A sampling of readers' letters, faxes and e-mail.
Who made thee?
Whatever the answer,
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strive to improve
what man has wrought
Editor, The Times:
I enjoyed reading, “Entertaining the notion of a place of wonder” and “Evolution sticker shock” (Times guest commentaries, Dec. 16). Both possibilities, random creation and intelligent design, boggle my little mind. How could something so improbable, so beautiful and so complex come into being randomly? It seems extremely unlikely.
We humans cannot even begin to create anything close to even the simplest one-celled organism. On the other hand, if there is some sort of intelligent force that created life, why? Were they lonely? Bored? What would their purpose be? And, where did they come from? Who created them and why? Both seem equally impossible to me.
Whatever the answer, I believe, at this time, it is beyond human capability to understand kind of like my cat trying to understand my computer. And, maybe it doesn’t really matter; after all, we are here and life can be a wonderful adventure.
Maybe instead of worrying about what everyone else believes, we should concentrate on making our lives here as rich and fulfilling as we can, and helping others to do so as well.
Leslie Ann Kutz, Snoqualmie
Comes a veiled horse
While the evolution and intelligent design (ID) commentaries represent valid and important viewpoints, their scope misses the Christian right’s political intent: ID is just a start, a Trojan horse to introduce their religious dogma into the public schools. With that religious dogma will come the rest of their right-wing political agenda, including the removal of barriers between church and state, for the purpose of creating an American right-wing-Christian theocracy.
If the majority is to support this theocracy, the requisite religious and political indoctrination must begin in the schools, with the children.
Chuck Vita, Woodinville
In heaven as on Earth
In response to Jonathan Witt’s commentary about “intelligent design,” I’d like to remind him that intelligence comes from brains, and brains are made of cells that evolved from previous cells. Therefore, it is impossible for intelligence to precede the arrival of the first cells.
He also states that the chance of a primordial soup creating a protein are less than one in 10 to the 150th power. Proteins are chains of amino acids, which are found in comets and meteors. It was also shown in the 1950s that they can be produced by combining methane, water and lightning, all of which were in abundance when this planet was in its infancy.
I find it far more plausible that the primordial soup produced amino and nucleic acids and, eventually, cells than that the vacuum of space produced a super intelligence.
Peter Renhard, Seattle
Other gods before me
Jonathan Witt would have us seek out a “place of wonder,” where we can throw our hands in the air and say “I don’t know how this could have happened, and so it couldn’t have: God must have done it.” It’s the same tired old, old, old “God of the gaps” argument. I’m sure a couple thousand years ago, people said the same thing about thunder: Oh, you scientists. We all know Thor makes the thunder.
Sure, that sounds silly now, and sure, if people didn’t have the straw-man representation of evolution thrust in their collective face, they’d say the same thing about Witt’s argument from ignorance.
Do we want our kids to be taught that, in the face of mystery, we should say “I don’t know how this happened, so God must have done it”?
Let’s not dance around it: The designer the Discovery Institute is talking about is God. O, brave new world, huh?
Josh Hayes, Seattle
Not only begat sun
Those who fought against Copernicus and Galileo were likewise afraid that if the Earth weren’t the center of the universe, their faith in God would be destroyed. We can see they were wrong.
Starting with Copernicus, we have learned that God is not just the God of one planet, but rather billions upon billions of galaxies. Science has increased our own view of the magnitude and glory and greatness of God. The scientific theory of evolution will ultimately do the same thing.
God is the God of everything, not just the gaps in our knowledge.
Jason Richard Hochstrasser, Seattle
Adhering to Good Book
Huntington Willard (“Evolution sticker shock”) need not be alarmed about textbook stickers alerting students that evolution is only a theory. I am certain that the fair-minded citizens of Cobb County, Ga., have balanced their approach with stickers in all the Bibles explaining that, not only is the book of Genesis not a fact, it isn’t even a scientific theory.
Leah Adams, Kirkland
Recast your nets
Now retired, I have been watching this argument since my dad advised me to make my own decisions on things that can’t be proven. Of course, “creation” won’t be proven, but many take it on faith. It is also interesting that others believe that two pieces of nothing that had floated around space for measureless time somehow bumped into one another, caused a great explosion, resulting in the origin of everything we can witness.
The “creation” believer cannot produce a “re-creation.” The “evolution” theorist cannot recreate nothingness. The argument hasn’t changed, nor will it change.
Given there is no middle ground, this discussion will continue with money to be made by either side, simply by selling books and periodicals supporting either “theory.” There are more important “windmills” to attack. We as a people and as a nation would be wiser to put our energies to solving problems we can and should address.
Richard Hartley, Ferndale
On and on it goes. Welcome to Florida 2000 Northwest (“Ballot checks vary widely across state,” page one, Dec. 19).
How can so many well-intentioned people interact so counterproductively, to bring about such a blithering fiasco?
I recently served as a King County recount observer. The recount process has been carried out conscientiously and scrupulously. I’m a Democrat, and I’d like to see Democrat Christine Gregoire win (the election for governor). But the election process has now been compromised to the point that neither she nor Republican Dino Rossi can claim any solid mandate to govern, without a revote.
The voters of this state basically did not make their choice. The courts will now be picking the next governor. Half of Washington’s voters are going to feel cheated, no matter what happens next.
How about a runoff between Gregoire and Rossi, with no one else on the ballot and no write-ins allowed?
Chuck Hastings, Federal Way
c/o fourth poll
Would a letter to Santa from the Washington state Democrats look something like this?
Please find Christine Gregoire 51 more votes during the manual recount in King County.
Sincerely, Washington State Democratic Party
Erick Spencer, Seattle
Better watch outside
Without weighing in on Marjorie Anderson’s theory regarding the sex of Santa Claus, let me remind letter writer Roger Hanson (“A Christmas quarrel,” Northwest Voices, Dec. 19) that “Desperate Housewives” is a fictional television program. Roger, that means that it’s not real. Please turn off the TV, go outside your home, and meet some real live women. The change will do you good.
Jennifer Ross, Mount Vernon