Saturday, 28 June 2014

Special creationist is courteously corrected by anthropology professor

There's an amusing scene in Raiders of the Lost Ark where Indiana Jones, after being confronted by an expert swordsman, shrugs, shoots the man, and walks away. Never bring a knife to a gun fight. Special creationists constantly make the intellectual version of this mistake, thinking that the Chick tract Big Daddy, in which a young college student manages to intellectually destroy his atheist science professor with a few shopworn cliches happens in real life. It doesn't. What happens is more like this:

Needless to say, it is impossible to know whether any young Christadelphian has been corrected in a similar fashion unless he or she relates this story publicly, though a similar version has happened where a John Hellawell antievolution lecture was comprehensively refuted by visiting guests from the BSCE. Unfortunately, our community is priming the next generation for similar scenes by positively reviewing pseudoscientific literature such as Wilfred Alleyne's extended argument from personal incredulity which was reviewed positively and uncritically in The Testimony, and telling them that:
It could be put to many uses: use it for preparing talks on creation; students will find resources to argue the case for creation in a reasoned and well-informed way; 
The brute reality is that any young believer using those arguments is going to suffer the fate of the brash student who thought she could destroy a seasoned professional such as Tim White. We are setting up the next generation for failure by advocating fundamentalism and pseudoscience, and when they lose faith, the blame will life firmly on the YECs and extreme literalists in our community.