Sunday, October 30, 2016

"Six meanings of evolution"

Some creationists, when talking about the theory of evolution, will bring up this argument that there are "six meanings of evolution." Namely:

Cosmic evolution: the origin of time, space, and matter from nothing in the “big bang”
Chemical evolution: all elements “evolved” from hydrogen
Stellar evolution: stars and planets formed from gas clouds
Organic evolution: life begins from inanimate matter
Macro-evolution: animals and plants change from one type into another
Micro-evolution: variations form within the “kind”

I'm not 100% sure who invented this, but as far as I know, it was most probably Kent Hovind. (His son, Eric Hovind, who just loves to parrot all of his father's arguments and speeches like a robot, also regularly presents this "argument".)

The claim isn't true, and is nonsensical. Those names are completely made up by creationists (probably by Kent Hovind) and the first ones have absolutely nothing to do with the theory of evolution. It's a scientific theory of biology, not cosmogony, cosmology, nuclear physics, astrophysics nor abiogenesis, which is what those first four are talking about. Also the theory does not distinguish between "macro-evolution" and "micro-evolution", which are also more or less made-up terms. No scientist has ever claimed that any of those four things are part of the theory of evolution (which, once again, is a theory of biology).

Yet, no matter how many times this is explained to creationists, they keep parroting this over and over. Because, you see, for some unfathomable reason you can see this list repeated by other creationists, on websites, on YouTube videos, on Chick tracts... you name it. No matter how many times they are explained that the list is just nonsensical, they just keep parroting it, like it were some kind of great argument.

And that's what puzzles me: Why do they keep parroting this, and why do they think it's some kind of argument against evolution? What exactly is the point they are trying to make?

I mean, seriously. Watch some Kent Hovind lecture where he presents this list. He just presents it and... well, nothing. There is no followup, no argument, no point. There is no explanation of what exactly he's trying to say (other than "only the last one is true"). He presents the list as if it were somehow revealing. Revealing of what? Who knows.

He's not the only one who does it. I have seen several YouTube videos of creationists parroting the list (usually without referencing the source) as if it were some kind of great argument, but without any kind of explanation or point to it. They just present the list... and then nothing. They go to something else. The point they were trying to make by presenting the list remains a mystery.

It just goes to show how dishonest creationists are. Most of them know that those terms are nonsensical, and that the theory of evolution does not encompass those fields of science, because they have been told so over and over. Yet they keep repeating the list as factual.

An honest person would find out what the theory of evolution really is about (a theory of biology explaining the diversification of life through the mechanism of descent with modification and natural selection), see that it has nothing to do with astrophysics or particle physics, and then stop presenting that list as inaccurate and pointless.

But creationists are not honest. "An honest creationist" is one of the biggest oxymorons in existence.

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