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The Critic's Resource on AntiEvolution

Deposition of Robert V. Gentry - Page 2


Contrasted with that, my understanding was a Judeo- Christian ethic, which involved two singularities, but far more recent. So the question at hand, as far as I can tell, primarily, was one of whether the premises of uniformitarianism geology — radioactively speaking, whether these premises were substantiated or whether, indeed I could find evidence that would support or confirm those premises.


Q. Dr. Gentry, do you have an understanding of the phrase Creation Scientists?

A. This Act that the Arkansas legislature has passed — let's see, is there a copy of it here to look, at — in Section 4-A, it defines Creation Science, and from my standpoint, I think this would be an agreeable definition of Creation Science in that Section 4 here.

Q. What do you understand to be the meaning of Creation Scientists?

A. I think this is a question which each individual who believes in creation has to decide for himself, on the basis of his understanding of the creation epic.

My understanding of Creation Science, is generally in accord with Section 4, the Arkansas legislative Act 590. Therefore, in that context, I could be considered a Creation Scientist, in some sense of the word. There are other individuals in my estimation, who also consider themselves as believers in creation, that would not necessarily subscribe to the Section "A" there, but yet, they; would still say that they were Creation Scientists.

So I don't think I have a broad general definition of anyone who is a Creation Scientist. Its


something that I can understand myself on the basis of what is defined here as Creation Science. I understand what is being stated to the limit of my ability. Right now, I would agree: with those statements, general terms, until such time comes as we have falsification of those general statements or general principles or what I have actually asked for in my letters and my articles, until, such time as a falsification evidence comes in, then I will remain a Creation Scientist, in the sense, I would, Section A. — Section 4, Part A. as being a part of Creation Science. But I wouldn't want to put myself on record as trying to define any Creation Scientists for all individuals in the world. That is something that is beyond, in my estimation, the limits of my knowledge and my understanding, what these other colleagues understand and mean.

In other words, again I refer back to the statement. I made earlier, I really am speaking for myself, and I prefer to let other people speak for themselves in the context of their understanding of Creation Science.

Q. Doctor, then is it fair to summarize part of what you just said, that you consider yourself to be a Creation Scientist in the sense that you believe in this definition of Creation Science given in Section 4A


of the Act 590?

A. At the present time, I consider that the statements made in Section 4, Part A, are defensible aspects of Creation Science. I'm still in a search for truth in my laboratory work, and indeed, if there were ever a cause of evidence, demonstrable evidence, falsifiable evidence, that would falsify any of these positions, then I'm interested in finding that.

So it's an ongoing situation, as far as my being a Creation Scientist is concerned, and remaining a part of the general overview of Creation Science here given in Section 4. This is why I have openly asked the scientific community to try to help me out. Indeed as unusual as it seems, in some respects, I refer to my comment, I submitted this letter to the members of the scientific community, not as an antagonist reporting to have the final word in a dispute, but as a colleague who generally seeks a vigorous critical response to the evidence discussed herein. I'm trying to put it out into the widest possible evidence so that if I'm wrong and a lot of people, of course, think I'm wrong, then everyone, including myself, would have the opportunity, I want to make an about face if I'm wrong. So this is why I'm asking — so I'm a Creation Scientist today, I would generally agree with


the definition in Section 4 here until such evidence comes along that would indicate otherwise, falsifiable evidence, demonstrable evidence.

Q. Doctor, would you say that you have always been a Creation Scientist in the sense that you accept the definition given here.

A. Okay. Now, your statement that I have always been a Creation Scientist in the sense, remember and I think your question implies that you remember, that there was a time certainly when I was an evolutionist which I indicated to your earlier, but I understand from your question that you are referring to that period of time after I began looking into the evidences for creation and accepted the general overview of the Genesis profile of the Earth's history, which is what you are referring to.

In other words, there was a time in my life which I wasn't a Creationist at all, didn't do anything in regard to Creation Science at all.

Q. To be clear, if we look at it chronologically would you say that you would have been an evolutionist rather than a creationist?

A. Well, probably thinking back on it, near the end of the time I was getting my B.S., or perhaps a little bit earlier, about 1955, maybe 1954, too, you


know, until the time that I became a Seventh Day Adventist, mid 1979, certainly during that time I was — I can remember discussing evolution on the positive side with other individuals. So let's say in general terms, 1954, '55, through mid 1959, being an evolutionist.

Q. Doctor, what was the occasion for your ceasing to hold the belief in evolution?

A. The occasion relates to the information which I have given earlier, the study of the prophecies, some of which I have referred to in the book of Daniel. and the others relating to the life of the Messiah, the events of the Messiah, led me to believe, that the entire Bible, not just parts of it, might have far more credibility than I had at that time afforded it. And so following that line of reasoning, I began again. to restudy the earlier portions of the Bible and asking myself how well I really knew the evidence that contradicted, for example, the Genesis account. That's one of the questions I began to ask myself at that time. There was no one day, one way — the next day believing in all of Section 4. What has happened is, there has been a gradual shift, so to speak, in my thinking over the period of time relating primarily to the way in which I have reexamined the scriptures on


one hand and reexamined the scientific evidence on the other hand.

Q. Doctor, what began or occasioned your first doubts about evolution?

A. The occasion primarily relating to my contact with Seventh Day Adventist, in that I had my mind refocused on the Ten Commandments, and it was this refocusing on the Ten Commandments that led me to see this Fourth Commandment which I had not seen, which I'm sure was there and I'm sure I had read in my many years of going to church, but the statement to the effect, "For in six days the Lord made heaven. and earth, the sea, and all that in them is and rested on the seventh."

