How To Stop Darwin Day

So let’s say you’re convinced that a national Darwin Day is a bad idea.

What can you do about it?

Well, it’s simple really. We want you to call and write your U.S. Representatives and Senators to tell them that you strongly object to this resolution.

How to Contact your Senators & Representatives to Stop Darwin Day

If you’re not sure who your Senators and Representatives are, or you don’t know how to contact them, there is an easy-to-use site that provides that information. All you need to do to find that information is to select Find Your Senators & Representatives from the main menu (which will take you to an outside link) and then provide your zip code.

What to Say

If you’re not sure what to say or write, we welcome you to use one of our Sample Letters (included below). You can also use one or more of the arguments provided on our Objections page, but try to keep your points brief.

Sample Letters

As promised, here are two sample letters you can use, one for House Resolution 548 and Senate Resolution 337, respectively. Be sure to change the words in brackets to fit your situation.

House Resolution 548

To:  [Your U.S. House Representative]

Re: Why you should oppose the Darwin Day resolution, H.R. 548.

There are several reasons why you should oppose H.R. 548, also known as the Darwin Day resolution.

Firstly, Charles Darwin is not an American. Rather than recognizing the accomplishments of a foreigner, why not honor someone like Raymond Damadian [inventor of the MRI], James Watson [co-discoverer of the structure of DNA], Alexander Graham Bell, George Washington Carver or Thomas Edison? Any one of these American scientists would be a better choice to honor as exemplifying the human curiosity and ingenuity that has promoted new scientific discoveries that have helped humanity solve numerous problems and improve living conditions, while at the same time promoting American industry and patriotism.

Secondly, it is certainly gross overstatement to suggest that Darwin is a “worthy symbol of scientific advancement on which to focus and around which to build a global celebration of science and humanity intended to promote a common bond among all the people of the Earth;” in what way would Darwin day unify when public polls reveal that Americans remain strongly divided over his theory?

Thirdly, erroneous matters such as teaching creation in public schools, climate change and global warming are all mentioned in a bill that claims only to wish to honor Darwin. These bits of pork language are evidence that this resolution is an ill-advised attempt to correct democracy where it concerns scientific theories. Americans should be concerned about such attempts to protect scientific theories by law and political action, thereby insulating them from the self-correcting process of scientific inquiry. In other words, politicians and lawmakers should stay out of scientific debates precisely because scientific theories are meant to stand or fall with the evidence.

I therefore strongly urge you to oppose H.R. 548. While a day honoring an American scientist exemplar would be an excellent way to promote American invention and patriotism, this resolution will only serve to further polarize the public and divide this country further. A house divided against itself cannot stand. Let science correct and establish its own theories, so that it may remain science in truth.

Senate Resolution 337

To:  [Your U.S. Senator]

Re: Why you should oppose the Darwin Day resolution, S.R. 337

There are several reasons why you should oppose S.R. 337, also known as the Darwin Day resolution.

Firstly, Charles Darwin is not an American. Rather than recognizing the accomplishments of a foreigner, why not honor someone like Raymond Damadian [inventor of the MRI], James Watson [co-discoverer of the structure of DNA], Alexander Graham Bell, George Washington Carver or Thomas Edison? Any one of these American scientists would be a better choice to honor as exemplifying the human curiosity and ingenuity that has promoted new scientific discoveries that have helped humanity solve numerous problems and improve living conditions, while at the same time promoting American industry and patriotism.

Secondly, it is certainly gross overstatement to suggest that Darwin is a “worthy symbol of scientific advancement on which to focus and around which to build a global celebration of science and humanity intended to promote a common bond among all the people of the Earth;” in what way would Darwin day unify when public polls reveal that Americans remain strongly divided over his theory?

Thirdly, erroneous matters such as teaching creation in public schools, climate change and global warming are all mentioned in a bill that claims only to wish to honor Darwin. These bits of pork language are evidence that this resolution is an ill-advised attempt to correct democracy where it concerns scientific theories. Americans should be concerned about such attempts to protect scientific theories by law and political action, thereby insulating them from the self-correcting process of scientific inquiry. In other words, politicians and lawmakers should stay out of scientific debates precisely because scientific theories are meant to stand or fall with the evidence.

I therefore strongly urge you to oppose S.R. 337. While a day honoring an American scientist exemplar would be an excellent way to promote American invention and patriotism, this resolution will only serve to further polarize the public and divide this country further. A house divided against itself cannot stand. Let science correct and establish its own theories, so that it may remain science in truth.

 

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Darwin Day: Ken Ham Gives Us More Reasons to Reject a Day Honoring a Man Who Rejected God

Ken Ham has written a blog post over at Answers in Genesis addressing the push for a national Darwin Day in which he gives several cogent points as to why this resolution is a bad idea.

