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Evolution doesn't explain morals (Talk.Origins)

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Response Article
This article (Evolution doesn't explain morals (Talk.Origins)) is a response to a rebuttal of a creationist claim published by Talk.Origins Archive under the title Index to Creationist Claims.


Claim CB411:

Evolution cannot explain moral behavior, especially altruism. Evolutionary fitness is selfish; individuals win only by benefitting themselves and their offspring.

Source:

  • Dembski, William A., 2004. Reflections on human origins.
  • Watchtower Bible and Tract Society, 1985. Life--How Did It Get Here? Brooklyn, NY, p. 177.

CreationWiki response:

The cited sources do not claim that evolution cannot explain moral behavior, but rather that it is best explained by creation. They also explain how true altruism — that is, something done for others for no reward at all or even to one's detriment — is to be explained.

And altruism is not confined to humans. It is also present in animals. The evolutionary explanation known as "kin selection" (that most beneficiaries of altruistic behavior are relatives of the "good Samaritan" animal, therefore helping them supposedly helps perpetuate your genes) is flawed. There is no gain in genetic fitness when the altruistic behavior helps an elderly brother, sister, or other relative that won't survive much longer anyway. And kin selection does not explain the many instances of help given to animal non-relatives, and even members of other species. There are instances where dolphins and whales have supported ill animals of a different species, "watchman" birds warn every animal within earshot when a hawk approaches, and dolphins have helped humans who were drowning.[1]

Certainly evolutionists have come up with explanations for some moral and altruistic behavior, but the explanations are incomplete and do not interlock.