When I realized that was in the context of what I considered to be a moral issue, was the point at which I sort of began to seriously think that I needed to reconsider the entire issue of Genesis itself and entire reliability connected with Genesis because I had the general view at that time that the earlier books of the Bible were maybe symbolic, maybe poetical. I wasn't really sure how factual that they were. And so I never, for a number of years, had taken the Genesis account very seriously. But it was the emphasis on the Fourth Commandment, the moral issue, that caused me


primarily to go back and again to reexamine the evidence.

Q. Doctor, could you remind me which commandment is the Fourth?

A. Which one?

Q. Yes, sir.

A. It is the one relating to the Sabbath, remember the Sabbath to keep it holy for heaven, and earth, the seventh day in the Fourth Commandment being referenced to as a memorial of the initial six days of creation. That's where the reference occurs. Maybe I can help you — let me ask you if you are trying to get around to asking me or thinking about asking me or wanting to ask was there a period of time in which I was what normally — what some people would normally call a Creationist, or words to that effect, but did not agree to all the items here in Section 4, Part A; is this something that you are interested in knowing?

Q. Yes, sir.

A. All right. And the answer to that question for many years, after I became a Seventh Day Adventist, and in theory, at least, accepting Genesis, I was of the opinion that the earth itself was still perhaps quite old and that perhaps life had simply been created on Earth relatively recently, but that the


Earth itself may have been very, very old and that, I think, for awhile I accepted the general view that indeed the overall inorganic development of granted either may very well have happened according to the normal — let's put it this way. My views would have in part paralleled very closely the cosmological views that were associated with parts of the Big Bang and the subsequent development of the Earth to the present time. It was not until later after I began this research that the idea of the granites, the Precambrian granites of this world, not being rocks, that's solely (that slowly?) cooled down, but rocks that were created came to my thinking so clearly, a difference occurred, a large difference occurred during the progress of my research, and a direct result of my research that considerably changed my thinking with respect to the time of origin and the actual mode of origin, of what I would call the basement rocks, the Precambrian granites. Whereas previously I considered from an early Creationist viewpoint, so to speak, that the Precambrian granites were possibly the result of — I don't remember all my thoughts — but quite possibly the result of the slow cooling, as people normally viewed them. Later on my view has been with the evidence in hand, these rocks, as far as I can tell,


I have hypothesized to be the result of Creation, and I have suggested that the following method can be used to help us to separate which of the views is really correct.

The normal uniformitarian viewpoint is that the Precambrian granites have through uniformitarian principles, as we know, we have crystals that can be synthesized in the laboratory, so if, indeed, the Precambrian granites are rocks that were formed through conventional physical laws, then I have suggested that one way that the present scenario, the evolutionary scenario could be validated, confirmed, is for a hen-size specimen of a piece of granite to be actually synthesized in the laboratory.

And I have further stated, again, in the articles that I have published here in EOS, that the polonium halos in these granites constitute evidence of primordial radioactivity and are, therefore, suggestive of a very, very rapid crystallization of these granites. so from that standpoint, my two theories or hypotheses are open to falsification in the laboratory; Number one, the synthesis of a piece of granite would falsify a view that the granites are primordial rocks, created rocks, I will accept that as


a falsification in my thesis; and, number two, the production of a single polonium halo, in a synthesized piece of granite, I will accept as evidence as falsification for my hypothesis that the polonium halos in the Precambrian granites constitute Precambrian written activity.

So on those two issues, I have tried to present to this scientific community and an opportunity for scientists who are interested in these questions of origins, to present the evidence so that if I'm wrong, then everyone can know, including myself.

Q. Doctor, then is it correct that your doubts about evolution and a gradual change in your thinking to acceptance of a Creationist view and the refinement of that — of the details, of that opinion come after your acquaintance with the Seventh Day Adventist's belief?

A. That is correct.

Q. Dr. Gentry, how did you come to first hear about the lawsuit that we're involved in here?

A. The lawsuit — I called the ACLU Office in Little Rock and asked whether or not the ACLU was going to intervene, and told me you were. I had some information, I'm sure, from some other source, but my first firm information was from the ACLU in Little Rock


Q. Do you recall, approximately when that was?

A. No, I don't. But it was apparently only a few days before the ACLU brought the lawsuit. I don't remember. I'll have to check my records. I may or may not have it in my records.

Q. Sir, who first asked you to testify in this action?

A. David Williams.

Q. Do you recall when that was?

A. I'll see if I have a record of that.


As close as I can tell, from my records, it was October 27th.

Q. Was the contact that you had at that time with Mr. Williams the first contact that you had had with any representative of the Arkansas Attorney General's Office?

A. Yes; to my knowledge, yes.

Q. Was that a letter or a telephone call?

A. It was a telephone call.

Q. Did Mr. Williams telephone you?

A. Yes, he did.

Q. Do you know how Mr. Williams happened to have your name?


A. That morning, a David McQueen, who is here today called me relative to participating in a symposium next June in Baltimore. I told him at that time that I was unsure of my schedule and was watching the events in Little Rock, whereupon he told me that he had been invited to be a witness at the trial, and implied in his statements to me, or he inferred, he had inferred or had thought that I was going to be a witness in the case. And I assured him that at that time I had not been contacted.

And so he said he was going to call David Williams that day about same matter relating to the trial, and he was going to mention my name to David Williams. And he did, apparently, because David Williams called me that very same day, and indicated that David McQueen had given him my name.

