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Author Topic:   Review: PBS's Evolution
Percy
Member
Posts: 18309
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 2.9


Message 1 of 11 (424)
09-29-2001 9:39 PM


Review of Episode One

Darwin's Dangerous Idea

PBS began a seven part series on evolution this past week. It was produced by WGBH here in Boston (well, not here, but not that far away, either). I've just viewed the first installment titled Darwin's Dangerous Idea. (A sidebar - I'm recording the entire series on my TiVo, a digital VCR that makes recording unbelievably simple. Earlier this year I told it to record anything about evolution, and it's recording the series automatically.)

This episode blends drama and documentary. The drama is bad, and I won't comment on it much. The acting was uniformly poor, as befits a PBS series, with the remarkable exception of Darwin's brother Erasmus, played by Mark Tandy. It was difficult to bear each appearance of daughter Annie on the screen since I knew what would happen, and the effect her death would have on Darwin. He carried the despair of this tragic event though his entire life.

Illustration of the development of Darwin's ideas through dialogue was a failure, and I'll just give one example. The inspiration Darwin derived from a reading of Malthus is presented on screen as Darwin picking up the book in a sitting room and reading the frontispiece while his brother Erasmus gives a two sentence summary. Darwin immediately replies that this is the crucial connection he needs, and Erasmus declares Darwin's theory complete. What hogwash!

The drama is interspersed with documentary. For those of us already familiar with evolution there was nothing new, but it was a powerful statement of why evolution is so widely accepted. The evolution of the eye often comes up in the Creation/evolution debate, and Dan-Eric Nilsson (a hyphenated first name?) of the University of Lund in Sweden has studied the evolution of the eye and shown how it could have evolved in only a half million years given known mutation rates. First there's a light sensitive patch, then increasing concavity provides rough directional ability. A narrow opening at the front provides some rough focusing power. A cover to the opening provides protection, and then fluid between different layers provides a rough lens.

Professor Nilsson also explains how we know that human and chimp DNA is 98% similar, and this leads into a presentation of Sally Boysen's work (at Ohio State University) on chimp intellectual development. It is often said by Creationists that such uniquely human abilities such as music and art could not have evolved because they are not needed in the wild. But Boysen has discovered chimps can be taught to count, something they didn't evolve in the wild, either. Both humans and chimps have inherent capabilities that seem to spring from nowhere and which are apparently just a side effect of our large brains.

Steven Jay Gould of Harvard and Daniel Dennet of Tufts provide continuity and high level explanations of evolution and of Darwin's discovery of it. Kenneth Miller of Brown University, who I think some of us have encountered on message boards from time to time, has written a book called Finding Darwin's God in which he reconciles evolution and religion, and he had what I felt to be the strongest statement bearing on the Creation/evolution debate:

I don't find God in the insufficiency of science to explain things. In other words, I don't find God in ignorance. I don't find God because we say, "Well, we can't explain that, that must be something that God's doing..."

A long time ago people were sufficiently unknowing of how things worked in the natural world to see when the sun moved across the sky they imagined God had to push the sun across the sky. And gradually we began to realize the world works according to physical laws. Science investigated those laws.

So what room is there for God in present day life?...He's the guy who made the rules of the game, and he manages to act within those rules.

I like this statement. He says we gradually learned the world works according to physical laws, not according to the actions of a God or gods. Wherever we look, even inside the cells of life, all we find is matter and energy obeying physical laws.

--Percy

[This message has been edited by Percipient, 11-24-2001]


  
Percy
Member
Posts: 18309
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 2.9


Message 2 of 11 (438)
10-14-2001 8:01 AM


Review of Episode Two

Great Transformations

This episode covered the significant transitions in evolutionary history: the first animals and the early emergence of all the body plans in existence today; the evolution of the first tetrapods and first land animals; and the evolution of whales.

The broad outline is the same story many of us are already familiar with, but one thing the episode made clear: Talk.Origins may be getting out of date. Much of the evidence presented for whale and tetrapod evolution was unfamiliar to me.

