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Yet another twattish survey attempts to claim that it is Dawkins fault that nobody believes in evolution

(57 Posts)
LadyGlencoraPalliser Mon 02-Feb-09 14:01:02

or so it would appear

No. Its becos they are fick.

belgo Mon 02-Feb-09 14:02:35

no it's because many of them have a religious belief.

beanieb Mon 02-Feb-09 14:03:17

erm, no they are not thick. I don't believe in Creationism and I am unconvinced by Evolution. Certainly I could read up on it a lot more but it's not as if a person has to 'believe' one or the other. it is quite possible to be un-convinced by both.

beanieb Mon 02-Feb-09 14:04:40

pplus - the article you link to doesn't mention Dawkins

GrimmaTheNome Mon 02-Feb-09 14:05:40

I'm not sure Dawkin's approach is always particularly helpful, but its certainly not his fault if anyone thinks that the origins of species have anything to do with belief or personal preference.

I do hope that RD hasn't put people off watching Attenbrough. I didn't see it all last night, but its good to see someone so widely respected and loved nailing his colours firmly to the mast of clear truth.

FAQtothefuture Mon 02-Feb-09 14:06:42

well I believe in an element of both. Of course we know that cells grow and develop and change. However even a cell has to have got there somehow grin

KayHarker Mon 02-Feb-09 14:10:39

'believe' is a bit of an odd phrase, isn't it. Unconvinced might work better - after all, many of the people who are unconvinced are often unaware of the nitty-gritty of the arguments and evidences presented on either side of the debate.

But yes, I'm sure a lot of people are very stupid to be completely unsure what happened to bring humanity to this particular point in our existence.

GrimmaTheNome Mon 02-Feb-09 14:11:26

>However even a cell has to have got there somehow

And scientists are busily finding out more and more about how it all happens.

juuule Mon 02-Feb-09 14:11:28

I can't find the reference in that article that claims it's Dawkins fault.

beanieb Mon 02-Feb-09 14:12:27

juuule, that's what I said. maybe the OP gor Dawkins and Darwin confused?

LadyGlencoraPalliser Mon 02-Feb-09 14:13:55

Sorry. Should have also linked to the accompanying opinion piece by Nick Spencer, director of studies at Theos the theological think tank that commissioned this study.

He says:
But most people do not actively reject evolution – they are simply sceptical about it. And the reason for their scepticism appears to lie in the fact that too many encounter Darwinism not as an elegant, parsimonious and well-evidenced scientific theory, but as a quasi-metaphysical one, an outlook on life that has become inextricably linked, through the purple prose of its most eloquent modern proponents, with reductionism, nihilism, atheism, and amorality. According to this understanding of Darwinism, morality (in as far as we can still talk about it) becomes calculating and fundamentally self-interested, ethical systems arbitrary, agency an illusion, human beings accidental and irrelevant, the human mind "a habitat for memes", the universe no more than "blind forces and physical replication", and God a nonsense.

By 'most eloquent modern proponents' of the Darwinistic outlook, Spencer is quite clearly referring to Dawkins.
He is trying to conflate rejection of theistic belief with 'amorality' and a belief in social Darwinism (survival of the fittest translated to apply to human society) which is a specious argument at best.

LadyGlencoraPalliser Mon 02-Feb-09 14:16:57

Beanieb - I don't understand how you can be unconvinced by evolution given the enormous weight of evidence. What is it that you find unconvincing? This is a genuine question, I really do find it hard to understand what makes people so sceptical.

solidgoldbullet4myvalentine Mon 02-Feb-09 14:17:33

The superstitious love to paint the likes of Dawkins as amoral, nihilistic, twisted loons. It detracts attantion from the amorality of most religion-peddlers, who are all coming up with 57 varieties of bullshit to obtain power over the gullible and extract money from them.

beanieb Mon 02-Feb-09 14:18:57

"Beanieb - I don't understand how you can be unconvinced by evolution given the enormous weight of evidence. What is it that you find unconvincing? This is a genuine question, I really do find it hard to understand what makes people so sceptical"

I don't know enough about it, I feel there are 'missing links' etc.

My second cousin is an expert on Primates and even he agrees there are too many ifs and buts.

beanieb Mon 02-Feb-09 14:20:07

but I am interested in hearing the views of those who are much more educated in the ways of Evolution. I just wish someone could explain it all to me in a clear and plain way without any ifs and buts.

LadyGlencoraPalliser Mon 02-Feb-09 14:23:37

The David Attenborough programme last night was very good, Beanie. I would recommend watching it.

belgo Mon 02-Feb-09 14:26:03

'enormous weight of evidence' - you mean a few dinosaur fossils?

No, sorry, still no convinced it's the whole story. Even people who do believe in the theory of evolution know that there are bits missing. Great big bits in fact.

That's what science is about, being open minded and willing to accept that we don't know everything.

KayHarker Mon 02-Feb-09 14:26:24

David Attenborough is never a chore, that's for certain.

FAQtothefuture Mon 02-Feb-09 14:27:51

yes programme was very good - I enjoyed it a lot.

although the whole "life started as a cell" bit was hardly news was it - look how babies grow - from a few cells into a human as we know it...................grin

LadyGlencoraPalliser Mon 02-Feb-09 14:29:22

There is a great deal of VERY convincing evidence for evolution, Belgo.
And for a divine creator - there is?
Oh yes, no evidence whatsoever.

svalbardy Mon 02-Feb-09 14:30:00

beanieb, I'm an evolutionary biologist, how much to you want to hear...? wink
Seriously if you want to talk about this, give me a way of contacting you and I'll happily explain things.

The other program that was REALLY good is Armand-Marie Leroi's "What Darwin Didn't Know"

FAQtothefuture Mon 02-Feb-09 14:30:55

but surely it doesn't matter how far back you go with evolution, whatever was the "first" thing still had to come into existance somehow

GrimmaTheNome Mon 02-Feb-09 14:33:01

Sure there are missing links. When you consider how unlikely it is for any individual to be fossilized its suprising how continuous the fossil record is! More of the 'links' get found all the time. Its starting to become even more clear as the evidence from genomics and proteomics floods in.

svalbardy Mon 02-Feb-09 14:35:37

Can we get it straight that evolution is a fact; Darwin's theory is that the mechanism for evolution is Natural Selection.

There's completely incontrovertible evidence for evolution: just look at 'flu viruses changing every year (that's why your flu jab only lasts a year) and drug-resistant bacteria (MRSA and other "superbugs"), and insecticide-resistant weeds or insects.

Evidence for natural selection is very much there, but to be obvious, it requires a level of knowledge that is way beyond the average non-biologist. Note I said KNOWLEDGE, not understanding.

will go some way to redressing that knowledge gap.

KayHarker Mon 02-Feb-09 14:36:45

Well, as a creationist, I find the whole thing fascinating, and never really feel the need to get terribly exercised about it. Someone like Attenborough tells me all about these ideas, and amazing things about nature. It's great. Couldn't give a monkeys, so to speak, about what he believes about how it all got here.

I, personally, feel the need to be thankful about it, but I'm quite content that others see it differently. I know that really winds some people up, but there you go.

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