Q. Had you ever discussed the possibility of your testifying in this action with anyone else, not from the Attorney General's Office, prior to the contact that you had with Mr. Williams?

A. Yes, I had.

Q. When was that, sir?

A. Somewhere around mid-August, I believe. There may have been an earlier time, but to my recollection, it was mid-August before I spoke with — I, would


I have to check my records. It could have been as early — as early August. I'm not sure. But I know by mid- August, I was definitely in contact with someone about the trial. It could have bean earlier, but I'm sure it was at least by mid-August.

Q. And with whom were you in contact?

A. I met Wendell Bird at a convention, at which I spoke here in Atlanta in mid-August.

Q. And I take it then that you would discuss the possibility of your testifying with Mr. Bird?

A. I discussed with him the possibility of testifying in this forthcoming case, yes.

Q. Do you recall the substance of your discussion?

A. The substance of the discussion was primarily that of my research. As I indicated, I had given a talk at this particular convention, and he was interested in discussing with me further the issues that I had spoken about, definitely information concerning the research that we are talking about here today.

Q. Doctor, when did you first see a copy of Act 590, the Statute that is at issue?

A. I will have to say simply I do not know. It was sometime this summer, but that is not the kind


of information that I sit down and write down in my notebook.

Q. Do you recall how you came to have a copy of the Act?

A. To be truthful with you, I don't. I may have gotten it from Wendell Bird, but I do not know. I really don't know.

Q. Have you ever had any discussion with Mr. John Whitehead about this case or the Statute?

A. I have had communication with John Whitehead — yes. It was, I think, John Whitehead who indicated to me earlier in the year that he thought if something developed in Arkansas, he would be interested in talking with me. But this was a situation where if something developed and, if something, else might happen, this is before there was any decisive or any act on the part of the ACLU to go into and challenge the case.

Q. Do you recall if this contact with Mr. Whitehead was before the Arkansas Statute was passed?

A. Now, that I don't know.

Q. Had you ever had any communication with Mr. Bird or Mr. Whitehead prior to the first instances that you just mentioned?

A. Yes. John Whitehead contacted me several years ago, I don't remember exactly how many, relative


to the case in California that was litigated this last March, and as I said his contact with me was what, two or three years ago. I don't know. I'd have to look in my records to find out.

He contacted me at that time about the possibility of testifying if he were involved in the case. I sent him reprints, and then the contact was generally broken off for a long period of time. I've had no — I never got involved in the situation in California.

Q. Have you ever had a criminal arrest or conviction?

A. No, I haven't.

Q. Have you aver discussed with a representative of the Attorney General's Office the specific subjects about which you are expected to testify at trial?

A. I have discussed with David Williams and Rick Campbell last night the essence of my research, as we are discussing this afternoon, and the implications which I have published openly, and have told them what I can say to them and whether this information would be useful or valuable, from their standpoint. It was, of course, their judgment to decide whether it would be useful or not.

Q. Have you discussed the possibility of


testifying as to any subject areas, other than your radio halo subject?

A. No. I definitely do not attempt to go outside the area in which I've actually done research and published. I have a very strong feeling that if we are going to search for a truth, we need to do it in a way so that intelligent and honest people have an opportunity to evaluate the evidence on a rational basis. So that my view is that people need to be very, very careful in the area of Creation Science when they make statements. Sometimes in my estimation their statements cannot be substantiated, cannot be backed up in the way that I attempt to do my work. But, of course, they are free, of course, to follow their own inclinations as they see fit. This is a free country.

Q. Doctor, looking at the Act 590, particularly Section 4, the definitions, I believe you had stated earlier that you would presently agree with the six instances of evidence for Creation Science that are listed in Subsection A?

A. Yes, I agree with them, remembering that my area of expertise does not extend to everything listed here, from a scientific standpoint. My area of


expertise is not involved with genetics or biology, so I would not want you to construe my agreement with the statements to be from the standpoint of having scientific expertise in those areas.

Q. Doctor, would, you tell me what you regard as the scientific evidences for point number six, that is, quote, a relatively recent inception of the Earth and living kinds, close quote?

A. The strongest evidence that I have for, for example, a recent inception of the Earth, I refer to this article in EOS, which I have read before, the one labeled in EOS, Volume 60, May 29, 1979, in which I have at that point indicated that the development of these uranium halos in coalified wood, as far as I could tell, comply a minimal stage of development. If the uniformitarian viewpoints that the formations which contain the halos in coalified wood is correct, then I would expect to see, as far as I could tell, the fully developed, uranium halos in coalified wood. And if the uniformitarian viewpoint of a constant biotite were correct, I would expect to see the uranium 238 to lead 206 ratios to be much less than those which we find in the material itself.

I wish to state, though, that the models that we are talking about here, the basic models we are


talking about, on the one hand involves for the evolutionary viewpoint, one singularity, followed by uniformity to the present time, that one singularity being the Big Bang, followed by uniformed action through the laws to the present.

The model which I propose again which I have indicated, here in this issue of EOS is a two singularity model, and I have tried to in this paper, and other places, distinguish the following: That whenever one has or hypothesizes a singularity, it is at this time in my estimation that the conventional laws which you observed from day-to-day, do not necessarily or cannot necessarily account for the phenomena at that juncture. So when we are talking about age, we can't have it both ways, so to speak. In every instance, when We talk about age, we must have to be reliable, a rate mechanism which somehow or another is assumed to run at a constant rate. In order to have complete assurance of any ages derived from any rate mechanism, one must have proof, so to speak, that the constant rate mechanism has been constant over the time period involved.

