The Dallas Morning News has a feature article about the Institute for Creation Research, which relocated from Southern California to Dallas a few years ago. For a mainstream news article about a scientific subject, it’s pretty well written and doesn’t oversimplify matters too much. But some of it is pretty funny to me.
But at the Institute for Creation Research in northwest Dallas, a group of nine Ph.D.s from places like Harvard and Los Alamos National Laboratory say all that molecules-to-man stuff is nonsense. And they’re out to prove it.
The biblical story of Genesis is literally true, they say. God created the heavens, earth and life in six sequential days lasting about 24 hours each.
The universe is not 13.8 billion years old (as astrophysicists calculate by measuring the rate of cosmic expansion), the earth is not 4.5 billion years old (as geologists conclude by using radioisotope dating on ancient rocks), and humans did not split from chimpanzees and gorillas about 4 million to 7 million years ago (as suggested by genetics and the fossil record).
Young-earth creationists like those at ICR argue that everything in the known universe began 6,000 to 10,000 years ago, a numeric range they calculate using the genealogy of the Bible — Adam lived 930 years and begat a son named Seth, who lived 105 years and begat Enos, and so on.
“Our attempt is to demonstrate that the Bible is accurate, not just religiously authoritative,” said Henry Morris III, CEO of the nonprofit with a 49-person payroll and an annual budget in the $7 million range.“The rationale behind it is this: If God really does exist, he shouldn’t be lying to us,” he said. “And if he’s lying to us right off the bat in the book of Genesis, we’ve got some real problems.”
And here we have all the evidence that is needed to show that they are not engaged in science as it is properly done but in apologetics. They begin with the idea they believe to be true solely on faith and then try to find evidence to support it, explaining away or ignoring all the contrary evidence, rather than seeking to find the best explanation for the evidence regardless of what conclusion it reaches. And this part absolutely cracked me up:
Jason Lisle, an astrophysicist and the research director at ICR, said he has no chance of winning a Nobel Prize, even if he makes a groundbreaking discovery. Secular scientists, he said, would never bestow the field’s highest honor on a creationist.
Right. Just like I have no chance of winning the Olympic gold medal for figure skating because those biased judges would never bestow the sport’s highest honor on a guy who can barely stand up on ice skates. It’s just so terribly unfair.