When I blogged recently about a new, pro-creationism edition of Charles Darwin's On the Origin of Species—complete with a rebuttal to the theory of evolution—the responses poured in. "I'm a little concerned," the communications director for the National Center for Science Education wrote me in an E-mail, "that some stuff—such as Ray Comfort's version of On the Origin of Species—gets coverage but no critical commentary."
So I invited the head of the National Center for Science Education, the leading organization promoting and defending the teaching of evolution in public schools, to debate Ray Comfort, author of the new Origin, here on God & Country.
Here's the first post from Comfort, explaining his new book, which he plans to distribute in the tens of thousands on college campuses. I'll post a rebuttal from NCSE Executive Director Eugenie Scott later today. Next week, I'll put up a follow-up post from each. And just a reminder: Neither God & Country nor U.S. News necessarily endorses their views. - Dan Gilgoff
Why I Published a New Origin
By Ray Comfort
When I discovered that the famous On the Origin of Species was public domain, I decided to publish it myself and write an Introduction and give away copies of the book to university students, in honor of the book's 150th year of publication.
But when Kirk Cameron (my TV cohost on The Way of the Master) and I produced a short video clip explaining what I wanted to do and posted it online, we kicked a hornet's nest. A big one.
Why are many atheists so angry? Why are they talking about book burnings, threatening to resist the giveaway and rip out the Introduction, etc.? Why was richarddawkins.net encouraging people to collect copies and rip out the Introduction? Professor Dawkins himself said that even though "a lot of people seem to be very worried about this," he wasn't at all worried. Why did he then tell Toronto university students to tear out the Introduction? There have been more than 140 different editions of On the Origin of Species, many with special Introductions, so what's the big deal with this one? If I am (as Professor Dawkins says) "an ignorant fool," why are so many feeling threatened by what I've written? Surely, the Introduction will be ignorance and foolishness, and simply confirm the students' presuppositions that intelligent design isn't worthy of even a first look.
There's a reason that they are deeply concerned.
The Introduction quotes Charles Darwin saying that blacks are closer to gorillas than whites and that natural selection has left men more intelligent than women. It also has quotes from Adolf Hitler's Mein Kampf showing Hitler's undeniable links to evolution. Of course, Hitler also used Christianity to further his political agenda, but my point is that Nazi Germany was the natural outcome of what Darwin called "one general law." Darwin said the law of natural selection is "Let the strongest live and the weakest die" (Chapter Seven, "Instinct"). Adolf Hitler put the theory of Darwinism into practice.
The Introduction also defines an atheist as someone who believes that nothing created everything—which is a scientific impossibility. Professor Dawkins believes that nothing created everything, and his belief is a big intellectual embarrassment to his followers. Now, anyone can get their own copy of the book on Amazon.com and read the Introduction, but don't be fooled by the comments. No doubt they will be hijacked by atheists. When my book You Can Lead an Atheist to Evidence But You Can't Make Him Think bumped Richard Dawkins's The God Delusion on Amazon.com in the atheist category, hundreds of angry atheists left scathing comments on Amazon.com and gave my book the lowest rating.
So, is this book going to be a backward step for science, as some have maintained? Of course not. Science is a wonderful discipline, to which we are deeply indebted. It will, however, be a backward step for the pseudo science of Darwinian evolution, of which there is no empirical proof. There are no species-to-species transitional forms in the fossil record. None. I deal with hundreds of atheists every day through my blog, so I can predict the response: "Of course there are fossils! There are millions of fossils, you unscientific idiot!!" They are right. There are millions of fossils, but they are the fossils of God's creation and have nothing to do with evolution. Again, there are no species-to-species transitional forms in the fossil record. That's what is called "the missing link." It was missing in Darwin's day, and it's still missing today. When believers in evolution protest that there are links between "kinds," a close look at their evidence reveals small bumps on whale bones (proving it once had legs), or experiments with bacteria, or conjecture that modern turkeys were once dinosaurs. Sure.
The problem when arguing with those who believe in atheistic evolution is that they move goal posts by redefining atheism or evolution or the word species. From Darwin to Dawkins, they speak the language of speculation, continually using words like probably, maybe, perhaps, and could've. And Darwinism is as nebulous as a puffy cloud on a hot windy day, forever moving, changing, and expanding—because its bounds are limited only by the fertile human imagination.
When we give away On the Origin of Species to university students, I want every one of them to make sure they don't stop at the Introduction. I want them to thoroughly read On the Origin of Species. When I read the book, I was very impressed with the brilliance of Charles Darwin. If he was alive today, I am sure that he would quickly rise to the top of Disney's imagineers or earn big bucks as a Hollywood screenwriter for science-fiction movies. Among other things, Darwin noted that black bears swam for hours with their mouths open, catching insects in the water. He believed that if they kept their mouths open all day, every day (for a long period of time), that they would acquire "larger and larger mouths, until a creature was produced as monstrous as a whale" (Chapter Six, "Difficulties on Theory").
Students can read Darwin's own explanation as to why there is no empirical evidence for his theory—that all "intermediate varieties" have disappeared—just like the Mormons' golden plates that the angel Moroni supposedly gave to Joseph Smith. There's one big difference, though, between the golden plates and the intermediate varieties. The Mormons say that only two golden plates are missing. Darwin says that millions of fossils (what he referred to as "innumerable," ibid.) are missing. After 150 years of desperate searching, the missing links are still—missing.
In Darwin's book, nothing is as God created it. Instead, all of creation miraculously evolved—from the bear's mouth to the giraffe's tail. For some reason, it has all reached the point of maturity during our lifetime and (after millions of years of redundancy) now functions as it was intended. Move over, J. R. R. Tolkien, Arthur C. Clarke, and J. K. Rowling. These three combined don't hold a candle to Charles Darwin. Most of their fans know that their writings were fantasy. Darwin's faithful followers don't.
Ray Comfort is the best selling author of more than 60 books, including You Can Lead an Atheist to Evidence But You Can't Make Him Think, Nothing Created Everything (with special cover condemnation by Richard Dawkins), God Doesn't Believe in Atheists, and Evolution—the Fairy Tale for Grownups. His booklet "The Atheist Test" has sold more than a million copies. He is the cohost of an award-winning television program (with actor Kirk Cameron), blogs daily to hundreds of atheists at Atheist Central, has debated atheistic evolution on ABC's Nightline and on the BBC, and was a platform speaker at the annual convention of American Atheists Inc. in 2001. He is a New Zealander who lives with his wife, Sue, in Southern California. They have three grown children. Find out more at Living Waters.