Now, I do not consider that I have proof of a constant decay rate from now back to the last singularity and the model which I hypothesize anymore


than I consider there is proof of a constant decay rate back to the inception of the first singularity in the other model. What I'm saying is that if one accepts without proof the viewpoint, that things have been going on relatively speaking at this rate since the last singularity, then you arrive at thus and so for the age of these chromations there in the Colorado plateau.

But we want to, at least in my mind, I want to be careful to distinguish between fact and assumption in this particular case. What I'm saying is that we are testing or attempting to test two scientific hypotheses, one being the one similarity from the initial point of the Big Bang to the present; the other, the dual singularity approach. What I have attempted to do in my scientific endeavors is to find out whether there is evidence of this second singularity. And I think, indeed, the halo in the coalified rate, the 206 ratios, or that sort of evidence.

In other words, we are looking at a crossover point between the two hypotheses. We look at the two models, and we ask, what does this model predict, and what does the other model predict, if one accepts the basic assumptions involved, not that we have proof of necessarily the assumptions on either side


And the halos in the coalified wood, as far as I can tell, are evidence of the existence of the second singularity, in the sense that if one were to take the halos that are there, the polonium halos in one hand, and the uranium halos in the other hand, this is the kind of scientific data that in my estimation one should be able to, so to speak, expect to find on the basis of the flood model and illustrate. My understanding of what we have seen in the Colorado Plateau, as far as the coalified wood is concerned, is that we have uranium solutions which have impregnated the wood while it was still in a somewhat gell-like condition. Uranium, and his daughters are permeating the coalified wood. Uranium is being separated in part from its daughters. Uranium, the rarest collecting in some cites, the polonium collecting with lead in other science.

Now, according to the usual conventional approach, we have, I believe, the Jurassic formations both of which have the deformed elliptical polonium to ten halos in the coalified wood. I suggest this is evidence that the uranium solutions invaded wood which was in the same state of condition in both formations at relatively the same time.

The tectonic event which then compressed


the wood and then compressed the halos, again, is something someone would expect to occur on the basis of infiltration of uranium bearing solutions at a specific time.

So I'm saying this information is the kind of information that fits into the dual singularity approach. If I attempt to place this information into the single singularity approach, I have not been able to do it. I have requested openly members of the scientific community to come forward with ways in which this can be done, and I am still looking for that kind of information.

Q. Doctor, is there any other scientific work which you would point to as evidencing a recent inception?

A. There is some work I am presently involved in that I am not at liberty to disclose at this appropriate time because it is in the review process, and I cannot divulge that information at this time because of that.

I will say, considering the topic of age, that the general view, again, going back to the polonium halos in the granites, now, the general view is that those granites, Precambrian granites formed slowly over long-periods of time. Indeed, as I had suggested, those halos are primordial, are suggestive of the


granites being primordial, then to me, this suggests that the granites, irrespective of the isotope ratios which exist between uranium 238 and lead 206, and Thorium 231 and lead 208, irrespective of the individual ratios which exist there, that the ratios themselves between the various parent and daughter isotope relations do not reflect a lapsed time. They in my opinion, do reflect the fact that the atoms have decayed from uranium and Thorium to lead, but I find in my estimation no evidence for the constancy of the decay rate.

As far as the initial episode, in which those halos I find no evidence of the decay rate at the time that the halos themselves, were in the process of formulation.

Q. Doctor, recalling your attention to Act 590, in Section B, Subsection B of Section 4, there are several points which the Act includes, as within a definition of evolution science or the evidences for evolution science. And number six in that subsection is, quote, an inception several billion years ago of the Earth and somewhat later of life, close quote. Are you aware of any scientific evidence which supports that view?

A. If one accepts the hypothesis or the premise


that the radioactivity decay rate has been uniformed, then one can interpret the isotope ratios of uranium 238 to lead 206 and thorium 232 to lead 208 as implying a several billion year age of the Earth, if that premise is accepted.

I find in my own thinking a question arising as to how one would validate a basic premise. And my position is that one cannot accept the interpretation of isotope ratios over that period of time as indicating a several billion year age of the Earth until the basic premise itself has been validated.

Q. Sir, in that answer, when you say the basic premise itself, do you mean —

A. The constancy of the decay rate.

Q. Okay.

A. You see, what I'm saying is, indeed, if there is a creation event, single singularity, we have events going on during that period of time, specifically creation week, in which my understanding of Creation implies bringing into existence material which previously had no existence, rocks which had prior — no prior existence, radioactivity which had no prior existence, and I'm in many respects ignorant of how the creator ordained the rock systems.

In my own mind, for example, I think of the


existence of the uranium halos and the thorium halos which many people interpret as evidences of very great periods, of the Earth's history. I simply try to point out that radioactivity is primarily a statistical process, and that whereas today in the Earth, there is a great amount of radioactivity on the surface and within, the crust of the Earth, generally speaking, we all live on the assumption that it will continue to decay relatively the same way it is decaying right now.

In my estimation, there is no physical law that would prohibit a significant fraction of the uranium atoms or thorium, atoms from decaying within this next week or two. We would say it is a statistically extremely improbable event that might happen. But as far as I can tell, it would violate no physical law. Likewise, then the events that occurred during Creation Week being under, in my estimation, the supervision of the creator himself, may have been such that the development of the uranium halos and the thorium halos may have taken place in a matter quite different than we would expect today from the standpoint of uniform radioactive decay, but that this would have not contradicted any of the physical laws, as far as I can tell, that we know of.


