Quotes from leading Evolutionary Scientists & others

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Franklin Harold: "We must concede that there are presently no detailed Darwinian accounts of the evolution of any biochemical or cellular system, only a variety of wishful speculations.”Franklin M. Harold, Professor Emeritus Biochemistry, Colorado State University, "The way of the cell: molecules, organisms and the order of life", Oxford University Press, New York, 2001, p. 205

Andrew Knoll: “We don’t really know how life originated on this planet”. Professor of Biology, Harvard. Knoll, Andrew H., PBS Nova interview, How Did Life Begin? July 1, 2004. R

Paul Davies: "Nobody knows how a mixture of lifeless chemicals spontaneously organized themselves into the first living cell." Evolutionist Professor Davies, Paul, Australian Centre for Astrobiology, Sydney, New Scientist 179(2403):32, 2003

Stephen Jay Gould: “The extreme rarity of transitional forms in the fossil record persists as the trade secret of paleontology.” Stephen Jay Gould, Professor of Geology and Paleontology, Harvard University, "Evolution’s erratic pace, Natural History" 86(5):14, May 1977

J. B. S. Haldane: “If my mental processes are determined wholly by the motions of atoms in my brain, I have no reason to suppose that my beliefs are true . . . and hence I have no reason for supposing my brain to be composed of atoms.” J. B. S. Haldane, Atheist, evolutionary biologist. Haldane, "Possible Worlds", pg 209.

D M S Watson: "...evolution itself, a theory universally accepted not because it can be proved by logically coherent evidence to be true, but because the only alternative, special creation, is clearly incredible. D M S Watson (Jodrell Professor of Zoology and Comparative Anatomy.) "Adaptation," Nature, Vol. 124, 10 August 1929, p. 233. (Note bold emphasis not in original)

Stephen Jay Gould: "The absence of fossil evidence for intermediary stages between major transitions in organic design, indeed our inability, even in our imagination, to construct functional intermediates in many cases, has been a persistent and nagging problem for gradualistic accounts of evolution." Stephen Jay Gould (Professor of Geology and Paleontology, Harvard University), "Is a new and general theory of evolution emerging?" Paleobiology, vol. 6(1), January 1980, p. 127

John Endler: 1. "Natural selection must not be equated with evolution, though the two are intimately related." 2. "However, natural selection does not explain the origin of new variants, only the process of changes in their frequency." John Endler (Anniversary Professor of Animal Behaviour in the School of Psychology at the University of Exeter, England. Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences), "Natural Selection in the Wild", Princeton University Press, 1986, 1. p. 8, & 2. p. 245

Ronald R. West: "Contrary to what most scientists write, the fossil record does not support the Darwinian theory of evolution because it is this theory (there are several) which we use to interpret the fossil record. By doing so we are guilty of circular reasoning if we then say the fossil record supports this theory." Ronald R. West, PhD (paleoecology and geology) (Assistant Professor of Paleobiology at Kansas State University), "Paleoecology and uniformitarianism". Compass, vol. 45, May 1968, p. 216


Michael Ruse: ‘Evolution is promoted by its practitioners as more than mere science. Evolution is promulgated as an ideology, a secular religion—a full-fledged alternative to Christianity, with meaning and morality. I am an ardent evolutionist and an ex-Christian, but I must admit that in this one complaint—and Mr [sic] Gish is but one of many to make it—the literalists are absolutely right. Evolution is a religion. This was true of evolution in the beginning, and it is true of evolution still today. Michael Ruse was professor of philosophy and zoology at the University of Guelph, Canada. Ruse, M., "How evolution became a religion: creationists correct?" National Post, pp. B1,B3,B7 May 13, 2000.

Gerald A Kerkut: "This theory [regarding the common ancestry of all living things] can be called the 'General Theory of Evolution' and the evidence that supports it is not sufficiently strong to allow us to consider it as anything more than a working hypothesis." G A Kerkut, Professor of Physiology and Biochemistry, Dean of Science, Chairman of the School of Biochemical and Physiological Sciences and Head of the Department of Neurophysiology. Kerkut, G.A., "Implications of Evolution", Pergamon, Oxfored, UK, pl 157, 1960.

