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Do you accept the theory of evolution as fact?

Asked at Borders, 700 N.H. on February 13, 2007

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Photo of Lance LeClair

“I don’t believe in many things as fact, but yeah. It seems a little more plausible than the alternative.”

Photo of Kelly Ochs

“I’ve read Darwin’s book and I think it has merit, but I believe in the creation story.”

Photo of Renny Bhujbal

“Well, it’s a theory; it’s always disputable. But between evolution and creation, I’ll take evolution.”

Photo of Kristin McLinn

“Yes, I do. Throughout my education, that’s what I’ve learned, and that’s what I’ve come to believe.”

Comments

gr8dane 7 years, 2 months ago

How come none of us have monkeys for cousins, terence? We DO have monkeys for cousins. If you're a human being, you have monkeys for cousins.

Mind you, very very very DISTANT cousins. I'm not sure when our last common ancestor with (living) monkeys was. I'd have to ask my biologist friends or look that up.

We're much more closely related to the other ape species (as we're apes ourselves). Most closely with chimps and bonobos. And even there, we're some 7 million years removed, if I recall correctly. But they're much closer cousins with us than the monkeys.

There. You've just seen "my fancey science" (sic) explain that.

Marry (sic) and Jesuse (sic) are not relevant to the topic. That's religion, not science.

You let your priests think for you? :-O

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terence_mulcahy 7 years, 2 months ago

If evolution is reall then how come none of us have monkeys for cousines, id like to see your fancey science explaine that. Next you're going to try and tell me that marry weren't no virgin and jesuse can't fly. If god creating all the animals on earth in a day was a good enoughf explination for people in 4000 b.c. with no concept of biology, chemistry or germ theory then its good enougf for me in 2007 - who needs to think when a priests will do it for you

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RETICENT_IRREVERENT 7 years, 2 months ago

logic, I thought gravity was a fact, but gravitation was a theory.

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75x55 7 years, 2 months ago

I hardly ever agree with logicsound04, but his #4 is right on the mark!

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logicsound04 7 years, 2 months ago

My four cents:

1) Darwin and modern evolutionary theory are far from synonymous

2) Scientific theory and the layperson's use of the word "theory" are far from synonymous

3) This is a stupid OTS question, because the question directly implies that there is room for personal interpretation. When was the last time someone asked you the following question: "Do you accept the theory of gravity as fact?"

4) Even if creationism were absolutely true, it does not belong in the realm of science. The problem with ID is not that it might be false, but rather, that it cannot be tested by the scientific method.

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75x55 7 years, 2 months ago

Sorry, gr8dane beat ya to it.

"A big part of the problem is people are using common definitions of words, like theory and fact, instead of the definitions as science uses them"

Thusly demonstrating the strength of science, where if something doesn't work anymore, change it.

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scenebooster 7 years, 2 months ago

"See what our liberal universities are churning out. It is obvious of the University students' consanguinity...mind-numb robots. Think for yourselves."

Day late unintended irony alert.

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Agnostick 7 years, 2 months ago

Okay, nobody else is taking it... so I will...


"Insults, puh-leeze - such salesmanship.

Just a question - can a 'fact' be disproven, like a theory?"

--75x55


I would have to answer "yes."

Don't believe me? Go back in your magical time machine and ask these guys. They both disproved "facts" in their day.

Then, there was the case of this poor chap...

These biographies also illustrate, IMHO, what happens when science and religion work against each other, rather than cooperatively.

Agnostick agnostick@excite.com

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jonas 7 years, 2 months ago

"The Lord Jesus Christ said, "A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit" (Matthew 7:18). By this test, the evolution "tree" is certainly corrupt, for its "fruit" has been uniformly evil."

By this. . . . errr. . . "test?"

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

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gr8dane 7 years, 2 months ago

tecumseh, good point, the disctinction between old earth and young earth creationism, and the latter throwing out much more science.

Here's a good page that shows the continuum of creationist stances: http://www.ncseweb.org/resources/articles/528_science_religion_and_evoluti_6_19_2001.asp

"Theistic evolutionist" is the most rational, and throws out the least science (if any), and accepts evolution. Most Christians are in the "Theistic evolutionist" category. The farther you get from Theistic evolutionist (toward Young Earth creationism, and eventually, flat earthism), the more science you have to reject.

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gr8dane 7 years, 2 months ago

bondmen is so clueless. Anyone with a decent education can pick apart everything he says as false or dishonest (or both).

For example: "The canard that evolution is science and creation is religion is obviously false since it is impossible for scientists actually to observe or repeat unique events of the past."

False: based on the creationist fallacy that science can only deal with testable, observable, REPEATABLE things. This ignores all the historical science, that studies evidence something happened in the past.

It's also based on a creationist fallacy that evolution is "some event that happened once in the past", and not the ongoing process it is, still seen happening today.

All the evidence just supports that it happened in the past also.

Then: "Evolution is based on the premise of naturalism, not science. In fact, evolution is the underlying premise of more religions than creation."

Actually, SCIENCE is based on naturalism, and evolutionary THEORY is the naturalistic explanation for the origin of species and explaining how species did and still do adapt to their habitat, and thus is science. Creationism is the religious belief that rejects certain naturalistic explanations to insist God did it instead, and did it completely differently than the evidence says.

As for the second sentence, that's just gibberish. "Evolution is the underlying premise of more religions than creation" indeed.

Evolution is an observed, well documented factual process, accepted as a scientific fact. No faith required. Nor is our theory for it contradictory to having faith in a deity, who created. Evolutionary theory, like science in general, is neutral to the supernatural.

It is not the "underlying premise" to any religions. Although most modern religions have large percentages who can accept it just fine as compatible with their faith. Their faith isn't "based on the underlying premise of evolution". Just compatible with the SCIENCE of evolution. Just as they are conpatible with the SCIENCE of meteorology, and thousands of other fields.

