Proposed California Science Framework: An Open Letter to Education Superintendent Bill Honig
Dear Superintendent Honig:
The recently proposed "Nature of Science" statement1 in the Science Curriculum Framework for California Public Schools represents an appalling imposition of the religion of evolutionary humanism upon our public school system and will be deeply resented and opposed by a very large number of concerned parents and other citizens if adopted. There is much in the proposed Science Framework, of course, with which we agree. However, there are two vitally important assertions in it which are totally false and which we must in good conscience oppose. These two false premises are: (1) evolution is non-religious, even though its proponents admit that it injures the religious beliefs of what they consider an insignificant group of fundamentalists; (2) evolution is an established scientific fact which should therefore serve as the basic framework for all the sciences. These two assumptions are not only blatantly stated as facts in the proposed Framework but are arrogantly and offensively demanded, yet with no evidence whatever offered of their validity. The fact is that both are actually falsified by the real evidence, as will be outlined in the two following sections.
Belief in creation, as opposed to evolution, is shared by the conservative wings of all Christian denominations, as well as those in Judaism and Islam - not merely by an insignificant fundamentalist fringe cult. The 30 ICR staff members, for example, belong to at least 15 different churches in 12 or more different denominations. As another example, the majority of the churches in America's largest Protestant denomination (Southern Baptist) are committed to creationism. Numerous local and national polls (Associated Press 1981, Gallup 1982, and many others) have shown again and again that a least half of the American population are creationists (over 40% even believe in recent creation) and that over 85% want creationism to be included as a viable alternative in science curricula. Polls of attorneys, school board members, and even biology teachers likewise reflect strong support for at least a two-model approach. Your proposed Science Framework is certain to be resented and opposed by many, many people, in California and everywhere else.
Furthermore, to assert blandly that creationism favors one religious group while evolution is neutral is absurd. Evolution, in one form or another, is the basis of many more religions than is creationism. Not only liberal elements in Christendom, but also Buddhism, Confucianism; Taoism, Hinduism and the many New-Age cults are structured around the concept of an infinitely old, continuously evolving cosmos. All of these vigorously oppose the concept of special creation implicit in orthodox Christianity. The secular religions of Atheism, Humanism, Communism, Nazism and Social Darwinism are also based on evolution. Evolutionism destroys the integrity of the Bible and of Jesus Christ Himself, since both unequivocally teach the truth of special, supernatural creation. William Provine, one of the nation's top evolutionary scientist/historians, professor at Cornell University, has recently written as follows:
Of course it is still possible to believe in both modem evolutionary biology and a purposive force, even the Judaeo-Christian God. One can suppose that God started the whole universe or works through the laws of nature (or both). But this view of God is also worthless. (Such a god) does nothing whatever that is detectable. . .Yet prominent atheistic or agnostic scientists2 publicly deny that there is any conflict between science and religion. Rather than simple intellectual dishonesty, this position is pragmatic. In the United States, elected members of Congress all proclaim to be religious. Many scientists believe that funding for science might suffer if the atheistic implications of science were widely understood. (Academe, January/February 1987), p.51.
Evolution effectively destroys the teachings of any Bible-centered religion, including the Ten Commandments and the authority of Christ and His apostles. This is no light matter, especially when implemented in the name of the "science" of evolution.
If anything, it is even more unwarranted to insist - completely without evidence - that evolution is a scientific fact, with scientific creationism patronizingly dismissed as equivalent to astrology and flat-earthism. The formulators of your Science Framework have apparently not read - or at least not answered - any of the scores of books now available on the scientific basis of creationism and the unscientific character of evolutionism, at least most of which were written by men with scientific credentials fully comparable to those of your evolutionist advisors. In a brief paper such as this, we can only list a very few of the facts which you - as a respected educator, elected to a position with grave responsibility to all citizens - should be willing to consider.
(1) Science was founded and developed largely by creationists (Newton, Kepler, Galileo, Boyle, Pascal, Pasteur, Ray, Maxwell, etc.). who opposed the forms of evolution current in their times. Such scientists would not even be allowed to teach science in the schools subservient to your proposed Framework! The founding fathers of our country and all of our first schools were also creationist in belief.
(2) There are thousands of creationist scientists today, with science degrees from accredited schools. There are over 1000 scientists, with post-graduate science degrees, who are or have been members of the Creation Research Society alone. The staff and board members of our Institute for Creation Research include some 30 scientists with terminal degrees in their science fields from at least 25 different accredited universities - such as Harvard, Berkeley, Minnesota, Penn State, Oklahoma, Toronto, UCLA, and many others.
