Last week Dr. Joseph Mastropaolo, a
member of the Creation Science Hall of Fame, wagered $10,000 that evolutionists cannot disprove the literal reading of Genesis in a minitrial.The former biomechanics professor explained to Business Insider why he contends that the theory of evolution is wrong and life on Earth originated with Adam and Eve about 7,000 years ago.
“What evidence do they have that original creation didn’t happen?” Mastropaolo said. “In order for them to cast doubt on that Genesis narrative, they have to prove that the Earth is very, very, very old.”
Radiometric dating — the process of determining the age of rocks through the decay of naturally-occurring radioactive isotopes — suggests that Earth is about 4.5 billion years old.
Mastropaolo argues that the technique is totally unreliable.
As evidence he cites inconsistency in radiometric estimates of the Earth’s age. In 1921 it was estimated that the world is 1.5 billion years old, while in 1991 it was estimated that the world was 4.5 billion years old.
“These data would have us believe that in the 70 years from 1921 to 1991 the Earth, and everything on the Earth, aged 3.04 billion years,” Mastropaolo writes in a paper titled “Science Supports Literal Genesis.”
(Most educated people would consider this a ludicrous argument, as the difference in estimates can easily be attributed to improved dating techniques.)
Mastropaolo also sees evidence against radiometric dating in an incident where a rock formed in the eruption of Mount St. Helens 10 years prior was dated at 1.163 million years old (based on an average of three estimates). The creationist claims that the rock should be dated to the time of the eruption and thereby be considered 10 years old.
(Conventional scientists would argue that radiometric dating techniques, which are firmly grounded in physics, measure the last time that the rock being dated was melted or disturbed sufficiently to reconfigure its radioactive elements.)
Based on the discrepancy between the radiometric and creationist dating techniques, Mastropaolo creates a “calibration equation” that adjusts radiometric estimates so that “1.163 million radioisotope years equal 10 actual years.”
Once calibrated to that standard, Earth’s age changes from 4.5 billion radioisotope years to only 3,868 actual years.
“If you calibrate them, they don’t say that the Earth is old — they say the Earth is so young it’s illogical,” Mastropaolo, who has a PhD in Kinesiology, told BI. “So you can’t use evidence like that.”
The National Academy of Sciences maintains that rejecting the evidence regarding the age of the Earth “would mean rejecting not just biological evolution but also also fundamental discoveries of modern physics, chemistry, astrophysics, and geology.”
Wikimedia CommonsAs for the age of the Earth according to creation science, Mastropaolo averages the estimates made by Christian historians. He says the resulting range passes the test for “objective, valid, reliable, and calibrated” science.”As a scientist I’m obliged to take the 6,800 +/- 850 years [as the age of the Earth] because I have to believe what passed the test for objective science,” Mastropaolo said.
A literal reading of Genesis entails that humans and all animals were created “genetically perfect.” (That includes dinosaurs — Mastropaolo holds that dinosaurs roamed the Earth about a thousand years ago, but had a different name such as that it had a different name like “dragon” or “behemoth” or “Leviathan.”)
Consequently, life on Earth is undergoing devolution — caused by increasing amounts pollutants in the air, water, and soil — instead of evolution.
“If we take a look at the fossil record, it’s indisputable that … animals and plants go extinct, and we have never seen any of them arise [i.e.] come from nothing, or a lower animal, or from the constituent chemicals,” Mastropaolo said. “In other words, all of the definitions of evolution don’t hold. There are no data.”
Nevertheless, Mastropaolo is confident that he can convince a judge to disregard science pertaining to the theory of evolution.
“If … the judge comes to understand that all they’re doing is making an assertion — [that ] they don’t have any evidence [and] they didn’t do any calibrations — then I don’t think he has any choice but to say he won’t count those assertions,” he said. “That’s the whole point of this trial. We want to flesh that out [and] put it before people so they can understand it.”
A June Gallup poll found that 46 per cent of Americans believe the literal interpretation of Genesis.
Editor’s note: If a scientist would like to provide a rebuttal or endorsement of Dr. Mastropaolo’s arguments, send an email to [email protected]
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