What Are the Social Consequences of Evolution?
Opinions about origins have profound social consequences and even affect the way we think. Consider the following italicized perspectives and some responses:
1. Animal-like Behavior. If humans descended from animals, why shouldn’t humans behave like animals?
2. Good vs. Evil. If nature is all there is, why believe there is good and evil?
Response: Distinguishing good and evil requires broad, even absolute, standards—and Someone
competent to set those standards. Humans instinctively know there is good and evil, right and wrong.
Someone implanted that understanding in us; the laws of physics can’t.
3. Survival of the Fittest. If we evolved by “survival of the fittest,” then getting rid of the unfit is desirable. To conquer and exploit weaker people, businesses, and countries is just the law of the jungle from which we evolved. Mercy killings, forced sterilization, and selective breeding of humans, while unpopular with some, would be beneficial, in the long run, and very logical—if we evolved.
4. Communism. Friederich Engels, one of the founders of communism, wrote Karl Marx, another founder, and strongly recommended Charles Darwin’s book, The Origin of Species. In response, Marx wrote Engels that Darwin’s book “contains the basis in
natural history for our view [communism].” 1 Marx even offered to dedicate his book, Das Capital, to Darwin, but Darwin declined.
Joseph Stalin, ruthless dictator of the Soviet Union for many years, read Darwin’s book as a student at a church-based school. Stalin urged others to also read it. During that time, he became an atheist.
5. Personal Responsibility. If everything came into existence by chance and natural processes, then we have no responsibility to some supernatural being. Religions would be a crutch for the weak-minded and superstitious. Churches would be monuments to human ignorance. Furthermore, if evolution happened, then we and our actions are the consequence of trillions of natural events over billions of years. We had no control over any of those events. Our responsibility for our situation is relatively small. If bad things happen to us, we are primarily victims.
Response: But if we were created, we have great responsibility, and the Creator will hold us accountable.
More will be expected from those who have been given more.
6. Secular Humanism. If the “molecules-to-monkeys-toman” idea is correct, then man is the highest form of being. Man should be the object of greatest concern, not some fictitious Creator that man actually created.
Response: This philosophy is called secular humanism. Basically, it’s a humane sounding term
that means atheism with a vague, intellectual flavor. Secular humanism will decline as people increasingly
learn the scientific flaws of evolution.
7. New Age Movement. If people slowly evolved up from bacteria, then aren’t we evolving toward God? Aren’t we evolving a new consciousness? Aren’t we evolving into a glorious New Age?
Response: This belief, built on evolution, is growing like a cancer even in many churches in the world. It’s
called The New Age Movement. It also will decline as the scientific errors of evolution become known.
8. Marriage. If marriage is a cultural development, begun by ignorant tribes thousands of years ago, then why not change that custom, as we do other out-ofdate customs? Animals don’t marry; why should people? After all, we’re just animals. If people are a product of natural processes, then why not do what comes naturally? What’s wrong with sexual activity outside of marriage as long as no one is hurt?
Response: If God created man and woman and instituted marriage, then we should have an entirely
9. Racism. If humans evolved up from some apelike creature, then some people must have advanced higher on the evolutionary ladder than others. Some classes of people should be inherently superior to others.
Response: But that’s racism. That’s the twisted logic Hitler used to try to establish his super, Aryan race
and to justify exterminating six million Jews in the Holocaust. This does not mean evolutionists are
racists, although Charles Darwin and many of his followers of a century ago were extreme racists.
However, evolution has provided the main rationale for racism. Stephen Jay Gould has written that
“Biological arguments for racism … increased by orders of magnitude following the acceptance of
evolutionary theory.” (See Endnote 3 on page 271.) People with darker skin have suffered greatly from
evolutionary racism. Evolution has also caused others to suffer even more. They are victims of a
greater holocaust going on all around us—abortion.
10. Abortion. We dispose of unwanted animals such as cats and dogs. If humans are just evolved animals, why not terminate an unwanted pregnancy? Isn’t it the mother’s right? Shouldn’t she have a “choice” in
such a personal matter? After all, a fetus has no name or personality. It’s of lesser value than an adult. During a fetus’ first three months, it’s just a tiny glob of tissue that’s not much more important than a little pig
or rabbit. Why shouldn’t a fetus be “terminated” if adults or society would benefit? After all, we have a population problem. We must guide our destiny.
Response: Abortion is the premeditated killing of an innocent, defenseless, completely human baby.
Calling an unborn child a “fetus” is dehumanizing. Nor should we speak of “terminating a pregnancy.”
That is just a euphemism for killing a young human. Nine years after Darwin published his theory of
evolution, Professor Ernst Haeckel announced that animal embryos, including unborn babies, repeat
their evolutionary steps. Supposedly, human embryos begin as spheres, because humans evolved
from bacteria which are sometimes spheres. Later unborn babies look like fish, because humans
evolved from fish. Still later, they look like chimpanzees, because humans evolved from some
apelike ancestor. So human embryos are not yet human. Can you see the errors in this logic?
Similarity does not imply a genetic relationship. Haeckel’s false drawings, copied by hundreds of
textbook writers, contributed to his theory’s popularity. It was taught as fact throughout the
world for over a century, even in medical schools. Today the theory is completely discredited, although
it is still taught. (See “Embryology” on page 9 and page 50.)
Unborn children are human. Each adult’s body has about 100 trillion cells. When you were just one cell
inside your mother, all the marvelous, complex information that physically defines you and every
organ in your body was there. Although you were tiny and immature, you were completely human at one
cell. If anything, the amount of complex information that physically defines you has decreased since then.
Before birth, your mother acted as your support system, just as medical support systems are needed
by some sick or elderly people. Needing a support system does not remove people from the human race
or justify killing them.
Although these social problems did not originate with evolution, they follow logically from evolution. No doubt most evolutionists are as opposed as creationists to many of these social problems, but from an evolution perspective these behaviors are easily justified, rationalized, and tolerated. Evolution, while not the cause of evil, can usually defend or justify evil behavior—with seeming scientific credibility.2
Obviously, the creator of a complex machine can best provide its operating instructions. Likewise, only our
Creator has the authority and ability to establish timeless, moral absolutes. By what logic could anyone oppose these ten italicized viewpoints if there were no moral absolutes?
Without moral absolutes, “right” and “wrong” will be decided by whoever is in control, and that will change
from time to time. A false understanding of our origins has subtle, far-reaching, and profound consequences.
References and Notes
1. Conway Zirkle, Evolution, Marxian Biology, and the Social
Scene (Philadelphia, University of Pennsylvania Press,
1959), p. 86
2. Some evolutionists even try to explain rape as a
consequence of evolution. Professors Randy Thornhill and
Craig T. Palmer, in their book, A Natural History of Rape:
Biological Basis of Sexual Coercion (Cambridge, Massachusetts:
The MIT Press, 2000), say rape exists because of
evolution. These authors claim that rapists, on average,
have more children than other men; that is, they have
greater “reproductive success.” Therefore, after millions of
years, rapist tendencies have spread throughout the human
population. “Good,” according to evolution theory, is that
which enhances “reproductive success”; “good” has nothing
to do with morality. The fields of evolutionary psychology
and sociobiology, taught in many universities, popularize
and legitimize such ideas.