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+--Forum: Young-Earth Antievolution
+---Topic: $250,000 Evolution Challenge Accepted! started by johndcal

Posted by: johndcal on Oct. 01 2002,16:56

SUN VALLEY, CA - October 1, 2002 - A long-standing offer to prove evolution has been accepted by John D. Callahan, a theistic evolutionist and president of Faith & Reason Ministries: Reconciling Christianity with Accepted Science, < > The offer is being made by Dr. Kent Hovind, a young-Earth creationist and leader of Creation Science Evangelism, < >

Callahan writes Dr. Hovind, in a widely distributed open letter: "I accept your offer to prove evolution and win $250,000. I will prove secular, scientific evolution as it is appropriately taught in our schools. As you stipulate, this includes both the large-scale evolution of the universe, from the Big Bang, and Darwinian biological evolution. I could appeal to the mountain of empirical evidence (observation and experimentation) from many areas of science, which puts evolution beyond doubt to almost all scientists. However, this would be overkill, and since evolution is so simple to prove, I will do it in this letter. You insist evolution is an unsubstantiated, immoral religion; this is incorrect."

"First consider biological evolution. Besides innumerable transitional fossils -- dating billions of years to very primitive forms -- there are many living species (of the millions on Earth) and breeds that are obvious cousins and direct descendants of one another. An illustration is the domestic dog, which can produce a generation 30 times faster than man. From gray wolf populations the domestic dog has evolved (naturally and via human intervention) into dozens of species and hundreds of breeds (enormous gene pool) over the last 10,000 years. These are more than minor variations and indicative of macroevolution. Further, since a gray wolf has evolved into a pug dog, an ape has surely evolved into a Homo erectus and then a man."

"As far as large-scale evolution, the cosmic background radiation confirms the Big Bang and structure of the universe. Also light travels at 186,000 miles per second. Thus when astronomers look at distance objects, they are looking back in time. This 'time travel' clearly shows the evolution of the universe, from quasars and primitive galaxies (billions of years ago) to the modern appearance of our local universe. In addition we see stars in various stages of evolution, nucleosynthesis in supernova 1987A, molecules in space, and solar systems forming from dust and gas. Not every detail is understood, such as dark matter and energy, but this in no way negates the basic age and evolution of the universe."

"However, evolution makes no statement as to the existence of God. (For proof of His being, please see < > Therefore I address your point, '1. Time, space, and matter came into existence by themselves,' by stating that God created the universe with physical and spiritual laws facilitating evolution. Moreover, God is present and working in our lives and the universe, but not as envisioned by modern creation mythology: young-Earth creationism (your conviction), old-Earth creationism, and intelligent design theory."

"Please send my $250,000 to the address above. Thanks. If you wish more detail, from the ever-increasing mountain of empirical evidence, I would be happy to present before your review committee (or debate) provided you sponsor a public event and pay my traveling expenses (outside the Los Angeles, CA area)."

Dr. Hovind's challenge has been a rallying cry for creationists, and he asserts few, if any, legitimate inquires have been made -- and certainly no proof. However, evolutionists contend Dr. Hovind is not open to empirical evidence and scientific method. How will Dr. Hovind respond to the Callahan letter, which claims to concisely prove evolution consistent with belief in God?
Posted by: MidnightVoice on Aug. 29 2005,12:01

Did anything happen here?  :D
Posted by: Swoosh on Oct. 12 2005,22:49

Lol.  I love the open letter aspect, but Hovind is playing with a stacked (though not nearly full) deck.  

Dogs, wolves and the like are just variations on a Kind.  There is no evidence that a "dog came from a banana" or quack anything of the sort.  To say that the mooooo similarities between dogs and wolves quack implies that humans and apes are related is mooooOOoooo not supported by any evidence.  Quack.

Further, there is no evidencequack proving that the speed of light has always been constantmooooooo.  Nobody has ever seen a star "born" baaaa-a-a-a-a and to say that astronomers know how it was quack done is a lie.  There is no evidence quackquack.

And lastly.. moooo bleaaat quack!

Evidence denied... next, please.

Posted by: rawkandrawl on Oct. 20 2005,01:29

Swoosh- To me it seems that your philosophy is that something doesn't exist until you observe it. So, if you want to see the evidence for an astronomers explanation of how a star is born, go to your local observatory and analyze the spetrographs of a few different heavenly bodies. Then you will have some idea of the gases and hence reactions within those heavenly bodies. You would also be able to deduce the temperature of these heavenly bodies. With the help of persons more qualified than my self you should be able to see that the heavenly bodies you have observed could be interpreted as a star at various stages in it's evolution. After observing a few thousand different identical  examples of this evolution occuring in the universe, you should be bored enough to assume that this is the way it happens for all stars. Incidentally, this is part of how science works.