Fred Hoyle: "The chance that higher life forms might have emerged in this way is comparable with the chance that 'a tornado sweeping through a junk yard might assemble a Boeing 747 from the materials therein'." Sir Fred Hoyle (English astronomer, Professor of Astronomy at Cambridge University), as quoted in "Hoyle on Evolution". Nature, vol. 294, 12 Nov. 1981, p. 105, estimating the chances of the random emergence of even the simplest cell

Steven Jay Gould: “The maintenance of stability within species must be considered as a major evolutionary problem." Stephen Jay Gould, Professor of Geology and Paleontology, Harvard University, Gould, S.J. and Eldredge, N., Punctuated equilibrium comes of age. Nature 366:223–224, 1993. Return to text.

John Reader: "The entire hominid collection known today would barely cover a billiard table, ... the collection is so tantalizingly incomplete, and the specimens themselves often so fragmented and inconclusive, that more can be said about what is missing than about what is present. ...but ever since Darwin's work inspired the notion that fossils linking modern man and extinct ancestor would provide the most convincing proof of human evolution, preconceptions have led evidence by the nose in the study of fossil man." John Reader (photo-journalist and author of "Missing Links"), "Whatever happened to Zinjanthropus?" New Scientist, 26 March 1981, p. 802

Philip Skell: “Darwinian explanations for such things are often too supple: Natural selection makes humans self-centered and aggressive—except when it makes them altruistic and peaceable. Or natural selection produces virile men who eagerly spread their seed—except when it prefers men who are faithful protectors and providers. When an explanation is so supple that it can explain any behavior, it is difficult to test it experimentally, much less use it as a catalyst for scientific discovery" Philip S. Skell, Professor Emeritus of Biochemistry at Pennsylvania State University, member of National Academy of Sciences. "Why Do We Invoke Darwin? Evolutionary theory contributes little to experimental biology", The Scientist 19(16):10, 2005.

Tim White: "A five million-year-old piece of bone that was thought to be a collarbone of a humanlike creature is actually part of a dolphin rib, ...He [Dr. T. White] puts the incident on par with two other embarrassing [sic] faux pas by fossil hunters: Hesperopithecus, the fossil pig's tooth that was cited as evidence of very early man in North America, and Eoanthropus or 'Piltdown Man,' the jaw of an orangutan and the skull of a modern human that were claimed to be the 'earliest Englishman'. The problem with a lot of anthropologists is that they want so much to find a hominid that any scrap of bone becomes a hominid bone." Dr. Tim White (anthropologist, University of California, Berkeley). As quoted by Ian Anderson "Hominoid collarbone exposed as dolphin's rib", in New Scientist, 28 April 1983, p. 199

Robert Lewin: "The Central question...was whether the mechanisms underlying microevolution can be extrapolated to explain the phenomena of macroevolution. At the risk of doing violence to the positions of some of the people at the meeting, the answer can be given as a clear, No." Robert Lewin, reporting in the journal Science, on the November 1980 conference of some of the world's leading evolutionary biologists at the Chicago Field Museum of Natural History. (Note: bold emphasis not in original.) Lewin, R., Evolutionary theory under fire, Science 210(4472):883, 1980

Michael Shallis: “It is no more heretical to say the Universe displays purpose, as Hoyle has done, than to say that it is pointless, as Steven Weinberg has done. Both statements are metaphysical and outside science. Yet it seems that scientists are permitted by their own colleagues to say metaphysical things about lack of purpose and not the reverse. This suggests to me that science, in allowing this metaphysical notion, sees itself as religion and presumably as an atheistic religion (if you can have such a thing).” Shallis, M., Astrophysicist, Oxford University, "In the eye of a storm", New Scientist 101(1393):42–43, 19 January 1984.

