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Author Topic:   Debating evolution
SR71
Member (Idle past 4389 days)
Posts: 38
Joined: 05-07-2006


Message 1 of 91 (310579)
05-09-2006 6:07 PM


I'm just a teenager and I'm debating with another teen... I am supporting evolution and he is a Christian. I mentioned that even in the last 100-200 years, our feet have gotten quite a bit bigger on average, so I asked him what kind of changes could have happened over a much longer period of time... this was his response:

quote:
If you look at a painting of a person that that lived about lets say 2,000 years ago. The only difference you see is that He is a little shorter and had slightly smaller feet. Wow, 2,000 years and thats all thats happened. Not even any new special parts or aspects to us even being formed.

Can someone help me respond to this?


Replies to this message:
 Message 6 by Chiroptera, posted 05-09-2006 6:47 PM SR71 has not yet responded
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AdminPhat
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Message 2 of 91 (310580)
05-09-2006 6:16 PM


You should have gone through the Proposed Topics Forum
Thread moved here from the Coffee House forum.

==============================================================
I moved you over here to Faith/Belief because this is where this type of topic belongs, and I have decided to promote you. In the future, please do not start topics yourself---start them in the Proposed New Topics Forum. If approved, the topics will then be placed appropriately.

This message has been edited by AdminPhat, 05-09-2006 04:20 PM



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    SR71
    Member (Idle past 4389 days)
    Posts: 38
    Joined: 05-07-2006


    Message 3 of 91 (310581)
    05-09-2006 6:23 PM


    Thanks, sorry.
        
    SR71
    Member (Idle past 4389 days)
    Posts: 38
    Joined: 05-07-2006


    Message 4 of 91 (310583)
    05-09-2006 6:29 PM


    Something else he said. The only response I can think of is something along the lines of ... "nu-uh!!" and since I know everyone on here is really smart from past experience... can someone explain this to me?

    quote:
    They may be scientists but they cling to their findings cause they want to refute the creationism. They want to make a name for themselves and be famous. Some, a verry small few, actualy look to find answers. Those are the ones that end up realizing after comparing the facts that evolution is false.

    He told me that when scientists actually look into stuff, they find out that God is real. Which, he says, is why most real scientists are Christian. I know that's completely untrue but... examples?

    Anyone have a question I can ask as a super-stumper for him?


    Replies to this message:
     Message 5 by Chiroptera, posted 05-09-2006 6:46 PM SR71 has not yet responded
     Message 7 by jar, posted 05-09-2006 6:51 PM SR71 has not yet responded
     Message 9 by Quetzal, posted 05-09-2006 6:59 PM SR71 has not yet responded
     Message 11 by Cthulhu, posted 05-09-2006 7:04 PM SR71 has not yet responded
     Message 16 by nator, posted 05-09-2006 9:30 PM SR71 has not yet responded
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    Chiroptera
    Member
    Posts: 6649
    From: Oklahoma
    Joined: 09-28-2003
    Member Rating: 5.1


    Message 5 of 91 (310587)
    05-09-2006 6:46 PM
    Reply to: Message 4 by SR71
    05-09-2006 6:29 PM


    heavy sigh
    quote:
    They may be scientists but they cling to their findings cause they want to refute the creationism.

    Having had some experience in planetary science (which involves explaining the evolution of the solar system and the various planets over millions and billions of years), I can assure your friend that no one wants to refute creationism. All anyone wants to do is find the most reasonable model that explains the data that they have.

    -

    quote:
    They want to make a name for themselves and be famous.

    Which can most easily be done by refuting the dominant paradigm. Believe me, science that only confirms what everyone already expects is boring; no one makes a name for themselves by publishing results that everyone already expects.

    -

    Look, science is by its nature an anarchistic enterprise. Scientists work for hundreds, even thousands, of different universities and research institutions, and each of these has its own hiring and retaining policies, independent of all the others. There is no single organization that approves or disapproves of any particular researcher.

    These scientists publish in hundreds or even thousands of different journals and conferences, each of which has its own editorial policies and makes the decision to publish independently of all the other journals.

    Funding is provided by hundreds of different public and private organizations, each of which makes its decisions independently of all the others.

    If there were any truth to creationism, someone, somewhere is going to notice. That person will find a journal or conference somewhere in which to publish her findings. Other people are going to become aware of these results, and join the pro-creationist camp. Eventually, enough people would accept the creationist paradigm that they would be a significant presence in the scientific community.

    Anyone who believes that creationism cannot make any headway because of bias in the system has no idea how science is done.


