The Originality of Species: Science and logic contradict the theory of evolution.

Study confirms truth behind 'Darwin's moth'
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A different approach, namely to base demarcation criteria on the value base of science, was proposed by sociologist Robert K. Merton [] The first of these, universalism , asserts that whatever their origins, truth claims should be subjected to preestablished, impersonal criteria. This implies that the acceptance or rejection of claims should not depend on the personal or social qualities of their protagonists. The second imperative, communism , says that the substantive findings of science are the products of social collaboration and therefore belong to the community, rather than being owned by individuals or groups.

This is, as Merton pointed out, incompatible with patents that reserve exclusive rights of use to inventors and discoverers. His third imperative, disinterestedness , imposes a pattern of institutional control that is intended to curb the effects of personal or ideological motives that individual scientists may have. The fourth imperative, organized scepticism , implies that science allows detached scrutiny of beliefs that are dearly held by other institutions. This is what sometimes brings science into conflicts with religions and other ideologies.

Merton described these criteria as belonging to the sociology of science, and thus as empirical statements about norms in actual science rather than normative statements about how science should be conducted Merton [] , His criteria have often been dismissed by sociologists as oversimplified, and they have only had limited influence in philosophical discussions on the demarcation issue Dolby ; Ruse Their potential in the latter context does not seem to have been sufficiently explored. Most authors who have proposed demarcation criteria have instead put forward a list of such criteria.

A large number of lists have been published that consist of usually 5—10 criteria that can be used in combination to identify a pseudoscience or pseudoscientific practice. Many of the criteria that appear on such lists relate closely to criteria discussed above in Sections 4. One such list reads as follows:. Some of the authors who have proposed multicriterial demarcations have defended this approach as being superior to any mono-criterial demarcation. Hence, Bunge , asserted that many philosophers have failed to provide an adequate definition of science since they have presupposed that a single attribute will do; in his view the combination of several criteria is needed.

This would mean that there is a set of features that are characteristic of science, but although every part of science will have some of these features, we should not expect any part of science to have all of them. However, a multicriterial definition of science is not needed to justify a multicriterial account of how pseudoscience deviates from science. Even if science can be characterized by a single defining characteristic, different pseudoscientific practices may deviate from science in widely divergent ways.

Hence, the above-mentioned seven-itemed characterization of pseudoscience was proposed as representing seven common ways to deviate from a minimal necessary but not sufficient criterion of science, namely: Science is a systematic search for knowledge whose validity does not depend on the particular individual but is open for anyone to check or rediscover.

Pseudo-sciences have been called many names, with connotations ranging from contemptuous to laudatory. Three the terms currently in frequent use are science denial ism , scepticism, and fact resistance. Some forms of pseudo-science have as their main objective the promotion of a particular theory of their own, whereas others are driven by a desire to fight down some scientific theory or branch of science.

The former can be called pseudo-theory promotion and the latter science denial ism. Pseudo-theory promotion is exemplified by homeopathy, astrology, and ancient astronaut theories. Williams Other forms of science denial are relativity theory denial, tobacco disease denial, hiv denialism, and vaccination denialism. Many forms of pseudo-science combine pseudo-theory promotion with science denialism.

However, as practiced today, creationism has a strong focus on the repudiation of evolution, and it is therefore predominantly a form of science denialism. Science denialism usually proceeds by producing false controversies, i. This is an old strategy, applied already in the s by relativity theory deniers Wazeck , — It has been much used by tobacco disease deniers sponsored by the tobacco industry Oreskes and Conway ; Dunlap and Jacques , and it is currently employed with considerable success by climate science denialists Boykoff and Boykoff ; Boykoff However, whereas the fabrication of fake controversies is a standard tool in science denial, it is seldom if ever used in pseudo-theory promotion.

To the contrary, advocates of pseudo-sciences such as astrology and homeopathy tend to describe their theories as conformable to mainstream science. The term scepticism skepticism has at least three distinct usages that are relevant for the discussion on pseudo-science. First, scepticism is a philosophical method that proceeds by casting doubt on claims usually taken to be trivially true, such as the existence of the external world.

