Re: ACLU may sue NM Board of Education (was Re: Creationists win...)

Bruce L Grubb (
Wed, 04 Sep 1996 06:31:52 -0700

In article <50jcsr$>, (J Hart) wrote:

> In article <50bigb$>,
> says...
> >
> >In article <50a8ib$>, says...
> >>
> >>I today's _Albuquerque Journal_, the front-page news is that the ACLU
> >>will sue the board of education in New Mexico
> >The NM state Board of Education has come under the influence of a
> >rabidly anti-evolutionist physicist from Sandia National Laboratories by
> >the name of Roger X. Lenard.
> >the problem with this is that I know of no theory of origins which
> >has scientific credibility other than evolution.
> The evolutionist mind set does not allow a person to gain knowledge of any
> theory but evolution.

Even if this was true why does it eliminate Creationism? Remember 19th century
Creationists (called Catastrophes) used what we today would call
Evolution: The Great Chain of Being. Even today Creationists use a form
of Evolution: The Degenerative Model.

> Acts of the ignorant in suport of their false belief always tend to center
> around preventing alternate points of view from being taught or considered.
> Evolutionist are probably the largest group of closed minded people on the
> planet today.

Untrue. Creationism is the discarded theory and here is a part of its history:

The factions we call evolutionists and creationists have been
battling it out for a long time. The oldedest reference I can find to a
split in the theories on the history of the earth is between the
Plutonists and Neptunists around the 1750's.

Plutonists believed that the movement of the earth was the primary shaper
of the land while Neptunists believed water and in particular the Flood
were the primary shapers of the land. As you have no doubt guested they
got their names from two Roman dieties: Pluto who ruled the underworld and
Neptune who ruled the seas.

Because Plutonists believed in a uniform pattern of change they eventially
became called Uniformitarians. As Neptunists suggested that a series
of small and large catastrophes had shaped the earth they became known as

It was not until Darwin's and Wallece's theories came out (1859) that
these groups began to call themselves Evolutionists (Uniformitarian) and
Creationists (Catastrophism).

The real reason the Creationism structure failed is not due the the rise of
humanism but because
1) strict interpretations did not agree with observations baced on
Uniformitarianism Geology {1787},
2) it could not explain the placement of fossils and rocks in layers {1794},
3) got overly complicated beginning with Cuvier's double flood theory
{1813} and ended up with 6 "Gardens of Eden",
4) could not explain alterations of fresh and sea water animals in stata
{1831}, and
5) No amount of mathematics could keep Noah's ark from sinking even at the
Genus level {~1840s}.
Please note that Darwin's book did not come out until 1859 and by that time
the Creationism structure was already pulling apart at the seams.

Creationists seem to equate 'evolution' with Darwinian evolution.
Nothing could be farther from the truth.
Evolution can be broken down into the following types {in roughly their
order of creation}:
Progressive evolution: This is the idea that there is a progressive design
in the development of animals and humans. This type of evolution dates
back to before the existence of the Greeks. Also supported by 19th
century Creationists as _The Great Chain of Being_ theory.
In a social form its basic theme is 'our culture is the apex of cultural
evolution and all others are stages to our achievement or are composed of

Lamarckian evolution: developed by a 19th century Frenchman. Often summed
up {incorrectly} as 'inherence of acquired characteristics'. A social
version of this was used as a rebuttal to the reuse of Darwinian evolution
in Anthropology in the 1950's and 1960's. Parts of the social version of
this show up even today.

Darwinian evolution: Born out of the part of the Progressive evolution
model this theory added recombination and mutation, coupled with natural
selection, which allowed a species to gradually change to better exploit
it's current environment. The social version of this was a more refined
version of the Progressive model and is called 'Social Darwinism'. The
basic idea was that since Darwinian theory operate on hominoids up to the
genius Homo, then it also applied at a SOCIAL level as well as the
biological one.
This was used as bridge between biological and social evolution in many
different ways by many groups. The US used this bridge in the 1950's and
mid 1960's as an unified theory of evolution. The United States dropped
this unified theory idea way as too unworkable and too progressivistic by
the late 1960's, though it is still used in other parts of the world

Lysenko Evolution: Derived from the 'inherence of acquired
characteristics' misinterpretation of Lamarckian evolution by a Russian
biologist during the
Stalinist period. Regarded as a pseudo-science since the notion that
acquired characteristics (eg: bigger muscles from exercising) can be
incorporated into the genome by normal means has not been demonstrated by
serious biologists.

Punctuated Equilibrium Evolution: This theory blends elements of several
theories into a whole. In it there are long periods of slow (Darwinian)
evolution mixed with short periods when much greater variation occurs
(aspects of Lamarckian evolution). Frequent environmental stress (eg, in
an animal out of it's ecological niche), may suppress the mechanisms which
repair many mutations (such as thymidine dimers).
More complex versions of this add in parts of Quantum and Chaos Theory.
These versions state that the model can resembling different types of
evolution depending on who (Quantum Theory) and when (Chaos Theory) the
process is observed. These more complex versions are more commonly used
in cultural evolution and try to explain the interactions of culture,
environment, trade, etc in addition the fact that two different
anthropologists can observe the same culture at the same time and come up
with two radically different models.

Please note that modern evolutionists do NOT use Darwinian evolution any
more than physists use Newtonian physics. We teach our kids these models
because they are the easiest to _show_ to the kids rather than the more
accurate {but also more difficult to understand} Einstienian physics and
Punctuated Equilibrium Evolution models.

Binford, L.R.
1972 "Some Comments on Historical versus Processual Archaeology"
_An Archaeological Perspective_

Burke, James
1985 _Day the Universe Changed_ (London Writers Ltd.)

Cole, John R.
1980 "Cult Archaeology and Unscientific Method and Theory"
_Advances in Archaeological Methods and Theory, Vol 3_ pp 1-33

Dunnell, Robert C.
1986 "Methodological Issues in Americanist Artifact Classification"
_Advances in Archaeological Method and Theory_ vol 9.pp. 149-207

Gleck, James
1987 _Chaos_ (Penguin Books)

Schiffer, M.B.
1988 "The Structure of Archaeological Theory"
_American Antiquity_ 53(3) pp 461-485

Trigger, Bruce G.
1989 _A History of Archaeological Thought_ (Cambridge University Press)

Zurav, Gary
1979 _The Dancing Wu Li Masters_ (Bantam New Age)

and several other references now forgotten.