Evolution Part 6 – Stretching the truth – misinformation, frauds and hoaxes

It is amazing how much misinformation is out there when it comes to teaching evolution. Scientists and others believers in evolution are up in arms at even the hint of intelligent design, Biblical creation or problems with the theory will willingly accept wrong information in biology and science textbooks as long as it supports the theory. In fact I would not even be writing this post but for the fact that these frauds and hoaxes are not still in today’s textbooks.  Once again I will refer to the paper I wrote on Evolution.

In looking at other problems with evolution we will focus on two areas. The first is what Jonathan Wells calls the icons of evolution. [1] While Wells’ book deals with ten icons of evolution, we will limit our discussion to four. They are Homology in vertebrate limbs, Haeckel’s embryos, the Miller-Urey experiment and finally the peppered moth. The first two are used as examples in Merrill Life Science. The Miller-Urey experiment shows how difficult it is to create life from chemicals and the peppered moth is a classic example of using microevolution to prove macroevolution.

Next we will look at fakes and frauds in the name of evolution. Jonathan Wells’s book Icons of Evolution and Hank Hanegraaff’s book The Face That Demonstrates The Farce of Evolution [2] gives an in depth look at these fakes and frauds.

Icons of Evolution

The Homology in vertebrate limbs argument is meant to show that the similarities in the limbs prove common origin. The usual illustration is a bat’s wing, dolphin fin, horse’s leg and the human arm. Merrill Life Science changes this by replacing the horse’s leg with a bird’s wing. While the structures of the limbs are similar there are also differences. What the evolutionists choose to ignore, is that similarity in design may really mean a common designer rather than a common origin.

Homology in vertebrate limbs, while subject to different interpretation, at least uses drawings of actual vertebrate limbs as they appear in nature. The same cannot be said for Haeckel’s drawing of vertebrate embryos. Ernst Haeckel first made the drawings in the 1890’s and they are still used in biology textbooks today. Merrill Life Science uses a modified version of the drawings, however it does not deal with the fact that the original drawings were faked.  Haeckel used the same woodcut to print embryos from different animals and doctored others to make them more alike. [3] Even though the fakery was discovered when they were first published, they have been used to defend common origin ever since.

The Miller-Urey experiment was conducted in 1953 and tried to recreate the conditions on the early earth. Using a mixture of gases and an electrical charge, simple amino acids were formed. In order for this experiment to work, the early atmosphere had to have a high methane content and a low carbon dioxide content. Current scientific thought has this gas mixture reversed. The theory behind the Miller-Urey experiment has been abandoned. Since then no one has been able to created more than simple organic compounds. After fifty years, we are no closer to creating the first living cell in the laboratory.

The peppered moth is one of the most widely used and misused examples in all biology texts. Used to show macroevolution at work, it is an illustration of microevolution at best and actual shows no evolution at all. Before the industrial revolution in England, peppered moths were predominately light colored. As the industrial revolution progressed, the soot from industrial smokestacks caused the trunks and limbs of the trees to darken. At this time it was noticed that the darker colored moths were predominate. Later as cleaner burning fuels were used and the trees began to lighten, the lighter moths were again the predominant color. However, when all is said and done, you end up with dark and light colored peppered moths. The same as you started with. Only the percentage of each in the population has changed. In some instances the moth population is not in correlation with the color of the tree bark. Finally, the photos were faked. The moths were pinned to the tree trunks. Peppered moths do not normally rest on the trunk of a tree, but on the underside of tree branches. The experiment was flawed and did not show the moths in their proper environment.

