Click here to view CMI's position on climate change.

“Conservative” news site publishes pro-evolution misinformation piece

Photo by Paul NadarLouis PasteurFamed microbiologist Louis Pasteur


Published: 16 May 2019 (GMT+10)

The National Review is a longstanding conservative news outlet in the United States—but what, exactly, are they trying to conserve? This week, an article was published on their website by Razib Khan, an atheist geneticist1 who refers to himself as ‘sympathetic to classical liberalism’, by the title of, “Conservatives Shouldn’t Fear Evolutionary Theory”.2

In this piece, Khan attempts to put a conservative spin on Darwinism, claiming it is “a crowning achievement of Western civilization and a rejoinder to the modern myths of the Left.” Wow! The atheist Khan employs all the usual tactics here, bringing up the fact that, “many Christians well-versed in evolutionary science find it entirely compatible with their religious beliefs.” Yes, but is it actually compatible with the Bible? That’s the only important question! Why did Khan feel the need to bring up Christianity at all? Was he trying to play to his assumed audience? Khan was brought up a Muslim himself3, but he did not feel the need to comment on evolution’s compatibility with the Koran!

Khan also parrots the usual nonsense that it is somehow strange to see evolutionists being called ‘Darwinists’, conveniently ignoring the fact that Richard Dawkins, the famous atheist promoter of Darwinism, also uses the term ‘Darwinism’.4 Khan complains, “Evolutionary biologists almost never refer to themselves this way,” yet Dawkins is himself an evolutionary biologist!

The motive in this bickering about terminology is simply to obscure the fact that evolution is a belief system centered around a doctrine promoted, notably, by a man (Darwin). They would prefer to have it seen simply as indisputable fact, which it is certainly not.

Khan would have us believe that evolution is a ‘jewel’ in the crown of Western civilization, but the reality is quite the opposite: evolution is the most fundamental and detrimental attack on the foundations of Western civilization, which are the historical truths presented in Genesis. Khan does not understand (or prefers not to admit) that the founders of modern science were nearly all Bible-believing creationists who would have balked at Darwinism (and some of them, like Louis Pasteur for example, did so)!

Khan holds science in high regard, to the point of saying the following: “In the abstract, science is purely about truth.” But does Khan, who is a scientist, understand that science is wholly incapable of providing us with ‘truth’ in the first place? As Dr Julia Shaw writes in her article entitled, ‘I’m a Scientist, and I Don’t Believe in Facts’,

“Well, let me tell you a secret about science; scientists don’t prove anything. What we do is collect evidence that supports or does not support our predictions.”5

Even secular researchers and philosophers of science admit that science is controlled by biases and paradigms that shape the way evidence is interpreted. Khan’s view of science is the epitome of naivete, which is all too typical for writers of his sort.

The worst part of Khan’s article is not really what it contains (it’s low on substance), but rather what it doesn’t: Khan, who is a geneticist, presents a clean bill of health for the theory of evolution, doing justice to his apparent role as Darwinian propagandist, while totally ignoring the fact that modern genetics has thrown almost every aspect of evolution into confusion. Simply put, genetics proves that Darwin was wrong completely, and so is the Neo-Darwinian Synthesis which claims that genetic mutations acting through natural selection are capable of producing life.

Khan writes,

“Before the last decades of the 20th century, much of evolutionary biology was theory-heavy and data-poor. Genomics has transformed this, allowing geneticists to resolve questions about relatedness, forces in evolution, and divergence between species.

But Mr. Khan, you’re getting ahead of yourself! First you need to show, in genetics, how evolution is even possible to begin with. We know from modern genetics that most mutations are damaging, and we also know that most mutations are too small to be ‘visible’ to the process of natural selection.6 This means that most forms of life are necessarily degrading, gradually, and this process can end in nothing other than total extinction. This is the exact opposite of Darwinism: life is hopelessly degenerating. This is known as genetic entropy7, and Khan’s refusal to bring this up shows that he is either ignorant of his own field, or totally dishonest, portraying a flattering picture to his favored theory that is completely at odds with reality. Let the reader decide.

References and notes

  1. Khan self-identifies as an atheist on his blog ‘Gene Expression’ at gnxp.com/WordPress/faq/. Return to text.
  2. Khan, R., Conservatives Shouldn’t Fear Evolutionary Theory, nationalreview.com, 13 May 2019. Return to text.
  3. Also self-reported at gnxp.com/WordPress/faq/. Return to text.
  4. From Climbing Mount Improbable: Goodreads “Quotable Quote” goodreads.com/quotes/926505-darwinism-is-not-a-theory-of-random-chance-it-is Return to text.
  5. Shaw, J., I’m a Scientist, and I Don’t Believe in Facts, blogs.scientificamerican.com, 16 December 2016. Return to text.
  6. Sanford, J., Genetic Entropy, FMS publications, 2005-2014.Return to text.
  7. For an introduction to the concept of genetic entropy, look for my upcoming article in Creation Magazine entitled, ‘Genetic entropy—the silent killer’. Return to text.