    "Religion is the best business to be in. It's the only one where the customers blame themselves for product failure."
    -- Ellis Weiner (quoted on the NAiG message board)
    This message is a reply to:
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    Chiroptera
    Member
    Posts: 6649
    From: Oklahoma
    Joined: 09-28-2003
    Member Rating: 5.1


    Message 6 of 91 (310589)
    05-09-2006 6:47 PM
    Reply to: Message 1 by SR71
    05-09-2006 6:07 PM


    The kinds of changes that this person is expecting needs at least several hundreds of thousands of years to come about.


    "Religion is the best business to be in. It's the only one where the customers blame themselves for product failure."
    -- Ellis Weiner (quoted on the NAiG message board)
    This message is a reply to:
     Message 1 by SR71, posted 05-09-2006 6:07 PM SR71 has not yet responded

      
    jar
    Member
    Posts: 30997
    From: Texas!!
    Joined: 04-20-2004
    Member Rating: 4.2


    Message 7 of 91 (310591)
    05-09-2006 6:51 PM
    Reply to: Message 4 by SR71
    05-09-2006 6:29 PM


    It sounds like you've gotten yourself into one of those really great discussions we all enjoy when we're young, but that neither one of you has a clue what it is you're supposed to be discussing. You are both saying things but there is simply no connection between what one of you is saying with what the other one is saying.

    From your OP.

    I'm just a teenager and I'm debating with another teen... I am supporting evolution and he is a Christian.

    That sentence makes no sense. What does being a Christian have to do with Evolution? Every major Christian Church accepts evolution and supports teaching the Theory of Evolution and opposes Biblical Creationism. If he is rejecting Evolution he needs to base it on something other than Christianity because there is no question that Christianity accepts the TOE.

    Then in your second message you added:

    He told me that when scientists actually look into stuff, they find out that God is real. Which, he says, is why most real scientists are Christian.

    Again, what does that have to do with anything? There is nothing about Evolution that would imply that GOD does not exist or that God is not real.

    You both need to look into what it is you're debating. He needs to actually look at the evidence supporting Evolution and you need to look at what Christianity's position really is related to the TOE.

    You can start at the Open Letter Project where over 10,000 US Christian Clergy have signed supporting Evolution.

    His job is going to be a little harder. He needs another decade or so of researching before he will even be halfway prepared to dispute the TOE.


    Aslan is not a Tame Lion
    This message is a reply to:
     Message 4 by SR71, posted 05-09-2006 6:29 PM SR71 has not yet responded

      
    SR71
    Member (Idle past 4389 days)
    Posts: 38
    Joined: 05-07-2006


    Message 8 of 91 (310593)
    05-09-2006 6:54 PM


    Where can I look for proof of the Earth's age? Or at least... findings.
    Replies to this message:
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    Quetzal
    Member (Idle past 4045 days)
    Posts: 3228
    Joined: 01-09-2002


    Message 9 of 91 (310594)
    05-09-2006 6:59 PM
    Reply to: Message 4 by SR71
    05-09-2006 6:29 PM


    He told me that when scientists actually look into stuff, they find out that God is real. Which, he says, is why most real scientists are Christian.

    Ask him to name ten biologists who doubt evolution. Then ask him how many are named Steve (see, Project Steve (click)). :D

    quote:
    They may be scientists but they cling to their findings cause they want to refute the creationism. They want to make a name for themselves and be famous. Some, a verry small few, actualy look to find answers. Those are the ones that end up realizing after comparing the facts that evolution is false.

    Too funny. You can tell him that the vast majority of scientists couldn't give two twigs for creationism. Most working scientists are either blissfully unaware or only vaguely aware of its existence at all. The ones that get involved in the debate - mostly some flavor of biologist, but others as well - do so only because they realize that the underhanded legal maneuverings and pressure on non-scientist (elected) boards of education is a threat to legitimate science education in the US. IOW, if creationism or its gussied-up bastard progeny calling itself Intelligent Design wasn't trying to insert itself where it has no legitimate standing, there isn't a scientist in the country who would pay the least attention to it. They have more important things to do - like answering the questions of Life, the Universe, and Everything.

    Not. One. Single. Solitary. Scientist. has EVER made his or her name in science by confronting creationism. They make their name on the basis of their scientific studies and discoveries. Creationism-smashing is at best a sideline, and at worst a distraction.

    Why don't you invite your buddy to come over and play in our sandbox? We have a quite nice selection of practicing biologists, molecular biologists, geneticists, ecologists, (superb) geologists, physicists, cosmologists, and others of that ilk who would love to explain the "facts of life" to an uninformed creationist. :D


    This message is a reply to:
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    Chiroptera
    Member
    Posts: 6649
    From: Oklahoma
    Joined: 09-28-2003
    Member Rating: 5.1


    Message 10 of 91 (310595)
    05-09-2006 7:01 PM
    Reply to: Message 8 by SR71
    05-09-2006 6:54 PM


    It's time someone introduced you to TalkOrigins
    TalkOrigins is a very nice resource. It is filled with page after page of good evidence for the theory of evolution and the age of life/the earth/the universe. These essays are written with creationism in mind, too. And they reference actual science papers on their topics -- real bibliographies!


