I Have Heard This From Actual Teachers.

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20 Responses to I Have Heard This From Actual Teachers.

  1. This comic makes no sense.

  2. Both evolutionism and creation can appeal to popularity. Evolutionists do this all the time when they say that “everyone” who’s educated and has a brain accepts evolution even though that is false. Many do not accept this theory, but that does not stop evolutionists from trying to load on the “appeal to popularity” fallacy to keep everyone in line lest they feel like anti-science, anti-progress, “morons” and heretics.

    • You’re wandering into strawman territory with this kind of argument. Sure, you might hear that sort of phrasing from some random people on the Internet – or maybe even as a careless way for more educated people to summarize a more detailed argument – but if pressed for a more thorough statement, what you will hear from the scientific community as a whole is something more like:

      All of the physical evidence to date – phylogenetics, the fossil record, anatomical similarities, and geological distribution of species – lead those members of the scientific community educationally and experientially qualified to evaluate such evidence to the conclusion that the phenomenon of evolution is a fact. In addition, the mechanisms that govern this phenomenon are described by modern evolutionary theory which, while imperfect, is the best model we have to describe our observations to date.

      Obviously I’m being more careful with my words than some person speaking off the cuff in an interview or something, but the fact remains that “evolutionists” don’t – and don’t need to – rely on any kind of appeal to popularity. They have about a century and a half of physical data at their disposal to conclude that evolution is real, and observable even today. That’s why it’s part of the science curriculum. The idea that they “load on” the popular argument fallacy to keep everyone in line is just not based on reality. The arguments and physical evidence clearly supporting evolution have already been presented ad infinitum. It’s settled. It happens, we observe it regularly, we’re moving on.

      Now, there are obviously those who disagree with both this and the theory explaining it. People like Michael Behe, Karl Priest, Joseph Mastropaolo, and scores of others will write tomes of articles in creation “science” magazines about how evolution is a fraud, yet when it comes time to interrogate their data or submit any of their manuscripts for peer review by actual experts in the fields they regularly denigrate, they fall suspiciously silent. That silence speaks volumes, especially when they’ll spend the remainder of their time beating their chests over how no scientist will take them up on their attempts at public debates or the ridiculous “Life Science Prize”. Talk about appealing to popularity … that and outright dishonesty are the only ways they can gain traction with their ideas.

  3. “…yet when it comes time to interrogate their data or submit any of their manuscripts for peer review by actual experts in the fields they regularly denigrate, they fall suspiciously silent…”

    “Peer review” and “actual experts”–both appeals not only to popularity but to assimilation to authority (or face the consequences). Assimilate. Resistance is futile. There are no “experts” in evolution because the “experts” and the “evidence” were created to support the theory (which came first). Just as the experts in “creation science” are created and self-appointed.

    I would have thought that atheists would know not to blindly follow what the establishment purports just because they claim to be “experts,” “scientists,” and the “authority.” Not too long ago, the “experts” used to tell us that smoking was actually good for you. And this claim, (like many others) had no evidence or scientific basis to begin with. And people did not question it because an educated, scientifically-minded, “authority figure” in a lab coat told them that it was so. What people fail to realize that these “authorities” are often talking heads trained (whether they are aware of it or not) to push and parrot agendas that fall outside the realm of science.

    • “Peer review” and “actual experts”–both appeals not only to popularity but to assimilation to authority (or face the consequences). Assimilate. Resistance is futile. There are no “experts” in evolution because the “experts” and the “evidence” were created to support the theory (which came first). Just as the experts in “creation science” are created and self-appointed.

      Again, this is simply not true. By definition, a theory has to be supported by a vast body of supporting data, and modern evolutionary theory satisfies this requirement whether you want to believe it or not. More than one theory has met its demise because additional observations overturned their validity and another took its place. Quantum mechanics? Special / general relativity? Plate tectonics? It happens all the time. It may take a while, but it still happens and science moves forward in spite of your monolithic and Borg-like representation of the scientific community and the peer review process.

      Before the 18th and 19th centuries, there were a number of schools of thought about the static / fluid nature of the world and living things. It wasn’t until observations like those found in the fossil record after the advent of paleontology and the realization that species could become extinct that the concept of the “immutable” world was discarded. This is when both the discovery of the phenomenon of evolution, and the attempts to explain it, began.