Helpful Resources

The Genesis Account
by Jonathan Sarfati
US $39.00
Hard Cover
Refuting Compromise, updated & expanded
by Dr Jonathan Sarfati
US $17.00
Soft Cover

Readers’ comments

Rich D.
A small but I suspect important point - Richard Dawkins is, of course, British. Over here, the terms "Darwinism", "Darwinist\Darwinian", etc. are seen as purely descriptive, neutral and are used on all sides. In the USA, it seems that they are used mostly or only by anti-evolutionists, and are perceived by evolutionists as a slur. It's quite true that bickering over terminology (this is merely one of many examples) is an all-too-common tactic used by evolutionists as distractive rhetoric, and this is the main reason why creationists ought to go out of our way to avoid any words which we can think of which we know leads to such - precisely to disable evolutionists from resorting to this tactic, and instead force them to confront the issues. All too ironic then that Mr. Khan fails to make the distinction between different parts of the Anglosphere and its respective attitudes to the terms he discusses!
Paul Price

I think I have to respectfully disagree with your statement that creationists "ought to go out of [their] way to avoid any words" which lead to bickering by Darwinists. They specialize in bickering over words and their meaning. It's part of the way the false concept of evolution has gotten such a stranglehold in the first place. If we fail to use properly descriptive words like 'Darwinism', we're just ceding territory to them and letting them have the lexical battleground without a fight. The one who controls the use of words will win the debate every time.
Gerry T.
In my opinion, Dr. Khan and many others in his camp, are totally and intentionally dishonest. They know the evolutionary paradigm is a complete failure but refuse to admit that fact. Rather they cling to the rotting corpse which is evolutinary theory rather than bow their knee and their intellect to God. They are the most desperate of men.
Paul Price
Mr. Khan holds bachelors degrees, but as of yet he does not have a doctorate degree.
Dan M.
“Conservatives Shouldn’t Fear Evolutionary Theory”?
Well I don't fear any cult, whether it is religious or scientific because I educate myself. What I fear is, pushing a failed, inadequate hypothesis as scientific fact and forcing it on people who don't know any better, thereby hindering their spiritual growth! Evolutionist's are the fearful ones hoping people won't discover the deception and direct lie's that prop up their false beliefs, (religion). Dr. Dawkins has been recorded as saying, "He is frustrated by Americas slow progress in completely embracing evolutionary theory".
“Before the last decades of the 20th century, much of evolutionary biology was theory-heavy and data-poor. Genomics has transformed this, allowing geneticists to resolve questions about relatedness, forces in evolution, and divergence between species.
Sorry, it's just the opposite! Junk DNA as the evo's called it, will go down in history as one of the biggest blunders of the scientific community, invented to prop up their hypothesis. Actually DNA entropy now proves our genes are failing, (incurring fatal mistakes) not evolving! Evolutionist's hurt and hinder real observational advances in science by pushing a failed hypothesis that they refuse to abandon as any rational scientist would.
Thanks to the work of creation scientists, I'm in the know so the evo's can't fool me anymore. I pray that GOD would convict those scientist's who know the truth but are afraid of the established evolutionary scientific community, to stand up and expose the evolutionist hypothesis for what it is, story telling!
We need to remember! We are in a spiritual battle. It's not about the facts, (Eph 6:12).
Ian D.
Great article. Without Christ, it would be scary to know that all is on the way down, due to genetic entropy!
Gian Carlo B.
A lot of conservatives are evolutionists. Very little will you find YAC’s politically involved. And those that are are, sadly, not informed by latest YAC literature, and so end up giving you guys unwarranted bad names. Perhaps the sort that people like Matt Walsh criticized were of that sort, and not the sort like Jason Lisle or Sarfati. Anyways, excellent review. Only biblical creation can truly conserve traditional values. An evolutionary conservatism what it does is slow down the mechanism or make the process boringly redundant. After all, evolution is about surviving and adapting and changing from every change in environmental niche; it’s hard how we can conserve any traditional values in such a scenario. Even if it can, it turns important issues like marriage and family into a simplistic “all about genes passing and survival” and not genuine reflection of being made in His image and for bond forging for its own sake and not for genetics’ sake.
John B.
Excellent reply, show Khan's views for what they are, ignorant, misleading and misguided.
Philip U.
I wouldn't classify National Review as the least bit conservative. They are as humanist as an any of them, and definitely to the left-of-centre politically. This doesn't surprise in the least.

Comments are automatically closed 14 days after publication.