Creationism discussion

Curtis Clark jcclark at CSUPOMONA.EDU
Tue Sep 30 08:37:52 CDT 1997

Something left out of this discussion of countering creationist arguments
is that many of the founders of our science were truly scientific
creationists, Linnaeus being a clear example. If species are independently
created, then the differences between species (Linnaeus's "essential
variation") *must* be of a different sort than differences among members of
a species (his "accidental variation"). To a truly scientific creationist,
the chief research aim should be to distinguish essential and accidental
variation, for by doing so, one determines, out of all the existing
variability, which were the originally created kinds. To a creationist,
this should be at least as important as separating homology and homoplasy
is to us; perhaps even more so, since fundamentally different mechanisms
are presumed to be at work.

As far as I've been able to tell, no modern creationists bother to address
this central issue. Certainly our creationist academic ancestors eventually
gave up trying to distinguish the two kinds of variation. When I get
creationist students in my classes, I show them how important this question
of variation is to them, if they want to be a creationist and a biologist
both. I figure if they study it long enough, they will come to the same
conclusions as our academic forebears.

Curtis Clark       
Biological Sciences Department                     Voice: (909) 869-4062
California State Polytechnic University, Pomona    FAX:   (909) 869-4078
Pomona CA 91768-4032  USA                          jcclark at

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