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May 14, 2006

Scotland 1, Australia 0

The Scotsman’s answer to Ali G interviews Australia’s answer to Dr. Dino:

JOHN Mackay, a hitherto unknown creationist, has evolved into a bit of a minor celebrity in recent weeks, which may be something of a concern to a man whose adult life has been dedicated to dismissing all things Darwinian.
As international director of the Australia-based Creation Research, he has visited Britain on lecture tours almost every year since 1987, arguing that the world was, as the Bible says, created in six days, and in doing so stirring up, if not widespread apathy, then, at the very least, general indifference.
… So to what does Mackay attribute his new found popularity? Over the phone from his UK headquarters, he tells me it’s partly those critics, partly the “moral abyss”, which has something to do with homosexuality and God creating Adam and Eve, but not Adam and Bruce, and a lot to do with the popularity of the newfangled theory of intelligent design.
…So, what does he make of the alternative theory of unintelligent design? “You mean Richard Dawkins and the selfish gene?” he says. Nope. I mean the theory that the world was created by a supreme being, but that the design was pretty poor, and the designer, therefore, a bit thick.
For example, why create the dodo, a giant flightless bird of no purpose, whose extinction has caused no harm to the supposedly fragile eco-system of our planet?
“The dodo was just a giant pigeon,” says Mackay. Exactly. What better proof of a daft designer do you need. Normal pigeons are bad enough, rats with wings, why invent a giant one?
… What about stoats and weasels? Why invent two animals which no normal people can tell apart? An intelligent designer would have made it obvious, made one purple, or just written stoat or weasel on their foreheads.
Mackay has an answer for this too. It’s our fault, not the creator’s. The only reason we get mixed up is because we started naming them.
… What about the human appendix? Very useful, apparently. Good for the immune system. True it can be removed without harm, but only because the creator put in a couple of back-up systems.
But this begs two further questions. Why design a top of the range model that is so dim it can’t work out which of its own bits are useful, and which aren’t?

I guess that’s something evolution will have to take care of.

Posted by Stephen at 12:09 AM in Evolution | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

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