2005 World Summit on Evolution at Galápagos Islands

Showcase or Charade?


While the creationists had their Creation MEGA conference last month, the evolutionists (at any rate, 210 of them) were busy in June with their World Summit on Evolution in the Galápagos Islands, often called “the showcase of evolution.”

Referred to by some as the “Woodstock of evolution,” the Summit was meant to “remind the scientific community of the importance of the Galápagos Islands” as well as to “promote Ecuador, its scientists and the country’s educational institutions.” Hosted by the Universidad San Francisco de Quito (USFQ) which obtained additional support from the National Science Foundation, the purpose of the summit, according to the USFQ website, was to bring “the world’s outstanding leaders in evolution” together “face-to-face to share their insights” on evidence for evolution and “to discuss future research horizons.”

As stated on the USFQ website, participation was by invitation only, “so that a diverse and qualified assembly will be assured.” Also according to their website, “commentators who have made equal contributions to their fields but with differing views to those of the speakers are invited so that the spectrum of debate will be presented.”

While a number of evolutionists attended and even reported on the Creation MEGA Conference, this summit was closed to anyone who might dare to question Darwin.

There was even a suggestion of “creationist terrorism.” One life science writer for The Scientist said in a blog on the summit, “Arrival details were kept under wraps lest the creationist community get wind of the fact that so many luminaries would be on the same plane to the island.”

So what was the final outcome of this Summit which, according to the hosting organization’s website, is the first in a series of scientific meetings that will occur in a broader program designed to teach evolution to elementary and secondary school students in Ecuador? According to Michael Shermer, who writes in Scientific American, “Creationists and other outsiders contend that science is a cozy and insular club in which meetings are held to enforce agreement with the party line, to circle the wagons against any and all would-be challengers, and to achieve consensus on the most contentious issues.” He goes on to say that, “this conclusion is so wrong that it cannot have been made by anyone who has ever attended a scientific conference. The World Summit on Evolution, like most scientific conferences, revealed a science rich in history and tradition, data and theory, as well as controversy and debate. From this I conclude that the theory of evolution has never been stronger.”

While many are convinced that the fascinating and unusual creatures living on the Galápagos Islands are proof that all living things have evolved from much simpler forms over millions of years, Carl Wieland’s revealing article Darwin’s Eden in the current issue of Creationmagazine clearly demonstrates that the animals of the Galápagos do not prove goo-to-you evolution at all. Rather, they make excellent sense in a framework of biblical history. Sadly, the islands and their superbly designed creatures are being marketed to millions as “proof” of Darwin’s idea, when the reality is more like a charade than a showcase for evolution.


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