Anyway, I could keep going. That was just two thirds of one paragraph from bondmen's post, debunked. Debunking ALL of his words would be a fulltime job, and not a well paying one.

bondmen is just a "true believer" (ie fanatic), here to slander science because it's a threat to his weak faith. I'm glad I'm a Christian instead of a Creationist. WE don't have a problem with science.

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gr8dane 7 years, 2 months ago

Dena, excellent post. You hit the nail on the head.

Is the THEORY of evolution a fact? No. It's a THEORY. That EXPLAINS the PROCESS of evolution, which is an accepted scientific fact, based on the overwhelming evidence and observation and testing.

A big part of the problem is people are using common definitions of words, like theory and fact, instead of the definitions as science uses them (which are more exacting and specific). And they have a fallacy of false dichotomy, that if something's a fact, it can't be a theory.

In reality, evolution is both a fact and a theory, as are many other things in science, like gravity, and electricity, and hundreds of other things.

Or to be more accurate, it's an accepted, demonstrated fact that those things exist/occur, and the THEORY explains how they work, what causes them, etc.

Can a fact be disproven? Yes. Part of the scientific method (and creationists love to twist this fact) is that science doesn't consider ANYTHING "absolutely proven". Scientists don't even like to use the word "proof" or "prove", because nothing can be, except in math.

Even gravity is not "proven". Drop something a million times. It falls. But have you PROVEN that it won't fall UP on the millionth and one time? No. Not until you drop it the millionth and one time. And then you haven't proven it won't do so on the millionth and two time, and so on, and so on.

However, dropping it a million times and getting the same result (down) is more than enough to form a consensus that gravity is real. Now... coming up with a THEORY to explain it is harder.

Anyway, evolution is just as well supported by evidence and tested and observed as gravity. Can it be disproven? Technically, yes. Science must leave the possibility open. Is it LIKELY to be? Not really. Especially since every day, mountains more evidence come in that conform to how we expect biology to work, if evolution is true.

Anyway, I also agreed with you (mostly) that ID/Creationism doesn't belong in science class. It doesn't even belong in public school, not as something to teach the kids "this happened". 1) it has no evidence supporting it, and 2) it is teaching of religious beliefs and against the first amendment establishment clause. Teaching it in a HISTORY of Science or PHILOSOPHY of science class would be more appropriate. Or even a social science class talking about the MOVEMENT, etc.

If parents want their kids learning it as an alternative to science, teach it in your own time (home and/or church), or home-school them or enroll them in a private school that will. Keep your religious beliefs out of my child's head, especially misleading her that it's "science".

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thubbard76 7 years, 2 months ago

Now see here, Mr. (Ms?) Bondmen... We won't be having any rational, well thought, sensible discussions on THESE boards. You'd better pack up that intelligent snake oil and peddle it somewhere else. Really! Imagine that someone would think their argument through...this could start a trend!

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Sigmund 7 years, 2 months ago

I think creationism and evolution are both pretty unlikely. Of course I think the fluctuation in the energy of the sun has more impact on the climate than man made CO2.

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milkman_dan 7 years, 2 months ago

We were placed here by aliens. They told me that during the abduction. They're coming back. (keep some KY handy)

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bondmen 7 years, 2 months ago

No, there is scant if any evidence for chemical or biological evolution and faith does not rise up to fill the clearly observable void. Regarding beginnings for example:

The origins controversy is not fundamentally a scientific issue, but rather a life-and-death struggle between the only two basic worldviews, each embracing the origin, destiny and meaning of the cosmos and all things in the cosmos-material, biological, and spiritual.

Since each model of origins entails a comprehensive worldview, embracing the whole of reality, each is basically philosophical or, better, religious. The canard that evolution is science and creation is religion is obviously false since it is impossible for scientists actually to observe or repeat unique events of the past. Evolution is based on the premise of naturalism, not science. In fact, evolution is the underlying premise of more religions than creation.

Of the three creationist religions, only Biblical Christianity acknowledges that the Creator must also become the Redeemer and Savior. Thus Islam and Judaism, relying on human works (in addition to faith in the Creator), become humanistic in effect. All other religions are basically evolutionary religions, assuming an eternal space-time cosmos, the intrinsic processes of which (often personified as various gods and goddesses) have developed the cosmos into its present form.

The Lord Jesus Christ said, "A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit" (Matthew 7:18). By this test, the evolution "tree" is certainly corrupt, for its "fruit" has been uniformly evil.

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tecumseh9 7 years, 2 months ago

The best question to ask a creationist is right off is if they are a new Earth or old Earth one. Most are actually new Earth ones. Now if you are an old Earth creationist you throw out the Biology text but a new Earth (6,000 yr old Earth) creationist you also have to throw out the Geology text, the Astonomy text, the Physics text, the Molecular Biology text, the Geography text, even things like tree ring science you get the picture.

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jonas 7 years, 2 months ago

It's a lonely gulf, when none of your border lands measure up to your standards.

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Das_Ubermime 7 years, 2 months ago

Huh, I was always told that Texas doesn't fall into the gulf because the gulf has standards...

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beatrice 7 years, 2 months ago

I just thought that is why Texas doesn't fall into the gulf.

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nudist 7 years, 2 months ago

Tomorrow's topic: Who's smarter, men or women? The rules are: No sexist comments.

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beatrice 7 years, 2 months ago

Py, I thought people who don't believe in the theory of gravity just believed that we are kept on terra firma because the Devil sucks.

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Azure_Attitude 7 years, 2 months ago

The papacy can evolve, too. Pope JohnPaul II belived and stated publicly that the theory of evolution was credible. He didn't have a problem reconcilling faith and science.

