Why you shouldn't debate creationists: The 1870 version.

Alfred Wallace vs The Flat Earthers.

Incl. intelligent design, belief in divine creation

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Why you shouldn't debate creationists: The 1870 version.

#1  Postby Shrunk » Jan 14, 2015 3:49 pm

The Sensuous Curmudgeon has linked to this excellent article from Scientific American. It's interesting to notice how little the tactics employed by science denying Biblical literalists have changed over the centuries:

In January of 1870, Alfred Russel Wallace found himself on a collision-course with a group of creationists who fervently believed the earth is flat. The father of biogeography, co-discoverer of the theory of evolution by natural selection, seems an unlikely sort to be mixed in with religious fanatics on a question of geography settled since the 3rd century BC. Why was such a venerable 19th century man of science accepting wagers from flat-earthers regarding the shape of our planet?

Simply put: It looked like easy money.

Really, ten minutes and a telescope should have done it. Alas, nothing is easy when it comes to creationists, as Wallace would learn to his sorrow....

Poor Wallace...thought that (flat-earth proponent John) Hampden only needed to be shown some proof in order to accept the plain fact that the earth is round. He knew nothing of Hampden and his ilk, or he may never have accepted the wager. But in addition to wanting to win a cool £500, he believed “that a practical demonstration would be more convincing than the ridicule with which such views are usually met.” He was about to find out that practical demonstrations have absolutely no effect on these truest of true believers....


Plus ca change....
"A community is infinitely more brutalised by the habitual employment of punishment than it is by the occasional occurrence of crime." -Oscar Wilde
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Re: Why you shouldn't debate creationists: The 1870 version.

#2  Postby Sendraks » Jan 14, 2015 3:55 pm

Edifying and quite sad really.
"One of the great tragedies of mankind is that morality has been hijacked by religion." - Arthur C Clarke

"'Science doesn't know everything' - Well science knows it doesn't know everything, otherwise it'd stop" - Dara O'Brian
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Re: Why you shouldn't debate creationists: The 1870 version.

#3  Postby TopCat » Jan 14, 2015 4:20 pm

Mazeballs.
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