      I would have thought that atheists would know not to blindly follow what the establishment purports just because they claim to be “experts,” “scientists,” and the “authority.”

      Right. No one should “blindly follow” anyone just because they claim to be experts. However, because the scientific community as a whole – through the use of the scientific method and the peer review process that you so casually dismiss – has shown a track record of producing not only robust, reliable models describing the natural world but also practical applications of those theories in the form of new technology, then we should feel fairly confident in having a reasonable trust in what they have to say. Again, this is based on past experience and not just because of some self-appointed title. Faith has no place here.

      I find it odd that you would want to bring up the controversy behind cigarettes as an example of how science somehow failed us. It’s certainly true that during the WWI-WWII era and even later on in the 1950s, the tobacco companies would have commercials featuring doctors saying things like, “9 out of 10 doctors recommend Camels!” without even the slightest amount of scientific data to back it up. People believed them because everyone was doing it and a doctor on TV said so. But that was advertising; not science. During this time – from the 1930s to the 1950s – evidence slowly began accumulating that suggested smoking wasn’t nearly as “good” for you as the tobacco companies would have you believe.

      By 1950 the first research paper was published definitively linking smoking to cancer. Then, in 1964, the Surgeon General released a report confirming that smoking caused cancer in both men and women, as well as other health problems. This was especially instrumental in fundamentally altering public attitudes and public policy on cigarettes and smoking:

      “A Gallup Survey conducted in 1958 found that only 44 percent of Americans believed smoking caused cancer, while 78 percent believed so by 1968. In the course of a decade, it had become common knowledge that smoking damaged health, and mounting evidence of health risks gave Terry’s 1964 report public resonance.”

      And by 1970, cigarette commercials were banned from television and radio were banned.

      See, this is how science works. It’s true that the facts of a particular situation might get muddied by corporations with hidden (or glaringly obvious) agendas, especially when there’s not a great deal of data to arrive at anything conclusive. But, as more information was made available and our understanding improved, the scientific community successfully overturned the overwhelming public acceptance of smoking to reveal the reality of the situation. Yes, it took time … yes, there was opposition … but it worked. History has shown us that science is inherently self-correcting. Nothing – not dogma, popularity, “the Man”, or whatever other concerns you may have about its flaws – will be able to keep any kind of “dirty secret” about divine creation if that’s what really happened. The burden of proof is on creationists to back up their claims with a little more than claims of a giant conspiracy that isn’t there.

      • There’s a lot to cover in your response, which is why it is taking me a while to answer. I think that what is in this article demonstrates what I mean when I say that the “authorities” cannot always be trusted:

        “JAMA kicks off two decades of cigarette advertising
        The Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) published its first cigarette advertisement in 1933, stating that it had done so only “after careful consideration of the extent to which cigarettes were used by physicians in practice.” These advertisements continued for 20 years. The same year, Chesterfield began running ads in the New York State Journal of Medicine, with the claim that its cigarettes were “Just as pure as the water you drink… and practically untouched by human hands.”

        In medical journals and in the popular media, one of the most infamous cigarette advertising slogans was associated with the Camel brand: “More doctors smoke Camels than any other cigarette.” The campaign began in 1946 and ran for eight years in magazines and on the radio. The ads included this message:

        “Family physicians, surgeons, diagnosticians, nose and throat specialists, doctors in every branch of medicine… a total of 113,597 doctors… were asked the question: ‘What cigarette do you smoke?’ And more of them named Camel as their smoke than any other cigarette! Three independent research groups found this to be a fact. You see, doctors too smoke for pleasure. That full Camel flavor is just as appealing to a doctor’s taste as to yours… that marvelous Camel mildness means just as much to his throat as to yours.”

        Big Tobacco’s suppression of scientific evidence
        At the same time that JAMA ran cigarette ads, it published in 1950 the first major study to causally link smoking to lung cancer. Morton Levin, then director of Cancer Control for the New York State Department of Health, surveyed patients in Buffalo, N.Y., from 1938 to 1950 and found that smokers were twice as likely to develop lung cancer as non-smokers.”

        http://www.naturalnews.com/021949.html

  4. “History has shown us that science is inherently self-correcting. Nothing – not dogma, popularity, “the Man”, or whatever other concerns you may have about its flaws – will be able to keep any kind of “dirty secret” about divine creation if that’s what really happened. The burden of proof is on creationists to back up their claims with a little more than claims of a giant conspiracy that isn’t there.”