If theres no evidence of the speed of light being constant, there's no evidence of the permititivity of free space being constant, there's no evidence of the permeability of free space being constant and there is therefore no evidence of any electromagnetic interaction being constant. If in the entire history of the universe the magnitude of the force between charged particles has been changing, I think that astronomers explanations of the birth of stars can't be correct because the rely upon the constancy of electromagnetic reactions over very long periods of times, unless of course this inconstancy of the speed of light is negligible in which case it doesn't matter. So I leave it to you to go out and look at the evidence and see that there is in fact evidence for the speed of light to be constant by looking at the way many long term the explanations of many long term phenomena require it to be constant.
Posted by: Swoosh on Oct. 20 2005,02:09

Normally, my sense of humor is pretty dry.  I'll try to jazz it up in the future so I don't puzzle you. :D

But since it seems you are under the impression that I buy Hovind's blather, please note the barnyard animal sounds scattered throughout my flimsy satire.  Also, please redirect your attention to the first sentence in my post, paying special attention to the "deck of cards" references.

For the record, I resounding reject "creation science" and its bastard progeny, ID.

Yours in methodological naturalism,
Posted by: rawkandrawl on Oct. 20 2005,04:24

Now I Feel Like I Little Bit Of A Dickhead.
you shouldn't have said anything.
Posted by: Swoosh on Oct. 20 2005,04:34

Heh. No worries at all, mate.  I almost didn't say anything, but you know how rumors can get around.  I'm just trying to cut it off at the pass. :D

BTW, I listened to the mp3s of the Callahan/Hovind debate.  #### that Hovind, he's got charisma.  Callahan, unfortunately, has all the charm of a compost heap.  Of course Callahan had better arguments, but I fear that's not enough these days.  When is the next Carl Sagan coming down the pike?  Please hurry, the nation needs you!
Posted by: HPLC_Sean on Oct. 20 2005,04:34

I've been snared by parody-artists as you just were, rawk. I once fired off a hot response to an Evo proponent that parodied creationist-talk in a post.
Posted by: Swoosh on Oct. 20 2005,04:40

Sean, I have too.  Sometimes I'm not sure what's parody and what isn't.  It took me near ten of Evopeaches posts to determine that he was serious.  Nobody that angry, bitter and persistant could do good parody.  I'm pretty sure The Ghost of Paley is a parody.  He's not at all rancorous, so its harder to tell with him.
Posted by: rawkandrawl on Oct. 20 2005,05:12

Thats just disturbing that parody can come so close to truth. It may be that creationism has actually gone beyond parody. I just reread the post that I made and I can see that I got my foot stuck in my mouth a few times. Whoops.
Posted by: Swoosh on Oct. 20 2005,05:23

The scary thing to me, Rawk, is that so many people don't seem to notice the caricature Creationists are making of themselves.  In looking at this whole issue, I never know whether to laugh or rampage.  I mostly try to laugh.  But egads, its haaaaaarrrrrd to keep an active sense of humor.  I mean, c'mon!  Wasn't this settled already?  Why do so many Westerners identify so intensely with their favorite mythology?  What will it take for our society to evolve past this false dichotomy?

I'm gonna come up with a creationist lightbulb joke, and post it here.  Might be awhile. :)
Posted by: BWE on Aug. 04 2006,21:00

How many creationists does it take to screw in a lightbulb?

Well, creationists say the bulbs screw themselves in but the maintenance crew claims otherwise. WHo you going to believe?
Posted by: Heusdens on Feb. 23 2007,21:18

How to proof an impossible fact -- a universe (space time & matter) emerging from nothing by itself?

I thought such phenomena are the works of Gods, not acts of nature.

Mr. Hovind is just joking, since the proof he wants is a proo f for an act of God, but then one that created the universe 13,7 billion years ago instead of 6000 years ago.

Materialism acknowledges to the indestructability of matter and the uncreatability of matter (but one can transform one form of matter into another, like energy into mass and vice versa), which is in accordance with science, and therefore the universe did not begin.

This is not in contradiction with the Big Bang or physics, which just claims the universe was in the past denser, hotter and smaller, but does not state it began in a singularity.
Posted by: jbrown on June 22 2007,02:13

"Materialism acknowledges to the indestructability of matter and the uncreatability of matter (but one can transform one form of matter into another, like energy into mass and vice versa), which is in accordance with science, and therefore the universe did not begin."

What's more, if I understand him correctly, Stengner shows, in "God: The Failed Hypothesis" that the amount of energy in the Universe (when you take into account negative energy - this does exist - it's not just airy fairy bad vibes) is exactly zero.

This leaves the materialist/naturalist with even less to explain, it takes away the intuitively understood something from nothing question to begin with. Energy is simply a random disturbance in what would otherwise be known as nothing.

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