This has been, and still is, a highly useful method for investigating the justification of supposedly certain beliefs. Secondly, criticism of pseudo-science is often called scepticism. This is the term most commonly used by organisations devoted to the disclosure of pseudo-science. Thirdly, opposition to the scientific consensus in specific areas is sometimes called scepticism. Unwillingness to accept strongly supported factual statements is a traditional criterion of pseudo-science.

See for instance item 5 on the list of seven criteria cited in Section 4. This convergence of theoretically divergent demarcation criteria is a quite general phenomenon. Philosophers and other theoreticians of science differ widely in their views on what science is. Nevertheless, there is virtual unanimity in the community of knowledge disciplines on most particular issues of demarcation. There is widespread agreement for instance that creationism, astrology, homeopathy, Kirlian photography, dowsing, ufology, ancient astronaut theory, Holocaust denialism, Velikovskian catastrophism, and climate change denialism are pseudosciences.

There are a few points of controversy, for instance concerning the status of Freudian psychoanalysis, but the general picture is one of consensus rather than controversy in particular issues of demarcation. It is in a sense paradoxical that so much agreement has been reached in particular issues in spite of almost complete disagreement on the general criteria that these judgments should presumably be based upon.

This puzzle is a sure indication that there is still much important philosophical work to be done on the demarcation between science and pseudoscience. Philosophical reflection on pseudoscience has brought forth other interesting problem areas in addition to the demarcation between science and pseudoscience.

Examples include related demarcations such as that between science and religion, the relationship between science and reliable non-scientific knowledge for instance everyday knowledge , the scope for justifiable simplifications in science education and popular science, the nature and justification of methodological naturalism in science Boudry et al , and the meaning or meaninglessness of the concept of a supernatural phenomenon.

Several of these problem areas have as yet not received much philosophical attention. The purpose of demarcations 2. Alternative demarcation criteria 4. Some related terms 5. The purpose of demarcations Demarcations of science from pseudoscience can be made for both theoretical and practical reasons Mahner , The demarcation issue is therefore important in practical applications such as the following: Healthcare : Medical science develops and evaluates treatments according to evidence of their effectiveness. Hansson Environmental policies : In order to be on the safe side against potential disasters it may be legitimate to take preventive measures when there is valid but yet insufficient evidence of an environmental hazard.

Hansson 2. There is a consensus among her colleagues that the result is a mere artefact, due to experimental error. Case 2 : A biochemist goes on performing one sloppy experiment after the other. Case 3 : A biochemist performs various sloppy experiments in different areas. One is the experiment referred to in case 1.

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Much of her work is of the same quality. She does not propagate any particular unorthodox theory. The following examples serve to illustrate the difference between the two definitions and also to clarify why clause 1 is needed: A creationist book gives a correct account of the structure of DNA.

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An otherwise reliable chemistry book gives an incorrect account of the structure of DNA. A creationist book denies that the human species shares common ancestors with other primates. A preacher who denies that science can be trusted also denies that the human species shares common ancestors with other primates. One such list reads as follows: Belief in authority : It is contended that some person or persons have a special ability to determine what is true or false. Others have to accept their judgments. Unrepeatable experiments : Reliance is put on experiments that cannot be repeated by others with the same outcome.

Handpicked examples : Handpicked examples are used although they are not representative of the general category that the investigation refers to. Unwillingness to test : A theory is not tested although it is possible to test it. Disregard of refuting information : Observations or experiments that conflict with a theory are neglected. Built-in subterfuge : The testing of a theory is so arranged that the theory can only be confirmed, never disconfirmed, by the outcome. Explanations are abandoned without replacement. Tenable explanations are given up without being replaced, so that the new theory leaves much more unexplained than the previous one.

Hansson Some of the authors who have proposed multicriterial demarcations have defended this approach as being superior to any mono-criterial demarcation. Some related terms Pseudo-sciences have been called many names, with connotations ranging from contemptuous to laudatory. Bibliography Cited Works Agassi, Joseph, Baigrie, B. Bartley III, W. Boykoff, M.