I'll comment about just one portion of the program. Jenny Clark of Cambridge works in the area of tetrapod evolution. Several years ago she brought back several tons of fossil bearing rock from Greenland containing evidence that tetrapods evolved limbs before they emerged on land. This contradicted the conventional view that tetrapods gradually evolved limbs only after emerging on land. One possible explanation for the evolution of limbs by an underwater creature was that it provided a temporary means of escape from predators.

Creationists may find this episode very informative, not because it will convince them, but because to accurately criticize evolution it helps to be familiar with what it actually says. This episode was a very up-to-date summary of these topics.

--Percy

[This message has been edited by Percipient, 11-24-2001]


Replies to this message:
 Message 3 by Faith, posted 10-23-2001 4:26 PM Percy has responded

  
Faith
Inactive Member


Message 3 of 11 (442)
10-23-2001 4:26 PM
Reply to: Message 2 by Percy
10-14-2001 8:01 AM


I missed the first two episodes but caught most of the rest of that series. Having been a Christian for about fifteen years and a casual creationist for something short of that, what most annoys me about any presentation of biological information is that you don't get to hear about the facts apart from the theory.

Sometimes you can't even discover what the facts are at all while you are informed that this or that evolved thusly etc. So for instance you hear, quoting from a post above, that a certain investigator found "evidence that tetrapods evolved limbs before they emerged on land. This contradicted the conventional view that tetrapods gradually evolved limbs only after emerging on land."

This evidence was apparently contained in "several tons of fossil-bearing rock from Greenland," but it is rarely deemed necessary to inform us just what that evidence consisted in. Something to do with the age of the rocks? In the series it may well have been explained -- I may have missed it for some reason -- but I mention this description as posted here because it is so typical of what I find, and not because I particularly want to know about these rocks in this case.

Then an imaginative scenario explaining the possible use of the limbs while in water follows. All of the theory of evolution is built on such imaginative scenarios, but it is called science nevertheless because scientists do it and because there's so much of it that has been accumulated by now there's no way to stop doing it. Not that anybody has a motive to stop, of course, except a creationist who can be driven to extreme frustration by it.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 2 by Percy, posted 10-14-2001 8:01 AM Percy has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 4 by Percy, posted 10-25-2001 4:13 AM Faith has responded

Percy
Member
Posts: 18309
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 2.9


Message 4 of 11 (443)
10-25-2001 4:13 AM
Reply to: Message 3 by Faith
10-23-2001 4:26 PM


Faith wrote:
All of the theory of evolution is built on such imaginative scenarios...

Imaginative scenarios about things like tetrapod evolution are not the evidentiary foundation of evolutionary theory. During the first half of the 19th century geologists deduced that evolution had occurred based upon the evidence found in the roadcuts and mines that resulted from the burgeoning industrial revolution. It is the hard evidence of things like fossils and the geological column that enable us to learn enough about evolution to speculate meaningfully about how long ago organisms might have evolved. We may never know whether any particular scenario is correct, so much evidence is lost through time, but that evolution happened is a surety.

Nearly all Creationists accept evolution at the species level, but deny the possibility of evolution from an existing kind to a new kind. What reins in change to keep an evolving species from changing to the point where it becomes a new kind is never explained.

--Percy

[This message has been edited by Percipient, 11-24-2001]


This message is a reply to:
 Message 3 by Faith, posted 10-23-2001 4:26 PM Faith has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 5 by Faith, posted 10-25-2001 1:35 PM Percy has not yet responded

  
Faith
Inactive Member


Message 5 of 11 (444)
10-25-2001 1:35 PM
Reply to: Message 4 by Percy
10-25-2001 4:13 AM


Originally posted by Percipient:
Faith wrote:
All of the theory of evolution is built on such imaginative scenarios...
Imaginative scenarios about things like tetrapod evolution are not the evidentiary foundation of evolutionary theory.

Hi Percy, thanks for your answer. Not evidentiary, no, but so ubiquitous and taken for granted by evolutionists that a creationist looking for the raw data has to pry it loose from the scenario, from the theory itself, or in fact has to do without the data altogether.