Liberal Univeristies, Andy? What planet are you from? Yeah, only every university with a credible science program. To you, I bet, if it isn't Bob Jones University it's liberal.

Someone who pops off with a comment like that obvioulsy has not a clue about what thinking for onesself is. This "if it doesn't come from the bible it isn't true" attitude is the epitome of brainwashing. Far from thinking for yourself. But it's OK for you to have your logic spoonfed to you by your pastor. He can lead you down the path of blind faith and ignorance like lemmings off a cliff. That is your right.

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Pywacket 7 years, 2 months ago

Beatrice~ Those who reject the theory of gravity generally prefer to believe that we are kept on the earth by the diligent efforts of the Grand Creator, Benefactor, and All-Around Nice Guy. Whenever someone or something starts to float away, The Divine Hand reaches down and gently pushes the "floater" earthward.

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jonas 7 years, 2 months ago

Why in the world would we substitute a flamewar on evolution with a flamewar on abortion?

Isn't it clear, by now, that 75x55 isn't going to rise to your bait?

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yourworstnightmare 7 years, 2 months ago

Another topic:

Do you believe that human life begins at fertilization?

75x55, where are you?

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jonas 7 years, 2 months ago

Who's the one making assumptions?

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andrew55 7 years, 2 months ago

See what our liberal universities are churning out. It is obvious of the University students' consanguinity...mind-numb robots. Think for yourselves.

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andrew55 7 years, 2 months ago

Blah, blah, blah. So much to say about nothing. What does it matter? You are here. Make your pizzas. Make the most of it.

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bunnyhawk 7 years, 2 months ago

talk about a baited question!

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sgtwolverine 7 years, 2 months ago

I've heard some good things about Opera Mini. But I want to be able to escape the web, not cruise it anywhere! I spend enough time on it as it is...

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sgtwolverine 7 years, 2 months ago

R_I, not at all. I'm just considering the share of the browsers. Firefox has managed to become relatively popular, whereas other such browsers have not had such success in entering the public eye. It would probably be a considerably more interesting question as IE vs. Firefox than it would be as IE vs. Opera, since I think they'd have to work harder to find four people who were familiar with Opera.

Maybe "niche" would be a better word than "fringe."

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jonas 7 years, 2 months ago

"one never needs to shovel sun from the driveway"

Only when you're not doing the right drugs.

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RETICENT_IRREVERENT 7 years, 2 months ago

sgt, Opera also has a version called Opera Mini/¢.
The Opera Mini/¢ version is perfect for your mobile phone.

Posting to the OTS while sitting in a pew spares one those looks... You know the looks precipitated by the back of your head suddenly halting its progress... Creating a resonating thud and your accompanying exclamation... WHHHHAAAT? during those occasional um... looooong sermons. (I swear those pews are designed like a base fiddle to amplify the sounds of crainial contact.)

Plus you can cruise the web and post to the OTS while tooling around town.

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dajudge 7 years, 2 months ago

Deec--no, that was a different church. That one burned down at the turn of the last epoch. Anyway, Galileo-who? I believe, and it is only a belief, that we humans are evolving into electronic beings which in our very crude beginnings we know as computers. We will eventually need to be part machine, or if we can figure how to put ourselves and all we know into a computer memory bank and become self aware, that's the only way we will ever live long enough for space travel. Otherwise, the distances are just too great, so, no I don't believe in aliens from space. They would not survive the journey.

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bevy 7 years, 2 months ago

Damn Bea (first time I got to say that one)

I loved "one never needs to shovel sun from the driveway"

Haven't been to Ariz. but spent much time in your near neighbor, New Mexico. Western NM was incredibly beautiful, and I'm looking forward to making it out to AZ some day.

Every place has it's own natural beauty, you just have to learn how to appreciate it.

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beatrice 7 years, 2 months ago

Das: "space shares a lot in common with Arizona: inhospitable weather, lack of life, bleak landscapes..."

Oh Das, I take it you have never been to Arizona. Maybe if you came and stayed at one of our many world-class resorts you might learn the truth. (The fact that there are so many resorts and golf-courses here might be a clue as to the level of natural beauty here).

As far as inhospitable weather goes -- 70s and partly cloudy today, and we usually have 300 days of sunshine (and one never needs to shovel sun from the driveway). Lack of life -- please. Even the most rudimentary knowledge of the intricate eco-system of the desert will dispell that myth. Bleak landscape -- now, not to get into any comparison with Kansas that might be taken as Kansas bashing since I know you have the Flint Hills, but beside snow-covered mountains in the north and hills and mountains throughout the state and the Saguaro National Park in the South, Arizona also has that little thing called the Grand Canyon! If you haven't heard, it is one of the seven natural wonders of the world and not exactly a place usually described with the word "bleak."

Now, when shoveling that snow in Illinois, be sure to bend your knees. We don't want you throwing your back out. Tonight, I'll probably be sitting outside by the pool enjoying the grill.

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zimmerman 7 years, 2 months ago

denak is right. Evolution is a fact. No one can really dispute the fact that viruses evolve. Or maybe they can, but at least not with any kind intellectual argument. When people talk about evolutionary theory, what they're really talking about is the vast amount of work and research that is being done to try to understand evolution and how it works. Under evolutionary theory there are all sorts of different ideas that are debated about evolution, but after all of the evidence that scientists have seen over the years there isn't any debate over whether it exists or not. If you read any of the "creation scientists" papers, you realize that their arguments are weak at best but in most cases are just downright duplicitous. Pretty much the entire "creation science" movement is based around the idea to try to disprove evolution. Instead of any actual science being done, "creation scientists" spend all of their time digging through evolutionary papers and finding or in many instances creating contravercy where there isn't any.
In one distinct case, I remember a "creation scientist" quoting a scientific paper on evolution to show it's faults. When I read the actual paper myself, I realized the quote had left out the word "not" at the begining of the statement, and in effect had the actual scientist quoted saying the exact opposite of his intentions. It really annoys me that these liars are so bent on confusing others into thinking there is actual contravercy within the scientific community about this undisputed fact. If you don't believe something that has been proven time and time again that's your right, but really the reason that you don't believe it has nothing to do with science.