Likewise, during what I consider to be the second singularity, in my estimation, again, there is a possibility that the radioactive decay rate may not have been uniformed, according to our present understanding, during that very unusual period. In my estimation, it is only after these singularities are completed that one can, with some degree of hesitancy, begin to accept the conventional view that the radioactive decay rates and other physical processes phenomena have continued in the manner we observe them at the present time.

Q. Doctor, are you aware of any efforts which have been made by scientists to determine whether or not the radioactive decay rates are constant?

A. I work with radioactivity in the laboratory It's part of my research to work with radioactivity on a day-by-day basis.

In my experiments at the present time, I have confidence in the way in which the radioactive decay is envisioned and interpreted at the present time. The question is whether that extrapolation can be extended to the indefinite past and the conclusions drawn from that extrapolation be considered as factual information when, indeed, the very basic premise that we are using as a time mechanism is under question from


the standpoint of the polonium halos that I found in the granites themselves.

For example, in the paper which I have left a copy with you here, an individual who is clearly not a Creationist, the world renown nuclear physicist, Professor Norman Feather, University of Edinburgh, evaluated the polonium halos in granites after he read some of my papers, read the paper of Henderson: Ever since the discovery of polonium halos in old mica, Henderson and Sparks, 1939, the problem of their origin, has remained essentially unsolved. Two suggestions have been made, Henderson 1939; Gentry, 1973, but neither carries immediate conviction. These suggestions are examined critically and in detail and the difficulties of attaching to the acceptance of either are identified. Because these two suggestions — and I'll stop there for a moment.

The original suggestion of Henderson was that polonium halos derived from polonium atoms derived from uranium solutions. My suggestion later on in '73 was making every attempt to try to explain these polonium granites on a basis of a conventional viewpoint. I suggested they were large polonium or bismuth or lead that maybe had been incorporated into the granites on the conventional time frames, conventional


viewpoint, and those could have formed the polonium halos.

We did microexperiments, and we did, Professor Feather investigated the phenomena, and I will continue to read now, "Because these two suggestions appear to exhaust the logical possibilities of explanation, it is tempting to admit that one of them must be basically correct, but whoever would make this admission must be fortified by credulity of a high order."

In other words, indeed if there is evidence here of a radioactive phenomena, a very short half life that does not have any parent, then this, I say, calls into question the very basic premises of uniformity. And once they then begin to look at this phenomena, this is what I'm trying to get the scientific community to do as a friend, a colleague. Indeed, if there is something here, we need not to hide it, if there's proof for all of us to learn. If I'm wrong, I would like to know. If there is not evidence for Creation, then I don't want to propagate it at the Arkansas trial before my colleagues here today, or in the scientific community.

Another reference, this article, Mystery of the Radio Halos, my work hasn't been done in the


— people who are eminent in the field of science. have looked carefully at what I have done. I refer to a scientist that both of my colleagues know here today, Professor Edward Anders: "His conclusions are startling and shake the very foundations of radiochemistry and geochemistry, yet he has been so meticulous in his experimental work and so restrained in his interpretations, that most people take his work seriously. I think most people believe, as I do, that some unspectacular explanation will eventually be found for the anomalous halos, and that orthodoxy will turn out to be right after all. Meanwhile, Gentry should be encouraged to keep rattling this skeleton in our closet for all it is worth."

You can read what Professor Damon said:

"Supposing that the results of Gentry are confirmed, what will it mean for theory? I do not think it will mean any radical changes in geology or cosmology. It is much more likely that the explanation will be some tricky point in nuclear physics or nuclear chemistry that the experts have overlooked. That is, of course, only my personal opinion, and I am accustomed to be proved wrong by events. — I just lost a ten dollar bet that Nixon would be in office till the end of 1974, I will be glad to lose this one too.


Then you can read the letter from Professor John Wheeler on the outstanding events in the world. I spent a whole evening with John Wheeler going over the evidence that I'm presenting to you this afternoon as evidence for a rapid synthesis or crystallization of the basic rocks.

Wheeler's letter is here in its entirety: "You ask for my opinion of Dr. Robert Gentry's work on pleochroic polonium halos. I spent a number of hours reviewing this fascinating work with him some weeks ago. I was impressed with the clarity of the evidence for anomalous halos, that is, cases where there are rings indicating the presence of some members of the normal radioactive decay chain, without the other members of the family tree, that normally are present, that normally do show up in rings of their own, and have to be there on present views of the radioactive decay chains involved. If the evidence is impressive, the explanation for it is far from clear. I would look in normal geologic process of transfer of materials by heating and cooling; in isomeric nuclear transitions; and in every other standard physical phenomenon before I would even venture, to consider cosmological explanations. Let alone radical cosmological explanations. To explore all the avenues that


need exploring would take months, not the few hours I was privileged to spend in Dr. Gentry's company. A few days ago, I reviewed his work all too briefly with Dr. G. Wasserburg of Cal Tech, who is an expert in the radioactive dating of rocks, whose opinion would be much more to the point than mine, especially if be will give it to you in writing."

Well, clearly Wheeler didn't have time that evening to spend months with me. So I have attempted to put it out to the entire scientific community as these eminent scientists have suggested, so that if we indeed, do not have sufficient evidence for a singularity, I want to know about it.

I didn't want to go to the trial to present something for Creation that really is not a valid scientific phenomenon that is unexplained, and in my estimation, at least, the scientific community has a real good shot. You see, I'm not bringing out something that is in the back page of some religious journal. I have honestly approached the scientific community with every known scientific format that I can in meetings, in publications because my whole view is, if there is truth in the creator, and he has left truths in the rocks, then we all need to know. If he hasn't, then I want to know, and I want my friends to know, as



Q. Doctor, to return, to my question, which I'll restate the question, I guess, instead of reading it back through the record, are you aware, of any record which scientists have made to support the assumption that decay rates currently observed have been constant overtime?