On the Grounds of Patriotism

For example, he noted that Darwin wasn’t an American. It is a slap in the face to the hard work and ingenuity of  American scientists who bettered the world through their discoveries to prefer Darwin over one of our own.

 On the Grounds of Science

Mr. Ham also noted that “Darwinian evolution has no confirmation in observational science. What we see in the world is consistent with God’s Word, not evolutionary ideas about the past, and much of what we observe actually contradicts evolutionary ideas… What we see in nature is kinds that reproduce according to their kinds with only limited amounts of variation within the kind. We do see common designs in all of creation but that is explained by a common Designer, not common descent.”

He also noted that Darwin’s theory was fueled by a desire to confirm his naturalistic biases:

“Darwin isn’t a great example of “human curiosity and ingenuity”—he was compelled to come up with a way to explain life without God because he rejected God.”

Darwin’s writings indicate that he had already rejected the supernatural by the time he wrote Origins. His autobiography relates how he came to shed his Christian faith during this voyage:

“During these two years I was led to think much about religion. Whilst on board the Beagle I was quite orthodox, and I remember being heartily laughed at by several of the officers (though themselves orthodox) for quoting the Bible as an unanswerable authority on some point of morality. I suppose it was the novelty of the argument that amused them. But I had gradually come, by this time, to see that the Old Testament from its manifestly false history of the world, with the Tower of Babel, the rainbow as a sign, etc., etc., and from its attributing to God the feelings of a revengeful tyrant, was no more to be trusted than the sacred books of the Hindoos, or the beliefs of any barbarian…

By further reflecting that the clearest evidence would be requisite to make any sane man believe in the miracles by which Christianity is supported,–that the more we know of the fixed laws of nature the more incredible do miracles become,–that the men at that time were ignorant and credulous to a degree almost incomprehensible by us,–that the Gospels cannot be proved to have been written simultaneously with the events,–that they differ in many important details, far too important as it seemed to me to be admitted as the usual inaccuracies of eyewitnesses;–by such reflections as these, which I give not as having the least novelty or value, but as they influenced me, I gradually came to disbelieve in Christianity as a divine revelation.”

When one rejects the supernatural, one is forced to come up with a theory for the origins of life and humanity that is based on pure naturalism. Naturalism is a useful tool for scientific inquiry, but it is a blind assumption; naturalism can give you all-natural answers that may or may not be true (and are certainly false where the supernatural was involved), but it cannot tell you whether those answers are correct or whether the supernatural answer was correct instead. The methodology of naturalism prevents it from considering the supernatural alternative. Naturalism is also inconsistent; those who afire pure naturalism must also conclude that nature can do supernatural things that no one has ever observed (i.e., that everything can come from nothing, that life can come from non-life, that an amphibian can become a human prince if we just give it deep time, etc).

Darwin Himself had no answer for how the world began. According to Charles Darwin’s autobiography, he was a “theist.” The term in Darwin’s day meant someone who believed that a supernatural deity had created nature or the universe but did not intervene in the course of history, which is analogous to the modern sense of the word “deist.”

Darwin used the term in one famous passage in the autobiography:

“… the extreme difficulty or rather impossibility of conceiving this immense and wonderful universe, including man with his capacity of looking far backwards and far into futurity, as the result of blind chance or necessity. When thus reflecting I feel compelled to look to a First Cause having an intelligent mind in some degree analogous to that of man; and I deserve to be called a Theist. This conclusion was strong in my mind about the time, as far as I can remember, when I wrote the Origin of Species; and it is since that time that it has very gradually with many fluctuations become weaker.”

In an 1879 letter, written around the same time as the autobiography and first published in Life and Letters, he writes:

“In my most extreme fluctuations I have never been an Atheist in the sense of denying the existence of a God. I think that generally (and more and more as I grow older), but not always, that an Agnostic would be the more correct description of my state of mind.”

He was forced to hide behind the sham of agnosticism to prevent himself from more critically examining what sort of First Cause would be required to produce the “immense and wonderful universe” he observed; if he had, he would have discovered that this First Cause was very much the God of the Bible, which would’ve undermined the all-natural basis of Darwin’s most famous theory and made its conclusions regarding the common descent of all life unnecessary.

On the Grounds of Racism

Mr. Ham also notes that implications of Darwin’s theory rather disqualify him as a “worthy symbol” of the promotion of “a common bond among all of Earth’s peoples.” Darwin’s ideas were racist. While Darwin was an abolitionist, he wrote the following in Descent of Man:

“At some future period, not very distant as measured by centuries, the civilised races of man will almost certainly exterminate, and replace, the savage races throughout the world. At the same time the anthropomorphous apes . . . will no doubt be exterminated. The break between man and his nearest allies will then be wider, for it will intervene between man in a more civilised state, as we may hope, even than the Caucasian, and some ape as low as a baboon, instead of as now between the negro or Australian and the gorilla.”

