Gerald Gene Granroth’s Feb. 2 letter on Piltdown Man needs correction, because anti-evolutionists have a habit of distorting the history surrounding the faked remains.
There is no evidence anyone faked the remains to create evidence for our relationship with other primates. The remains were more than likely created for press and profit. Piltdown Man was only popular in Britain and hardly noticed by biology elsewhere.
Piltdown Man had very little effect on American textbooks because it was never popular with American biology. Besides, evolution was not really taught to American schoolchildren. It still isn’t in many areas of our country, although tougher standards for education are slowly changing that.
Piltdown Man was not exposed as a hoax by creationists, but by evolutionists who determined it did not fit with the rest of the hominid fossil record and tested its authenticity using techniques developed after World War II. Evolution became stronger, not weaker, after the hoax was exposed.
Creationism is rife with hoaxed fossils. The difference is it takes evolutionists to correct them, and yet creationists continue to use them. Examples include the Paluxy footprints, the Calaveras skull, Moab Man and Malachite Man.
Unlike creationism, evolution does not need to fake evidence to find support. Evolution is the grand unifying concept of biology, explaining the nature of nature, and is supported by centuries of biological research. Its utility and power can be found in all fields of science dealing with biology and then some. There is nothing provisional about the foundation of modern biology that deserves a textbook disclaimer.
Reed A. Cartwright