Sunday, August 26, 2007

Museum director muddleheadedness

The Houston Chronicle has an interview with The Houston Museum of Natural Science's director Joel Bartsch:
"Museums exist to take authentic objects and put them on display as a way of allowing people to engage in a dialogue around these objects. You could not ask for a better object to fit that bill than Lucy. If you're pro-evolution, Lucy is the poster child for pointing out all the strength of the evolutionary position. If you're pro-creation, Lucy is used as the poster child to point out what they perceive as weaknesses in the fossil. No matter what side of the debate you're on, Lucy is your girl."
Um, what? How can Lucy be anything other than a piece of pro-evolution evidence? First of all, you say she is 3.18 million years old which totally destroys the young-earth creationists' time line. Second of all, what are the "flaws"? Is Joel Bartsch engaging in the "god of the gaps" argument? That is, a claim that into every gap in the fossil record god must be thrust? What a strange position to take for someone running a large Museum of Natural Science to take. Surely, Bartsch is trained in science and the scientific method and knows the answers to these fundamental and misguided creationist arguments, and yet, he cannot help but trot them out in an effort to boost ticket sales. Shame on you!

Frankly, I don't care if creationists accept the truth of evolution or if they come and see Lucy. They can stay away for all I care.

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