    I believe that the truth eventually comes out in the end–but no thanks to the established “scientific community.” The truth is usually exposed only after many are already DEAD and millions and billions are in the pockets of various special interest groups. But before this happens, these talking heads do their best to continue the deception under the umbrella of “science.”

    The scientific community SHOULD be “self-correcting.” It should always be interested in only facts and the truth and never be guided by any agenda. Unfortunately, that is simply not the case. Whether it be US doctors selling cigarettes or Nazi scientists selling eugenics, one thing is clear: the scientific community is not protected by an invisible hand of Truth. To the contrary, it is rife with corruption guided by greed and hidden agendas just as any other powerful organizations including religious ones.

    • The first half of your response doesn’t provide any significant information beyond what I already pointed out, and I don’t even necessarily disagree with any of it: during the 1930s to the 1950s, tobacco companies made use of doctors in order to promote the sales and use of their product before there was enough data to show that smoking was harmful. However by the 1950s (I think 1953), enough conclusive evidence had come to light that the AMA stopped cigarette advertising in their journal, doctors began giving up smoking, and the tobacco industry stopped using them as testimonials. Now, the idea of the “smoking doctor” is seen as a joke about how they don’t practice what they preach. Times have clearly changed.

      Again, the facts can get confused when there’s a tremendous amount of money to be had by an industry with a vested interest. It’s true that these “men of science” were wrongly used as figures of authority … for a time. However, it was none other than the scientific community that discovered the link between smoking and cancer, the scientific community that presented the evidence, and the scientific community that was instrumental in altering popular opinion and fighting against a multi million dollar industry to make sure people knew the danger of tobacco. Once again … self-correction won out. It took time – as it most definitely will sometimes – but it won. The truth wouldn’t have come out without them.

      Since then, the tactic of using the “doctor as authority figure” by industry has not been used to nearly the same degree. True, there will always be situations where some doctors are “bought” by one corporation or another to peddle some crap, but they are widely met with skepticism within … you guessed it … the scientific community. To confuse the underhanded methods of an unscrupulous industry – or its misuse by a totalitarian government – with some flaw within the scientific community fatal enough to render it wholly untrustworthy is not based in reality. In addition, to say that it isn’t inherently self-correcting, and then bringing up two historical examples in which that very thing happened doesn’t give your argument much credibility.

      Neither does your application of this line of thought to the conclusion made by the same scientific community that the phenomenon of evolution is real and observable based on an overwhelming amount of evidence (getting back to the topic at hand). True, science has been misused over the course of human history, but you’re really going to have to demonstrate how this supposed “conspiracy” involving evolution reaches back almost 200 years and involves pretty much the entire modern world. Also, if species didn’t evolve, what is the alternative? Were they created? Did they just appear? What is the evidence to support such a claim and refute the conclusion that they evolved?

  5. “Also, if species didn’t evolve, what is the alternative? Were they created? Did they just appear? What is the evidence to support such a claim and refute the conclusion that they evolved?”

    You already know what “alternative” I would give to the evolutionist creation story. And coming up without an alternative that is palatable to you does does not lend any more credence to your evolutionary viewpoint. And you ask if they just “appeared” as though that is ridiculous, though debris appearing out of nowhere and eventually giving birth to life to you is not equally ridiculous. When will you realize that the millions of different “species” have been decided by a few and that many different “species” are very much the same in countless ways and can even mate and reproduce with each other? Just as “race” is a fictitious, pseudoscientific classification given to human beings, so are the countless other classifications divisions given to other forms of life.

    I can arbitrarily find slight differences in different organisms, create countless classifications for them, come up with the most difficult-to-pronounce names for them, but does that make me right and any more intelligent than anyone else? No. But this is what the so-called scientific community does all the time and you bow down to whatever they decide without question. They could have easily added or subtract thousands of chosen classifications and you would be none the wiser. You wouldn’t know the difference. How is that any different from religious leaders centuries ago who used their positions and educations to manipulate the population in the similar ways? These religious leaders also changed their positions over time, and like you, the populace gave excuses for them claiming that a new “truth” has been discovered.

