I will respond to some of your comments then let Shpongle continue, since he is doing an excellent job responding to your questions.
Why waste time? If it looks designed, acts like itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s designed, then maybe itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s designed.
It appears as though this statement represents the core of your posts. Few of the creationists I have met actually have an education in biology. They do not appear interested in reading and actually understanding what is proposed by biologists. Usually they create a cartoon of evolution Ã¢â‚¬â€œ something that Ken Hov*nd might tell them, then they attack the cartoon. Creationists might find that very appealing. It allows them to discount the theory without doing any of the hard work of understanding the science behind it. However, these strawman games have no impact on the many thousands of scientists in the field or any impact on the science.
Before you can successfully attack a theory, you must understand it. Einstein did not overturn the Newtonian model by reading nothing but fringe science. I do not know of any great scientists that did not begin without a basic understanding of what was understood by those before them. If you want to impress those trained in the sciences, or think you can show them the errors of their ways, then begin by showing you understand what they understand.
Would it make sense for me to say the Bible is just a fantasy without at least reading or understanding what the Bible actually said?
This to me is a poor interpretation of the supposed Ã¢â‚¬Å“geologic columnÃ¢â‚¬Â.
And may I ask where you got your education in the geologic column? Have you ever found an exception to what is in the textbooks. Do you have a better theory to account for all the known facts? Do you know what facts require explanation? Do you have a theory of why the first 3 billion years of life on this planet was almost entirely single cell life? Or have you simply read the creation literature to come to this conclusion?
Would you personally be concerned that you may have received a philosophy of science that is incompatible with reality but elegant enough and seductive enough to be alluring?
I was brought up in a creationist home. In my education, however, I was always taught to question both facts and theories. To do that, one first needs to understand those facts and theories. Do you think you could pass an undergraduate exam on evolutionary or geological theory? I am not asking that you agree with it. I only ask whether you understand it well enough to pass an exam that shows you understand what geologists and evolutionary biologists actually believe. From your questions and comments I am assuming that know only the cartoon version of evolution that creationists have created.
But I will certainly accept your quote as a billboard for Kentucky's Creation Museum Ã¢â‚¬Å“incompatible with reality but elegant enough and seductive enough to be alluringÃ¢â‚¬Â
It looks to me like throwing paint against a canvas in the hopes of getting a Rembrandt.
Yes, this shows both a common and quite fundamental misunderstanding of evolutionary theory. Creationists are usually happy to discuss the role of random mutations, but seem to misunderstand the role of selection.
A Product of Clay Zapped With Energy?
Again, this is your cartoon of evolutionary theory. No scientist in this field is proposing this. This is neither part of evolutionary theory or abiogenesis. However, if you would read some of the literature in the field, you would learn this.
This hypothesis is currently in a state of complete lack of evidence. Would you agree?
Of course, I do not agree. I am by no means an expert on abiogenesis. But I have read a few books on the topic, so at least I am aware of the hundreds of different kinds of evidence. To say there is Ã¢â‚¬Å“a complete lack of evidenceÃ¢â‚¬Â simply implies Ã¢â‚¬Å“a complete lack of knowledgeÃ¢â‚¬Â of the research in this field. One may not agree with all of the evidence. However, it appears to be a bit strange to form a strong opinion about a subject but find it a Ã¢â‚¬Å“waste of timeÃ¢â‚¬Â to read about this evidence.
People dreaming and making fancy computer models that look clever have no bearing on reality, again would you agree?
Actually, most of the work in this field is experimental. Again, it can be helpful to read a bit before forming an opinion. Some of the work requires some background in biochemistry, but of course, you have already formed an opinion on that too. Right?
YouÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re asking me to swallow tons of assumptions.
It can be helpful to understand the difference between assumptions and accepted facts. The facts have many lines of supporting evidence. If you are not aware of these various lines of evidence, then they will likely appear as assumptions. Again, getting a good education can be useful here. Otherwise, it just looks like scientists are making it up (or making an assumption).
The age of the earth has been tested in many many different ways and it is now an accepted fact that the earth is billions, - not millions and not thousands of years old. From there, one can look at the facts of where on the earth one finds fossils. From there, we can look at the transitions of life over the last 3.5 billion years and begin to discuss the possible theories that can account for that change. Certainly, a good hint would be the evidence of genetics and microevolution.
You are welcome to generate any theory that is consistent with the facts. You are also welcome to question the facts if you can come up with strong evidence to counter them, but remember that no form of evidence represents Ã¢â‚¬ËœproofÃ¢â‚¬â„¢. Proof is found only in mathematics. However, using the word Ã¢â‚¬ËœassumptionÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ simply because you are not aware of the various lines of evidence, does not strengthen your position.
A handful of freaks that nature seems to get rid of on its own donÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t come close to explaining the diversity of life we see on this planet.
Again, this shows a misunderstanding of evolution. Many creationists think that evolution implies the survival of Ã¢â‚¬ËœfreeksÃ¢â‚¬â„¢. They seem to think that evolution implies that animals should be born with half formed and useless features that will only become useful in later generations. Again this is just one of your cartoons. It is not a part of evolutionary theory.
For example, a flying squirrel is not a Ã¢â‚¬ËœfreakÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ relative to squirrels. A flying lemur is not a Ã¢â‚¬ËœfreakÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ relative to lemurs. The changes that allow these animals to fly (actually glide) are all functional. Transitional animals appear only transitional in retrospect.