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bobberboy 7 years, 2 months ago

I don't know why everyone has such a problem with this idea. It's not black and white folks it's a shade of grey - evolution is one of the tools by which God created our conscious state of being.

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Ceallach 7 years, 2 months ago

Opera is a very helpful browser to use when checking presentation for web development. If it looks as planned in Opera you have a pretty good idea that your code is right. Whereas some of the other browsers pick and choose which codes they will directly publish and just have their own way with the rest.

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RETICENT_IRREVERENT 7 years, 2 months ago

sgt, "fringe"?

Should I infer that you are implying a certain "marginality" by the use of the word fringe?

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sgtwolverine 7 years, 2 months ago

Oh, yeah. I forgot about Opera, R_I. Good call. Though Opera does tend to be a fringe browser, and I was going with the two main choices. (My site stats show 78.4% IE visitors, 11.4% Firefox, 7.9% Safari and 0.1% Opera, with other assorted browsers adding small percentages.)

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denak 7 years, 2 months ago

".....Do you accept the theory of evolution as fact?..."

This question is the problem right here. The question uses the common meaning not the scientific meaning of the word fact.

Evolution is a scientific fact. Evolution as a whole and in part, has been testes over and over and over and continously proves to be factual.

People can dispute this all they want but evolution, as a scientific theory, has stood the test of time and scientific discovery continues to prove the fact rather then disprove it.

If someone wants to believe that God created the world in 6 days, fine go ahead. But that belief does not withstand the scientific method and therefore, can not be taught in a science class as a valid scientific theory.

If a person wants to teach I.D. or Creationism in school, fine put it in anthropology or history although anthropology, history, and linqustics can prove it false also.

Dena

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RETICENT_IRREVERENT 7 years, 2 months ago

T_O_B,

Besides the obvious?

i_p went to lunch. At lunch he dined on poached salmon with watercress yogurt sauce, served with braised asparagus. He chose Iced tea for a beverage.

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deec 7 years, 2 months ago

Is that the same church that persecuted Galileo for proving that the earth revolved around the sun?

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RETICENT_IRREVERENT 7 years, 2 months ago

sgt, I'm partial to Opera.

Lefse rules!

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RETICENT_IRREVERENT 7 years, 2 months ago

Ceal,

"Wow, I spend the morning at a boring workshop and when I return most of the board is going ape!"

Very clever!

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dajudge 7 years, 2 months ago

If you must know, I believe the Roman Catholic Church is the one true church and the pope is unflappable. And darn those scientists that figured out about the human genome, because, now they have proven that all human life began in Africa and spread out over the world some 60,000 yrs. ago. And one guy still has the original gene.

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Das_Ubermime 7 years, 2 months ago

Actually, I'm a little short on ammo... Luckily though, no dodo sightings in the area just yet.

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MyName 7 years, 2 months ago

More than you ever wanted to know about Lorem Ipsum here for the taking! http://www.lipsum.com/

Learn about it's roots in classical Latin text from 45 B.C.! A book about ethics, no less! Discover it's first use as a typesetting text (in the 1500s BTW). Stand in awe as you realize that, while this topic may be harmless and boring, it is still much more enlightening than anything you will read about evolution on a newspaper message board!

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit, sed diam nonummy nibh euismod tincidunt ut laoreet dolore magna aliquam erat volutpat. Ut wisi enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exerci tation ullamcorper suscipit lobortis nisl ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis autem vel eum iriure dolor in hendrerit in vulputate velit esse molestie consequat, vel illum dolore eu feugiat nulla facilisis at vero eros et accumsan et iusto odio dignissim qui blandit praesent luptatum...

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The_Original_Bob 7 years, 2 months ago

Das - I hope you have your supplies ready.

So, anyone know what happened to I_P? Besides the obvious.

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Silence_Dogood 7 years, 2 months ago

Next question: do you prefer Hy-Vee or Dillon's?

I prefer Hy-Vee; Dillon's is the epitome of low-brow culture, and their Kroger generic brand blows chunks. Plus, at Hy-Vee, you can always see local TV celebrity Jaynie shopping!!!!

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75x55 7 years, 2 months ago

Insults, puh-leeze - such salesmanship.

Just a question - can a 'fact' be disproven, like a theory?

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Ceallach 7 years, 2 months ago

Wow, I spend the morning at a boring workshop and when I return most of the board is going ape!

If a theory is unproven, such as macroevolution, and one still "believes" it is true because microevolution can be scientifically noted, that merely makes macroevolution your belief system not a scientifically proven fact.

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Das_Ubermime 7 years, 2 months ago

I agree with Jonas, the BIG! OTS is definitely a serene place filled with unicorns and flowers that get trampled on when the people next door (from the land of Urwrongia) invade to discuss such things as "serious issues".

Bea, I wouldn't worry about floating off into space too much. Afterall, space shares a lot in common with Arizona: inhospitable weather, lack of life, bleak landscapes...

So I'm in central Illinois right now watching this snow drift build outside my window... It's almost as tall as a car now. We are supposed to be in a blizzard until midnight and I'm thinking that it's going to be hard to get out of my apartment tomorrow morning...

