Where is the evidence?

Published April 7th, 2013 by Bobby Henderson

Here’s a video that has been making the rounds.   Richard Dawkins shows great patience in interviewing Creationist Wendy Wright.  I find it painful to watch but also fascinating.

741 Responses to “Where is the evidence?”

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  1. Tom says:

    I’m not sure if it’s just my personal distaste for creationists…..but does anyone else find Wendy laughing every time or almost every time Richard offers an intelligible answer well….a bit f**king annoying. She comes out with some right nonsense “does a person have a soul” an he doesn’t laugh at her, he respectively listens to her views an they are far more laughable than his.

    • Fagioli says:

      Indubitubidubitally, she be One of Phil’s finest creations.

      • Fagioli says:

        Delete “indubi….,” insert “Aaargh!” Sorry.

    • Joseph says:

      you can see arrogance and ignorance in each nervous laugh.

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  3. Brian Terry says:

    I don’t know how he does it. I have watched Richard Dawkins in many an interview, many a TV program and many a debate. He never loses his temper, he has calm and reasoned arguments and still they don’t see the point. Avoiding the question of lack of evidence of intelligent design seems all too common. A pity at least one of these people, all of whom appear intelligent and free thinking on the surface will not accept the simplest argument of all “go to your museum and look at the evidence, it is presented to you there”. Man has the patience of a saint! Are there any noodly saints yet?

    • TheFewTheProudTheMarinara says:

      People want comfort, not facts. Perhaps if children had science classes BEFORE years of indoctrination?

      • Apprentice Frederic says:

        ARRRRRight-O! But, of course, a good start would be to keep indoctrination (check out Vitter!) out of science classes.

        • TheFewtheProudtheMarinara says:

          You have to brainwa.. religiously train the youngsters early. Imagine approaching someone in their 20s who’d never heard of god and trying to dispel their belief in evolution, replacing it with tales from the BuyBull or Koran. They’d be looking over your shoulder for the men in white suits, holding the straight-jacket you’d slipped out of.

        • Apprentice Frederic says:

          (* makes beebleberries *)

      • X Heathen says:

        Facts give me comfort

  4. Clarissa says:

    I, as a seventh grader know more about genetic variation then she does. How many times does she say “where is the evidence”, “back up”, “uhm”, and “ha”? She wants to teach us the distorted evidence and leave us students to draw twisted conclusion. You can see both Wright and Dawkin laying traps and avoiding them. I find it offensive that she thinks that atheists don’t respect other human beings. What does community and politics have anything to do with biological. Evolution is an uncontested theory among scientists. She obviously does not know the definition of a scientific theory. Evolution is like gravity. She wonders why she can’t get research grants. Wright does not have a degree or has not studied science in college, therefore she is not a scientist. Then again, evolution does not care whether we believe in it, it simply is there. Several teachers at my school are creationists. Its annoying when they slip christian values and veiled anti-evolution materials into class. Some of the creationist students at school are more open minded. What, did you think 13 year olds only think about how to skip class and get away with no homework?

    • Keith says:

      Clarissa, I am glad there are people like you in primary school (or whatever you call it these days). Since you evidently have your wits about you I was wondering if you ever challenge what your creationist teachers are doing when they slip one under the radar. Do they do this in science classes? If they do it seems to me that what they are doing is not only immoral put possibly illegal. (I am assuming, possibly incorrectly, that you live in the USA.)

      • Clarissa says:

        Yes, I live in the US. My school has a large population of atheistic children who realize when teachers are doing this which promptly causes debates and imitations to spring up (at least among the honors classes.) Luckily my school is not in one of the states who definitely have creationist problems. Creationist teachers are a minority. However, I do not question these teachers during class, as this is not smart for my grade. A lot of people do not realize the extent of the influence teachers have on students and their grades. Oh well.

        • Keith says:

          OK. Thank you for replying to that, Clarissa. I suppose that as long it doesn’t interfere with your future prospects you will have to suffer in silence. The whole idea that teachers can, in essence, blackmail you into not challenging the presentation of religion as science annoys me, as I’m sure it does you.

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  6. bill freedman says:

    so the main argument for creationists (as she has stated) is a moral objection against evolution vs. the scientific evidence for evolution.

    • Keith says:

      I used to have a friend who refused to accept that man evolved from “ape” simply because it made him feel, in esssence, “dirty”. It was analogous, I suppose, to someone denying that his parents ever had sex.

      • William says:

        Ummmm…..ape and man supposedly came from a common ancestor.

        • Keith says:

          Essentially we are still apes. We belong to the same family as chimps, bonobos, ourangutans etc. The major things that separate us from them are an ability to annihilate everything we come across and a belief that because we can make television sets we are superior to them.
          Actually, our cladistic cousins can be rather nasty to each other.

      • Rev. Wulff says:

        Keith, and yet he presumably had no problems with man being made *of* dirt?

        • Keith says:

          Well, presumably god washed the dirt thoroughly before using it.

    • Pete Byrdie says:

      To be fair to her, that atheism and evolution offer no moral framework, and worse that evolution is easily corrupted to support atrocity, is a point that needs making. It has absolutely no bearing on empirical reasoning, and to admit it as a motivation for developing a world view seems imbecilic, but that’s her choice.

