Good Science and Bad Behavior

That’s not thunder: it’s Dr. Einstein rolling over in his grave!  Have you heard the news that the Theory of Relativity is being seriously challenged?  If you missed the reports, physicists at a laboratory in Europe believe they have found something in the universe that moves faster than the speed of light.  If they can confirm that these tiny  particles called neutrinos do indeed achieve such velocity, this would dismantle and discard Einstein’s most famous theory, and would rewrite the rules of physics!  Some scientists believe it’s about to happen.  Others believe Einstein will withstand the challenge.  But the suggestion of this kind of breakthrough has scientists everywhere buzzing with excitement.

Einstein’s theory of relativity has been around since 1905.  It has been taught, explored and celebrated in classrooms and textbooks for generations.  Should the researchers in Europe confirm their preliminary findings, textbooks must be rewritten and scholarly papers will be discounted or dismissed.  But nobody is quarreling, or questioning motives, or calling opponents unflattering names.  In fact, the term “opponent” has never been used once as this story has developed over the last three weeks.  A major scientific theory may be knocked down in the near future, but it’s so non-controversial that most Americans haven’t even heard about it.

Something similar happened a 2006 when astronomers concluded that Pluto is not actually a planet.  School children had been taught that this small, distant body was our ninth planet since its discovery in 1930.  But after years of debate- a calm, civil debate never even reported by the press– our solar system was reduced to 8 planets overnight.  Nobody was ever labeled a fool or an ignoramus or “anti-scientific,” although a fact of science was being challenged and ultimately overturned.

Events like these should raise questions about the tenor of the debate raging around another scientific theory- Darwin’s theory of Evolution.  Why is it considered so villainous and unscientific to challenge the standing of Darwinism?  It’s only slightly older than Einstein’s theory and it’s never been a fact like Pluto’s status used to be.  It’s certainly not a law of science like the Law of Gravity.  But in 1991 when researchers and authors began to seriously challenge the logic and the science of evolution, their ideas were immediately discounted with angry denunciations.  When a biochemist named Michael Behe actually met Charles Darwin’s own test and proved that some microscopic life forms are irreducibly complex and, therefore, could not have evolved, his work and even his professionalism were ridiculed.

Two decades later, with that damning evidence still on the table, many advocates for Darwin have simply moved on.  Scholars who express doubts about the theory are demonized, professors who want to raise questions in class are fired, and the simple idea of intelligent design has become anathema.  This level of outrage might suggest that physicists or biologists actually have a working model to demonstrate how nothingness produced that first marble that became the big bang, or how a light sensitive spot on a simple organism could have evolved to something as complex as an eye.  But in fact, there are no models like that.  So innocent questions are drowned out in a storm of vague speculation and angry accusation.

All this sound and fury reveals that some facts are just facts and some theories are just theories, but Darwin’s Theory of Evolution is an Agenda.  Writing in the Wall Street Journal about the challenge to Einstein, a physicist named Michio Kaku explains, “Reputations may rise and fall. But in the end, this is a victory for science. No theory is carved in stone. Science is merciless when it comes to testing all theories over and over, at any time, in any place. Unlike religion or politics, science is ultimately decided by experiments, done repeatedly in every form. There are no sacred cows. In science, 100 authorities count for nothing. Experiment counts for everything.”

With all due respect, Dr. Kaku should look again.  There is indeed one sacred cow in biology;  one theory does seem to be written in stone.  Apparently, some reputations must never fall.  In the Church of Darwin, the claims are still repeated after experiments have failed.

Lift up the Cross!


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