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Azure_Attitude 7 years, 2 months ago

75 thinks the insults and a condescending attitude will detract from the fact the he/she/it has no defensible position. Maybe among those stuck in the dark ages and those that can't wrap their mind around science or theories, but not among intelligent people anyway.

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Ceallach 7 years, 2 months ago

sgt, I prefer just about any browser to IE, so yes to Foxfire.

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beatrice 7 years, 2 months ago

If I don't believe in the theory of gravity, will I just float off into space?

I also believe that God favored the Colts over the Bears, which includes their fans. I'm just curious who God will favor during next year's big game?

Zeus Rules!

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Redzilla 7 years, 2 months ago

I'm sticking with evolution, just to keep mankind's self-esteem up. If we are the product of a perfect, all-knowing being, we have sunk pretty far from our origins and let everyone down. If we're descended from monkeys, we're doing pretty well for ourselves.

(Ditto to H_Lecter's love affair with Firefox.)

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75x55 7 years, 2 months ago

You should stay on topic, serenedaydream.

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mick 7 years, 2 months ago

The Latin phrase that sums up evolution theory: Post Hoc Ergo Propter Hoc. As for me, "nolo contendere."

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jonas 7 years, 2 months ago

Is the original Star Wars trilogy better than the "prequel" trilogy?

Yes, and that is a fact. Although it's also fact that the lightsaber fights are much better in the prequel trilogy.

I think I'm with Gootsie. The OTS section is generally the happy place for me. If I want to fight I go into the other articles and do it there.

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yourworstnightmare 7 years, 2 months ago

75x55,

Why do you continue to post if you do not want to discuss your opinions? Is it just because you love to hurl lies and slander and insults?

That's fine until the real discussion starts, and then you run for the hills.

There's a word for this type of person, and it also describes a persian, an abyssinian, and an american short hair...

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H_Lecter 7 years, 2 months ago

Firefox 2.0 99.9% of the time.

It has spell check and has a very small footprint. It can be set to clean itself when you close it unless you need to keep tabs on where the kids have been. It imports all of your favorites and links from IE. It is a platform that fewer attackers aim at than IE. You can use tabs, but I prefer not using them.

The spell check works on OTS.

HL

http://www.mozilla.com/en-US/

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Pywacket 7 years, 2 months ago

It is a fact that I am always amazed that in this day & age, people still cling to the mythologies their ancestors used to explain the world (and to control each other). And at the same time, they (who consider themselves sophisticated members of "civilized" societies) take a condescending and amused attitude toward the "primitive" beliefs of societies that believe in multiple gods, spirits, magic, or anything not fitting into the Jewish, Christian, Muslim, or (insert other large "legitimate" religions here) system. Sigh....

Evolution is a "theory" in the same way that gravity is a "theory."

Bone777 said, "Take any part of the human anatomy/physiology and really study it and then tell me that that could happen by chance. The cell, the eyes, the hands, the ear.........."

There is no CHANCE about evolution other than naturally arising mutations. Whether those mutations (which still happen constantly in all species--do you not believe THAT?) prevail is a matter of supreme logic and beautiful simplicity on the part of nature. If you think evolution is all about chaos, go read up on it.

I need to get out and enjoy this snow. Have fun, kiddies.

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Gootsie 7 years, 2 months ago

I'm going to sign out until tomorrow's question. May I suggest:

What is it about xxx that gets others in trouble?

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75x55 7 years, 2 months ago

"Saying "it's a theory, not a fact/law" just shows ignorance of what these words mean in science, and a fallacy that something can only be one or the other but not both."

Can a 'fact' be disproven?

If so, was it actually a 'fact'?

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gr8dane 7 years, 2 months ago

Bone777 said, "Take any part of the human anatomy/physiology and really study it and then tell me that that could happen by chance."

The only ones saying "it happened by chance" are the creationists, and it's their misconception of what the scientists (aka "evolutionists") are saying. The scientists are NOT saying that. Evolution is very much the OPPOSITE of chance, although chance is involved (randomness of mutations, etc). That's why it's called Natural SELECTION, which means very much NOT "all by chance". If it were "random chance", any trait would be as likely as any other to be SELECTED.


Another common (creationist encouraged) misconception I saw a lot of in here (even from people who accept evolution): "Evolution is just a theory, not a fact or a law". Actually, it's all three.

It's an observed, tested, well supported fact that evolution happens. We have scientific theories AND laws ABOUT HOW it works. Many other things we have THEORIES about are the same. They are factual. We have theories EXPLAINING them. That's what scientific theories are.

For example, roger_o_thornhill said, "I thought part of the definition of the word theory was that it was specifically NOT considered yet fact. What is so GOPDAMN difficult to understand about that?"

No. The DEFINITION of theory (as science uses it) says that the thing the theory EXPLAINS could very well be accepted as factually existing/occurring. The theory EXPLAINS it.

from the National Academy of Science: Theory: In science, a well-substantiated explanation of some aspect of the natural world that can incorporate facts, laws, inferences, and tested hypotheses.

Saying "it's a theory, not a fact/law" just shows ignorance of what these words mean in science, and a fallacy that something can only be one or the other but not both.

Also: "Laws are generalizations that describe phenomena, whereas theories explain phenomena. For example, the laws of thermodynamics describe what will happen under certain circumstances; thermodynamics theories explain why these events occur. Laws, like facts and theories, can change with better data. But theories do not develop into laws with the accumulation of evidence. Rather, theories are the goal of science." - National Academy of Science

In other words, theories are not expected to "become" anything else, when "better proven". They are always theories. But they can LEAD to other things, new laws, new facts, new theories, etc.

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jrlii 7 years, 2 months ago

Science is based on "Natural causes for natural phenomena." If your answer is "It's magic," "It's a miracle," or "Because God made it so," it is not Science.

