Atheist Son Writes… This is evolution. What do you believe?

Dear mum,

I haven’t received any evidence against evolution or for creationism so thought I’d remind you. You sounded so extremely confident on the phone that evolution by natural selection is, and I quote you, “obviously not true”, that I must admit I am very excited to hear your evidence!

I understand this is not your area of expertise and so encourage you to speak with anyone who may know more, and read books on the topic, etc and then write to me. However, if you do this then I would ask that both of us avoid blindly using arguments parrot fashion from books or other people without first completely understanding what is being said! Don’t take too long to reply though as we have a lot to cover!

Before we start, it would be very helpful to know exactly what it is you DO believe. I will begin by defining, in summary, the consensus view of science, and my own view. This way we can both be be very clear and not just make straw-man arguments 🙂

It is my view that all life on Earth originated from a single simple chemical source capable of reproduction, which through a gradual process of competition and natural selection, over multiple generations for the last 3 billion years, resulted in an explosion in complex life adapted to fill almost every ecological niche on the planet. This organic process of evolution by natural selection continues now in every species of animal, plant, fungi, bacteria and virus at a rate more or less proportional to the rate of generational reproduction. A prediction of this is that every species on the planet is connected with, and a cousin to, every other species; humans are cousins of modern day chimpanzees, which are cousins of rats, which are cousins of fish, and so on and so on.

Okay, I look forward to hearing your statement soon!

Before I hand over to you I just want to address one other more thing. On the phone you claimed that science is somehow dogmatic and therefore I would be unwilling to change my mind about subjects like evolution. Creationists would have you think this however the reality is quite the contrary. Scientists are rewarded more for finding new things, not for supporting established principles. Thus, they tend to look more for novelties and for results that would overturn common beliefs. If a scientist found evidence that falsified evolution, he or she would be guaranteed world prestige and fame. I really hope you are right and can reveal to me incontrovertible evidence for creationism since it will make me an extremely rich and famous man! I will of course share the bounty 😉

Creationists are under far more pressure than scientists. Since their entire world view is threatened by finding disconfirming evidence, they are very highly motivated not to admit it. Many creationists have taken oaths saying that no evidence could change their dogma (AIG). I know of several creationists that studied science not to find the truth, but to destroy Darwinism (e.g., Jon Wells.). The commitment to established dogma is pretty well monopolized by creationists.

I look forward to a sincere and rational discussion of the evidence, avoiding vague assertions and wishful thinking, and sticking to empirical facts and observable reality.

The floor is yours….

Your loving son,


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