So often all you find is a narrative about how this particular bone fits into the theory, how old it supposedly is -- usually without the sequence of thought that led to the reckoning of its age -- rather than a clear description of what exactly was found and in what environment. So for instance they may find a bone that is normally found in whales but because of its location is associated with a land animal, and this kind of thing leads to speculations about the one creature's evolution into the other. But all they have is this bone. A creationist has to listen through all the evolutionistic extrapolations from this one poor little bone and try to extricate the bone from them in order to think through his own theory from the bone up.

quote:

During the first half of the 19th century geologists deduced that evolution had occurred based upon the evidence found in the roadcuts and mines that resulted from the burgeoning industrial revolution. It is the hard evidence of things like fossils and the geological column that enable us to learn enough about evolution to speculate meaningfully about how long ago organisms might have evolved.

I do understand that I may not be able to argue any of this effectively, but calling the geological column "hard evidence" does make a creationist groan. It didn't take roadcuts and mines to expose the geological stratifications of the earth or the incredibly ubiquitous deposition of fossils either. That may have been some kind of impetus to evolutionary theory, I don't know, but the strata are visible all over the earth. Just the way they would be had a great flood occurred. Yes, I understand that the apparent ordering of the fossils SEEMS to fit evolution.

quote:

We may never know whether any particular scenario is correct, so much evidence is lost through time, but that evolution happened is a surety.

What can I say to that? Evolutionists do like to declare it a done deal, putting an extraordinary burden of proof on the creationist.

quote:
Nearly all Creationists accept evolution at the species level, but deny the possibility of evolution from an existing kind to a new kind.

Yes, in fact we object to the very terminology. Calling intraspecies variation "evolution at the species level" is stacking the deck against us. Natural phenomena which isolate a portion of the gene pool, such as genetic drift, are called "evolutionary processes," although what really happens is that certain genetic possibilities are ELIMINATED from the gene pool, allowing others to proliferate and alter the character of the creature. A creationist would expect this kind of thing within a species.

But there is also a problem with the term "species" I've been grasping recently: if one of these isolated populations, with even a very severely reduced genetic potential compared with the population from which it split, becomes unable to interbreed with the mother population, it is now called a new "species" but this begs the question creationists are raising. There is apparently much evidence of many new "species" being formed by this kind of process, or at least more are being discovered, these days. But all that has happened is that the gene pool of this new population is severely restricted in its genetic potentials compared to that of the old. This is what happens in domestic breeding too.

I know that to this point there is no clear definition of a "stopping point" beyond which "evolution" can no longer occur, but this fact that new "species" are formed out of the restricting or limiting of the gene pool -- the gene pool shared by the greater population of the same kind of creature from which the new became isolated (it is hard to find neutral terminology here for a creationist to use with an evolutionist)-- this limiting seems to me to describe not anything new at all, but just an extreme and very limited expression of one genetic variation possible in the original main group. Certainly this is what would happen IF creationism were true. You simply get more and more interesting variations as certain genes are isolated and allowed to increase in the new population while other genetic possibilities are no longer available. I hope I'm making sense.

quote:

What reins in change to keep an evolving species from changing to the point where it becomes a new kind is never explained.

That's true, but this could be largely a function of evolutionistic assumptions preventing thought from going in the necessary directions. If in fact "evolution" describes what is only an isolating and limiting of a gene pool, there's simply no further direction to go. It's reached some kind of limit for that gene pool.

That is, what is being called evolution is not an actual change from something to something else in any of its various manifestations, but merely a variability that is built into the basic genetic endowment for a given kind. When "speciation" leads to a "species" which is extremely limited in its genetic potentials, even when interbreeding is no longer possible, logically it seems you have even LESS possibility of change than occurred in the original population. The change that IS possible is not actual change however, merely a variation built into the genetic potentials given to the "kind."