This is not to say that miracles do not happen or that God never intervenes, but it should be noted that it has become MUCH harder to prove a miracle to Rome's standards today than it was even fifty years ago, and vastly harder than at the dawn of the scientific age four hundred years ago.

Just personally, I believe in Evolution as an indisputable fact. I also do not believe that evolution is by any means a complete explanation for life as we know it. After all, what would evolutionary biologists do if the theory were complete and all encompassing?

I believe it is an astoundingly arrogant position to assume that today's humans are the zenith of creation. What will humans evolve into? Or will we simply go extinct in some environmental calamity, leaving no successor?

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jimincountry 7 years, 2 months ago

Yes, someofit.....no,someofit.....dunno, majorityofit!

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craigers 7 years, 2 months ago

couranna1, the bible gives a timeline of those that were living on the earth, but it does not date the earth.
As for evolution, I believe that it occurs on a small scale level but not on the overall macroevolution scale.

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Gootsie 7 years, 2 months ago

30". And not tapering off. I would be a great weatherperson, wouldn't I!

Never used either.

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bevy 7 years, 2 months ago

Firefox is awesome, I started using it on the recommendation of a friend who works in internet and network security. Two good reasons. 1. It's FREE. 2. Most of the security exploits/viruses/other nasty stuff are geared towards IE.

You can also open multiple sites using tabs on a single window instead of multiple windows. Very cool.

Besides all that, it ain't a Microsoft product. Nuff said.

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couranna1 7 years, 2 months ago

evolution is a fact. the two can coexist but the creation story in the bible is not true the world would only be 6000 years old if it was.

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Souki 7 years, 2 months ago

Crono:

You're still stuck for an explanation for how you can know life on earth appeared at least once -- if you or other reliable observers weren't there to witness its appearance.

However, here's a hint: Life exists on earth. The earth has not always existed, so the life upon it could not always have existed. Thus, at some point, the life that exists on earth must have appeared.

This is a very simple lesson in how you can know something happened without having witnessed it happening. Evolution "happens" all the time, and there are plenty of ways of knowing that without anyone's having (or even being able) to observe it happening.

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logrithmic 7 years, 2 months ago

God is a fact??? What a load.

Evolution does not posit that man developed through monkeys. It says we share common ancestors.

Anyone that knows anything about DNA knows that all life forms consist of largely the same DNA (95% in common). To divorce ourselves from the rest of life by positing some God myth is ridiculous.

Things change people. Books written 2,000 years ago and selected by men to describe the so-called Word of God are not only silly, but dangerous to the planet as well, especially in this day of global warming and potential nuclear devastation.

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sunflower_sue 7 years, 2 months ago

sgt, never used firefox. Anyway I can get to my Yahoo works for me.

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psychofan 7 years, 2 months ago

Do you believe that Lance LeClair's chops are real as a fact?

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75x55 7 years, 2 months ago

nicedaydream - I think my profile answers any questions that concern you - have a great day!

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hisdaughter 7 years, 2 months ago

Evolution is NOT a fact. It is pure theory and will never be anything more than that. The universe was created by God, the one true Creator. Man did not develop through monkeys. We were created by the hands of God. You find that all in the book of Genesis.

"The LORD God formed the man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being." Genesis 2:7

"Then God said, "Let us make man in our image, in our likeness, and let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth, and over all the creatures that move along the ground." So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them." Genesis 1:26 & 27

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sgtwolverine 7 years, 2 months ago

Ooh! I like inventing my own questions. How about, "Do you prefer Firefox or Internet Explorer?"

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bevy 7 years, 2 months ago

This is turning into one of those "if a tree falls in the woods and no one hears it, does it make a sound?" arguments.

Personally I prefer this iteration: "If a man says something in the woods and there is no woman around to hear him, is he still wrong?"

Cheers to ALL of you for keeping the mudslinging out. I get so sick of those who get angry about this subject. I also concur that this stupid question is flame bait.

Maybe they should let the posters on this board write the questions for a week. I'm sure we could come up with some that would engender better debate. Here's a sample:

Paper or plastic? State your reasons.

Is the original Star Wars trilogy better than the "prequel" trilogy?

Do you believe in the Tooth Fairy?

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yourworstnightmare 7 years, 2 months ago

75x55,

You have not answered my questions from months ago.

Here they are, in case you have forgotten. Be a man and answer them for once.

1) Do you believe that human life begins at fertilization?

2) Why do you believe that human life begins at fertilization?

3) Where in the bible does it state that human life begins at fertilization?

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RETICENT_IRREVERENT 7 years, 2 months ago

Proverbia 11:29

qui conturbat domum suam possidebit ventos et qui stultus est serviet sapienti

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crono 7 years, 2 months ago

Souki said:

"If it were true, Crono, that someone must observe an event in order to know that it happened, then how can you know that "the origin of life on earth happened once"? Perhaps it happened twice. Perhaps it never happened. By your reasoning, it would be impossible to know."

The origin of life on earth happened at least once. If it happened more than that, we didn't observe it, thus failing the observability criterion of science. Even if it did happen more than once, we can't repeatedly observe it happening, thus failing the repeatability criterion of science. Thus, any theory of the origin of life on earth is not a scientific theory.

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Ceallach 7 years, 2 months ago

Yes, I accept the fact that evolution is a theory.

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sunflower_sue 7 years, 2 months ago

semper fidelis i_p.

You

gotta

be

kidding

me!

This

is

ridiculous!

Thanks,

s_s

p.s.

cave

canem!

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The_Original_Bob 7 years, 2 months ago

R_I - I'm assuming I_P got into a tussle with the stench on another article.

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Tony Kisner 7 years, 2 months ago

I think the question has a flaw, is theory ever considered fact?