    • True, I already know what alternative you would propose. It would be one without any supporting evidence; in fact, it would be one that is refuted by all of the physical evidence gathered to date. Physical evidence such as the fossil record, phylogenetics, comparative anatomy, and geological distribution. This is all independently verifiable and leads the entire scientific community to the same conclusion: species evolve. And, as a result of this, we have models in place to describe how it occurs that not only match our observations but have predictive capability as well. I’m sorry you don’t agree with this, but calling names and refusing to acknowledge the difference between abiogenesis and evolution doesn’t help your argument.

      If you want to discuss abiogenesis, that’s fine. I’ll just reference what I told you last time, which still stands:

      “Abiogenesis is the study of how life could have originated from basic building blocks by way of the principles of chemistry, thermodynamics, physics, etc. We observe, firsthand, organic molecules forming from less complex constituents. We’ve been able to synthesize RNA that replicates itself indefinitely. We’ve re-created organic molecules using the conditions that best represent our understanding of the early earth. All of these things – while incomplete – are snapshots of the process, and each step helps us put together the pieces of how life began.

      You may think it’s a “ridiculous notion” … and it may very well be. But it’s the best we have based on our observations to date. If something comes along that forces us to completely rethink our ideas, then we’ll start over. That’s how science works sometimes. I’m curious, though … if you think the origin of life from inorganic constituents is ridiculous … what do you think happened? Do you have any data to back up your claim?

      I also had a feeling you’d try to call out my request for evidence as some kind of argument from ignorance, but as I said, the conclusion that evolution occurs is supported by the data. If you wish to come up with an alternate viewpoint, the burden of proof is on you to provide something … anything … to support it. Until then, it’s just talk. It’s been talk ever since the creationist movement started.

      As for your personal disagreement with the way species are classified (as opposed to “kinds”, I assume?), I’m afraid I can’t find much sympathy. It’s a typical argument from incredulity. “I don’t understand how this phenomenon occurs”, or “I can’t understand how the scientific community does X or Y”, so therefore they’re wrong and my explanation – however bereft of evidence – is just as good. The fact that the process of evolution is a continuum and accumulated change occurs over such long periods of time means that there are going to be situations where it will be difficult to define a species. There is also no absolute, universal definition applicable to every single life form. But to conclude from this that the entire process of taxonomic nomenclature is “pseudo-scientific” and “fictitious” is just another excuse for you to shout “conspiracy” once again.

      Also, I’ll only talk about new data being discovered, and possibly a new hypothesis or theory arising from it. Given the scientific method’s track record, I tend to trust the conclusions of the scientific community, knowing it’s all a perpetual work in progress. Since you haven’t yet realized, that’s how it works. Claiming that a new “truth” has been discovered and simply having blind faith in the institution that provided it is the specialty of the religious, not the secular world. Assuming that’s how science works is something I’ve seen only from creationists desperate to put it in the same category as their own belief system … which says quite a bit about what they think about their own religion.

      And for the third time, I’ll ask you: give me some evidence. Peer reviewed, independently verifiable physical evidence that shows that organisms DON’T evolve, but that they were created not just by any divine force, but by the Christian god Jehovah. Otherwise this conversation will keep going in circles, and I’m getting tired of saying the same things over and over.

      • “Race” IS a fictitious label given to human beings. What aren’t dogs classified by “race” but are instead classified by the more appropriate term, “breed?” Because there is no reason to politically divide dogs, but there are countless political reasons to divide humans. We are all HUMAN BEINGS with the same origins, but with different physical features due to BREEDING. Instead of simply accepting labels given to us by The Authority as being infallible, it would be wise to actually think outside the box and question everything. Politics plays a role in everything. That is just a fact of life.

        • I was responding to your claims about species, which was the entire point of your comment.

          As for dogs, they’re classified by “breed” because they’re all the same species.

          As for you, please provide me some evidence for creation by your Christian God, as I have asked before. Cite for me some independently verifiable evidence from a peer reviewed journal like Nature, Science, the Journal of Theoretical Biology, the American Naturalist, Biological Reviews, Quarterly Review of Biology, etc.

          • “As for dogs, they’re classified by “breed” because they’re all the same species.”

            As opposed to human that are not of the same species as well? Are you serious?