I understand there are some "species," the cheetah perhaps an example, in which there is only one gene for a number of gene loci, 24 as I recall in the case of the cheetah. So the way I'd think about this is that variation has simply stopped for these genetic factors, or in other words what usually gets called "evolution" has stopped there. The "mutations" that frequently occur at a gene locus are not mutations in the sense of change into something new, but mutations in the sense of possible variations built into the kind. It is these frequent mutations that are no longer occurring in the cheetah population for these particular loci. The cheetah is, by creationist reckoning, one kind of genetic variation on the cat kind, not a new "species." The fact that it can no longer interbreed with others of the cat kind is an artificial definition imposed by evolutionism.

Creationists prefer the term "kind" because the way evolutionists use the term "species" obscures this point. That doesn't mean it is clear yet exactly what constitutes a "kind." I would imagine eventually the study of the genome might show the genetic limits of a kind, something that defines the group unequivocally, and defines the limits
of change. But I do kind of think there's something very suggestive here in my observation that the "evolution" to the cheetah has STOPPED the NATURALLY OCCURRING genetic variation at certain loci.

I'm no scientist, I know, but I have been doing a little reading up on biology and trying to grasp some of these things, so I hope it might be possible to join in the discussion about them without embarrassing myself too drastically.

{A couple of phrases and a paragraph added today, hopefully for clarity's sake, 11-01-01}

[This message has been edited by Faith, 11-01-2001]

[This message has been edited by Faith, 11-01-2001]

[This message has been edited by Percipient, 11-24-2001]


This message is a reply to:
 Message 4 by Percy, posted 10-25-2001 4:13 AM Percy has not yet responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 11 by mark24, posted 12-02-2001 4:46 PM Faith has not yet responded

Faith
Inactive Member


Message 6 of 11 (445)
10-25-2001 2:28 PM


On the subject of the PBS series on Evolution, I learned there that the term "mutation" is used to describe the isolation and subsequent proliferation of a particular small portion of the original gene pool. The examples of the increasing toxicity of both the newt and the TB bacteria used the term this way.

A diagram was given showing a variety of TB germs of different colors representing different degrees of toxicity, or susceptibility to various antibiotics. All but a few green ones disappeared as the narrator explained that antibiotics killed off the rest. Now the green ones multiply and fill the culture dish. They are resistant to the antibiotics, and it is this new resistant strain that is now killing more people.

As I watched this I realized that to my mind this is what would normally happen within a kind. What is here called a "mutation" is not a change into, or addition of something new, but merely the isolation and proliferation of something old, a potential already built into the kind, as its original presence in the diagram among the total group of TB bacteria shows is generally recognized.

Calling this "evolution" or even calling it "mutation" begs a lot of questions, stacks the deck and other logical fallacies. This is not change. I know that definitionally it is. Definitionally all kinds of things are evolution which to a creationist are no such thing, but the problem is with the definitions.

With the newt it was a similar situation. The newts were being gobbled up by a local snake population. Those which happened to have more of the toxic substance in their skins tended to proliferate as a result until the whole population had become much more toxic than the original.

This is natural selection, and it occurs within a species or kind just fine, allowing adaptive possibilities under a variety of environmental possibilities. Genetically it is again simply an isolating of a genetic variation. Nothing new is being created here. It's merely that the toxic variety of the gene or gene combination, which is already potential in the newt kind, is being allowed to proliferate under selection by the snakes, while the less toxic variation is suppressed in the total population. This does not deserve to be called "evolution" except in the most trivial sense.


Replies to this message:
 Message 10 by mark24, posted 12-02-2001 4:10 PM Faith has not yet responded

Percy
Member
Posts: 18309
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 2.9


Message 7 of 11 (465)
11-17-2001 5:24 PM


Review of Episode Three

The Evolutionary Arms Race

The discussion in the previous message from Faith refers to this third episode in the series. Faith's comments are accurate that the kind of evolution described is of a minor nature. The examples are of germs evolving immunity to drugs and of newts evolving greater toxicity as a defense against predators, not of creatures evolving new organs or limbs. But evolution that takes place in real time is limited to tiny steps.

