Charles Darwin is revered by today’s scientists. Yet, not too many years ago, scientist taught that Darwinism had been disproven. Scientists rejected much of Darwin’s “Origin of the Species”. Mutation and adaptation were taught in science classes as the factors that explain the changes we see over time in plants and animals.
Then, suddenly, within the last two decades Darwinism has been revived. Not only has Darwinism been revived, accommodations have been made that explain what wasn’t acceptable in the earlier teachings of Darwin. Scientists have gone from questioning Darwin’s theory to criticizing those who dare to question the theory. People who do not fall in line with what is being taught are called “anti-scientist”.
Darwin taught that certain ‘flaws’ must be overcome before his theory could be considered plausible. In Chapter six, Darwin struggled with the lack of transitional fossils, why there is order in life processes rather than chaos, and the fact that evolution would require species to evolve organs from simple to complex. He acknowledged, also, that the age of the universe is the one factor on which his theory could not hold true. For life to have evolved as it is today, the earth would need to be older, indeed, much older, than scientist were stating at the time.
The age of the earth was, for Darwin, a major unexplained difficulty. He recognized that a great deal of time must have been necessary for the world’s diversity of plants and animals to evolve—more time, certainly, than the 6,000 years allowed by the leading biblical interpretation of earth’s age, but more also than many scientists then accepted. In 1862, the physicist William Thomson (later Lord Kelvin) calculated that the planet was unlikely to be more than 100 million years old—still nowhere near enough time for evolution to have acted so dramatically. “Thomson’s views on the recent age of the world have been for some time one of my sorest troubles,” Darwin wrote to Wallace in 1869. Further studies, including one by Darwin’s son George, an astronomer, fixed earth’s age at well under 100 million years.
Scientists who revived Darwin’s theory have begun to demand that everyone accept their decision that the earth is 4.5 billion years old. The use of Radiocarbon dating or carbon-14 dating is said to prove this and the case is closed, as far as “true” scientist are concerned. When educated scientist disagree, they are marginalized by the “scientific community.” The subject is not open for discussion or debate in government school classrooms.
The fact that the billions of years needed for the theory to hold true must be uninterrupted by a world-wide cataclysmic upheaval, is another factor not open for discussion.
I do not believe that Darwin would have made the remarks that today’s ‘scientists’ make, such as, “Those who do not believe Darwin’s theory of evolution are anti-science.” Darwin might have been described as “anti-science” if he said today what he said then:
For myself, also, I rejoice profoundly; for, thinking of so many cases of men pursuing an illusion for years, often and often a cold shudder has run through me, and I have asked myself whether I may not have devoted my life to a phantasy. Darwin’s Life and Letters 1887 – Vol 2 p 229
Scientists will say that his work has since been validated.
But, let us suppose that the earth is old and has remained for 4.5 billion years without a cataclysmic upheaval. There is another factor that must be considered. For life to evolve, the size and distance of the sun and moon must have remained constant for that long as well and mathematicians tell us that this isn’t the case. There is a slight variance in the distance of the earth from the bodies that orbit it and the bodies that it orbits. These variances over 4.5 billion years would cause the end of life as we know it.
Since Darwinism depends upon the age of the earth being billions of years old and conditions during that period remaining fairly constant, it seems that a scientist would acknowledge that there are areas that should be open for discussion rather than becoming angry at those who do bring up questions. How could true educators and scientists settle for anything less?