Richard Dawkins: "Evolution has been observed. It’s just that it hasn’t been observed while it’s happening." Richard Dawkins, Professor, (Ethologist, Biologist and writer) ‘Battle over evolution’ Bill Moyers interviews Richard Dawkins, Now, 3 December 2004, PBS network

Pierre-Paul Grassé: "We add that it would be all too easy to object that mutations have no evolutionary effect because they are eliminated by natural selection. Lethal mutations (the worst kind) are effectively eliminated, but others persist as alleles. ...Mutants are present within every population, from bacteria to man. There can be no doubt about it. But for the evolutionist, the essential lies elsewhere: in the fact that mutations do not coincide with evolution." Pierre-Paul Grassé (University of Paris and past-President, French Academie des Sciences) in Evolution of Living Organisms, Academic Press, New York, 1977, p. 88

Thomas Nagel: “I speak from experience, being strongly subject to this fear myself: I want atheism to be true and am made uneasy by the fact that some of the most intelligent and well-informed people I know are religious believers. It isn’t just that I don’t believe in God and, naturally, hope that I’m right in my belief. It’s that I hope there is no God! I don’t want there to be a God; I don’t want the universe to be like that. My guess is that this cosmic authority problem is not a rare condition and that it is responsible for much of the scientism and reductionism of our time. One of the tendencies it supports is the ludicrous overuse of evolutionary biology to explain everything about human life, including everything about the human mind …. This is a somewhat ridiculous situation …. [I]t is just as irrational to be influenced in one’s beliefs by the hope that God does not exist as by the hope that God does exist.” Thomas Nagel (Professor of Philosophy and Law at New York University), The Last Word, pp. 130–131, Oxford University Press, 1997. Dr Nagel (1937– )

Robert E. Lee: "Why do geologists and archeologists still spend their scarce money on costly radiocarbon determinations? They do so because occasional dates appear to be useful. While the method cannot be counted on to give good, unequivocal results, the number do impress people, and save them the trouble of thinking excessively. Expressed in what look like precise calendar years, figures seem somehow better ... 'Absolute' dates determined by a laboratory carry a lot of weight, and are extremely helpful in bolstering weak arguments.

"No matter how 'useful' it is, though, the radiocarbon method is still not capable of yielding accurate and reliable results. There are gross discrepancies, the chronology is uneven and relative, and the accepted dates are actually selected dates. This whole bless thing is nothing but 13th-century alchemy, and it all depends upon which funny paper you read." Robert E. Lee, Anthropologist and Archeologist, "Radiocarbon: ages in error". Anthropological Journal of Canada, vol.19(3), 1981, pp.9-29.

J. E. O'Rourks: "The intelligent layman has long suspected circular reasoning in the use of rocks to date fossils and fossils to date rocks. The geologist has never bothered to think of a good reply, feeling that explanations are not worth the trouble as long as the work brings results. This is supposed to be hard-headed pragmatism." J. E. O'Rourks, "Pragmatism versus materialism in stratigraphy". American Journal of Science, vol. 276, January 1976, p. 47

T. N. Tahmisian: "Scientists who go about teaching that evolution is a fact of life are great con-men, and the story they are telling may be the greatest hoax ever. In explaining evolution, we do not have one iota of fact." Dr. T. N. Tahmisian (Atomic Energy Commission, USA) in "The Fresno Bee", August 20, 1959. As quoted by N. J. Mitchell, Evolution and the Emperor's New Clothes, Roydon Publications, UK, 1983, title page. Dr. Tahmisian studied the effects of irradiation on living cells and an expert in radiometric dating.

Niles Eldredge: ‘I admit that an awful lot of that has gotten into the textbooks as though it were true. For instance, the most famous example still on exhibit downstairs (in the American Museum) is the exhibit on horse evolution prepared perhaps 50 years ago. That has been presented as literal truth in textbook after textbook. Now I think that that is lamentable, particularly because the people who propose these kinds of stories themselves may be aware of the speculative nature of some of the stuff. But by the time it filters down to the textbooks, we’ve got science as truth and we’ve got a problem.’ Dr. Niles Eldredge, curator at the American Museum of Natural History, in a recorded interview with Luther Sunderland, published in Darwin’s Enigma: Fossils and Other Problems, Master Books, El Cajon, California, USA.

