In two recent letters, Jeffrey Ryan and Eric Collier misquoted my letter published June 10 and misinterpreted my statements, so some clarification is required. Hyperbole and distortion may seem proper to these folks, but actually reveal the weakness of their arguments.Ryan says that I claimed “that the ongoing effort to substitute intelligent design for modern science is imaginary.” I actually wrote opposing Rich Mayfield’s claim of a “campaign in America to convince its citizens that analytical reason should be subservient to divine mandate.” There is no such campaign. Ryan then cites the Discovery Institute as part of his perceived “ongoing effort,” saying it “exists solely to wipe out the teaching of evolution in order to return America to a “theistic educational system”.In reality, the Discovery Institute states clearly on its website that its Center for Science and Culture “encourages schools to improve science education by teaching students more fully about the theory of evolution, including the theory’s scientific weaknesses as well as its strengths.” How threatening. Despite the paranoia exhibited by Ryan and previously by Rich Mayfield, this is the approach of most proponents of intelligent design (ID): they merely want educators to acknowledge that macroevolution is a theory, not a proven fact. Ryan then states “Evolution does not rely on randomness, as any first year biology student could tell him.” In reality, I never said that evolution relies on randomness. Although Ryan is unclear, by “evolution” he likely means microevolution, also known as natural selection, mutation and variation within species. Natural selection is clearly a fact, acknowledged by the ID community, and indeed does not rely on randomness. In my letter, however, I clearly stated that my arguments were against macroevolution (the origination of new species via natural selection). There have been no discoveries of any transitional forms which would prove that macroevolution ever occurred. In order for macroevolutionists to explain how it might have occurred, they have invented silly faith-based theories like “punctuated equilibrium” (i.e. new species must have just magically appeared without leaving any record of transitional forms). The associated atheistic concept of the origin of the universe – it magically appeared from nothing, with no cause – clearly relies on randomness, which was the focus of my statements.In another letter, Eric Collier also misquotes me, saying I wrote that “the Resurrection is “one of the best documented events in history.” In reality, I wrote : “… Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection are the best documented events of ancient history.” I stand by this statement. The manuscript evidence for the biblical accounts of Jesus’ life, the writings of historians of that period, the testimony of eyewitnesses, and the impact of Jesus’ life on his followers, show that there is no other event of that period which is as well-documented. He may dismiss the Bible because he doesn’t like what it says or believes its content is fictional, but the manuscript evidence tracing its origins (which Collier clearly has not researched) cannot be denied. Collier’s comment that it’s “a fanciful text from a hysterical age by unknown authors” is absurd, even atheistic scholars acknowledge its great value as literature and that manuscripts date directly back to the first century with known authorship. Ryan’s and Collier’s letters are useful in one way, though: they expose the methods used by macroevolutionist zealots to prohibit even the mention of a Creator in public schools. It’s unfortunate that these methods often consist of hyperbole, distortion and denial of facts.
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