          • Which living humans are of a different species than Homo Sapiens sapiens? What are you talking about now?

            And one more time, now … please provide me some evidence for creation by your Christian God. Cite for me some independently verifiable evidence from a peer reviewed journal like Nature, Science, the Journal of Theoretical Biology, the American Naturalist, Biological Reviews, Quarterly Review of Biology, etc.

            As for your little snipe, I guess I shouldn’t be surprised that you’d eventually be reduced to making up things that I supposedly “believe”, but if that’s the way this conversation is going to go, then I’m not sure there’s a point in taking you even remotely seriously.

          • “Which living humans are of a different species than Homo Sapiens sapiens? What are you talking about now?”

            You tell me. You said dogs are not classified by “race” because they belong to the same species. “As opposed to humans” is the most logical conclusion I could come to by that statement.

            Tell me, if Science said that based on their “peer-reviewed studies” have concluded that the human races are more fundamentally different than previously thought and can now be classified as different species altogether, would you accept this change?

          • “You said dogs are not classified by “race” because they belong to the same species. ”

            No.

            I said only that dogs are characterized by breed because they’re the same species. I said nothing about race. I may have misunderstood your point, but I wanted to make the distinction between “breed” and “species”. The problem – and the more important point – is that I honestly don’t know why you’re bringing up race – or breed – at all since the original basis of your comment was about the classification of species, and now you’re inexplicably digressing once again into something else.

            “Tell me, if Science said that based on their “peer-reviewed studies” have concluded that the human races are more fundamentally different than previously thought and can now be classified as different species altogether, would you accept this change?”

            If evidence came to light that suggested our best understanding of any natural phenomenon was possibly mistaken, I would wait to see it independently verified, because these things take time and can end up going nowhere. If it is, and there was mounting evidence to support an alternate hypothesis, then I would accept that alternate explanation as the best one we have to support the available data … knowing full well that it could also be wrong or incomplete. As I pointed out to you before, I have a reasonable trust in science, and an understanding that it’s a perpetual work in progress. Based on our past conversations, you’re likely going to call this “blind faith” or some other label that deliberately misrepresents my position, but hey, I’m not expecting much else.

            “You may hold faith and reverence for these entities [the peer review process, independently verifiable evidence]. I do not.”

            Yeah, case in point. If you think, after all this time, that I hold “faith and reverence” for the scientific method and its underpinnings, then it seems that you hold no “reverence” for the concept of reading comprehension. I’ve told you the difference between blind faith and reasonable trust based on past experience how many times??

            The rest of your last comment is just a word salad of logical fallacies, so I’ll just say this:

            Evolution is about how species change, not the beginning of life, and it IS different from creationism because we can actually back up our claims with evidence. The fact that you not only don’t accept that, but just don’t seem to like science anymore when the answers bother you are your problems, not mine. I see no reason to “admit” that the scientific community has it all wrong because some internet conspiracy theorist who can’t meet the burden of proof is convinced that this is true. I appreciate your concern, though.

            This has been fun. Truly. You can feel free to keep throwing me more bad science, misrepresenting my position, and just generally making things up, but at this point I’m only going to keep you around for the hit counts. I can’t bring myself to consider any further effort to reasonably discuss something of substance with you as a valuable use of my time.

          • You know, nothing surprises me anymore. If the scientific establishment in your country decided to start asserting that we are all different species of human beings, you would start believing that as well.

          • I also suppose you would buy the BS that all the ape-like predecessors to us migrated out of Africa and practiced apartheid as well; giving us perfect and pure “different species” of human beings. If that’s critical thinking, I rather wallow in ignorance.

  6. “And one more time, now … please provide me some evidence for creation by your Christian God. Cite for me some independently verifiable evidence from a peer reviewed journal like Nature, Science, the Journal of Theoretical Biology, the American Naturalist, Biological Reviews, Quarterly Review of Biology, etc.”

    You may hold faith and reverence for these entities. I do not. There’s a whole world out there that would also agree. China is a superpower, yet they have no mandates for teaching evolution as science in their schools. That is because evolution is, in reality, a creation story that is irrelevant to science; irrelevant to progress. At least I will admit that creation is also not about science–it’s about knowing where we came from and one can progress scientifically without creation being taught in schools. It’s time for YOU to admit that evolution is no different.

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