As I’ve said before, the whole ID v Darwin debate was never of great concern to me (although the stupidity of some of the statements made on both sides would often irritate me). When I recently became re-interested in the issue, while I was certainly not coming from a philosophical materialist point of view, I was open-minded about evolution; I could have easily accepted the Francis Collins approach, without much thought.
Ay, but there’s the rub: without much thought. The more I read the arguments from both sides, the more I am convinced that Darwinism (or neo-Darwinism) is so full of holes that it would instantly collapse if it were not for all of the hot air being blown into it by its supporters. I don’t think that it even qualifies as a theory. Rather, Darwinism at this point is a collage of hypothesis, data (there is some data), speculations, assumptions and assertions, all pasted onto a foundation of philosophical materialism. It only works if you assume that there is nothing outside of the material world, and therefore the reach of science. As soon as you open the presumed system, it collapses.
Anyone who’s done any reading on the subject at all has encountered the ridicule that the “scientists” heap on the ID community; the ad hominem approach is, I think, their first line of defense. By portraying IDists as fools (i.e. Creationists), so therefore there is no need to even consider the ID position. This is not true of all Darwinians, obviously, but it appears to be the norm for those outspoken on the subject. Other complaints are that they don’t understand the subject matter, they misquote evolutionists, they use selective facts, and so on. What I am often finding, however, is that the evolutionists are the ones guilty of ignorance of the IDist arguments, who misquote IDists, and so on.
As I have complained before, I would really like an evolutionist to seriously consider the various anti-Darwinian arguments, and give serious responses. There are a few out there, but they are very few and far between (more rare than the mythological transitional fossil).
The truth is that macro-evolution, which many Darwinists claim is no different than micro-evolution, is not supported by the evidence (unless, again, you presuppose a materialist, evolutionary world). Instead of ID being a “God of the gaps” argument, neo-Darwinism is very much a “theory of the gaps” argument. Rather than admitting that there are holes in the theory, you hear things like, “we just don’t know enough; when we do, it will make sense.” What is that, science? Hardly. It is nothing more, as someone has said, but the creation myth of Philosophical materialism.
The list of problems with macro-evolution is too long to list here. Things like the inadequacy of the fossil record, the fact that there are no smooth transitions but many jumps like the Cambrian Explosion, and the problem of the Big Bang, are all major problems for Darwinism that have no real answers, just a faith in future science. Even the oft-ridiculed “irreducible complexity” argument has not been disproved, but deserves a good, close review.
Tomorrow, a look at another often-overlooked challenge to evolution.