Not that there was a chance in Hell I’d ever vote for him for anything, but now in a rambling and dogmatic monolog, Carson explains how evolution is stupid, and exposes himself as someone who embraces ignorance.
In aFaith & Libertyinterview posted last week, potential GOP presidential candidate Ben Carson discussed his rejection of the theory of evolution, arguing that the science of evolution is a sign of humankind’s arrogance and beliefthat they are so smart that if they can’t explain how God did something, then it didn’t happen, which of course means that they’re God. You don’t need a God if you consider yourself capable of explaining everything.
Did that make any sense to you? Scientists are open about what parts of the evolutionary story they don’t understand; it’s the creationists who are so certain that they know the entire process, and every bit of it is explained by saying
GOD. So do creationists think they’re a god? Does the fact that he thinks himself capable of explaining everything by invoking his deity mean he doesn’t need a god? That is so incoherent and wrong.
But it’s also cant. Creationists commonly accuse scientists of arrogance, of being know-it-alls. We aren’t. We just know that creationists are wrong, and have the evidence to back it up.
He claimed thatno one has the knowledgeof the age of the earthbased on the Bible,adding thatcarbon dating and all of these things really don’t mean anything to a God who has the ability to create anything at any point in time.
Actually, we do have good knowledge of the age of the earth — we have multiple lines of evidence that all converge on the fact that the Earth is very old, about 4½ billion years old, and that the idea that it is only 6,000 years old is utterly ludicrous. The notion of a young earth is also unbiblical — there is no date given in the Christian holy book, and he openly admits that. The claim that it is 600 years old comes from, in general, two sources: numerology (there are a series of nice round thousand-year-long ages that represent stages in God’s plan for humanity, and of course there are 7 of them because 7 is a magic number), and the visions of the Seventh Day Adventist prophetess, Ellen White, who claimed that Jesus personally told her how old the earth was, and showed her visions of its creation. There’s nothing biblical about it, except in the sense that the Bible is a stew of nonsense which allows anyone to read into it anything they want.
I expect a neurosurgeon to know the basics of physics, and understand that carbon isotope decay is not useful for dating the age of rocks, or any material over 50,000 years old. It’s enough to show that the young earth creationist date is untenable, but dating the earth requires other methods. It’s pathetic to argue against geology with such a complete lack of knowledge of the science.
Isn’t it convenient that, when the evidence shows that something is very, very old, the Christian fanatics simply tell us that their God created it with the illusion of age?
Carson pointed to thecomplexity of the human brainas proof that evolution is a myth:Somebody says that came from a slime pit full of promiscuous biochemicals? I don’t think so.
Nothing good ever comes from a slime pit. No one claims that nervous systems arose spontaneously from
I know that in his training, Carson had to have examined the brains of other mammals (you don’t get to operate on people until you’ve practiced on at least cats). He has to know that there is a range of complexity and size within the mammals, and that we don’t claim that the human brain just poofed into existence from random pools of chemicals; it is an enlargement of a primate brain. It’s grossly dishonest for him to make this argument.
Unfortunately, I wouldn’t be surprised if he was never exposed to the full range of animal nervous systems, which is a shame. There is all kinds of wonderful data on everything from jellyfish neurons to Aplysia ganglia which tells us that the general principles of neurobiology have deep roots. Our brains are assemblies of excitable cells, and there’s a phenomenal amount of information available on how they gradually arose.
He said evolution is unable to explain the development of an eyeball:Give me a break. According to their scheme, it had to occur over night, it had to be there. I instead say, if you have an intelligent creator, what he does is give his creatures the ability to adapt to the environment so he doesn’t have to start over every fifty years creating all over again.
You have to listen to the whole interview to see the full inanity of his claim here. He argues that, under evolution, first a whole, fully formed rod cell would evolve, and then it would sit around waiting for millions of years for cones to evolve, and then these two cells would wait passively even longer for the retinal circuitry to appear. It’s appalling. He can only imagine modern cells of a limited type, and rather than developing as an integrated whole, they had to have evolved piece-wise. His ignorance of the science is total.
If god magicked the ability to adapt into his creations, why can’t he see that that is sufficient to spawn “endless forms most beautiful” without his kibitzer deity?
Calling someone a “brain surgeon” has long been a term of praise for high intelligence and discipline and skill. Between Michael Egnor and Ben Carson, they’ve managed to thoroughly undermine that reputation — “brain surgeon” has come to mean to me a narrowly specialized person with an inflated ego who has no depth of understanding of science, and that’s a shame. I’m sure there are intelligent neurosurgeons out there in the wide world, and it’s just too bad that two of their most prominent representatives are flaming ass-weasels.
Also, what are medical schools teaching their students? How can you go through an undergraduate education and years of medical training and be as ignorant of basic biology as Carson is?