Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Darwin said it was absurd to think the eye evolved!

I'm currently reading Origin of Species in preparation for my upcoming trip to the Galapagos islands. I've made it to page 227, which, in the version I have, contains the famous quote which creationists often take to suggest that Darwin himself didn't even believe his own theory could explain the origin of the eye. Here is the quote as often cited by creationist twits:

"To suppose that the eye, with all its inimitable contrivances for adjusting the focus to different distances, for admitting different amounts of light, and for the correction of spherical and chromatic aberration, could have been formed by natural selection, seems, I freely confess, absurd in the highest possible degree."

What the misinformed/dishonest jackasses will not do, in an attempt to fool somebody who has not read the book, is to continue the quote.....

"When it was first said that the sun stood still and the world turned round, the common sense of mankind declared the doctrine false; but the old saying of Vox populi, vox Dei ["the voice of the people is the voice of God "], as every philosopher knows, cannot be trusted in science. Reason tells me, that if numerous gradations from a simple and imperfect eye to one complex and perfect can be shown to exist, each grade being useful to its possessor, as is certain the case; if further, the eye ever varies and the variations be inherited, as is likewise certainly the case; and if such variations should be useful to any animal under changing conditions of life, then the difficulty of believing that a perfect and complex eye could be formed by natural selection, should not be considered as subversive of the theory. "

To think that Darwin would shoot down his own theory within the book in which he presents it to the world, is ridiculous! What is wrong with these creationist morons?

Here are 3 examples of creationists taking (or attempting to take) this quote to serve their own purposes, without (voluntarily) giving the rest of the paragraph. One of these men will be recognised as an especially dishonest cretin who you've probably heard of, Kent Hovind. Good thing he's in prison! Ha!

Example #1: Click here. Note the quote at the top of the page.

Example #2: Click here. A catalogue of some of Kent Hovind's attempts to use the quote to convince others that evolution is not valid.

Example #3: This fuckwit called in to an atheist TV program (which I'll properly introduce in another post another time), and tried to use it to bolster his case. Did it work out for him? Not so much. This video is from 9 days ago as of this posting, so it appears that people still haven't figured it out. (The jester hat the guy is wearing is a long story explained in the first half hour or so of the show, which is not included in this video).

Do creationists really wonder why people laugh at them? Oh! That gives me an idea for one of my next posts!

1 comment:

tom sheepandgoats said...

Depends on how you use Darwin's "eye" quote. If you use it to suggest he doesn't believe his own theory, that's dishonest. But if you use his quote to show he acknowledges some pretty high hurdles exist in proving his theory.....well, what's wrong with that?

You may appreciate this post from a creation person who cites Darwin and goes on the quote his suceeding words....the ones which are not usually quoted.