Tuesday, 20 January 2015

How Creationist Lie To Us - Jehovah's Witnesses

Professor Rama Singh "I fully support the theory of evolution."
The Freethinker - The voice of atheism since 1881 » Prof’s words twisted to attack evolution

What the Jehovah's Witness on-line magazine, "Awake!", claims:

How would you complete the following sentence?

LIFE IS THE RESULT OF _______________________________________.

SOME might assume that a scientifically-minded person would pick "evolution" and that a religious person would pick "creation."

But not always.

Rama Singh, professor of biology at Canada’s McMaster University, says: "The opposition to evolution goes beyond religious fundamentalism and includes a great many people from educated sections of the population."

Why is it that even some scientifically-minded people have trouble accepting evolution as the origin of life? To answer that, consider two questions that baffle many researchers:

(1) How did life get its start? and
(2) How did living things develop?


The truth:

Evolution, Religion, Reason - An open letter to Jehovah's Witnesses

Editor of Awake (Magazine)
Jehovah's Witnesses

Dear Editor,

I am writing to protest your Awake Magazine article, "The origin of life - five questions worth asking", dated January, 2015", in which you have misquoted me by taking half a sentence out of context from my article on evolution. Contrary to what you imply, I do not support a creationist view, nor do I suggest that even a minority of scientists support such a view. Anyone who reads my article can see that I fully support the theory of evolution (Singh 2011).

In my article, I follow the paragraph from which you have misquoted me with material showing why the facts of evolution are hard to comprehend for many people. My article is meant for people who want to understand evolution but who do not have the expertise to do so, not for creationists like you who oppose evolution on religious grounds.

Your misquotation amounts to intellectual dishonesty and reflects on your character and dignity as editor as well as a man of God. I can understand that you do not accept evolution as an explanation for the biodiversity on this planet, but I cannot understand why you would knowingly misuse a scientist’s work to make him appear supporting the creationist point of view.

I have received inquiries from many evolutionists, atheists and former members of your organization (ex-JW) who brought the above misquotation to my attention. I agree with them that your misquotation of my work is deliberate and meant to convince your followers in the truth of creationism by perpetuating false support from scientists.

So I am asking you first to remove the misquotation from your article immediately and second print an unconditional apology for what I consider is a deliberate damaging action on your part to my reputation.

The goal of religion is to seek truth, to remove ignorance and fear, not to perpetuate myths and lies. As a man of religion you may have the need for God and as a man of science I may not. But we both should be on the same side when it comes to the pursuit of truth. Believers need truth as much as non-believers do.

If I may suggest, as an organization you should stop wasting your time in perpetuating lies against evolution. Religion and science need each other. As Einstein remarked, religion is lame without science, and science is blind without religion. Religion and science are both driven by reason but they operate in different domains. Religion seeks absolute truth, science proceeds through incremental steps. Religion is the reason to keep science marching.

[...]

In closing, I say to you what I say to my students: To understand other subjects you need to study them; to understand evolution you need to study and meditate on it.

Rama Singh
Department of Biology
McMaster University
Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
Singh@mcmaster.ca

References:

Singh, R.S. (2009). Atheists too can be loving and kind. Hamilton Spectator, July 23, 2013.

Singh, R.S. (2011). Darwin's legacy: why biology is not physics, or why evolution has not become a common sense? Genome 54: 1-6.


At the time of writing, the JW magazine is still online and remains uncorrected. The Jehovah's Witness cult has a long record of trying to trick its members and others with selective misquotes and lies. It even tells its members they shouldn't check the 'facts' they are told by the cult's leaders as this betrays a lack of confidence and trust.

When you show the world you know you need to lie for your faith, you show the world you know your faith is a lie. You also show the world you have an agenda you are so ashamed of you need to hide it under a cloak of religiosity.

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