1 in 5 Americans believe Sun revolves around the Earth

Reply Sat 14 Jul, 2007 08:57 am
Re: 1 in 5 Americans believe Sun revolves around the Earth
BlueAwesomeness wrote:
We're all ignorant to some extent. A Christian isn't any more ignorant than an evolutionist. Christians just use faith to cover the things that they can't prove, by believing in a reliable source.

Uh-huh . . . leaving aside the undeniable fact that "evolutionist" is a term coined by creationists eager to indentify "the enemy"--i can think of few contentions more absurd than that relying upon faith is a case of "believing in a reliable source." What early reason could anyone have for describing faith as a reliable source?

Though evolutionists use faith, too. They have faith that the things they read about scientific studies are true. They have faith that the studies weren't faked, or that the information that is being given to them isn't false. They also have faith in the scientists that performed the studies.

There are people who undoubtedly do respond to science as though it were a faith. However, this incredibly naive contention ignores the very structure of modern scientific research which provides a host of checks and balances to attempt to assure the reliability of reports of newly found data, or newly derived conclusions from observation and experimentation. Scientific journals are peer-reviewed, which means that one or more (almost always more than one) other qualified scientific investigator who has not participated in the research to be published has reviewed the submitted material to look for flaws in methods or conclusions based on the data and the experimentation. Additionally, people who have built their careers on one set of assumptions about the significance of scientific data and experimentation will immediately challenge anything which contradicts their point of view--from which they will either attempt to discredit that differing point of view, or will re-assess their own conclusions based on new data and results. Finally, new data and experimental results will lead to new predictive assumptions. If those assumptions do not bear out, the data and experimental results would have to be reassessed; if the predictive assumptions are borne out in further research, it serves to solidify whatever theory or aspects of theory were involved. The principle of falsifiability in scientific investigation strongly underpins all reports of new findings.

Absolutely nothing of the kind can be said of canonical religious scripture--it is never subject to revision, and any evidence which casts doubt on the content of scripture, or flat out disproves the silly contentions of scripture (such as the "sun standing still"), is ignored, while those who question scripture are vilified. Having "faith" in science is similar to having faith that people who are crossing your path at a traffic light will stop when their light is red--it is a plausibly based assumption, based on experience, and entails a rational understanding that not all results will necessarily conform. Religious faith is, however, like faith in the tooth fairy--it is believing something because one wants it to be true, not because one otherwise has any good reason to believe.

So evolutionists are just as ignorant as Christians. And most athiests believe in evolution. (There aren't many alternatives other than creationism and evolution.) Therefore, athiests are just as ignorant as Christians.

This is an hilariously flawed conclusion. It proceeds from ipse dixit humbug to a conclusion pleasant to a religionist point of view. Everyone is ignorant, to a greater or lesser degree. There is, however, a difference between those who are ignorant, know it, acknowledge it, and attempt to remedy their ignorance--and those who are ignorant, won't admit it, and rely upon a book of fairy tales to supply the deficiencies of their understanding.
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Reply Sun 15 Jul, 2007 05:49 pm
yes, hilariously flawed.
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