Knapp (10-16-01) trotted out a list of 100 naysaying scientists. According to the National Science Foundation, there are more than 2.8 million credentialed scientists (math, life, and physical) in the U.S. Even if we include the several scientists in the list of Darwin doubters who are affiliated with foreign institutions, those 100 still represent less that four one-thousandths of one percent of all the scientists in this country. "Insignificant?" Mr. Knapp asks. Well, how else would one classify such a minuscule fraction? Negligible perhaps?
Mr. Knapp misrepresents what I said when he claims that I characterized those who doubt or reject evolution as "always" having a religious axe to grind. If he will read more carefully, he will see that I said, "almost always." Be that as it may, the group that compiled the aforementioned list is a religious organization, many of the signatories are affiliated in one way or another with religious oriented institutions, and the individual whom he singled out, Dr. Schaefer, is a featured speaker for the Campus Crusade for Christ. Indeed, religious belief appears to be a rather common motivating factor in this groupís skepticism toward evolution. I suspect the same holds true for Mr. Knapp.
Mr. Knapp complains that my mainstream science Internet sites "would be better labeled pro-evolution sites." He canít seem to grasp the fact that mainstream science sites are, by default, pro-evolution sites. Nonetheless, if those sites did not satisfy him, he can try the National Academy of Sciences (www.nap.edu/readingroom/books/evolution98/) and the American Association for the Advancement of Science ( http://archives.aaas.org/docs/resolutions.php?doc_id=450 ) sites. They donít get anymore mainstream than those. He might also find www.faithreason.org to be of interest.
(Note: Modifications were made in this letter to replace incorrect URLs.)
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