Tech UPTechnologyThis is how they created us

This is how they created us

The crusade against Darwin is going from strength to strength. Protected by supposed scientific arguments, the new generations ofcreationistsThey try to blow up the foundations of theTheory of Evolutionto impose what they have dubbed the science of creation, which explains the adaptations and diversity of terrestrial organisms through the intervention of a wise Creator. Mainly in the United States and Australia, but also in Brazil, Italy, Turkey and other developed countries,anti-evolutionistsThey try to sow public opinion doubts about the scientific validity of evolution, to make believe that divine creation is an alternative theory to that proposed by Darwin and that, therefore, it should be explained in science classes and included in the textbooks; and to sue in the courts for the Government to impose the teaching of the new creationist postulates on the science teachers of the public schools.

Illiteracy reaches university

In recent years, the creationist movement has waged such aggressive campaigns against evolution that US universities are concerned about the growing scientific illiteracy that prevails in the country: each year the number of students who believe that “the scientific community is divided on evolution “and that” evolution is an unverified theory. ” From the scientific community it is noticed that the science of creation is, in reality, a pseudoscience, that the scientific evidence of evolution is solid as granite and that anti-evolutionists despise and manipulate scientific methods and debates among researchers to defend their religious principles and political aspirations. ? The rise of creationism is nothing more than, purely and simply, politics; represents a point – and not much less the main concern – of the resurgent evangelical right ?, warned the recently deceased Stephen Jay Gould inChicken teeth and horse fingers (1984).

Americans are in favor of creationism

But the scientists’ warning is deafened by the propaganda of the creationists who, without a doubt, have managed to sow confusion in those who are not clear about what the theory of evolution says and what it represents. Most people believe in some myth or superstition around the appearance of life. This is confirmed by a survey carried out in 2001 by The Gallup, an organization that has studied human nature and behavior for 70 years. In it you can read that almost half of Americans believe in creationism. 45% of those surveyed think that God created the human being no more than 10,000 years ago, an idea very close to the creationist theses. And although almost the other half accept that our species is the result of an evolutionary process that spanned millions of years, 37 percent of the people in this group are convinced that the divine finger intervened at some point. The poll also made it clear that there are more Americans who believe in Satan than in evolution. Devilish indeed. There is a great deal of evidence that the blue planet has had a long existence, and that all creatures, including humans, have appeared in more primitive forms in the course of Earth’s history. This means that all species come from other species and therefore that all of them harbor common ancestors in the distant past. For scientists, the common thread that unites forms of life, current or fossil, is evolution.


The way in which this wonderful process of change operates in time was explained 146 years agoCharles Darwinin his workThe origin of species. According to the father of the theory of evolution, in any population of individuals there are variations between each of them, and some of these differences can be inherited. The interaction of these personal variations with the environment plays a vital role in determining which individuals will survive and reproduce, and which will not. If this occurs, some variations enable certain individuals to live longer and leave more offspring than others. Darwin called these variations favorable and argued that positive inherited variations tended to be more frequent from one generation to the next. This process by which nature chooses the survivors he callednatural selection. It is the engine of evolution. Given enough time, natural selection can produce an accumulation of changes that make two organisms different from each other, until they become different and incompatible species from the reproductive plane. How could it be otherwise, the Origin of Species broke into the theological world like a plow in a termite mound, as it highlighted the story of the origins of life that the Genesis of the Bible tells. The Darwinian work, by interposing natural selection with the Creative Mind, was branded as “a huge imposture” and “an attempt to dethrone God.”

The Church regards the Bible as allegorical

The Catholic Church did not set its sights on denunciation, but established scientific-religious organizations to combat these ideas. The Protestants followed in their footsteps and the Society for the Promotion of Christian Knowledge published a book declaring evolution “openly opposed to the fundamental doctrine of Creation.” When Darwin published hisOrigin of Manthe noise broke out again. Even the critic of theTimes he condemned the book as “a completely untenable hypothesis.”


However, the Church, overwhelmed by scientific evidence for the theory of evolution, gradually began to admit that Darwinism was perhaps not incompatible with religious belief. In the encyclicalThe human race, published in 1950, Pius XII grudgingly admitted evolution as a legitimate hypothesis that he considered tentatively supported and potentially uncertain. But almost half a century later, in 1996, Pope John Paul II issued a statement in which he invited Christians to consider the evolutionary process as an effectively proven fact. Despite the fact that most of the Catholic hierarchy considers the Bible as allegorical, there are various Protestant sects and some Catholics that maintain a creationism that is as allegedly scientific as it is literalist, that is, they admit to the letter stories such as that of Adam and Eve. , Noah’s Ark and the Universal Flood. It is a belief that today is marginal among the main western religions, and a doctrine that, as Gould already pointed out in his work of 2000Science versus religion“It is only well developed in the distinctively American context of the pluralism of the Protestant Church. The Church has diversified into a range of sects unique for its wealth, encompassing the whole range of conceived forms of worship and creed.”