      I’ve encountered a number of Dawkins’ supporters on the internet in the last few years, and a couple in real life, and they rely far too heavily on the claim that religious belief promotes violence. Although Dawkins makes no such claim in this video, he has tried hard to fortify such a connection in his books and TV appearances. In the short term, this is dangerous to the atheist community because it’s so easily confused. Throughout all of human history, almost every person who has ever lived has been religious. In most cases, that doesn’t mean that they have gone about their lives essentially as freethinking humans in a secular world but gone to a church or temple every now and then. For most, it has meant numinosity is present in their perception of everything in the world, and much of their activity has in some way contained ritual. That so much war, discrimination and violence is connected with religion could as easily be because people tend to associate with communities, demographics, with shared spiritual and political views as well as family ties. Even religions which preach peace have been corrupted to violence, and that’s telling. Evolution has no moral message, but has already been corrupted to justify atrocity, even in a world which is still almost entirely a religious one. That is the long term danger of attributing too much weight to the connection between faith and atrocity. Atheists may be perfectly capable of committing similar acts, with no nagging concerns about their final fates to stay their hands. Much work still needs to be done to determine why a people lose empathy for another people, and the already emotionally charged field of science vs faith, atheism vs theism is not the place to search for objectivity on this.

      Obviously, what Wendy Wright means by “teach the controversy” is “teach any mistaken past assumption, any dispute about the processes of evolution and any holes in current knowledge as evidence that evolution is wrong”. She’s right that such information is often kept out of the classroom. That’s because none of these things have any bearing on the validity of evolution, although they may well be useful in teaching about the often circuitous methods of scientific discovery. (Superscience is far more direct, therefore much better.) There is, of course, a vast amount of evidence for evolution, or it would never have developed from the work of scientists who were raised in religious communities, and often experienced internal conflict and familial friction when doubting their faith. In spite of the fossil record being woefully incomplete, intermediacy appears everywhere within it. It appears in living species, too, which have been blessedly free from competition in environments which have changed little, or which have been seperated from their shared ancestors, and so have retained ancient features, or evolved along parallel paths. However, I welcome those who look for faults with evidence, whatever their motivations, because through human failing or scientific practicality, it is true that science often dismisses or ignores inconvenient evidence, and that has occasionally led to stagnation in the progress of some areas of science when great leaps could have been made earlier. In defending science against the likes of Wendy Wright, we should keep going back to the evidence, not to convince her, but to be sure she hasn’t raised valid points that could teach us something new.

      • steve e abraham says:

        Somehow, everyone seems to think that if one is an “evolutionist”, that person denies everything in the bible. That is not so. Even an atheist, an arrogant one at that, can claim that there are many good and wholesome moral principles in the bible. There are many that are not. There is no reason that a person who is on the side of evolution cannot use the good and wholesome morals of the bible as a template or moral coe to live by. He easily can do this, without using the concept of god. He does not even have to deny the concept of god, just agree to not use it, and extrapolate the good morality of the bible. As critical, thinking human beings, we do not have to accept that a god asked Abraham to sacrifice his son, or try to find a reason for why the bible seems to feel that slavery is ok. If current bible enthusiasts can avoid considering slavery in the bible, can’t we use the same method to avoid the concept of god? Take the “holy” out of the bible, what do we have? Mostly a really nice moral way of living. Hah…. so there you go.

  7. Robert Norris says:

    How can this women be so blatantly ignorant?! She uses parts of the theory to support her beliefs but then denies the rest of it!! Evolution is not about emotions or the choices you make on how to treat people, it’s an undeniable fact that can not be refuted by a person who can smile for an hour and act like an air head!! Show me the evidence of your “creator”??? Don’t tell me second hand stories involving a man that none of the writers had even met, a book that repressed women and the poor for thousands of years and still does, show ME the factual evidence of a “god”!!! This woman demands evidence of evolution when there is more toward the theory of evolution than there has EVER been about “god” in our museums.

    • Pete Byrdie says:

      Indeed, she is holding evolution answerable to a far greater density of evidence than creationism of one sort or another. That’s because she’s using supernatural science, or superscience, which seeks and values evidence according to its support for a predetermined conclusion. If only she could feel the touch of His Noodly Appendage, what a Pastafarian ambassador she would make!

  8. steve e abraham says:

    I watched this video and I was surprised Richard Dawkins forgot to use a great retort to a big question that was asked. If this creationist questions what we can use to base our morals on , using eugenics etc. as examples of poor use of Evolution theory……….well…. then we can answer….. if the bible has sttod the test of times as being a guide for moral action, we can always use the morals of the bible as our basis. We just would not need to use the idea of god. We don’t have to deny or accept god’s existence, we just don’t have to use this idea. Just extrapolate the great morals and concepts of the bible. Leave out any reference to god. What does “creation” have to do with morality anyway? Whether one believes in creationism or evolution has no bearing on using the morality of the Bible. There is no law in the universe that says that we cannot base our morality on the bible without using the concept of god in the bible. ………… what a great idea and answer to creationists claim that evolution can lead to cruelty. Neither evolution nor creationism leads to cruelty, it is the people who use deluded ideas that cause affliction to mankind.

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