This idea that the Causasian people groups were the most highly evolved while the darker-skinned people groups were closer to our ape-like ancestors were used to justify all sorts of scientific racism, including eugenics. Darwin applied his evolutionary idea of natural selection not only to animal development but also to the development of human “races;” thus, he viewed the genocide of indigenous peoples of Australia by the British as natural selection at work. Likewise, Darwin the philanthropist remarked that since sympathy and social programs for the poor and “weak” circumvented survival of the fittest, one could at least hope they did not breed:

“With savages, the weak in body or mind are soon eliminated; and those that survive commonly exhibit a vigorous state of health. We civilised men, on the other hand, do our utmost to check the process of elimination; we build asylums for the imbecile, the maimed, and the sick; we institute poor-laws; and our medical men exert their utmost skill to save the life of every one to the last moment. There is reason to believe that vaccination has preserved thousands, who from a weak constitution would formerly have succumbed to small-pox. Thus the weak members of civilised societies propagate their kind. No one who has attended to the breeding of domestic animals will doubt that this must be highly injurious to the race of man. It is surprising how soon a want of care, or care wrongly directed, leads to the degeneration of a domestic race; but excepting in the case of man himself, hardly any one is so ignorant as to allow his worst animals to breed.

The aid which we feel impelled to give to the helpless is mainly an incidental result of the instinct of sympathy, which was originally acquired as part of the social instincts, but subsequently rendered, in the manner previously indicated, more tender and more widely diffused. Nor could we check our sympathy, even at the urging of hard reason, without deterioration in the noblest part of our nature. The surgeon may harden himself whilst performing an operation, for he knows that he is acting for the good of his patient; but if we were intentionally to neglect the weak and helpless, it could only be for a contingent benefit, with an overwhelming present evil. We must therefore bear the undoubtedly bad effects of the weak surviving and propagating their kind; but there appears to be at least one check in steady action, namely that the weaker and inferior members of society do not marry so freely as the sound; and this check might be indefinitely increased by the weak in body or mind refraining from marriage, though this is more to be hoped for than expected.” [The Descent of Man, Chapter V (1871)]

Whether or not Darwin intended the result, his theory naturally lends itself to justification for racism. As Stephen Jay Gould noted in Ontogeny and Plylogeny (1977):

“Biological arguments for racism may have been common before 1859, but they increased by orders of magnitude following the acceptance of evolutionary theory.” [p. 127]

Far from being a unifying force, Darwin remains a controversial figure because of his theories, which is why Mr. Ham is forced to point out that there are “many more worthy and less controversial figures like Newton, Mendel, or Pasteur” who would better exemplify the qualities being attributed to Darwin.

Darwin Day’s Real Agenda

I tend to agree with him that the Darwin Day resolution “seems to be nothing more than an attempt to push the anti-God religion of secularism on the nearly half of Americans who believe in a Creator.” Even though they claim that the Bible and Darwin can co-exist, there can be no doubt that if a national Darwin Day is established it will be hailed as a victory for secular humanists.

You can read the entirety of Ken Ham’s post at https://answersingenesis.org/blogs/ken-ham/2016/01/19/will-there-be-national-darwin-day/

Stop Darwin Day!

Two Connecticut Congressmen have introduced Darwin Day resolutions this year. House Resolution 548 is sponsored by Rep. Jim Hines (CT-4); Senate Resolution 337 is sponsored by Senator Richard Blumenthal (D- Connecticut). It comes as no surprise that the resolutions are backed by the Secular Coalition of America and the American Humanist Association.

The resolutions seek to honor Charles Darwin is “a worthy symbol on which to celebrate the achievements of reason, science, and the advancement of human knowledge” and as a “worthy symbol of scientific advancement on which to focus and around which to build a global celebration of science and humanity intended to promote a common bond among all the people of the Earth;” however pork language included in the resolution regarding teaching creation in public schools, climate change and global warming make it clear that this resolution is an ill-advised attempt to correct democracy where it concerns scientific theories.

The charge of teaching creation in public schools smacks of beating a dead horse; since it’s been deemed unconstitutional many times over, I can only presume this is an emotional appeal meant to further polarize those with a stake in the creation-evolution debate. According to the polls, most Americans do not affirm all-natural evolution, despite the fact that this is exactly and exclusively what public schools teach; the democratic majority overwhelmingly affirms either special creation or theistic evolution. While polls show increased support for climate change, it has been strongly linked with support for evolution by those seeking to polarize and politicize these issues. Americans should be concerned about such attempts to protect scientific theories by law and political action, thereby insulating them from the self-correcting process of scientific inquiry. In other words, politicians and lawmakers should stay out of scientific debates precisely because scientific theories are meant to stand or fall with the evidence.

We are strongly urging our fellow citizens to oppose HR 548 and SR 337 by calling and emailing your representatives to let them know you oppose the Darwin Day resolution. Let science correct and establish its own theories, so that it may remain science in truth.