Need help with a Creationist

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avatarxprime
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Need help with a Creationist

Post by avatarxprime » 2008-04-04 10:43pm

I'm debating this guy who is arguing that layman on both sides (Evolutionists and Creationists) are the same. His point is that since they are layman they are essentially placing their faith in something without having empirical evidence they themselves have experienced. I've tried arguing how you don't need to be an expert to experience the evidence, and used the story of Darwin and the Captain of the Beagle to try and illustrate my point, but it's like nothing gets through. Any ideas?

Here's his latest statement:
But still you're just arguing my "relevant" point. Lest i assume you're committing ignoratio elenchi, please be careful not to lose sight of the one and only issue at hand. The only issue I wish to raise: whether the layman evolutionist is inherently the same as the layman creationist by virtue of the fact that they do not experience (in many cases, do not have an expert understanding of) the evidence presented to them directly. By experiencing the evidence and by an empirical account I mean seeing, touching, hearing the actual specimens (articles, fossils, fetuses etc.)
It's a shame that you should get confused and miss the most critical point of my argument: that the layman evolutionist made his judgment not by an empirical account, as defined, but by something else. Something else. Not empirical account. Something else other than empirical account.
I may have suggested "initially" that it may be due to the captain's judgment of Darwin's credibility and you successfully argued it to be due to "reasonableness" of Darwin's explanation. Eitherway, it still stands that faith and reasonableness do not qualify as experiential account of the evidence. In other words: Something else. Not empirical account. Something else other than empirical account. In fact, it can be argued that it is also faith and "reasonableness of explanation" that persuade creationists.
Ergo, as the layman evolutionist has no claim to empirical knowledge, he has no claim to superiority over (and possibly, difference with) the creationist.

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starslayer
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Post by starslayer » 2008-04-05 02:55am

While he is technically correct, I suppose, he misses the fact that the layman that accepts evolution can empirically verify his thoughts, as the evidence is widely available in museums and universities around the world, whereas the creationist layman cannot empirically verify his version of events at all. Therefore, his final statement is quite wrong, as the evolution-acceptor can easily verify his position, and thus his position is empirically and objectively superior to the creationist's. In other words, this guy's point is irrelevant because of the different options open to the evolution-acceptor and the creationist.

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Post by Scottish Ninja » 2008-04-05 11:56am

His argument boils down to "They haven't seen it personally, so how can they know?", which is, of course, bullshit. As starslayer points out, that stuff is readily accessible in most natural history museums.
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Post by Twoyboy » 2008-04-07 12:03am

Scottish Ninja wrote:His argument boils down to "They haven't seen it personally, so how can they know?", which is, of course, bullshit. As starslayer points out, that stuff is readily accessible in most natural history museums.
Not just that, but the idea that this evidence is verified independently over and over is a fundamental assumption of science, one that is itself verified each time science builds on itself to discover something new.

That is to say, the assumptions that science can be taken on face value is strengthened by the fact that science has provided us with so many technological breakthroughs and the fact that all forms of science from year one to tertiary level and beyond all seem to "mesh" together well. The same assumption made of religion is destroyed by the fact that dogma is rewritten when it becomes unpopular among its constituents and it continually brnaches out into more schools of thought rather than coming together.

Thus, even the layman can look at the works of science and the works of religion and make a relative judgment on which is more likely to be correct.
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Post by Darth Servo » 2008-04-07 12:26am

He is full of shit. People are taught evolution in school with text books which have pictures of the evidence.

There have been enough news stories of fraudulent scientists being discredited to know that the scientific community does not tolerate dishonesty. Of course your typical pinheaded creationist will just use those cases as proof that science is untrustworthy. "If one was a hoax, they all are"
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Post by avatarxprime » 2008-04-08 12:31am

I know, he's trying to hide under discussion of the philosophy of knowledge. Every time I just plainly tell him that the evidence exists (and then follow up with examples) he simply says I'm acting like a Creationist with "blind faith" in the idea of science and ignores my examples. He actually had the never to write the following in a response to me concerning Evolutionary Theory:
On the contrary and on a more pragmatic note, a healthy dose of skepticism has always been critical to the development of science. Developing better models can be a simple matter of taking a second look at assumptions of older ones. (Assumptions that the faithful like you wouldn't bother to investigate.) Critical observation follows naturally from skepticism. In the great scientific enterprise, only seekers have something to find.
He's acting like Evolution is just a hypothesis someone had rather than a full fledged theory. I'm really starting to think it's just not worth my time to continue this little dance with him.

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Post by starslayer » 2008-04-08 01:16am

Don't waste your time at this point. He clearly has not listened to your direct refutations, and is just doing a broken record/wall of ignorance at this point. His latest bullshit quote shows that he has no understanding of evolution or its place in science in the first place, anyways. If you could educate him on this, and have him listen, it might be worth it; however, it doesn't look like he would.

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Post by Darth Servo » 2008-04-08 02:04am

avatarxprime's creationist moron acquaintance wrote:On the contrary and on a more pragmatic note, a healthy dose of skepticism has always been critical to the development of science. Developing better models can be a simple matter of taking a second look at assumptions of older ones. (Assumptions that the faithful like you wouldn't bother to investigate.) Critical observation follows naturally from skepticism. In the great scientific enterprise, only seekers have something to find.
<sigh> Another creationist babbling on and on about "flaws" and "holes" in evolution theory. Why is it that every creationist automatically assumes any gap in our understanding of evolution constitutes proof of creationism? Oh yeah, because they don't HAVE any REAL evidence for creationism.
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