A. I'm aware of experiments which I do and other people do on a daily basis, which today shows that by and large, within the limits of experimental uncertainty that the transformation rates of the various radioactive atoms are proceeding, at which we call a constant rate. Now, I'm not aware of any direct experimental evidence that would allow us to say that those transformation rates are capable of being extrapolated. indefinitely.

Q. Are you aware of any work which has been done by way of subjecting the decay rates as observed to extraordinary conditions as say, I don't know, temperature or pressure or the like in an effort to see whether such extraordinary environment alters the decay rates?

A. Yes, I'm aware of experiments like this that have been done.

Q. Can you tell me whether they reveal there


were any alterations or not?

A. Not as a result, to my knowledge, any significant change. There were small changes, but not very significant changes with respect to pressure, but none that I know of with respect to temperature.

Q. Did the insignificant changes that you've mentioned with respect to pressure have to do with all of the decay measurements or only one or more?

A. Only one, as far as I understand.

Q. Which one was that?

A. It's probably involving electromagnets, if I remember correctly.

Q. Are you aware of any increase in the rate of alpha decay or beta decay that have been identified. experimentally?

A. Not to my knowledge, experimentally.

Q. Doctor, recognizing the necessary difficulties in trying to identify things that happened before any observer was present, are you aware of any experiments which might be performed reflecting on the constancy of radioactive decay rates which have not been performed?

A. Well, that raises a basic question as to whether one can perform experiments that would validate the constancy of any rate mechanism when there was no



Q. Yes, sir. If I may repeat my question. I said, we must, of course, recognize the difficulties inherent in the fact that things which occurred or may have occurred prior to the presence of an observer cannot be or has been observed, recognizing that difficulty, are you aware of any experiment which can be performed which might bear on the question which have not been performed?

A. I do not agree that there are experiments that can be performed that would bear on the question and would validate the premises.

Q. Is it your view then that experiments trying to determine whether decay rates are altered by temperature or pressure, for instance, don't bear on the question of constancy?

A. They do not bear — in my estimation, they do not bear on the question of whether, indeed, the decay rates have always been constant because the assumption involved with the single model approach is that of uniformitarianism. One is basically taking that as an assumption without proof. And may I suggest that as I have stated two people who argue on the basis of uniformitarianism, I find very, very interesting, because as I pointed out — let me find my paper here — I find


it very interesting that the decay rate argued for a constant lambda is pursued to the length that it is when indeed there comes a point in time when my good colleagues, and I do not wish to in any way put them down with what I'm going to say, there comes a time when uniformity, as far as I can tell, is not the rule of the day.

And I refer to EOS, the publication I have here, in which Paul Damon is promoting conventional viewpoints, and I will read as follows: I agree with Damon that if Polonium halos in granites originated with primordial polonium, this would essentially cast in doubt the science of modern geochronology." Paul Damon, I think, has indicated that, and I agree with him. So if we have primordial halos, this cast in doubt the idea.

I would also agree that, "Polonium halos imply either that the earth is now solely lead 206, which is demonstrably wrong, or that the pristine earth was synthesized within several hours at most. Understandably, Damon considers both alternatives equally absurd and concludes that any new theory which accounts for primordial polonium halos must also reexplain virtually all the internally consistent data upon which modern physics, geology, and cosmology are


based. But with all due respect to Damon, he was not here when the earth was formed, thus his belief that rapid synthesis of the earth is incredible is not based on the kind of direct experimental evidence like that which shows that the earth is not just lead 206. Moreover, I must take strong exception to his unqualified inclusion of the laws of physics in the same category as geology and cosmology. This association gives the impression that any evidence which would apparently falsify cosmological and geological framework can immediately be recognized as an absurdity because it would also invalidate contemporary laws of physics. But this is not necessarily true because even though cosmology and geology both rely on data from contemporary physics, the ultimate reliability on these theories is hinged separately on the crucial unproven assumption that physical processes have remained unchanged with time.

In fact, when Damon argues that the concept of primordial polonium halos is incredible because it contradicts the uniform action of physical loss, it seems he is arguing against a concept, nonuniformity which is inherent in the very cosmology he defends. That is, does not the present cosmology assume that physical laws have operated uniformly only since the


Big Bang, whereas the Big Bang itself, if it occurred, is an example of a singularity that defies explanation on the basis of known physical laws? Let us then examine the other aide of the coin. If the word incredible is to be used to, describe the possibility that primordial polonium halos exist and that they are evidence of a rapid synthesis of the earth, ought we not be fair enough to weigh that incredibility with the one which at one time necessitated all the matter of the universe to be compacted within an ultrasmall volume in space?

The Big Bang goes back to a nonuniformity in decay rate. Both hypotheses go back to a nonuniformity, as far as the original inception of the models themselves are concerned.

Paul Damon has indicated, and I agree with him, that if 218 polonium halos and granite originate with this, would they essentially cast this date? I have asked the scientific community to falsify my position that polonium 218 halos are primordial. I have offered them an opportunity to do so on two bases. Damon agrees that if granites are primordial, this casts any doubt in science of modern geology. It seems like that people who are interested in validating the conventional viewpoint, they would take


advantage of the opportunity they have of falsifying my position, falsifying the evidence.

