[Note: Dr. Hovind responded to this letter during his radio show 8-26-04 (see radio show 8-26-04, 44:29 minutes). Also see Hovind/Callahan Debate, Dec-5-04.]
John D. Callahan, --==+==-- Faith & Reason Ministries, http://www.faithreason.org/
8601 Sunland Bl 44, Sun Valley, CA 91352, 818-767-5362, [email protected]
Dr. Kent Hovind, Creation Science Evangelism, http://www.drdino.com/
29 Cummings Rd, Pensacola, FL 32503, 850-479-3466, 877-479-3466, 850-479-8562 FAX
Dear Dr. Hovind,.................................................October 1, 2002
I accept your offer to prove evolution and win $250,000. I will prove secular, scientific evolution as it is appropriately taught in our schools. As you stipulate, this includes both the large-scale evolution of the universe, from the Big Bang, and Darwinian biological evolution. I could appeal to the mountain of empirical evidence (observation and experimentation) from many areas of science, which puts evolution beyond doubt to almost all scientists. However, this would be overkill, and since evolution is so simple to prove, I will do it in this letter. You insist evolution is an unsubstantiated, immoral religion; this is incorrect.
First consider biological evolution. Besides innumerable transitional fossils -- dating billions of years to very primitive forms -- there are many living species (of the millions on Earth) and breeds that are obvious cousins and direct descendants of one another. An illustration is the domestic dog, which can produce a generation 30 times faster than man. From gray wolf populations the domestic dog has evolved (naturally and via human intervention) into dozens of species and hundreds of breeds (enormous gene pool) over the last 10,000 years. These are more than minor variations and indicative of macroevolution. Further, since a gray wolf has evolved into a pug dog, an ape has surely evolved into a Homo erectus and then a man.
As far as large-scale evolution, the cosmic background radiation confirms the Big Bang and structure of the universe. Also light travels at 186,000 miles per second. Thus when astronomers look at distance objects, they are looking back in time. This "time travel" clearly shows the evolution of the universe, from quasars and primitive galaxies (billions of years ago) to the modern appearance of our local universe. In addition we see stars in various stages of evolution, nucleosynthesis in supernova 1987A, molecules in space, and solar systems forming from dust and gas. Not every detail is understood, such as dark matter and energy, but this in no way negates the basic age and evolution of the universe.
However, evolution makes no statement as to the existence of God. (For proof of His being, please see http://www.faithreason.org/.) Therefore I address your point, "1. Time, space, and matter came into existence by themselves," by stating that God created the universe with physical and spiritual laws facilitating evolution. Moreover, God is present and working in our lives and the universe, but not as envisioned by modern creation mythology: young-Earth creationism (your conviction), old-Earth creationism, and intelligent design theory.
Please send my $250,000 to the address above. Thanks. If you wish more detail, from the ever-increasing mountain of empirical evidence, I would be happy to present before your review committee (or debate) provided you sponsor a public event and pay my traveling expenses (outside the Los Angeles, CA area).
John D. Callahan, President
Faith & Reason Ministries, http://www.faithreason.org/
Reconciling Christianity with Accepted Science
(C) 2002 Faith & Reason Ministries. Credited, verbatim copying granted.