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Giberson and Stephens want American evangelicals to forsake their tradition for a rat’s nest of crackpot ideas.

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Thinking about Al Mohler’s response to Giberson and Stephens’ attack on “anti-science” American evangelicals in the New York Times: The problem isn’t that they want evangelicals to forsake their religious tradition for another one.

That would be a fair proposition. Paul offered to debate the Athenian philosophers on Mars Hill, with the idea that if they ended up persuaded that there  is only one God, they ought to convert.

But Giberson and Stephens don’t want evangelicals to forsake their tradition for a different religion. They want them to forsake it for a rat’s nest of crackpot ideas. Which is what so often counts for science these days.

You know what I mean: Apes have cultures, just like people; any soap opera plot can be pasted onto the unwritten book of human evolution; cows become whales, no problem; we live in a giant sim, a giant hologram, a multiverse where anything is possible except science – courtesy, ScienceTM …. the stuff of so many “science pages” today … all to be believed in preference to the Gospel – merely on the word of some “authorities” in science.

We’ve covered a fair bit of the nonsense here at Uncommon Descent, and we are sandbagging for way more.

It’s not that evangelicals would have something different to believe if they listened to these folk. They would have a cacophony of nothing to believe. Or nonsense. Or whatever. If they’re fool enough.

While I’m here: About some of the issues these types think we aren’t being “Christian”about:

– Yes, some people can “pray away the gay.” I know someone who did. I attended his Wedding Mass, and you can be sure he wasn’t marrying a guy, not in that church. Over the priests’ dead bodies, maybe. Not that time though.

-I also think it is grossly unethical to claim on the one hand that everyone should understand being gay and also claim that a guy who feels he is gay – but doesn’t want to be gay – should be discouraged from therapy. Why isn’t it that guy’s own business and nobody else’s?

– Second, there is so much political corruption around the climate change debate that all reasonable Christians should be dispensed from believing anything whatever about it except that there are quite a few liars and frauds out there (surprise, surprise). We’ll have to cope with the resulting bills anyway.

Follow UD News at Twitter! And back to regular science coverage soon, thank heaven!

8 Replies to “Giberson and Stephens want American evangelicals to forsake their tradition for a rat’s nest of crackpot ideas.

  1. 1
    NickMatzke_UD says:

    cows become whales, no problem

    Wow, this could be right out of the crazy-YEC Bible-Science Newsletter from the early 1980s. And you dare accuse other people of being crackpots?

    Over in real science, just last week I went to the Chicago Field Museum and saw Pakicetus, Ambulocetus, Dorudon, etc. on display, life-size casts open to the public for everyone to see.

    http://fieldmuseum.org/about/w.....lk-through

    Photos of, the same or very similar casts are here:
    http://www.sciohost.org/ncse/k......html#s070

    Hint: Pakicetus didn’t look like a cow — even though it is an “artiodactyl” (even-toed hoofed animal), the “hoof” back then was just a thick toenail. Pakicetus was more like a big, nasty, carnivorous fish-eating pig. (Pigs and hippos are also artiodactyls.)

    With junk like this, you instantly have lost anyone who knows the first thing about the science. I can’t think of a more perfect example of exactly the flaws that Giberson and Stephens were pointing out in much of modern evangelicalism. Congratulations.

  2. 2
    News says:

    NickMatzke_UD, do you subscribe to all the other crackpot-isms too?

    We’ve only historically heard of the Bible-Science Newsletter, but we’ve sure heard plenty of pop sci tales – cows to whales being only one.

    Can we pick and choose? Is that how it works? Or do we have to believe the whole whack to pass muster. In which case …

    Didja hear the wunnabout the chimps who really have a culture? Naw, but ya soon will. – News

  3. 3
    bornagain77 says:

    Nick, before you wrote about how great the fossil evidence is for whales and how ‘real people of science’ don’t question such rubbish, did you see this video that Jonathan just posted this morning:

    Whale Evolution vs. The Fossil Record: The Video
    http://vimeo.com/30921402

  4. 4
    Chas D says:

    we’ve sure heard plenty of pop sci tales – cows to whales being only one.

    Like Nick said, you heard wrong. Artiodactyls – closest living relative actually the hippo, not the cow. Which is maybe no more ‘believable’, but is well supported by molecular data … wait, you don’t believe molecular data either? OK. Still, if you want a snappy derisory slogan, at least have some regard to the consensus – hippos-to-whales, please!

    Can we pick and choose? Is that how it works? Or do we have to believe the whole whack to pass muster.

    That’s the great part, you don’t have to ‘believe’ anything. In fact, scientists spend their days disbelieving each other. Eventually (the bit the public gets to see) they hold their hands up and say “OK, convinced. For now.”. Till some jackanapes trying to make a name for ’emselves forces a reassessment of assumptions. Crazy, ain’t it?

  5. 5
    News says:

    Okay, hippos. For now. We’re still waiting to hear which crackpots Matzke doesn’t believe. What about you, Chas D?

  6. 6
    NickMatzke_UD says:

    Really? A young-earth creationist video from, I suspect, the 1990s, featuring Duane Gish? A video which can’t be bothered to point out that Darwin removed his bear/whale hypothesis from the Origin, that can’t be bothered to note that the mesonychid hypothesis (that’s what the hyena & carnivore-type “ancestors” were about) is decades old and Ambulocetus (and the modern hippo) are universally acknowledged to be closer relatives of the ancestor of whales, although mesonychids are still relatively close? A video that ignores natural selection and pretends that evolution says that the whole thing happened by chance (and, I’m quite sure, is quote-mining Bill Clemmons, a guy in my department, who is very likely talking about the chance process of fossilization, not saying that all of evolution is purely a matter of chance.

  7. 7
    NickMatzke_UD says:

    IOW, exactly the kind of crude anti-intellectualism that Giberson & Stephens were criticizing…

  8. 8
    Chas D says:

    We’re still waiting to hear which crackpots Matzke doesn’t believe. What about you, Chas D?

    Well – I wouldn’t want to be uncharitable to my hosts …

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