Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Creation Museum To Get Allosaurus Skull

The AP is reporting that the Creation Museum, in Petersburg, Kentucky, has become the recipient of a privately donated, almost complete (but plastically deformed) Allosaurus skull.  Dylan Lovan writes:

The museum said in a written statement Friday that the Allosaurus probably stood about 10 feet tall and 30 feet long, and was a meat-eater. The skeleton, nicknamed "Ebenezer," includes a skull with 53 teeth and will go on display in an exhibit next year.

"For decades I've walked through many leading secular museums, like the Smithsonian in Washington, and have seen their impressive dinosaur skeletons, but they were used for evolution," said Ken Ham, co-founder of the Answers in Genesis ministry, which operates the museum. "Now we have one of that class for our museum."
Unfortunately, they have no idea what to do with it other than put it on display. They can't do a taxonomic study because that would involve evolutionary biology. They cannot try to place it in a geological context because that would involve mainstream geology. All they can really do is sit and look at it.

The story continues:
The well-preserved condition of the Allosaurus is evidence that it died during a worldwide flood as described in the Bible's Old Testament, Andrew Snelling, a geologist at the Creation Museum, said in the statement.

Snelling said the fossil's intact skeleton is proof of an extremely rapid burial, "which is a confirmation of the global catastrophe of a flood a few thousand years ago."
That is absurd. The fact that it was buried rapidly constitutes no evidence whatsoever that it was buried during a world-wide flood. There are plenty of examples of animals that become entombed and fossilized in contexts that didn't involve water.  This happens routinely in volcanic sediments.  The Ashfall deposits in Yellowstone and the Liaoning fossil beds in China are prime examples.    Ironically, it is the deposits at Liaoning that are so damaging to the flood model because they represent multiple volcanic eruptions over  a considerable depositional thickness, something that could not possibly have happened in a world-wide flood. 

The nature of the fossil find, itself, also presents problems for Ham and Snelling (or should, at any rate).  How could something like that fossilize in four and half thousand years?  Actual, carbon-dated archaeological remains that old aren't fossilized.  These, and so many other questions about the flood model are never addressed.

For now, all they can do is put it up and say "Gee, isn't that pretty."



  1. Spaced-Out Science5:10 PM

    I understand that in western Colorado and other places, huge piles of bones are found representing thousands of individuals who obviously could not have been living together in anything we could call close proximity. Whether carnivore or herbivore, each would have required large areas of resources to survive. What would you say is the smallest size of a "regional" flood which could pile so many carcasses together? It would seem to be a rather large tsunami to me...bigger than anything seen in recent years. If you had been alive at the time, might you have written that the whole world was covered in water, because that's exactly what it would have seemed like to you? Even today, educated men write that the sun rises in the east and sets in the west, because it seems that way to us who stand on earth's surface, even though we know that the earth actually spins on its axis to produce this phenomenon. Why don't you dole out some irreverent scoffing at men like that as well? The problem I see with those who refuse any ideas about creationism or even intelligent design is that they typically never give credit where credit is due, but instead only ridicule. Why so defensive? What have you got to lose by admitting that someone with a different worldview has a legitimate point? If nothing else, shouldn't it help you to see where your own assumptions start and stop--where the limitations of the evidence really exists? From what I understand of those assumptions and limitations, you would do well to adopt a more humble attitude. Stridency fails to add an iota of credible evidence or "proof" but only adds ammunition to the politics of intolerance and bigotry. Actually, it does one other thing--it apparently satiates some people's desires for a kind of entertainment in the blogosphere where folks vie for the best sarcasm and ridicule of those with alternate points of view. If that's what turns you on, then go ahead but please don't advertise it as anything fair, balanced or respectful of others. I've read a number of articles from Ken Ham's organization and I disagree with them on some significant ideas. Having said that, I have to tell you that nowhere did I read the kind of disrespect, sarcasm and belittling towards others that seems so common among others towards them. That fact alone tends to give them more credibility, in my eyes.

    1. I would like to see the study of Western Colorado of which you write. I have never heard of such a thing. But even so, there is a section in Washington State in which a Pleistocene ice cork melted, allowing the Columbia River to flood a very large area very quickly. Those deposits are as you describe. The catch is that there is a known mechanism for this and it is easily explained. You are correct that if I had been alive, I might have thought that the entire world had been covered. There is absolutely no shame in that. The problem is that, through scientific means, we now know that the whole world was never covered and yet some STILL argue that it was.

      The sun rising and setting is a colloquialism. It doesn't describe scientific reality nor is it meant to. It would only be a problem is someone was literally trying to promote a geocentric model of the universe. Then one would reasonably criticize it.

      I do not attempt to be strident, but merely point out that when Andrew Snelling says that the complete Allosaurus skull testifies to a world-wide flood, he says such without a scrap of evidence to promote that opinion. He needs to examine it to determine if it was deposited in an aquamarine environment to back up what he says. He has not done that.

      I agree that belittling and sarcasm are best left off the table. If you believe I have done this, I apologize. It was not intended. But please remember that, as far as Ken Ham is concerned, not too long back,he was disinvited from a homeschool conference because he (and his son) said some very nasty things about another presenter.


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  5. Anonymous12:52 AM

    Isn't there a prohibition somewhere in the Bible against lying your ass off?