Daily Kent Stater

It’s time to look at both sides of origin debate

Dear Editor:

I am writing in response to Leslie Arntz’s column in Feb. 22’s paper. First off, I loved what she had to say in “I am biased, but so are you.” I’m glad she isn’t afraid to “offend” anybody by expressing her beliefs. It’s about time we all looked at both sides (religion vs. non-religion) equally.

Furthermore, Leslie, be prepared to receive a lot of hate mail because that is what “they” like to do. Don’t worry, you are not alone in your beliefs. There are many of us out there who agree with you, myself included, who I think have been silent too long. Too many times have I seen conservative or even moderately thinking students torn apart and ridiculed for what they believe in. It’s disgusting and a bit unfair. Isn’t that what “they” are always screaming about?

Nicole Dunkle

Junior English major

Read up on evolution before stating opinions

Dear Editor:

First, it is important to assert the difference between religion and science as undertakings. Religion may well be “a cause, principle or system of beliefs held to with ardor and faith,” but the scientific method is “the systematic procedure for scientific investigation, generally involving the observation of phenomenon, the formulation of a hypothesis … experimentation to test the hypothesis, and a conclusion that validates or modifies the hypothesis,” according to the American Heritage College Dictionary. Science, as a methodology, relies on experiment, observation and repetition as a means to achieving answers about phenomena. The distinction between faith and experiment and observation is, we hope, a very clear one, and hence religion and science must also be distinct.

When scientists refer to evolution, they are not referring to dogma, but the conclusions of countless, independent and reproducible observations made in and on the natural world.

Far from asserting that God does not exist, science does not deal with any deity or deities, because this cannot be handled with objective, reproducible observations. In the absence of observation, one will never be able to advance towards logically proving or disproving anything about God, making God a very poor hypothesis for explaining natural events. We also know from experience that having religious beliefs at stake in any endeavor is likely to make us throw objectivity away. Questions regarding God are best left in the realm of theology. Science will never “disprove” the existence of God, but it has given us a remarkably comprehensive and predictive picture of the world independent of the existence of God.

Is the humanistic or scientific world view responsible for degrading contemporary American culture? Modern science can be traced to the Enlightenment of the 17th and 18th centuries. Humanism, if one allows a fairly broad definition — a world view centered on human beings — has been with Western culture since the early Renaissance. Do we need to point out that homosexuality, pornography, abortion and lawlessness all existed long before the advent of either science or humanism? Even if one wants to insist that these are all social maladies, they can hardly be blamed on science or humanism. At a time when our world is divided by religious fundamentalism and intolerance, and plagued by immense poverty, disease and environmental destruction, it is astounding that anyone could view “humanism” as one of the greatest problems facing society.

It is irresponsible to make broad assertions about this topic based on conjecture and hearsay rather than factual information, as was done in last Tuesday’s column. Everyone is entitled to his or her opinion, but those wishing to present their opinion on evolution and religion should first become knowledgeable on both topics. Everyone should read Darwin’s Origin of Species as well as the Bible to gain a better understanding of the diversity of opinions on human life, morality and religion.

Doug Antibus, junior conservation major

Lauren Miheli, senior conservation major