Origins 18(2):51-52 (1991).
A recent Gallup Poll has affirmed significant acceptance of creation. Conducted in 1991, the survey of over 1000 representative adults in the United States also showed that the general "scientific" evolutionary model does not have strong preference. Individuals were given four choices:
Results indicate that only 9% believe in the purely evolutionary model (Choice 1), 40%
believed that God was active in a combination of creation and evolution (Choice 2); 47%
believed that God created man in the last 10,000 years, as believed by creationists
(Choice 3), and 4% did not know.
It is surprising that 143 years after the publication of the Origin of Species by Charles Darwin and persistent efforts on the part of evolutionists to promote their views, only 9% of the general population believe them. This is all the more surprising in view of the very broad endorsement of evolution by the powerful scientific community. Unfortunately, Choice 3 about man's recent creation, which was selected by 47%, did not involve a statement about the rest of creation and may not fully represent the standard biblical creation stance, but it is the closest choice to it.
A very similar Gallup Poll conducted nine years earlier gave about the same percentages: 9% for evolution, 38% for a combination of creation and evolution, 44% for man's recent creation, and 9% did not know. It does not appear that there is any significant change in this nine-year period. The 3% increase in 1991 noted for a recent creation of man (Choice 3) may not be statistically significant.
One interesting result of the 1991 survey is the effect of education on beliefs about origins: 16% of college graduates believed in the evolutionary view (Choice 1), while for those below a high-school diploma level, only 5% did. Only 25% of college graduates believed in a recent creation (Choice 3), while 65% of those below the hgh-school diploma level did. One might be tempted to suggest that knowledge steers one away from myths such as creation On the other hand, the effect of a basically secular education may just as well be the reason for this. One cannot be exposed to years of evolutionary teaching without its having some effect. Creation, which is sometimes defined as a religion, is not often promulgated or even allowed in many public schools. Both the contemporary secular philosophy in academia and the rejection of religious concepts in public education favor evolution.
One may wonder why more than five times (47% versus 9%) as many believe in some form of recent creation as in naturalistic evolution, or why more college graduates (25% versus 16%) favor the recent-creation-of-man model. Such questions are difficult to answer, but I would suggest the following:
Until these questions can be adequately answered by the evolutionary community we should not expect overwhelming support for their model.
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