Evolutionist Neil deGrasse Tyson has pointed out that notions of creationism and intelligent design ignore a fundamental and important problem—the fact that the universe, and most of the things in it, would never have been designed. As Tyson explains:
Star formation is completely inefficient. Most places in the universe will kill life instantly—instantly! People say “Oh, the forces of nature are just right for life.” Excuse me. Just look at the volume of the universe where you can’t live. You will die instantly. That is not what I call the Garden of Eden, alright. … We’re on a collision course with the Andromeda galaxy—gone is this beautiful spiral that we have. And of course we’re on a one-way, expanding universe as we wind down to oblivion, as the temperature of the universe approaches absolute zero.
The inner solar system is a shooting gallery. And look how long it took for multicellular life to evolve—3.5 billion years! Obviously not a good design. Then there are the earthquakes, volcanoes, floods, tornadoes, hurricanes, tsunamis, and one of Darwin’s favorites, lightning strikes. 99% of all life that ever lived is now extinct. “None of this,” Tyson explains, “is any sign that there is a benevolent anything out there.”
And consider all the natural diseases. Lukemia, hemophilia, sickle cell anemia, multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, and ALS. The list goes on and on. But that’s not all. Our limited human vision system can only perceive a narrow band of the entire electromagnetic spectrum. As Tyson makes clear:
Anyone who has seen the full breadth of the electromagnetic spectrum will recognize how blind we are.
We have to eat constantly because we’re warm-blooded. So we’re always looking for food. And what about carbon monoxide? You can’t smell it or taste, but you breath it in and “your dead.”
The problem, Tyson explains, is that we tend to ignore these obvious problems:
This is all simply stupid design. The problem is, if you look for what is intelligent, and yes you can find some things that are really beautiful, and really—“hey, that’s clever,” such as the ball-socket of the shoulder. There are a lot of things you can point to, but then you stop looking at all the things that confound that revelation. And so, if I came upon a frozen waterfall, and it just struck me for all its beauty, I would then turn over the rock and try to find a millipede, or some kind of deadly newt, and put that in context, and realize, of course, the universe is not here for us.
And so the final verdict: “No engineer would design that, at all. Ever!” As Hume’s character Philo put it more than two centuries ago,
Here, Cleanthes, I find myself at ease in my argument. Here I triumph. Formerly, when we argued concerning the natural attributes of intelligence and design, I needed all my skeptical and metaphysical subtlety to elude your grasp. In many views of the universe and of its parts, particularly the latter, the beauty and fitness of final causes strike us with such irresistible force, that all objections appear (what I believe they really are) mere cavils and sophisms; nor can we then imagine how it was ever possible for us to repose any weight on them. But there is no view of human life, or of the condition of mankind, from which, without the greatest violence, we can infer the moral attributes, or learn that infinite benevolence, conjoined with infinite power and infinite wisdom, which we must discover by the eyes of faith alone. It is your turn now to tug the laboring oar, and to support your philosophical subtleties against the dictates of plain reason and experience.
Tyson has more evidence than Hume ever had, and it confirms that age old message. Complexity and beauty may suggest design, but dysteleology and evil refute it. The world must have evolved. Religion trumps science every time.