Sunday, September 6, 2015

#1455: Shane Cessna

Shane Cessna is a hardcore creationist worship leader, Sunday school teacher and speaker affiliated with the Creation Research Society and Creation Ministries International, who hopes to share with Christians his insight that a belief in evolution and the Bible cannot be reconciled with one another.” His goal, accordingly, is to teach Christians sound creation information that will allow them to defend their faith with confidence.” As most creationists, Cessna is concerned with outreach, not science (he seems to dislike science intensely, and prefers to promote (usually false) anecdotes on how science is fraud): “If your church or homeschool group would like me to come speak about creation/evolution issues, feel free to contact me,” or in short: Make sure to get to the children before they encounter, you know, too much of reality, evidence and – crucially – science. After all, anyone with a cursory understanding of evolution would too easily see through the ploys, PRATTs and talking points Cessna is using. (Here’s just one example of how Cessna researches his topics). “You’ll be amazed to see how weak the scientific evidence for evolution is,” says Cessna, and we are pretty sure it’ll look that way in Cessna’s presentations. After all, according to Cessna “Evolution teaches us there is no need for God, there is no spiritual realm, and there is no afterlife. According to the theory, spirituality is just an evolutionary trick of the mind,” which does … not resemble anything remotely related to the theory of evolution.

As for the fraud claims? Well, Cessna covers Ernst Haeckel, the Peppered Moth and the Piltdown Man, and – for the clincher – points out how science is always changing whereas God’s word remains the same. Yes, that science is a self-correcting enterprise where beliefs are adjusted to the evidence is apparently a bad thing – go for pure dogmatism and denialism instead, and there will be no need to investigate further once you've found the answer you like.

Diagnosis: Yes, that kind of guy. Dishonest and deceptive to the core, but he’ll never realize.

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