Stephen Jay Gould: "The essence of Darwinism lies in a single phrase: natural selection is the creative force of evolutionary change. No one denies that natural selection will play a negative role in eliminating the unfit. Darwinian theories require that it create the fit as well." Stephen Jay Gould, Professor of Geology and Paleontology, Harvard University, "The return of hopeful monsters". Natural History, vol. LXXXVI(6), June-Jule 1977, p. 28

Colin Patterson: Gould [Stephen J.] and the American Museum people are hard to contradict when they say there are no transitional fossils. … You say that I should at least “show a photo of the fossil from which each type of organism was derived.” I will lay it on the line—there is not one such fossil for which one could make a watertight argument. Dr Colin Patterson, was senior paleontologist (fossil expert) at British Museum of Natural History. Sunderland, L., Darwin’s Enigma, Master Books, Arkansas, USA, pp. 101–102, 1998. Patterson’s letter was written in 1979

Jerome Lejeune: "We have no acceptable theory of evolution at the present time. There is none; and I cannot accept the theory that I teach to my students each year. Let me explain. I teach the synthetic theory known as the neo-Darwinian one, for one reason only; not because it’s good, we know it is bad, but because there isn’t any other. Whilst waiting to find something better you are taught something which is known to be inexact, which is a first approximation…" From a French recording of internationally recognised geneticist, Professor Jerome Lejeune, at a lecture given in Paris on March 17, 1985. Translated by Peter Wilders of Monaco.

Francis Crick: "An honest man, armed with all the knowledge available to us now, could only state that in some sense, the origin of life appears at the moment to be almost a miracle, so many are the conditions which would have had to have been satisfied to get it going. But this should not be taken to imply that there are good reasons to believe that it could not have started on the earth by a perfectly reasonable sequence of fairly ordinary chemical reactions. The plain fact is that the time available was too long, the many microenvironments on the earth's surface too diverse, the various chemical possibilities too numerous and our own knowledge and imagination too feeble to allow us to be able to unravel exactly how it might or might not have happened such a long time ago, especially as we have no experimental evidence from that era to check our ideas." Francis Crick, Molecular biologist, biophysicist, and neuroscientist. Nobel-Prize–winner. New York NY: Simon & Schuster, 1981, p. 88.

Richard Lewontin: "Our willingness to accept scientific claims that are against common sense is the key to an understanding of the real struggle between science and the supernatural. We take the side of science in spite of the patent absurdity of some of its constructs, in spite of its failure to fulfill many of its extravagant promises of health and life, in spite of the tolerance of the scientific community for unsubstantiated just-so stories, because we have a prior commitment, a commitment to materialism.

"It is not that the methods and institutions of science somehow compel us to accept a material explanation of the phenomenal world, but, on the contrary, that we are forced by our a priori adherence to material causes to create an apparatus of investigation and a set of concepts that produce material explanations, no matter how counter-intuitive, no matter how mystifying to the uninitiated. Moreover, that materialism is absolute, for we cannot allow a Divine Foot in the door."
Professor Richard Lewontin, Geneticist. Billions and billions of demons (review of The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark by Carl Sagan, 1997), The New York Review, p. 31, 9 January 1997.

Henry Lipson: "Darwin's book, On the Origin of Species, was published in 1859. It is perhaps the most influential book that has ever been published, because it was read by scientist and non- scientist alike, and it aroused violent controversy. Religious people disliked it because it appeared to dispense with God; scientists liked it because it seemed to solve the most important problem in the universe-the existence of living matter. In fact, evolution became in a sense a scientific religion; almost all scientists have accepted it and many are prepared to 'bend' their observations to fit in with it. Lipson, H.S., Professor of Physics, University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology, UK, "A physicist looks at evolution," Physics Bulletin, Vol. 31, No. 4, May 1980, p.138.

Isaac Asimov: "And in man is a three-pound brain which, as far as we know, is the most complex and orderly arrangement of matter in the universe." Dr. Isaac Asimov (biochemist; was a Professor at Boston University School of Medicine; internationally known author), "In the game of energy and thermodynamics you can't even break even.". Smithsonian Institute Journal, June 1970, p. 10

Erasmus Darwin: "In fact the a priori reasoning [i.e. a metaphysical assumption which cannot be proven empirically] is so entirely satisfactory to me that if the facts won't fit in, why so much the worse for the facts is my feeling." Erasmus Darwin, in a letter to his brother Charles, after reading his new book, "The Origin of Species," in Darwin, F., ed., "The Life of Charles Darwin," [1902], Senate: London, 1995, reprint, p215.