YE creationist blogger Sirius Knotts has posted about a recent case of racism in my home state of Louisiana. I completely agree with him on the ugliness of this sin, but I find his concluding paragraph a bit confusing.

I think we need to toss the word “race” into the garbage can.  The idea of human races is an evolutionary by-product. The Bible teaches that there is only one human race, born of Adam and Eve.

In another post on interracial marriage, Sirius does an excellent job showing that there is no scriptural basis for racism, despite the many attempts by others to misuse various passages to justify this sin. However, he makes a similar comment about evolution in one of the comments, when he writes:

I’m not sure what we expect here. We teach evolution in our schools exclusively which teaches that there are human races and that we’re in competition with one another. All of the tolerance teaching on the planet cannot overcome what we teach them about people groups in the name of science. We lay the foundation for racism in our science classrooms.

Is this a fair criticism of evolution? Is there a necessary connection between evolution and racism? Absolutely not.

In the first place, evolution is an explanation of how the variety of life came to exist. It is not a code of morality. We do not determine what is right or wrong based on what we see in the natural world. For example, some animals kill their own young; others assert their dominance over other males by sexually forcing themselves upon them. This obviously does not have anything to say about how we ought to treat other people. To assert that these phenomena occur is to merely describe what happens in nature, not to condone the behavior. We should not treat evolution any differently.

Second, both evolutionists and young earth creationists alike believe that all human beings have a common ancestor. YECs believe in two original human beings, and evolutionists believe in an original group from which we all come. Therefore, both groups can argue against racism by asserting that all of humanity is of the same blood. It can even be asserted that there is hardly any difference in our DNA.

Though the differences among red, yellow, black and white are small, there are still differences. I would venture to say that both YECs and evolutionists explain these differences through the separation of various groups and the subsequent changes that took place over time. To say that we should throw the term “race” in the garbage can is, I think, too sweeping a statement to make. Racial distinctions are both apparent and, in the field of medicine, are helpful in understanding diseases that affect certain races but not others. If by “race,” we mean separate species, then yes, throw that understanding in the trash. But I don’t think anyone believes that.

Let’s remember that YECs (at least those who adhere to AIG) do in fact believe in survival of the fittest and in change over time, which they term microevolution. It puzzles me therefore to read Sirius’ comment faulting evolution for leading to racism because it teaches that we are “in competition with one another.”

Finally, before anyone starts giving me examples of people who used evolution to justify this monstrocity or another, let me remind him or her that just because someone uses a belief to justify his own racism does not mean that racism logically follows from that belief per se. We have had racism long before Darwin, and just as many people have used Christianity to justify this and a host of other sins.

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