02 July, 2010

Geologist to YECs: "Shh Even Before You Start!"

Perusing Chris Rowan's links from Highly Allochthonous, you'll find a delicious smack-down of Young Earth Creationists before they can even fill their lungs to trumpet a paper studying the effects of a sudden flood.  This post is a must-read for everyone who's sick to death of YECs beating the already dead uniformitarian horse into a mushy pulp.  You've heard 'em.  Every time geologists discuss the fact that some landforms have been created rapidly by major events, like floods or eruptions, the YECs pounce.  They crow over the fact that those evil scientists have had to admit that rapid change happens.  To which the geologists say, "Well, duh."

Here is a paragraph that sums it up brilliantly:
I would argue that rapid and significant processes are included within our current understanding of processes. For example, I study the processes and deposits of turbidity currents, which are essentially submarine avalanches of sediment. The recurrence of such events varies but is typically on the order of hundreds to thousands of years. Moderate to large turbidity current events would surely be labeled “catastrophic” from our point of view. Yet, entire sedimentary basins are filled with the deposits of hundreds of thousands of individual catastrophic events. While each event may be short-lived and cataclysmic, they occur very regularly over time and incrementally stack to produce a stratigraphic succession. We might consider some volcanic systems similarly — each eruption event might be catastrophic, but over time this is how the volcano is incrementally constructed.
Now, you young IDiots: put the sledgehammer down and back away from the dead horse.

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