Freshman Falstaff vs. Professor Darwin Dawkins


Ellis Washington

The light of the body is the eye: If therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light. But if thine eye be evil, thy whole body shall be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness!

~ Matthew 6:22-23

Prologue to Evolutionary Geology 101

Last week we had a meeting for Salt and Light Global, a non-profit organization I helped create that “educates and equips Christians to engage the culture worldview of the day via citizen statesmanship and selfless service for the purpose of glorifying God and helping people live the abundant life Christ promised.” Salt & Light Global has a new legal division known as the Great Lakes Justice Center. As is typical after our meetings everyone stays around, fellowshipping with one another and eating some of the delicious food prepared by our secretary, Marilyn Wagner, who whatever she cooks (this time chocolate chip cookies) is always the best.

Also during this time of interesting conversations among friends, David Kallman, V.P. of SLG and founding attorney of his own law firm, Kallman Legal Group, launches into an engaging story that took place in the early 1970s when he was a college freshman at Schoolcraft College here in Livonia, Michigan. David recalled how he was so excited to take his first college class, Geology 101, taught by an eminent and world-renowned scientist. David even made the unusual move to sit on the front row, yet his elation was soon brought to disappointment when the Dean arrived with a stranger nobody knew who was introduced as the replacement professor for this class.


Here is an excerpt on how David recalls that event in a beautifully written essay that he wrote years later titled, Rational Faith and Evolution – A Point of View:

I actually faced this type of hostility in my very first class in college in 1974. It was a geology class that was supposed to be taught by a distinguished geology professor at Schoolcraft College in Livonia, Michigan. I sat in the front row (which I never do!) and waited expectantly for the session to begin at 8:00 a.m. A few minutes after the start time an instructor entered the room and explained that our professor had suffered a heart attack and would be unable to teach our class that term. The instructor introduced a graduate student from Michigan State University who would be filling in and teaching our class.

He began his introduction to the geology class and wrote the word “EVOLUTION” in large letters across the blackboard. He said we would be studying this topic for the first half of the semester as it applied to geology. Despite the clear contradictions between evolution and the Bible, as a Christian I had never thought much about the topic. It was not a big deal to me one way or the other. I had never looked closely at the issue. As the new teacher got to the end of his introductory remarks, he asked the entire class of about 75 students, “By the way, there isn’t anyone here who does notbelieve in evolution, is there?”

The question struck me in a way I had never thought about the issue before because he used the word “believe.” After considering his question, I thought to myself, “No; I don’t believe in evolution.” Without thinking, I raised my hand. The instructor seemed quite surprised. As I looked back around the room I realized I was the only one who had raised my hand. He came over in front of my desk and proceeded to make fun of me in front of the entire class. He said things such as, “You must be one of those ‘Biblical creationists’ who thinks the whole world was made in six days” and “I bet you think Adam and Eve were real people.” I was obviously not happy with being the brunt of his attempted humor, and started thinking about how I could possibly make my escape from the room! He ended his attack by sarcastically saying, “Well, maybe I’ll just have to give you an hour of class so you can give us the ‘scientific evidence’ for creation.” He used air quotes around the words “scientific evidence” while the entire class chuckled. Once again, I reacted without thinking through the consequences and accepted his challenge, “Great, when can I do it?” He tried to move on and said he would set a time later. I then said even louder, “You just said I could have one hour of time to present the scientific evidence for creation, so give me the time!” He finally agreed I could have the first hour of class two weeks later.

After realizing what I had done and that I had no clue as to what scientific evidence existed to support creation, I did the most logical thing a college freshman would do – I called home and asked my parents if they had anything I could use! I was fortunate to have grown up in a Bible believing Christian home, and I knew both my parents did not agree with evolutionary teaching. I remembered seeing some Bible Science Association newsletters around the house and asked my mom if they were still there. She had kept them all. She also had the book, “The Genesis Flood” by Dr. John Whitcomb and Dr. Henry Morris. I read everything I could on the subject in the next two weeks. It was also helpful to review information from Dr. John Moore, a creationist science professor at Michigan State University at the time. My presentation included poster board visuals I prepared showing the problems with the fossil record, past hoaxes regarding ancient man (Nebraska Man), the Coelacanth fish anomaly, and other evidence, with all the documentation regarding the sources of the information. In the presentation I only used scientific evidence and studies without any direct reference to the Bible. I used the full hour and then answered questions from some of the students as well as I could.

As I started to leave the front of the class to return to my seat our teacher told me to stay there as he came back up front. I thought, “Oh boy, here comes round two of his ridicule.” Instead, he asked me where I had obtained all the information used in the presentation. He said, “I have been through years of scientific training, and I have never heard anything that you just presented. Where did it come from?” It gave me a great opportunity to give the sources again. He then asked me to prepare a bibliography so he could distribute it to the entire class, which he did the following week! He said that he was a Christian and just never thought there was actually any science to support a creationist viewpoint. He thanked me for speaking up and apologized for his earlier remarks to me in front of the class!