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Azure_Attitude 7 years, 2 months ago

Please, Bone, be real! These scientists have all been to college and were likely to have anatomy and physiology, biochemistry, etc. They probably forgot more about human anatomy than you ever bothered to be exposed to or learned. Sheesh, that was ridiculous!

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RETICENT_IRREVERENT 7 years, 2 months ago

T_O_B,

Its an old typesetters nonsense thingy..

Kind of like: "The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog", or "Now is the time for all good men to come to the aid of their country"

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The_Original_Bob 7 years, 2 months ago

It it Latin? Ohh, so much I don't know about dead languages.

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Das_Ubermime 7 years, 2 months ago

So now we sit and wait to see whether TOB is banned for using Latin?

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roger_o_thornhill 7 years, 2 months ago

I thought part of the definition of the word theory was that it was specifically NOT considered yet fact. What is so GOPDAMN difficult to understand about that? Like the theory of God. Like the theories of liberty, justice, and equality.

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The_Original_Bob 7 years, 2 months ago

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit. Donec in libero. Nam gravida, est at iaculis ultricies, pede nunc euismod mauris, eu vestibulum justo felis in dui. Fusce ultricies pulvinar lorem. Sed lobortis neque a lectus. Mauris iaculis fringilla tortor. Proin eu ipsum. Ut porttitor dictum dolor. Etiam mollis gravida mauris. Aenean vel dolor ut mauris congue varius. Aenean viverra magna pellentesque ante. Nam eros tortor, pellentesque sed, pellentesque quis, faucibus eget, sapien.

In memory of I_P. I have no clue what all that means. Anyone know what this means?

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Gootsie 7 years, 2 months ago

You're right TOB. I was afraid it was I_P.

13".

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The_Original_Bob 7 years, 2 months ago

R_I -

I_P got disappearededed? For typing in Latin?

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RETICENT_IRREVERENT 7 years, 2 months ago

Bone, Could it happen by happenstance?

I got married by happenstance, I met a wonderful "rib thief"

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jonas 7 years, 2 months ago

okay, studying now. . . . sure, why not?

The thing is, the chances are probably 5.6X10^15 against it just happening by chance, and if that one chance had never happened, we wouldn't be talking about it.

Because we wouldn't exist.

. . . can't say I understand what is so dumbfounding about the idea that life occurs within perameters which life requires in order to exist.

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The_Original_Bob 7 years, 2 months ago

Gootsie -

While this topic has been bandied about eleventy hundred times, it still riles up the emotions of those that think they can change someone else's views via a newspaper messageboard.

Expect a few "This Comment Removed By Site Staff" messages and certainly a couple disappearededededd folks.

The good news... there are at least 2 other articles today on this simliar topic. Hopefully, the poo slinging will stay on those.

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Bone777 7 years, 2 months ago

Take any part of the human anatomy/physiology and really study it and then tell me that that could happen by chance.

The cell, the eyes, the hands, the ear..........

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Gootsie 7 years, 2 months ago

Did someone get disappearded? I'm scared!!

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75x55 7 years, 2 months ago

Agno. the closet stalker - you are obsessed with me, aren't you? Poor little person.

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Gootsie 7 years, 2 months ago

What happened to the ice weasals post?

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mick 7 years, 2 months ago

I agree with crono. 150 years or so ago was the great episistemological debate. It should have ended then with the philosophy of Pragmatism which is (was) the underpinning of modern Science. It said that Science does not equate with Truth beyond the time and scope of a particular experiment or of its practical application. There is a lot of psedoscience out there that presupposes the Truth of evolution theory. Instead of scientific method it is only pigeon-holing "facts" into a framework of preconceived notions.

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Agnostick 7 years, 2 months ago

It may be stupid flame bait, 75x55, but the fact is... you posted here before me! :p

delegatezero said it best, for me: It's a little bit of both. And there are more important things in today's world than worrying about all this.

Agnostick agnostick@excite.com

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innocuous_posts 7 years, 2 months ago

Ice weasles should be your main concern. Just when you don't see them, you know they are there.

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The_Original_Bob 7 years, 2 months ago

Blue - I got the whiskey. I don't think Katie deems it essential. Which is why she is a bad weatherguesser.

Das - Snow Cougars? Possibly. I'm more worried about this flock of Dodo's that are apparently trapped in town due to the weather.

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sunflower_sue 7 years, 2 months ago

RI, you pull that old "I'm buying a case 'cause the cashier is too dumb to know that the price is per box" thing? Works every time! Did you pay him/her with $2 bills or did you want to maintain a low profile?

Evolution? Sure, we evolve all the time. Like, yesterday, I owned a couple of dragoons, but they quickly evolved into dabloons. Life is good! Coffee cake is almost ready. Who wants the corner piece?

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Souki 7 years, 2 months ago

Crono said:

"The origin of life on earth happened once and none of us saw it happen.

"Hence, the origin of life falls outside the epistemological bounds of the scientific method."

If it were true, Crono, that someone must observe an event in order to know that it happened, then how can you know that "the origin of life on earth happened once"? Perhaps it happened twice. Perhaps it never happened. By your reasoning, it would be impossible to know.

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RETICENT_IRREVERENT 7 years, 2 months ago

T_O_B, Last week I bought 2 cases (2000 rounds) of 9mm for 7.99 a case at Cabela's. They must have been having a heck of a sale.

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Das_Ubermime 7 years, 2 months ago

Guns and ammo TOB? They for the snow cougars?

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Centrist 7 years, 2 months ago

The Ultimate Answer to the Ultimate Question of Life, The Universe and Everything is ......

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The_Original_Bob 7 years, 2 months ago

Seeing how it's a theory, then it is just that. Although I tend to agree with it.

Gootsie - Yeah, Katie Tornado told me to stock up on water, guns, ammo, and canned goods. Going to be that type of day I guess.

