Darwin Day – When is it?
February 12 marks Darwin Day, when humanists around the globe celebrate the anniversary of the birth of Charles Darwin, the pioneer of the modern form of the theory of evolution by means of natural selection, in 1809 in Shrewsbury. While evolution was not an original idea with Darwin (the ancient Greeks believed in a form of evolution and even Darwin’s grandfather had formulated his own view of naturalistic evolution), Darwin is widely regarded as the key populariser of ‘molecules-to-man’ evolution. November 22 marks the anniversary of the publication of his book, The Origin, in 1859.
Various events are conducted on Darwin Day around the world. They have included dinner parties with special recipes for primordial soup, protests with school boards, workshops, and literature distribution by people in ape costumes. Darwin’s birthplace, Shrewsbury, began a ‘Darwin Festival’ in 2003 which now lasts the full month of February.
Darwin Day – The agenda
An examination of the ‘Darwin Day’ website reveals that the people behind the international celebration are far more interested in promoting a naturalistic worldview than they are a scientifically feasible model of origins.
While the humanists make the claim that "the Celebration itself…does not promote religion or non-religion and especially not anti-religion", and as wikipedia notes, "The day is used to highlight Darwin’s contribution to science and to promote science in general," a couple of points are somewhat revealing. There exists no Einstein day, nor a Newton day, nor a Copernicus Day, nor a Galileo Day. All of these men were brilliant scientists, whose contribution to our understanding of reality is invaluable. Yet if Darwin Day is about promoting science as opposed to a materialistic ideology or dogma, why is he the only scientist for whom we have a yearly commemoration? Moreover, the sponsors for the movement include secular humanistic organisations such as the Skeptic Society and the Freedom from Religion Foundation.
Darwin Day – Tribute to a failed paradigm
The important prediction that Darwin’s theory makes is that organisms will become more complex through an incremental modification. This ought to be discernable in the fossil record, but Darwin at the time admitted that it did not show the intermediates that his theory required. Moreover, many of his contemporaries pointed out that the overall and consistent pattern of the fossil record is that new groups of animal appear abruptly. This has been confirmed by the numerous fossils unearthed since then.
Darwin also recognized that his theory implied not only the gradual development of organisms, but also of their organs. In chapter 6 of his book The Origin, he provided this test of his theory, as a ground on which it could be falsified:
“If it could be demonstrated that any complex organ existed, which could not possibly have been formed by numerous, successive, slight modifications, my theory would absolutely break down.”
Thus, the central failing of Darwinism is that it cannot account for the irreducible complexity of molecular biology. This shows itself not only at the molecular level, but also in the origin of life, of eukaryotic cells, sex, and the abrupt appearance of new forms in the fossil record -- all of which clearly run contrary to the overall Darwinian paradigm.
So why is Darwin’s theory so widely held today among the scientific community? In large part, it has to do with the fact that the theory does explain certain data; and, indeed, for some facts, notably those relating to the operation of natural selection at the morphological level, it is most likely the correct explanation. However, scientists entrenched in a paradigm are inclined to grant too much weight to what a theory does explain, mistakenly seeing this as vindication, whilst insufficient weight is given to those facts that seem to militate against the overall thesis. But the test of a scientific theory is not those observations that support it, but the significance that should be attached to those that contradict it. After all, a common complaint from proponents of evolution is that intelligent design is not scientific because it is not falsifiable, whereas the theory of evolution is. The irony is that the adherents of Darwinism are themselves often unwilling to subject the theory of evolution to proper scientific testing and risk falsification of the theory. We know today that there are multiple critical facts which strike hard blows at the Darwinian worldview. These are not merely trivial problems or anomalies that are likely to be solved, but fundamental matters that appear to be without prospect of solution. Learn More!