This article by Dr Jurie van den Heever is my favourite. He is a senior palaeontologist at Stellenbosch University and an expert on Karoo fossils. I translate pieces of it below. (Shall I try to put up a better scanned version of the article when I get back home?)
The article starts out discussing Andrew Snelling. A few years ago, he gave a talk about his PhD research at the geology department at Stellenbosch University on a Friday, talking about a geological specimen a couple of thousand million years old. The following day he gave a talk in Table View titled “Dinosaurs in Genesis”, claiming the earth is only a few thousand years old, and that humans and dinosaurs existed together.
The wider implication of creationists’ claims are that science as a whole is incorrect, especially astronomers and physicists’ calculations of the age of stars and other heavenly bodies (which has nothing to do with biological evolution).
Snelling’s activities led to a condemning article by an Australian scientist, Will the Real Dr. Snelling Please Stand Up?
At the end of the first column, following further discussion of Dr Snelling’s dishonesty and cognitive dissonance, Van den Heever turns to Don Batten. He points out that his talk was full of misrepresentations and obvious errors.
Batten’s true colours began to show when a science student with fundamentalist leanings asking how he should react to lectures on evolution. Without a second thought, Batten suggested the Snelling method. The student was encouraged to remain silent about his anti-evolution attitude and simply give the desired answers in tests and exams, so that he can obtain his degree. Because the university is testing knowledge and not beliefs, he can simply ignore rational facts and believe what he wants. Again, cognitive dissonance.
A specific religious conviction is not needed for a career as researcher. What is important is a healthy curiosity and an ability to investigate the natural world in a rational way.
Other requirements include dedication and honesty. If you are dishonest enough to remain silent despite believing you’re busy with nonsense, you should rather consider changing careers. On the other hand, once you have your degree, you can also [manhaftig?] declare that you are a scientist (which you are not), that the creation account of Genesis is literally true (which it isn’t), and that consequently evolution is false (which it isn’t).
I particularly liked the ending of his letter/article:
Despite Don Batten’s supposed “scientific” approach, in 2001 he wrote in an article in a creationist magazine where he claims all humans on earth, except Noah and the rest of the Ark-family, were wiped out in a flood approximately 4500 years ago.
The interesting thing about this is that the Egyptians that lived in the neighbourhood simply continued with their lives without noticing that they’re drowning in a flood. Also, the famous pyramids of Giza near Cairo that were completed approximately 500 years earlier, was left unharmed by the flood.
Other older inhabitants of the old Middle-East, for example the Babylonians, had the nerve to only record a local flood, wherein featured their own Noah and a much smaller ark.
Considering the Judaeans spent a particular period of time living in banishment in Babylon, and that the oppressed usually incorporate some elements of the oppressors’ life- and world-view into their own, this is likely the true source of the mythical flood and ark story in Genesis, irrespective of Don Batten’s declarations.
Van den Heever draai nie doekies om nie…