Shifting The Burden

Several thousand years ago, there was the myth of Atlas.  Atlas, according to Greek mythology, was forced to hold up the sky forever because he lost a really big war.  But one day, a hero named Hercules, on a mission from his king, had to collect some golden apples, which only Atlas could gather/knew the location of.  So, Hercules took the burden of the sky, and Atlas got the apples.  But Atlas decided to take the priceless produce to the king and get the glory, while Hercules had to hold his burden forever.  But Hercules was clever.  You see, Atlas was, at the very least, slightly reasonable, so when Hercules asked for Atlas to take the sky for a second while he padded his back with the skin of the Nemean Lion (another myth), the guy fell for it.

So, what relevance does this have on an evolution blog?  Well, in the CSE seminar Beginnings, during the segment “The Age Of The Earth”, Kent Hovind points to how proponents of evolution are constantly shifting the burden of proof.  In fact, one of the most popular arguments for creationism (it’s a really simple one, too), can be used by evolution supporters, too.  And there is no real counterargument.  Here’s how it goes down:

Creationist: You know, God made the Earth six thousand years ago.

Evolutionist: No, he didn’t!

Creationist: Oh, really?  Were you there?

Evolutionist: Were you?

And so on and so on.  Asking for an eyewitness account to creation/common descent is just shifting the burden back and forth, like the Black Pearl from that one Pirates Of The Caribbean film.  But the creationists sometimes shift the burden, too.  For example, Kent Hovind’s 250,000 dollar offer not only directly ignores years of compiled evidence, but it also puts an extremely heavy burden on the backs of any scientist dumb enough to fall for that propaganda scheme.  I mean, not only does Hovind require that evidence for common descent be given, but also evidence for the Big Bang, star formation, the origins of life, all of which have nothing to do with evolution, but instead provide a straw man.  So I ask you, if the creationists say that us proponents of evolution constantly shift the burden of proof, consider how often THEY do it, too!


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