With the apple pie and Uncle Sam

In the words of this eminent paleontologist, the creationism controversy is as American as apple pie and Uncle Sam. Indeed, it is in this country that Darwinism has been most fiercely attacked. First they tried the Bible and versions of it, such as the one published in 1909 by Cyrus Scofield to popularize the idea of the English doctor Thomas Chalmers that there is a great temporal gap between verses 1 and 2 of the first chapter of Genesis, thus leaving everything the time required by Earth science between a first act of creation and destruction, and a second creation. Today, the creationist group Tierra Vieja includes in its postulates this outdated “creative solution.” Other anti-evolutionist factions chose to ridicule Darwin with seemingly strong arguments from geology and paleontology. The first to try was George McCreay Price, a Seventh-day Adventist, but he was branded ignorant by the scientific community. Still, the fundamentalist movement mobilized with great success, especially after gaining the political backing of presidential candidate and preeminent charlatan William Jenning Bryan.

Under them, the anti-evolutionists in the early 1920s succeeded in getting 37 states to pass decrees to ban the teaching of evolution in public schools. This led to the famous 1925 Tennessee Monkey Trial, which convicted a professor named John Thomas Scopes for teaching the theory of evolution. The conviction was overturned, not because the scientists succeeded in discrediting the anti-evolutionists, but on the basis of a technicality that prevented, as the American liberals would have liked, to test the unconstitutionality of the Tennessee Law, which declared it a crime. teach “that man descended from a lower order of animals.”

Anti-evolutionist associations are born

Así nos crearon
In his bookThe Triumph of Evolution and the Failure of Creationism, Niles Eldredge calls the creationists’ stance on the fossil evidence of human evolution pathetic. Anti-evolutionists argue that the fossils of early hominids, such as those of the Australopithecines, which lived about 4 million years ago, belong to mere extinct monkeys. Nor do they accept the intermediate forms between these hominids and modern man, such as Homo habilis, Homo ergaster and Homo erectus; and they say that fossils that resemble modern man are not confirmed 100,000 years old.

Despite everything, the defeat in Scopes’ trial pushed the creationists to change their strategy. His new objective was now to spread his postulates in the media and create his own biblical institutes to expose the creationist theses to the public. In this way, numerous anti-evolutionist associations were born throughout the country that studied scientific evidence about origins using both science and revelation. In a display of mental pirouette, creationists began to present creation as an alternative scientific theory to evolution. They clung to it like a lifeline, especially after the abolition of anti-evolutionary laws that, incidentally, flagrantly violated the First Amendment to the US Constitution, passed in 1791, which states that “Congress should not enact any law that is designed to impose a religion or that prohibits the freely professing a religion. “


At the head of the incipient scientific creationism were the professor of hydraulic engineering Henry M. Morris and the biochemist Duane Gish, founders in 1970 of the Institute for Creation Research (ICR), San Diego. Its members call themselves Young Earth creationists and are the ones who have launched campaigns to join school boards, to pressure the courts to incorporate creationist science into public schools in states such as Louisiana, Arkansas and Ohio; and to smear the Darwinists.

How they made a fool of themselves in court

In the past two decades, the Tierra Joven creationists had some successes, but also suffered major setbacks in several prominent lawsuits, such as the 1982 case known as McLean et al v. Arkansas Board of Education, where prestigious Nobel laureates, evolutionists, philosophers and theologians exposed the unscientific bias of their creationist theses and the impossibility of equating creation science with the theory of evolution in schools. Anti-Darwinists also had to bite their tongues in Edwards v. Aguillard of Louisiana in 1987, when the Supreme Court declared it unconstitutional to order the teaching of anti-evolutionist science in science classes.


Despite the setbacks, creationists who believe what the Bible says at face value have not thrown in the towel and continue to sow confusion from their research institutions, museums, websites, books and pamphlets. His favorite catchphrase is to insist that “the theory of evolution is wrong” and that “they have scientific evidence to disprove it.” They blatantly lie when they say that Darwin’s theory is in crisis in the scientific community, but still reap its poisoned fruits. In fact, President Reagan echoed this propaganda to a group of evangelicals in Dallas when he stated, referring to evolution that “well, it’s a theory. It’s just a scientific theory and in recent years it has been put into question. of judgment in the world of science; that is, the scientific community no longer thinks that it is so infallible. ” Even the reelected president George W. Bush and important members of the Government such as John Ashcroft – Secretary of Justice – and Tom Delay – leader of the Republican congressmen – openly boast of being creationists.

It is the most documented theory in science


It is true that evolution is a theory, the most documented of all science. Although more than a century has passed since the publication of the Origin of Species, Darwin’s original concept still constitutes the global framework of engagement for the evolutionary process. Everything that has been discovered since then has confirmed and reinforced the correctness of the Darwinian theory. “Advances in genetics and molecular biology have provided a solid body for the vague notions of inheritance and variability that he and his contemporaries had to contend with. Today, we speak in terms of DNA replication and mutations, and we understand the mechanisms that are involved. The result is what is sometimes called the theory of synthetic or neo-Darwinian evolution , “explains the Nobel Prize in medicine Christian de Duve in his book Life in Evolution .