Though not mentioned in the episode itself, the evolutionary arms race is the source of the common misunderstanding that evolution is change in the direction of improvement. If one looks at the fossil record one sees a record of increasing sophistication, with modern plants and animals apparently representing the pinacle of evolutionary achievement. Many people conclude, for example, that ancient hominids evolved toward modern humans with direction and purpose. This conclusion is wrong.

Evolution is directionless. Creatures evolve only in response to environmental pressures. The hawk didn't evolve great visual acuity simply because that was the future destiny of primitive hawks, but because their prey became increasingly difficult to find from the air. Those hawks most likely to survive and produce offspring were those who could see best. Those prey most adept at hiding were also most likely to survive and produce offspring. Both predator and prey passed on their traits to their offspring who continued the battle right into the present.

The same is true of Wile E. Coyote and Roadrunner. This isn't well known, but coyotes and roadrunners used to be pretty slow, carrying out the chase at a walk, and only fast walking coyotes ate dinner. Then some roadrunners evolved the ability to trot, and as this improvement became increasingly dominant among roadrunners more and more coyotes went hungry, until they too evolved the ability to trot. But then some roadrunners evolved the ability to run, and so the coyote also evolved the ability to run. And so today coyotes and roadrunners are pretty fast and a couple actually starred in a successful cartoon series. I don't have an evolutionary explanation for Speedy Gonzoles the mouse , though - he must be a freak mutant.

This episode relates the story of the mystery of three hunters found lying dead around their campfire. Foul play was not a possibility, there was no evidence of violence, and the only thing unusual was a dead newt in the coffee pot. This newt, it was found, was incredibly poisonous. In fact, it contained enough toxin to kill a hundred human beings. What possible reason could there be for this newt to evolve such incredible toxicity.

It turns out that the primary predator of the newt is the garter snake, which, fortunately for the garter snake, happens to be immune (mostly) to the newt's toxin. Apparently, newt and garter snake have been involved in an evolutionary arms race, where the newt evolves greater toxicity and the garter snake evolves greater immunity to the toxin. The net result is a newt of incredible toxicity, and a snake of incredible immunity to toxicity. The snake apparently does pay a price. The greater its immunity, the less its agility.

So we humans aren't intelligent because that was our evolutionary destiny, but only because it was a response to increasing threats from our environment. Perhaps we were competing with other hominid species. Or perhaps with predators. Or perhaps with each other, evolving ever increasing social skills in order to win that desirable mate!

--Percy

[This message has been edited by Percipient (edited 11-18-2001).]


Replies to this message:
 Message 8 by Faith, posted 11-24-2001 3:08 PM Percy has responded

  
Faith
Inactive Member


Message 8 of 11 (482)
11-24-2001 3:08 PM
Reply to: Message 7 by Percy
11-17-2001 5:24 PM


quote:
The discussion in the previous message from Faith refers to this third episode in the series. Faith's comments are accurate that the kind of evolution described is of a minor nature. The examples are of germs evolving immunity to drugs and of newts evolving greater toxicity as a defense against predators, not of creatures evolving new organs or limbs. But evolution that takes place in real time is limited to tiny steps.

Apparently you aren't addressing this post as an answer to mine, but I would comment that just calling those adaptations "evolution" begs the entire argument you think you are having with biblical creationists (I don't know about other creationists). In the simplest descriptive sense of the word, nobody could object: certainly change of a certain sort is occurring: the genetic combinations have changed and the outward expression in increased toxicity is a change. But creationists accept this kind of change as demonstrating the adaptability always potential in the genetic endowment of the creature's gene pool.

Again, I'm aware that evolutionists refer to this "minor" level of change as microevolution. I haven't been following the arguments in this area closely for some time but I gather that some creationists have also accepted this term. In my opinion it is a highly tendentious term that stacks the deck for evolutionism. For a biblical creationist the term is meaningless. What is being described by that term is simply the built-in genetic adaptability of the Kind.