Q. Doctor, I must ask you, in view of the short time that we have remaining, to try to confine your responses somewhat more closely to my question, The question, I've asked is, whether or not you regard experiments which seek to identify physical forces might or might not alter decay rates, as relevant to this question of constancy or not?

A. I was of the impression that during my discussions just then, and I may not have made it clear I was of the impression that I was trying to make it clear that when we go back to the time in which you are talking about, a singularity, I do not regard appropriate experiments, involving possible ways of decay rate changes as indicators of how or when or if decay rates may have changed in the times passed. This I regard in the province of the model in which the one who is devising a model has promoted or fabricated the original assumptions.

Q. Do you regard these experiments as bearing on the question of whether there is any physical process short of singularity which could alter those decay rates?

A. In my estimation, they could bear on that



Q. Do you — is it your opinion that there is any physical process short of a singularity which could alter uranium and thorium, other radioactive decay rates?

A. I have an open mind, but at the present time, I do not — I do not feel that

THE WITNESS: Would you state the question again?

(Whereupon, the court reporter read the record as requested.)

THE WITNESS: In my opinion, I have an open mind, but at the present time, no.

Q. (By Mr. Wolfe); Sir, what is your opinion as to the probable cause of the second singularity in the model that you proposed?

A. The second singularity in the model that I've proposed is that, I have indicated here, the letter to EOS, is my understanding of the, "a later catastrophe which resulted in a solar system-wide disturbance that was manifested on earth primarily as a world wide flood with subsequent crustal adjustments. So a world wide flood is my understanding in part of the second singularity.

Q. Sir, what is your view as to what caused the


world wide flood?

A. In my estimation, and in my opinion, it is the direct intervention of the Creator.

Q. Dr. Gentry, do the co-authors of your paper on your work in coalified wood subscribe to your model of two singularities that you have —

A. Generally, no. There is one that does, generally, no.

Q. Doctor, are there other workers in your area, that is, your area that is broadly described, not just radio halos, who do regard the evidence of radiometric dating techniques as proof for a great age of the earth?

A. I want to make sure I understand the question.

THE WITNESS: Would you please read that back?

(Whereupon, the court reporter read the record as requested.)

MR. WOLFE: Let me restate the question.

Q. (By Mr. Wolfe) Are there other scientists studying the age of the earth who do regard evidence of radiometric dating techniques as proof for evidence for a great age of the earth?

A. I have heard a number of papers and read a


number of papers where certainly the evidence, it is considered evidence for a great age. I would be hesitant to say that I know for sure that they have stated it as proof for a great age, but they may very well do that.

Q. I take it, it's fair to say that you do not regard that evidence as sufficient to counter the evidence that you have in your radiohalo work for a recent age?

A. Let me refer to you — that's true. Let me refer to this letter from, and unsolicited letter from a gentleman that I have never met, known, spoken to, a Ph.D. and apparently in some field, perhaps science, written to me the 20th of October, 1981: "Dear Professor Gentry: A few years ago I became interested in the current methods of dating the formation of the earth, and during my investigations I was most interested to read some of your excellent papers on pleochroic halos. The evidence indicating an almost instantaneous crystallization of the earth's surface rock was compelling in its rigor and integrity. I was similarly impressed by your findings which suggest the relatively recent formation of coal. My interest in the topic continues, and I have had the opportunity of discussing your findings


with others who are similarly interested in the general question of origins. Unfortunately, however, I no longer have available the reference facilities of a university library, and have not been able to keep abreast of publications over the past few years. I am therefore writing with two requests, and I should be most grateful if you could find the time to answer. One, have you become aware of any reasons to reconsider your conclusions in the papers I have alluded to? Could you further comment on the acceptance which your results now command, amongst those who might find your conclusions contrary to their working models of the formation of the earth?

Two, could you please send me any papers on this topic, or related thereto, that you have published since the report on radiohaloes on coalified wood, since 1976?

I recognize that these requests will make substantial demand on your time and I would apologize for this. However, your cooperation would be enormously valued, if you should be able to do so. I thank you in anticipation, Dr. F. G. Donaldson, Ph.D." Now, this is the gentleman who has done no more than read the papers that I put out in the open


literature. I have no idea whether the man is a Creationist or not. Be says he finds evidence of an almost instantaneous crystallization of the earth's surface rock and similar evidence with respect to recent formation of coal.

I do not wish to imply to you, nor do I wish, or will apply at the time, that I have an army of followers. There are perhaps a few people who have examined my work, as has Dr. Donaldson who perhaps felt the same way that he does, but I do not intend to go to the trial, if I am privileged to go there, implying the agreement of the scientific community. I am at variance with the individuals, my colleagues, who interpret the works, the ratios as indicators of great time. Clearly at variance, and this is why I'm asking for rebuttals from them so that I won't remain in the dark.

Q. Sir, then, is it fair to say that looking at radiometric dating techniques and results, and at your work in radio halos, that you regard the most persuasive interpretation as that the earth was — had a relatively recent inception, and that rocks, basement rocks, were probably instantly crystallized after creation or shortly thereafter; is that a fair description?


A. Yes; with the proviso that, again, I have asked the scientific community if at all possible to falsify —

Q. Yes, sir. I understand that. I'd like to deal now with just an interpretation of the present

A. Yes.

Q. — evidence. Then as to persons who still credit the notion of an inception of the earth several billion years ago, I take it they are looking at the same evidence, but drawing a different interpretation of both the radiometric work and your own —

A. I think I want to read again, Professor Anders letter. It says —

Q. Sir, I would be happy for you to read the letter, but do you regard what I just said as a fair description, of the conclusions of others, namely, they have looked at the radiometric dating work and your own work and their interpretation is that the radiometric dating work is more likely to be accurate, so they continue to accept that, the more likely explanation is an inception for the earth several billion years ago, does that seem like a fair description?

