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Atheism's case not a slam dunk

Published:Tuesday | May 8, 2012 | 12:00 AM

THE EDITOR, Sir:

I write in response to the opinion piece 'Secular humanists, religious apologists, and Stinky' by Dr Ethon Lowe in your publication of Sunday, May 6.

First, Dr Lowe's claim that morality is not limited to religion does not have unanimous support among significant thinkers. Morality implies 'one ought to', and although Gnu atheists like Richard Dawkins believe that morality may arise from evolutionary processes, most thinkers reject this notion.

The views of philosophers such as de Sade and Nietzsche are held to illustrate the failure and incoherence of the Enlightenment project of autonomous ethics. To these thinkers (both theists and atheists), theism is the necessary and only foundation for ethics.

With respect to humans arising from other species by evolution, it should be noted that modern synthesis - the mechanism of evolution taught in many biology textbooks - does not have the support of significant evolutionary biologists. In fact, Allen MacNeill, evolutionary biologist at Cornell University, and others state that modern synthesis is dead.

Hubert Yockey, a physicist who worked on the 'Manhattan Project' to make the first atomic bomb, helped to establish the fact that a fundamental characteristic of living organisms is that they are complex information technology systems which use a digital code (DNA).

During the 1940s, mathematician John von Neumann established that to achieve what is called evolution (descent with modification), an essential component would have to be the presence of what he called a 'universal constructor'. At the core of the 'universal constructor' is what we in the 21st century would call 'computer technology'.

Neither digital code nor computer technology has ever been observed to arise without the input of an intellect.

WAYNE WEST (Dr)

wayne_west@hotmail.com

Kingston 6