(3) Evolution is unscientific by virtue of the fact that no one has ever observed it in action, or knows how it is accomplished. Variations, recombinations, and mutations are facts of observation, but never speciation! Colin Patterson, leading evolutionist at the British Museum, has acknowledged that "no one has ever produced a species by mechanisms of natural selection" (BBC Interview, Match 4, 1982). Keith Thomson, Professor of Biology and Dean of the Graduate School at Yale, laments that speciation itself is still, 130 years after Darwin supposedly solved the problem, "the central mystery" of evolutionary biology American Scientist, 1982, p.529).
(4) An important scientific, philosophical, and logical flaw in the proposed Science Framework is the inability to distinguish between processes which occur in the present, and, as such, can be observed, replicated, and potentially falsified (such as the law of gravity), and processes which occurred in the past (such as evolution or creation) which were not observed, and which cannot be tested.
(5) Out of the billions of fossils in the rocks of the earth, not one true transitional form, with transitional structures (e.g., half-developed hearts, scales becoming feathers) has ever been found. A top paleontologist, James Valentine, of U.C. Santa Barbara, has recently said: "If ever we were to expect to find ancestors to or intermediates between higher taxa, it would be in the rocks of late Precambrian or Ordovician times, when the bulk of the world's higher animal taxa evolved. Yet transitional alliances are unknown or unconfirmed for any of the phyla or classes appearing then" (Development as An Evolutionary Process, Alan Lias Inc., 1987, p.84).
(6) The reason why no evidence of evolution is ever seen either in the processes of the present or the records of the past is evidently because genuine vertically upward evolution is impossible. Natural processes cannot generate more complex organisms from simpler ones; unless the latter have been pre-programmed to do this (as in the genetic code, which directs an embryo upward to adulthood). Evolution has no such code, proceeding only by time and chance, nor does it have any mechanism to convert the sun's energy (on which alone it must draw) into upward evolutionary transmutation of either an individual species or the whole biosphere. Without such a program or energy conversion mechanism, the universal law of increasing entropy (which has never been observed to fail) specifies a net ultimate decay in any system, whether open or closed.
(7) The old "evidences" (old even in Darwin's day) for evolution, such as vestigial organs and embryonic recapitulation, have long been utterly discredited. Gould has recently acknowledged that such things as similarities and adaptations are at least as strong support for common design as for common ancestry. He says, in fact, that the main evidence now for evolution lies in such "imperfections" as the panda's thumb (Natural History, January 1987, p.14). Even if valid, however, this is poor evidence, illustrating only the decay principle in nature, rather than any upward evolution.
(8) All of the above scientific deficiencies in evolutionism are actually positive evidences for creation. The stability of present taxa, with gaps between them, the ubiquitous absence of transitional fossils, the law of increasing entropy, the similarities of structures for similar functions in different creatures - all are direct predictions from the creation model of origins. The evidences all fit creation!
(9) Neither creation nor evolution is scientifically demonstrable, since neither can be reproduced experimentally. Therefore, both should be taught as alternative models of origins, either of which must be accepted finally by faith. Creationism, however, is a reasonable faith, based on the evidence. Evolutionism is an irrational faith, based on naturalistic premises and exercised in spite of all the evidence against it. Please note how inconsistent it is for your writers to declaim against dogmatism and then immediately to assert dogmatically that evolution is a proved fact of science!
(10) Creationism can be taught in public schools on a strictly scientific basis, without reference to the Bible (six creation days, Ussher chronology, Adam and Eve, the Noahic flood, etc.). Creationism is compatible with the Bible (just as evolutionism is with Buddhism, Taoism and Atheism), but its scientific evidences can be taught in dependently of the Bible or any religious implications.
On the basis of the above considerations, Dr. Honig, as well as much more evidence that could be presented if space and time permitted, we urge you to re-work this proposed Science Framework, giving fair treatment to all the scientific arguments, pro and con, for both models of origins. This is the only right thing to do, especially in America.
Science Faculty and Staff, Institute for Creation Research
(Dr. Henry M. Morris, Founder and President Emeritus)
1 Sub-Final Draft, "The Nature of Science," California Science Curriculum Framework Committee for K-12 Science, California State Department of Education, October 1988.
2 In context, Dr. Provine is here referring to the widely distributed anticreationist diatribe by the National Academy of Sciences, entitled Science and Creationism, which makes this false assertion. The proposed Framework cites this booklet in support of its dogmatic position.
Cite this article: Various Authors. 1988. Proposed California Science Framework: An Open Letter to Education Superintendent Bill Honig. Acts & Facts. 17 (12).