And I know this term "Kind" also raises many questions. The reason I use it is that the term "species" turns out not to represent what a creationist wants to keep in mind: a category of creature that has much genetic adaptive capacity but always remains that Kind no matter what apparent extremes of variability are possible within it.

quote:

Though not mentioned in the episode itself, the evolutionary arms race is the source of the common misunderstanding that evolution is change in the direction of improvement.

I'm pretty conscious of the error of teleology and I find that it is often those with scientific pretensions who commit it. There is just something about the theory itself that leans in that direction: the generally increasing complexity, the development of a creature capable of self-reflection.

quote:
It turns out that the primary predator of the newt is the garter snake, which, fortunately for the garter snake, happens to be immune (mostly) to the newt's toxin. Apparently, newt and garter snake have been involved in an evolutionary arms race, where the newt evolves greater toxicity and the garter snake evolves greater immunity to the toxin. The net result is a newt of incredible toxicity, and a snake of incredible immunity to toxicity. The snake apparently does pay a price. The greater its immunity, the less its agility.

I do believe I grasped this process and represented it accurately enough.

quote:
So we humans aren't intelligent because that was our evolutionary destiny, but only because it was a response to increasing threats from our environment.

The probabilities involved in such a notion are staggering, but apparently not beyond the imaginative capacities of the intrepid scientist.

quote:
Perhaps we were competing with other hominid species. Or perhaps with predators. Or perhaps with each other, evolving ever increasing social skills in order to win that desirable mate!

--Percy


Forgive me if I comment that the evolutionists' imaginative explanations for why evolution may have occurred in a particular case, such as human intelligence, are so mean and paltry that if that's what they think life is really all about I'm amazed scientists desire to go on living it.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 7 by Percy, posted 11-17-2001 5:24 PM Percy has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 9 by Percy, posted 11-24-2001 6:44 PM Faith has not yet responded

Percy
Member
Posts: 18309
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 2.9


Message 9 of 11 (483)
11-24-2001 6:44 PM
Reply to: Message 8 by Faith
11-24-2001 3:08 PM


I wrote:
So we humans aren't intelligent because that was our evolutionary destiny, but only because it was a response to increasing threats from our environment.

Faith replied:
The probabilities involved in such a notion are staggering...

And you were up all night doing the calculations?

You can walk coast to coast in tiny steps of only a couple feet. You've already conceded microevolution, now you have only to explain what keeps the tiny steps of microevolution from accumulating into really big changes.

Faith replied:
Forgive me if I comment that the evolutionists' imaginative explanations for why evolution may have occurred in a particular case, such as human intelligence, are so mean and paltry that if that's what they think life is really all about I'm amazed scientists desire to go on living it.

I think you may be confusing evidence for evolution with proposed hypothetical scenarios for how evolution might have taken place. We have fossils as way stations through which we know evolution must have proceeded, and we have the final result in ourselves, and we have a bunch of other evidence such as genetic research tracing the maternal origins of mitochondrial DNA and the paternal origins of the Y chromosome, and after that we just do the best we can.

But I have a feeling you're not rejecting these scenarios because of any specific deficiencies, but simply because you reject all evolutionary scenarios.

Keep in mind that Creationists don't really have a good definition of kind. For all you know, Homo sapiens and Australopithecus afarensis are of the same kind.

--Percy


This message is a reply to:
 Message 8 by Faith, posted 11-24-2001 3:08 PM Faith has not yet responded

  
mark24
Member (Idle past 3275 days)
Posts: 3857
From: UK
Joined: 12-01-2001


Message 10 of 11 (507)
12-02-2001 4:10 PM
Reply to: Message 6 by Faith
10-25-2001 2:28 PM


Faith,
You are correct in your assumption that the AB resistant TB did not necessarily arise as a result of mutation. What probably happened is as you described, a small portion of the global TB population was ALREADY AB resistant. All that happened was the non AB ones died to be replaced by the AB variety. This is natural selection at its finest. For evolution to have happened, a mutation would have to have occurred, that mutation THEN being tested by natural selection. NOTE. given rates of mutability, is is highly likely that many mutations took place. It just can't be shown that any affected restistance to ABs.