A. Yes. This is what Anders was stating, that


he was leaning towards that direction.

Q. Are you aware of any — oh, I'll confess I'm not certain what they call this — any principle or practice or theory in scientific inquiry that performs in weighing those two interpretations or aids in choosing between them?

A. Yes. This is what I've tried to describe in my reports on the halos and coalified wood. I tried to find an area where the normal evolutionary cosmological model will predict one thing, and where the dual singularity model will predict something else. And I try to look at that cross-over point and say, what does the data at this particular point tell me. This is information which I've already spoken of this afternoon. The halos and the coalified wood, as far as I can tell, fit the dual singularity model. Now, there may be people who can easily put it into the single singularity model. I don't see it in print yet. That doesn't mean it won't be there. But I'm trying to find those critical points where we have — there are not many points where we have the cross-over that can predict something we can go back and do today, and this is what I'm trying to do in my published work.

Q. Are there other experiments which indicate


great age or the geochronologic strategy and the Colorado plateau that you were looking at in your coalified wood studies?

THE WITNESS: Would you read that back?

(Whereupon, the court reporter read the record as requested.)

THE WITNESS: I won't pretend to be an expert on the Colorado plateau. Those samples were collected by, by and large, Dr. Irvin Brayger of the U.S. Geologic Survey. I'm not aware of any evidence in Brayger's published reports that would, to me, imply the necessity of the great age for the Colorado plateau. I would mention something else, except I don't have Brayger's report in front of me, which would be very apropos, being in danger of quoting it out of context, so I won't do it until I get it in front of me. There is something in one of his reports that suggests something to the opposite. But I don't have the report in front of me, so I won't quote it.

Q. (By Mr. Wolfe) Doctor, I understood you to have said that your measurements of uranium 238 and


lead 206 ratios indicated to you a recent age for those geologic events; is that correct?

A. I think at the time that I said that, I made it very, very clear that that quote, recent age, was based on the unproved premise, and is in the same category as trying to extract age from any other model, that it is based on an unproven premises, which people need to understand is in itself the age cannot be taken any more factually, so to speak, that you can extrapolate the premise itself.

Q. I see. Are there other measurements of uranium-lead ratios or other radioactive techniques which contradict, let's say, the uranium-lead ratio's that you have taken?

A. Are you referring to the coalified wood?

Q. Yes, sir.

A. I'm sure that in the literature there, there are many analyses, many reports, at which I'm unaware. There's also another aspect to the coalified wood situation in the plateau, Colorado plateau, and other places, and that is, as I have pointed out, one prediction of the dual singularity model is that there was separation of uranium from its daughters. And so as we look at material which is secondary sedimentary material, one would expect to find in places where you


had conditions, as far as separation, uranium daughters find evidence of uranium that's equal to equilibrium. On these coalified wood, we did find disequilibrium. This is in the context now of the framework, the frame work being that you have a singularity, and the singularity has disassociated the uranium from its daughters and so, therefore, if indeed the conventional ideal concerning decay rates processes on the earth are valid, since the singularity, and I say if they are valid since the singularity, then one would expect to find evidence of this equilibrium in these. Now, indeed, we found evidence of disequilibrium in the coalified wood.

Now, the other model would attribute that this equilibrium to chemical changes within the formation since the uranium itself has been incorporated into the rock.

Q. Doctor, can you explain to me your basis of, or the basis for, your view of the first singularity, the creation, which applies sort of normal time, that is, the six-day Creation week, to a singularity, which I would take by definition not to be a normal time phenomenon?

A. I think — I'm glad you asked the question. I think it's important to distinguish between the events


transpiring during the period of time and the mode which those events — the reason, the ultimate cause of the events, themselves.

As I have indicated to you earlier, one of the primary reasons why I began to rethink the entire issue of evolution versus Creation is because of the moral perspective of the Fourth Commandment. Now, in my estimation, in the Fourth Commandment, which it says, in six days, the Lord made heaven and earth and rested the seventh day, I find in that one sentence, the word they used in a consistent manner, as far as I can tell, so that I cannot separate the word "day" seventh day from the day and the six days of Creation. As far as I'm concerned, it is a consistent whole.

Then we simply proceed to, as far as I can tell, a record of what the Creator himself is telling us he did. He could have chosen, I suppose, any length of time that he wishes, but as far as I can tell, he has left a record that he did it in the time that he specified.

Q. Doctor, you read into the record a short while ago several letters discussing your work. I think the ones that I have reference to are those by 25


Professor Anders, Professor Dyson, and Professor Wheeler?

A. Yes.

Q. Sir, and I think that each of them states that your work, that radio halos might require extraordinary changes in the way that the earth's history is viewed. And I think, that each goes on to say either that they personally believe that the explanation is proven to be some much more simply anomalous result, or at least, they would look first in all less radical explanations.

Does that seem a reasonable scientific view to you?

A. I would hope that they and others would continue all possible efforts to find a conventional view of the phenomenon that I have found. This is what I am hoping, that if at all possible can be done.

Q. I take it then that you do not agree with — do not disagree with looking there first?

A. From the papers that I have shown to you from Professor Feather and from the letters of Paul Damon himself and from Gary York's response, I think we have evidence that people have been looking and from Professor Feather's response, "because these two suggestions appear to exhaust the logical possibilities

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