Most scientists are completely in tune with the basic facts and mechanisms of evolution, such as that terrestrial life has been evolving for about 3.5 billion years and that it continues to do so today, that natural selection is a mechanism. central to which evolutionary change operates over multiple generations, that all species are related because they descend from common ancestors from the earliest forms of life, and that man is a unique species descended from a long series of bipedal primates. As in any other field of science, scientists debate Darwinian theory to delve into the evolutionary mechanisms and processes that have diversified life on Earth. For example, while no biologist questions the importance of natural selection, many doubt its ubiquity. Indeed, there are evolutionists who argue that there are substantial amounts of genetic change that may not be subject to natural selection and that can spread randomly through populations. Other experts doubt the link that Darwin established between natural selection and imperceptible change, through all the intermediate degrees. They argue that most evolutionary events can happen much faster than the father of evolution supposed.


Now, no scientist doubts that Darwinian evolution by natural selection did not happen or that it is not a key and current mechanism of living evolution. But these necessary, healthy, and no less exciting scientific debates are perverted and caricatured by creationists. This is his favorite tactic, to misrepresent what serious scientists say and publish to make it appear that the theory of evolution has its feet of clay. Examples of this vile manipulation abound: a few years ago, Stephen Jay Gould and Niles Eldredge observed that major evolutionary lines often appear suddenly in the fossil record and proposed that large-scale evolutionary change possibly unfolds gradually over time. geological, while doing so more quickly in others. This model, known as punctuated equilibrium, was in contrast to the hypothesis that evolution was a gradual and slow process. Well, even though Gould and Eldredge did not question the established basic principles of Darwinian evolution, it did not take long for creationists to circulate a pamphlet with the following headline: “Harvard Scientists Say Evolution is a Hoax.”

Biomolecules that play to create life

And recently, anti-evolutionists raised a cry that the television series Evolution made no mention of research by Stuart Kauffman, a biochemist at the University of Pennsylvania investigating how complex biological systems can self-organize from components simple. Some creationists suggest that this molecular gift represents an alternative to natural selection, thereby implying that Kauffman believes that natural selection is invalid and is therefore probably in tune with anti-evolutionists. Nothing is further from the truth, since the work of this researcher shows that it is highly probable that the first forms of life – self-replicating organisms – arose on their own from what is known as the primordial soup. But this anti-creationist fact has no interest in divulging the Darwin conspirators.


Leading the Evolution critics is Michael J. Behe, a biochemist at the University of Pennsylvania and one of the leading ideologues of a new and influential creationist lineage dubbed intelligent design (ID). The vanguard of this movement is entrenched in the Discovery Institute’s Center for the Renewal of Science and Culture in Seattle. The ideological core of this neo-creationist current is made up of biologists, biochemists, chemists, physicists, philosophers and historians of different religious beliefs: Catholics, Protestants, Jews, Orthodox, agnostics … They do not like to be called creationists, they never put the Bible in response to his divine Designer they no longer call him God. The novelty in its anti-evolutionist strategy is to argue in scientific language why the processes of nature cannot be explained in evolutionary terms and yes, if the figure of an intelligent designer is introduced who, incidentally, could even be of extraterrestrial origin. To do this, they do not skimp on financial means and operate in the media world with disturbing ease. His elaborate scientific arguments, which in fact are not, can hardly be refuted by those not skilled in evolution, biology, and mathematics. In fact, last September, scientists could not believe that one of the members of ID, Stephen Meyer, had cast one of his anti-evolutionist articles in the journal Proceedings of the Biological Society of Washington. Serious biologists warn that intelligent design is nothing more than a sociopolitical movement of conservative Christians whose representatives ignore or misinterpret, sometimes intentionally, the science of evolution.

The conclusive proof is in the coagulation

His anti-evolutionist arguments have been systematically refuted, but IDs turn a deaf ear and denounce the intransigence of official science. For example, one of its anti-evolutionist pillars focuses on the idea of the irreducible complexity of natural systems proposed by Behe. According to him, there are highly complex systems at the molecular level, such as the bacterial flagellum and the blood clotting mechanism, which it is impossible for them to have evolved on their own, which in themselves are evidence of design. And William A. Dembski, a mathematician at Baylor University and an advocate of intelligent design, invokes that biodiversity is not explained by evolutionary chance – evolution, to begin with, is not an entirely random process, according to scientists – and argues that “The action of creative intelligence leaves behind a characteristic sign or evidence that can be filtered and detected.” These ideas are being heard in various political and educational circles in at least 37 states in the US The outlook is not encouraging at all.

Enrique M. Coperías

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