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Gootsie 7 years, 2 months ago

11" and counting.

I missed seeing her on the TV. But she sure didn't post on here. Are we really going to die? Cause if so, I'm going shopping.

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sgtwolverine 7 years, 2 months ago

Great, i_p. Now I feel like I'm picking a Powerpoint template.

Das, you're right. I guess the only thing we can avoid is undeath.

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Centrist 7 years, 2 months ago

If evolution is true, why are there still monkeys?

If religion is true, why so many different interpretations/religions?

I believe none of us have a bloody clue where this all started.

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aeroscout17 7 years, 2 months ago

I am so tired of stupid questions like this; theories are not facts. They are supported by evidence and facts. They are not to be believed in or proved, only supported or refuted. ARGHH!! (Oops, first one to post in all caps)

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Das_Ubermime 7 years, 2 months ago

Awwwww, the Ubermime is banned from work today. :(

Darn high winds and snow...

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Das_Ubermime 7 years, 2 months ago

sgt, there is no way to avoid death. Heck, even when you are zombified you still have to die first.

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innocuous_posts 7 years, 2 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

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blue73harley 7 years, 2 months ago

Gootsie - I disagree about Katie Tornadie. She was doing a full tilt "we are all gonna die!" on the 10 pm news.

Your prediction on the cut n' paste, however, is probably right.

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75x55 7 years, 2 months ago

So, the question is actually do you "believe in" a scientific theory?

Not 'act upon a presumption of a scientific theory, until it is disproven', but actually 'believe in', which is a faith statement.

This question is stupid flame bait.

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paladin 7 years, 2 months ago

"I cannot conceive of a genuine scientist without that profound faith. The situation may be expressed by an image: science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind." -Einstein http://www.einsteinandreligion.com/scienceandreligion2.html

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Sen_Fudgepack 7 years, 2 months ago

Natural selection is still happening... Just look at the posts.... Some are definitely in the shallow end of the gene pool...

BTW, what level of inbreeding would we be on if we all came from one man and one woman?? (Where's a math geek when you need one??) Maybe that's why we use such a pitiful portion of our brain?? Hmmm....

I believe in the Pinochio effect... At one point there were a bunch of monkeys and then God intervened.... Where's the MISSING LINK?? Find that and I'll be completely on evolution's boat.... BUT, that still doesn't change my beliefs that some powerful force (some may call it GOD) created it all... All of us are basically atoms in different configurations... What makes up an atom? Energy... What creates the energy?? What creates all energy?? God?? Hmm...

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Azure_Attitude 7 years, 2 months ago

Don't forget about the cosmic debris, purplesage. Whoop, I went Zappa again . . .

One's faith is weak if it is so threatened by evolution. One can believe in both. I think the first capters, if not the first chapter its self, talks about evolution. It's all in interpretation, and if you think the present bible hasn't been interpreted you are incredibly naive.

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purplesage 7 years, 2 months ago

What's the problem with combining evolution and creation? The problem is incompatibility. One allows for an open system with the activity of a Creator; the other functions within a closed continuum of time and space, allowing only for time and chance.

Theistic blends are really poor compromises. Advocates of creation or intelligent design (not exactly the same thing, by the way) do not deny evolution. The question is origins - not do things change in the course of history. Evolution cannot explain origin. The big bang blew something up and the primordial ooze came from somerwhere.

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RETICENT_IRREVERENT 7 years, 2 months ago

This wouldn't even be a discussion if it were not for those damn beguiling rib thieves...

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conceptual_continuity 7 years, 2 months ago

us descending from monkeys sounds a lot more factual than that nonsense the religious crackpots are trying to feed me

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innocuous_posts 7 years, 2 months ago

jonas, I believe in "The Orgin of Species" . I've even seen actual copies of it with my own eyes.

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Gootsie 7 years, 2 months ago

Katie didn't tell us this was coming. Off with her head!

I predict up to two feet of cut/paste by mid afternoon, then it will taper off.

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jonas 7 years, 2 months ago

Yep. Though I certainly don't take "The Origin of Species" as fact. But evolution clearly occurs. For instance, I was born with eye spots on the top of my head. I flare them when approached by potential predators, such as large dogs and Hare Krishnas, and they have served me well.

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sgtwolverine 7 years, 2 months ago

Oh, boy. We're all going to die.

Also, I like pizza. And that's a fact.

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RETICENT_IRREVERENT 7 years, 2 months ago

Dang, this darn school cancelling snow, just slipped and about broke my coccyx.

Why in the hell do we have a tailbone anyway?

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RETICENT_IRREVERENT 7 years, 2 months ago

One of my ancestors uncles was a monkey, not even an American monkey, but an Old World monkey.

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crono 7 years, 2 months ago

Scientific inquiry is limited to repeatedly observable phenomena.

The origin of life on earth happened once and none of us saw it happen.

Hence, the origin of life falls outside the epistemological bounds of the scientific method.

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delegatezero 7 years, 2 months ago

Why do people have such a hard time combining creationism (although probably not as stated in the Bible and other "holy books") and evolution? The two really compliment each other quite well and where one lacks, the other makes up. Open your mind just a tad bit and you'll find that science and religion have the ability to mingle quite well. Face it... deep, down inside... no matter how smart you think you are (or claim to be), none of us has a freakin' clue as to how everything came about. Sure we can act intellectual and support evolution, or we can act pious and religious and support creationism, but in the end, no one in this world can say they absolutely KNOW how everything came about. Not even Darwin. That's why it's the theory of evolution, not the law of evolution.

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innocuous_posts 7 years, 2 months ago

Prediction for today: lots of fist waving & perhaps an ALL CAPS front moving thru. Have fun storming the castle.

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