Monday, February 23, 2009

Ray's epic fail; creationists just don't get it.

Less than 2 weeks after it went on sale, Ray Comfort's book "You Can Lead An Atheist To Evidence, But You Can't Make Him Think," has plummeted to number 1,366 on Amazon's book sales rank at the time of this writing. I've reviewed some of the commentary about this book, and even left some commentary myself. It should come as no surprise that this book has only garnered a whopping 2 out of 5 stars by it's reviewers.

As expected, the apologists for creationism have offered their best arguments. And as usual, they have failed. The usual tactics were used; quote mines, misquoting the Bible, taking quotes out of context (for some reason they love quoting Hawking), and ad hominem attacks. But they've come out with a new argument that I haven't heard before; atheists and agnostics just hate logic and science.

But the tactic that I love the most, is their invocation of creationists as part of their argument. Let me be the first to admit that, yes, creationists have done and continue to do great things for the advancement of science. Most notable of these creationists is Raymond Damadian, the inventor of the magnetic resonance imaging system, or MRI. You have to give credit where credit is due, and Mr. Damadian certainly deserves credit. By the boatload.

But creationists, don't stop with Damadian. They're quick to tell you about every other creationist who have made great contributions to science, as well as their status, what they've done, where they've been, where they're going, publications, political opinions, birthdays, and blood type. For instance, one poster at Amazon had this to say:

"Dr Raymond V. Damadian-Inventor of the MRI (The Nobel Committee snubbed him-probably because he is a creationist-and instead awarded Lauterbur and Mansfield, for their discoveries concerning MRI scans.)
Dr. John R. Baumgardner (Geophysicist) "the world's preeminent expert in the design of computer models for geophysical convection."
Dr Ian Macreadie (Molecular Biologist and Microbiologist) Australia's Principal Research Scientist.
Dr. Ben Carson- the World's foremost Pediatric Neurosurgeon (the brain cannot be an accident of evolution)
Dr. A.E. Wilder-Smith (3 Doctorates and a 3-star NATO General) A former Evolutionist, Dr. Wilder-Smith debated various leading scientists on the subject throughout the world. In his opinion, the Evolution model did not fit as well with the established facts of science as did the Creation model of intelligent design.
Dr. Robert Gentry- the world's leading authority of nuclear physics research. When he began his research, he was an evolutionist. Today, Dr. Gentry is a fully convinced young earth creation scientist.

Shall I go on? There are thousands of brilliant Creationist Scientist. And what about the Creationist Scientific Heroes of the past? Take a look:

Louis Pasteur- Father of Modern Microbiology, invented the pasteurization process and opposed evolution theory
Johann Kepler- Father of Physical Astronomy
Robert Boyle-Father of Modern Chemistry
William Kirby -Father of Entomology
James Clerk Maxwell -Father of Electromagnetic Theory
Charles Bell-Premier Anatomist and Surgeon
Michael Faraday-Father of Electromagnetism
Gregor Johann Mendel-Father of Modern Genetics
Isaac Newton -Father of Universal Gravitation
George Washington Carver-Father of Modern Agriculture
And many, many more."

The logical fallacies in this argument are blatant, but Christian creationists are so blinded by their own smug sense of superiority that they will never see them. First, and perhaps the easiest to see, is that these creationists used their logic and reason to make their mark in science; not their faith. Aside from that, most of the scientists that creationists will mention have died long before evolution gained solid scientific ground. Secondly, for every scientist that accepts creationism, there are 20 that dismiss it. Thirdly, they'll never mention an Islamic creationist who has done great things for science, like Ulugh Beg (astronomer), Abu Rayhan Biruni (earth science), or Ibn Zuhr, who was performing experimental surgeries and dissections around 1130 C.E. If he were Christian, he'd likely have been convicted of crimes against God and humanity and subsequently drawn and quartered, or forced to spend the rest of his natural life under house arrest like Galileo.

I don't know about you, but I love when creationists use people they've never met, and mention sciences that they have no concept of, to support their argument. They'll never, ever open a textbook to do any real research, and offer a scientific alternative to evolution. But they'll spend hours looking for quotes to bolster their argument, while bashing people who have dedicated their lives to the pursuit of science just because they don't subscribe to their particular creationist worldview. What's worse, some have even started to refer to Ray as "Dr. Comfort," or "Professor Comfort." At which point I must remind them that even Ray is honest enough to admit that he's never received formal training in any of the sciences at anytime in his life.

Also, something that many Christian creationists do not realize, or will never admit, is that some of the icons they use to strengthen their argument were occultists. For instance, Galileo and Newton were practicing occultists throughout their lives. Newton even sent several men to their deaths because of fraud and forgery. Christians will say that this was a very Christian thing to do, of course, to which I ask, didn't Jesus implore us to forgive our debtors instead of killing them?

Or take Jack Parsons, the brilliant rocket scientist who gave us solid rocket fuel, and co-founded JPL. If it weren't for Parsons, our space program would not be as advanced as it is. It should be noted that Parsons was hand-picked by Alistair Crowley to help lead the Ordo Templi Orientis. Parsons was a devout occultist, and even prayed to the god, Pan.

Other notable occult scientists were John Dee, Francis Bacon, and Franz Mesmer, from where we get the term, mesmerize.

All the time that creationists spend looking for quotes to support their lame, antiquated, misleading arguments and reading Ray's books would have been better spent reading an actual biology book.

Good luck with that.

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