    "Religion is the best business to be in. It's the only one where the customers blame themselves for product failure."
    -- Ellis Weiner (quoted on the NAiG message board)
    This message is a reply to:
     Message 8 by SR71, posted 05-09-2006 6:54 PM SR71 has not yet responded

      
    Cthulhu
    Member (Idle past 4025 days)
    Posts: 273
    From: Roe Dyelin
    Joined: 09-09-2003


    Message 11 of 91 (310596)
    05-09-2006 7:04 PM
    Reply to: Message 4 by SR71
    05-09-2006 6:29 PM


    He told me that when scientists actually look into stuff, they find out that God is real. Which, he says, is why most real scientists are Christian. I know that's completely untrue but... examples?

    The religious split among scientists is 60% atheist and 40% theists.

    Linky


    This message is a reply to:
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    Coragyps
    Member
    Posts: 5393
    From: Snyder, Texas, USA
    Joined: 11-12-2002
    Member Rating: 3.5


    Message 12 of 91 (310599)
    05-09-2006 7:38 PM
    Reply to: Message 8 by SR71
    05-09-2006 6:54 PM


    Age of the Earth? Specifically.
    http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/dalrymple/how_old_earth.html
    This message is a reply to:
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    jar
    Member
    Posts: 30997
    From: Texas!!
    Joined: 04-20-2004
    Member Rating: 4.2


    Message 13 of 91 (310602)
    05-09-2006 7:48 PM
    Reply to: Message 8 by SR71
    05-09-2006 6:54 PM


    Go out side on a clear night. See stars? If so, then the earth is older than 6000 years.

    See Message 1.


    Aslan is not a Tame Lion
    This message is a reply to:
     Message 8 by SR71, posted 05-09-2006 6:54 PM SR71 has not yet responded

      
    RAZD
    Member
    Posts: 19890
    From: the other end of the sidewalk
    Joined: 03-14-2004
    Member Rating: 5.5


    Message 14 of 91 (310613)
    05-09-2006 9:15 PM
    Reply to: Message 1 by SR71
    05-09-2006 6:07 PM


    The only difference you see is that He is a little shorter and had slightly smaller feet. Wow, 2,000 years and thats all thats happened. Not even any new special parts or aspects to us even being formed.

    Notice that he agrees that there has been change. He then proceeds with the logical fallacy of argument from incredulity to make it seem totally insufficient evidence.

    (see http://onegoodmove.org/fallacy/toc.htm for logical fallacies -- it usually helps to understand and recognize when such arguments are used)

    Now we look at the fossil record and see the change in stature in hominids over the last 3 million years ("Lucy" was something between 3 and 4 ft tall). You can also see that there are noticable changes in the relative lengths of different bones, more than just the change in overall size.

    So you are both agreed that change happens over very long periods of time with no sudden changes, such as "new special parts or aspects ... being formed" so that is not where the disagreement lies.

    Where the disagreement lies is recognizing the long age of the earth. Age that makes the accumulation of slow change over time more than sufficient to explain all the diversity of life, versus denial of sufficient time. Age measured by other means that confirms that enough time was available.

    When it comes to determining when "new special parts or aspects" are formed in any species you need to get him to define what he means, or you will just get the old "that's just minor change within a kind" excuse to brush it off.

    You might want to wade through the {evolutionary chain} thread
    http://www.evcforum.net/cgi-bin/dm.cgi?action=msg&f=5&t=632&m=1

    or you might want to start at {Message 143} and pay attention to the horse development, especially of the hoof where it acts as a secondary pump to help blood circulation in the legs.

    And remember, evolution is not about the development of new and special features ... it is just change in species over time. That the development of arms and legs from fins was always possible and never required.

    And one other thing -- enjoy the 'battle' and use it as an excuse to learn, not just about the science but about how other people think.

    Welcome to the fray eh?


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    This message is a reply to:
     Message 1 by SR71, posted 05-09-2006 6:07 PM SR71 has not yet responded

    Replies to this message:
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    Gary
    Inactive Member


    Message 15 of 91 (310616)
    05-09-2006 9:25 PM
    Reply to: Message 14 by RAZD
    05-09-2006 9:15 PM


    RAZD writes:

    And one other thing -- enjoy the 'battle' and use it as an excuse to learn, not just about the science but about how other people think.

    This is an excellent point that should not be ignored. You can learn some interesting things about the nature of both faith and reason by watching people debate evolution and creationism.

    This message has been edited by Gary, 05-09-2006 09:26 PM


    This message is a reply to:
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