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« Outlook on life  
Twenty Questions For The Intelligent Designer
Author of this text:

1. Why are there so many species? Doesn't an Intelligent Designer imply that it could have created a few species designed so well that there would be no need for them to be multiplied without end?

2. Why did the Designer have to periodically destroy his creations? Why were they designed so poorly that they could not adjust to these changes?

3. Why did the Designer, from time to time, destroy much of the earth by having it collide with comets, producing in turn, overbearing heat and cold, which then destroyed a great many of the life forms it had created?

4. Why did the Designer create celestial systems like planets, suns, comets, exploding stars, black holes and galaxies that demolish one another?

5. Why is the Designer allowing the cosmos to expand continuously?

6. Why is there continental drift, resulting in the creation of mountain ranges and earthquakes? Why is the earth's crust so restless, constantly changing, sinking and rising, thereby causing vast changes in climate that are most harmful to plants and animals?

7. Why did the Designer create species that literally war upon one another: big fish eating little fish, little fish eating smaller plankton, microscopic bacteria and viruses preying upon humans, and humans in turn fighting and killing these germs?

8. Why is there such a redundancy of organs to accomplish the same function, like two lungs, two kidneys and two sets of toes (or any toes at all)?

9. Why is nature so inefficient? Why, for instance, does the human male need upwards of two-million sperm to impregnate just one female egg?

10. Why are parts of the human body inadequate for their functions, like birth canals that are too small? Why can't our teeth be replaced like those of the shark?

11. Why are there parts of the human body that no longer have a function, like the appendix, male breasts, pubic hair?

12. When constructing a human brain and its attached body, why is it necessary for one cell to divide into a collection of cells that looks something like an invertebrate called an ascidian (e.g., a sea squirt), then changes course to head in the direction of a shark's elongated body form, then shifts toward a proper fish's gills, then scraps the gills after a few weeks and remakes the body into the image of a reptile, then into that of a primitive mammal, then realigns things into the primate ape format, and finally, with some fine tuning of the relative growth rates, grows into the big brain we humans have?

13. Why is the wiring of the brain so mixed up, where the nerves from the right side of the body cross to the left side somewhere in the spinal cord or brainstem, and go to the left cerebral cortex, making our right-hand movement commands start from the left cortex and then cross over to the right side in the brainstem, finally exiting to go to the muscles on the right side of the body?

14. Why does the Designer create misfits-midgets, hermaphrodites, retardates, victims of genetic diseases, homosexuals and lesbians-ironically the very people who do not want to perpetuate the species?

15. Why is the cloaca (klow AH kah)-the common opening for the intestine, kidneys and reproductive organs-so primitive that they lead to many problems for women (let alone greatly detracting from romance)?

16. Why are some species at an evolutionary dead end, like the sponges? Why have echinoderms (ee KY no durms) sea lilies, sea stars, brittle stars, sea urchins, sand dollars, sea cucumbers-regressed instead of evolving? (They apparently once developed a longitudinal and bilateral body plan, and then reverted back to the more primitive radial plan.)

17. If the Designer had done its work intelligently, why has man had to improve upon the Designer's results through man's artificial selection of flowers, crop plants, livestock and other animals of particular interest to humans?

18. Why do animal populations outrun the vegetation needed for food? Why didn't the Designer provide birth control methods that work better?

19. Why aren't human protected against the overloads of allergens?

20. Why didn't the Designer inform the majority of people that their intuitions and personal belief systems about religion were mere fantasy, based on animism; that they do not share a world with a population of extraordinary, extra-corporeal, and invisible beings, ranging from souls and ghosts to saints and fairies, angels and cherubim, demons, jinn, devils, gods and goddesses-that, in fact, the Intelligent Designer never existed in the first place?

Published in the November/December issue of the American Rationalist ©.


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When You Are - or Are not - a Secular Humanist

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« Outlook on life   (Published: 26-10-2003 )

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Bernard Katz
Contributing Editor of the American Rationalist. Autobiography

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