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What Sam Brownback Thinks About Evolution Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Posted by Henry in anti-evolution, creationism, evolution, faith, fundamentalism, God, rationality, religion, Sam Brownback, science, United States.
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This is a bit of delayed post due to my travelling for work, but anyway…

This article, written by Republican Senator Sam Brownback, outlines his views on evolution, and has been debunked and ridiculed – as it should be – by fellow bloggers such as Pharyngula, the Friendly Atheist and readers of Richard Dawkins’ site. Here is my own two cents of worth.

It is often the case that people who do oppose evolution are the ones who do not understand it. In the two paragraphs show below, Brownback has shown just how much he does not know:

There is no one single theory of evolution, as proponents of punctuated equilibrium and classical Darwinism continue to feud today. Many questions raised by evolutionary theory — like whether man has a unique place in the world or is merely the chance product of random mutations — go beyond empirical science and are better addressed in the realm of philosophy or theology.

The most passionate advocates of evolutionary theory offer a vision of man as a kind of historical accident. That being the case, many believers — myself included — reject arguments for evolution that dismiss the possibility of divine causality.

First, I am tired of reading that evolution is all about chance and random mutations (and therefore, we are a mere product of historical accident). Natural selection is an algorithm that is not based on randomness and chance, and by definition an algorithm is the opposite of randomness. Second, there are areas of uncertainty within the theory of evolution, but that is the nature of science. Science is about making progress in our understanding, and it is perfectly natural to have problems in theories. Quantum theory, for example, has many intriguing, unsolved mysteries, as well as competing theories – but that does not make it invalid.