Needless to say, I was shocked at this turn of events. Some of the students later told me that they agreed with me, but had been too scared or embarrassed to raise their hands. It was a good opportunity to have further discussion and then get into the Bible and its gospel message. God taught me an important lesson that day. Never be afraid to speak up for Him and to trust Him for the results.

I was later able to use the presentation a second time because I also had a speech class that term and was able to use the same presentation for my speech in that class. When I finished my talk the professor critiqued my speech, gave me an A, and then asked me if I was going to be a pastor after college! I told him I did not think so and it turned out the Lord had other plans for me. As an attorney I have had many opportunities to represent churches, home educators, and private schools over the years. I think back on that experience from my first class in college and thank God for the opportunity He gave me. I can now see how God used it to prepare me to be ready with a defense at any time (I Peter 3:15). 

Epilogue to Falstaff: God’s last laugh at Darwin’s Delusions

Everybody loves David – his booming voice, Reaganesque optimism and somewhat hefty demeanor in my opinion brings to mind Shakespeare’s Falstaff, the jovial, classical character of mirth and happiness that appears in both parts of Henry IV,Henry V and The Merry Wives of WindsorFalstaff (1893) was also the title of one of the great operas by the Italian Romantic master Giuseppe Verdi. The historical John Falstaff (often spelled ‘Fastolf’) fought at the Battle of Patay (June 18, 1429) againstJoan of Arc, which the English lost. Fastolf’s previous actions as a soldier had earned him wide admiration, but he appears to have become a scapegoat after this decisive English defeat. This particular aspect of Falstaff’s biography I wish to highlight in discussing my friend’s intellectual battle he endured as a college Freshman that forced to defend not his Christian faith but Scientific Creationism against militant evolution atheism, yet David, being the optimistic, joyful man he is by nature did not feel that he was unjustly or unfairly attacked and was happy to mount an admirable apologetic in defense Scientific Creationism. Yet he did believe that this professor tried to intimidate him, to bully him, but to what end? For merely having the courage and the intellectual honesty to raise his hand when the professor asked, “Who in this class doesn’t believe in evolution”?

In David’s beautiful defense of Science from a Christian worldview before his peers and before his zealous evolution professor, he quoted the famed evolution atheist scientist Richard Dawkins who ranted and raved that, “Religion is capable of driving people to such dangerous folly that faith seems to me to qualify as a kind of mental illness.” He further said, “You cannot be both sane and well educated and disbelieve in evolution. The evidence is so strong that any sane, educated person has got to believe in evolution.” Therefore, David deduced that according to Dawkins, if you teach science to your children from a Creationist viewpoint you are insane. If Dawkins’ diatribe were true think of the 40 men who wrote both Testaments of the Bible including Abraham, Moses, Samuel, Isaiah, David, Jeremiah, Peter, Paul, and John – where they are all crazy also to Dawkins? Think about great theologians throughout history like St. Augustine, St. Thomas Aquinas, Martin Luther, and John Calvin who according to Dawkins’ reasoning must all insane for believing in God? Taking Dawkins’ anti-Christian obsession to its logical progression you might as well destroy the last 6,000 years of human history which was inextricably linked to a Judeo-Christian worldview in history, philosophy, science, theology, culture and society.

David as an 18-year-old college freshman of course couldn’t know that he valiantly battled in 1974 would 40 years later be these same battles between Creationism vs. Evolution, God vs. Humanism, Science vs. Scientific mythology, the Bible vs. Darwin, Christianity vs the Cult of Evolution Atheism. That this spiritual war is merely a continuation of the existential battles and eternal struggles waged through the Ages – Good vs. Evil, Veritas (Truth) vs. the eternal lie of Satan and his Satan’s little helpers like Charles Darwin and Richard Dawkins.

Praise God that my friend David Kallman whom I affectionately refer to in this essay ‘Freshman Falstaff’ got the last laugh against his arrogant professor of evolution atheism who to his credit was so moved by David’s passionate defense of Scientific Creationism that the Professor confessed in secret to David that he was actually a Christian, nevertheless protecting his career and reputation as a scientist, as a college instructor who would one day want tenure, this Geology instructor tragically seemed too afraid to admit to God’s perfect record as the God of Creation and the God of Science as compared to what Charles Darwin, ‘the Father of Evolution’ had to admit in a letter to his friend Asa Gray (June 1, 1859) regarding the deficiency of scientific certainty of his own ideas just five months before On the Origin of Species was published (Nov. 24, 1859) – It [evolution theory] is a mere rag of an hypothesis with as many flaw[s] & holes as sound parts.

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Ellis Washington

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