My Challenge Still Stands

To The Reader’s Forum:

Ten years ago I wrote:

”The New York State Geological Association meets at a different location every year. Its members are academics and geologists. The Association has met at Fredonia three times: 1974, 1990, and 1999. The next time it meets there, I propose to any Creationist that we take a survey of all the participants with a B. S. degree or higher. The Creationist will pay the cost of the survey. If the Creationist will pay me one dollar for every participant who believes the earth is older than 10,000 years or that living species evolved from other species and common ancestors, I will pay him $10 for every participant who believes the age of the earth is 10,000 years or less or that families or higher taxons of livings things appear suddenly and independently as a product of Special Creation.

”If I’m not just wrong but dead wrong, if 50% or more of the participants believe in a young earth, Special Creation, and a Genesis flood, I will reimburse the Creationist for the cost of the survey and pay him a bonus of $1,000. If the Creationist fails to find even one participant that believes in Special Creation, a young earth, and a Genesis flood, he will pay me a bonus of $1,000.

”We are not talking about the engineers, scientists speaking as laymen outside their field of training, law school teachers, journalists, preachers, and flacks that the Creationists adore as ‘creation scientists.’ These are people who work with the rocks and the fossils all the time. So Creationists, stop the breast-beating and exhibitionism. Put up or shut up.”

September 20-22 this year the Geological Association meets at Fredonia SUNY. My challenge still stands. These are the people who work with the rocks and the fossils day in and day out. Creationists will argue that the experts are not always right. Quite true. But neither are people who do not know their subject and people who claim knowledge through revelation or inspiration. I know where I would put my money.

Creationists love to go to the Grand Canyon. You don’t have to go to the Grand Canyon to see rocks. In past years these meetings consisted of outstanding field trips and were open to the public. Bring the greatest Creationist debaters in the country. See if you can explain what is written in the rocks.

Norman P. Carlson