I'm glad you posted this. I come from the science side of the argument & groan when I see people claim instances where evolution actually occurred, when "all" were seeing is natural selection. It was Darwin who gave us natural selection, NOT evolution, as is commonly thought. Evolution existed as an idea before Darwin, particularly Lamarck. Darwinistic Natural Selection is alive & well & you have now seen it for yourself.

I ask you to consider, given that evolutionary change in species is random mutation being given up to non-random natural selection, & that both of these events/processes have been observed. Why do creationists still hold out? Surely a well supported theory where the two driving processes are fact (shudder), is better than a God hypothesis that is based on ABSOLUTELY NOTHING, a triumph of hope over expectation?

In my opinion this is the crux of creationism. What mindset allows the destruction of other peoples ideas that are to a greater or lesser extent supported by observation, by pointing out that there are gaps still requiring evidence in said idea. When the defended creationist notion (& I choose my words carefully)itself is entirely without evidential merit?

What sort of FUBAR logic is going on here?

A Jokey example follows........

If a creationist drove up to a road junction & there were lots of cars & lorries smashed into the back of each other. Twisted metal & plastic abounds, no survivors, all burnt beyond recognition. He would therefore, on the basis that no living human witnessed what science laughably describes as a "traffic accident", that God did it. Going further, the vehicles were probably deposited in the Flood. Because not only was radioactive decay & light speed different back then, but so was the rate that motor vehicles rust. Clearly this "traffic accident" is evidence for the Flood, & therefore evidence for God.

Why DO they do that?

[This message has been edited by mark24, 12-02-2001]


This message is a reply to:
 Message 6 by Faith, posted 10-25-2001 2:28 PM Faith has not yet responded

  
mark24
Member (Idle past 3275 days)
Posts: 3857
From: UK
Joined: 12-01-2001


Message 11 of 11 (508)
12-02-2001 4:46 PM
Reply to: Message 5 by Faith
10-25-2001 1:35 PM


Faith,

"That's true, but this could be largely a function of evolutionistic assumptions preventing thought from going in the necessary directions. If in fact "evolution" describes what is only an isolating and limiting of a gene pool, there's simply no further direction to go. It's reached some kind of limit for that gene pool. "

Thats true for natural selection in a gene pool with no mutations going on. If a mutation occurs then the gene pool has changed. If this continually happens then species CAN change as the entire gene pool for the species potentially (depending on quality) changes with every mutation. Then there is nothing stopping a "kind" evolving into something that, given enough time, couldn't breed with the original species. I.E. A new species has evolved.

I picked this up on the scientificcreationism forum.

"DNA changes all the time. Mutations occur approximately once every million base pair during every DNA replication. Considering that humans have 30,000 genes with the vast majority having greater than 100 codons per gene (a codon is 3 base pairs), that is at least 90,000,000 base pairs. At a mutation every million base pairs per replication that is 90 mutations per cell per replications. Now considering that you started as one cell that divided into millions to become a full grown adult, and that cellular division occurs all the time (therefore so does DNA replication) in your gonads, how many mutations do you think are in your sperm/eggs that will be passed on to the next generation. Add to this the mutations you inherited from your parents and grandparents ect. No granted most of these DNA mutations are silent, but many aren't. Most are detrimental, and that is why only 1/3 human fertilisations result in a pregnancy. However not all detrimental mutations are filtered in this way and that is why so many children are unfortuantely born with genetic diseases - it is not Gods will. Nevertheless some of these mutations are benifical - inhance a metabolic pathway, give better sight, hearing etc; and if this mutation increases the chances of an individual in passing of their genes to the next generation, evolution will begin, and gradual the whole population will inherit this advantagous mutation. And sometimes, the accumulation of advantagous mutations will lead to speciation. All due to random mutations."

So, roughly 90 mutations in EVERY sperm & egg adds up to a lot of gene pool changes.

[This message has been edited by mark24, 12-02-2001]


This message is a reply to:
 Message 5 by Faith, posted 10-25-2001 1:35 PM Faith has not yet responded

  
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