Fakes and Mistakes

            The search to fill in the family tree of modern man is filled with fakes and mistakes. The problem evolutionists have is that the fossil record rarely produces complete skeletons. Usually only a few bones are found. The most amazing of these is the Nebraska Man. In 1922 a single tooth was found in Nebraska. From this tooth an entire man was created and declared an ancestor to modern man. Sometime later geologist Harold Cook found an identical tooth. This new tooth was attached to a jaw which was attached to a body. Unfortunately for Nebraska Man, the body was the body of a pig. [4]

Both Java Man and Peking Man were once thought to be ancestors to modern man. After further study both are now believed to be extinct apes. In fact the Peking Man skulls were all found bashed in at the base of the skull. Rather than an ancestor, Peking Man was most likely someone’s lunch. [5]

Piltdown Man was an out and out fraud. In 1912 a new fossil is found. The skull is human. The jaw is ape like and the teeth are somewhere in between man and ape. It appears that the missing link between man and apes has been found. Unfortunately for evolutionists, Piltdown Man is a not too well conceived fraud. The jaw bone and teeth are from a modern orangutan, stained to appear old. The teeth have been filed to appear more human. File marks are visible on the teeth. Though the forger left obvious signs of his work, the scientific world did not declare Piltdown Man a fraud until 1953. [6]

Another mistake in the cause of evolution it the triceratops DNA. Sometimes even well meaning scientists make mistakes. Bones of a triceratops were found with potential to extract DNA. Geneticists took the     material and began to do rough sequencing. In a paper presented at the April 2000 Florida Symposium on Dinosaur Bird Evolution, William Garstka reported that the DNA was similar to bird DNA. As a matter of fact the DNA was not only similar to bird DNA it was an exact match with the DNA of the modern turkey. It was only later that the geneticists that had done the sequencing remembered eating a turkey sandwich at the time. [7]

Sometimes there is not even fossil evidence for the evolutionist’s creations. Pro Avis is an example. Since evolutionists have not found their bird dinosaur missing link, Stephen J. Gould and John Ostrom have postulated the Pro Avis. They have drawn up this missing link. It has even appeared in American Scientist. Just one problem, Pro Avis is just fiction. [8]

So are we being willingly mislead in order to buy into evolution? I really do not think so. Most of the mistakes I believe were made in order to rush to be the first with a new find to support evolution. Many of the so called Icons are either inertia in the textbook industry and poor editing. Some though are left in because even though they are wrong they illustrate a concept in evolution. The late Stephen Jay Gould used this line of reasoning for including Haeckel’s embryos in science and biology textbooks.  Being a fan of Gould I really think he is not trying to mislead.

What I have listed in this post is just part of the misleading things used in textbooks and sights devoted to evolution. It would seem that a theory that is supposed to have so much proof that it is beyond all doubt should be able to came up with better examples and proofs. I wrote the paper much of this post is taken from over ten years ago. In order to see what has happened in the science textbook arena since I purchased two seventh grad texts ans a high school biology text used in Texas. I figured that since Texas is one of the most conservative states it would be a good one to see if these examples are still in use. Sadl to say the answer is yes. Some things seem resistant to change.

Next time I will look at what is the biggest problem facing the theory of evolution, how life began.

Have a blessed day,


[1] Jonathan Wells, Icons of Evolution Science or Myth., Regnery Publishing, Inc, Washington, DC, 2000

[2] Hank Hanegraaff, The Face That Demonstrates The Farce Of Evolution, Word, Nashville, 1998

[3] Icons of Evolution Science Or Myth, 91

[4] The Face That Demonstrates The Farce Of Evolution, 49.

[5] ibid, 54 to57.

[6] ibid, 52 to 54.

[7] Icons of Evolution Science or Myth, 130 to 131

[8] The Face That Demonstrates The Farce Of Evolution, 38 to 39.

About dwwork

The name of this blog is taken from 1 Peter 3:13 - “always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, keeping a clear conscience. This verse became special to me over ten years ago when I was asked to teach an adult Sunday school class on Christian apologetics. This interest grew over the years to the point that I took some graduate level classes in apologetics. I think the best way to be prepared to give and answer to everyone who asks is to know scripture. It is my hope that through these short devotionals the reader will become more familiar with each verse. I have tried when possible to make them personal hoping in some small way to show that God’s word written over two thousand years ago is still relevant today. In the writing of these short devotionals I have been able to better understand how God’s word impacts my life. It is my hope that you too will come closer to our Lord Jesus and develop a closer relationship with Him. Finally, if the reader finds anything in conflict with scripture please let me know. God’s word is the final authority always overrules anything I might write. David
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