Boykoff, Bunge, Mario, The Need for Reconstruction , Amherst, N. Carlson, Shawn, Cioffi, Frank, Culver, Roger and Ianna, Philip, Astrology: True or False. Derksen, A. Dolby, R. Dunlap, Riley E. Jacques, Dutch, Steven I, Feleppa, Robert, Fuller, Steve, Gardner, Martin, Fads and Fallacies in the Name of Science , Dover Expanded version of his In the Name of Science , Gleberzon, William, Glymour, Clark and Stalker, Douglas, Grove , J. Gruenberger, Fred J. Hansson, Sven Ove, Vetenskap och ovetenskap , Stockholm: Tiden. Kitcher, Philip, Abusing Science. Krystal, Arthur, Kuhn, Thomas S.

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Lakatos, Imre, Criticism and the Growth of Knowledge. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Langmuir, Irving, [] Laudan, Larry, Cohan and L. Laudan eds. Lugg, Andrew, Mahner, Martin, Mayo, Deborah G. Merton, Robert K. Morris, Robert L. Oreskes, Naomi and Erik M. Conway, Merchants of doubt: how a handful of scientists obscured the truth on issues from tobacco smoke to global warming , New York: Bloomsbury Press.

Pigliucci, Massimo, Pigliucci, Massimo and Maarten Boudry eds. Philosophy of Pseudoscience. Reconsidering the demarcation problem. Chicago: Chicago University Press. Popper, Karl, Conjectures and refutations. The growth of scientific knowledge , New York: Basic Books. Unended Quest London: Fontana. Radner, Daisie and Michael Radner, Reisch, George A.

Ruse, Michael, Ruse, Michael ed. But is it science? Settle, Tom, Siitonen, Arto, Thagard, Paul R. Thurs, Daniel P. Numbers, Vollmer, Gerhard, Wazeck, Milena, Einsteins Gegner. Frankfurt: campus. Williams, Nigel, Astrology James, Edward W, Kanitscheider, Bernulf, Climate science denialism McKinnon, Catriona, Torcello, Lawrence, Creationism Kitcher, Philip, Parapsychology Flew, Antony, Psychoanalysis Cioffi, Frank, Freud and the Question of Pseudoscience. Chigago: Open Court. RNA world advocates suggest that if the first self-replicating life was based upon RNA, it would have required a molecule between and nucleotides in length.

But the odds of specifying, say, nucleotides in an RNA molecule by chance is about 1 in 10 -- below the universal probability boundary, or events which are remotely possible to occur within the history of the universe. Fourth -- and most fundamentally -- the RNA world hypothesis does not explain the origin of the genetic code itself. However, this process of transcription and translation requires a large suite of proteins and molecular machines -- which themselves are encoded by genetic information. This poses a chicken-and-egg problem, where essential enzymes and molecular machines are needed to perform the very task that constructs them.

DVDs are rich in information, but without the machinery of a DVD player to read the disk, process its information, and convert it into a picture and sound, the disk would be useless. So how did the first disk and DVD player system arise? The answer is obvious: a goal directed process -- intelligent design -- is required to produce both the player and the disk at the same time. In living cells, information-carrying molecules e. Just like the DVD analogy, genetic information can never be converted into proteins without the proper machinery.

Yet in cells, the machines required for processing the genetic information in RNA or DNA are encoded by those same genetic molecules -- they perform and direct the very task that builds them. Biologist Frank Salisbury explained this problem in a paper in American Biology Teacher not long after the workings of the genetic code were first uncovered:. Despite decades of work, origin-of-life theorists are still at a loss to explain how this system arose. During his acceptance speech, he offered this stark analysis, reprinted in the respected journal, Chemical and Engineering News :.

Similarly, the aforementioned article in Cell Biology International concludes: "New approaches to investigating the origin of the genetic code are required. The constraints of historical science are such that the origin of life may never be understood. But there is a much deeper problem with theories of chemical evolution, as well as biological evolution. This pertains not just to the ability to process genetic information via a genetic code, but the origin of that information itself. According to evolutionary biologists, once life got started, Darwinian evolution took over and eventually produced the grand diversity we observe today.

Under the standard view, a process of random mutation and natural selection built life's vast complexity one small mutational step at a time. All of life's complex features, of course, are thought to be encoded in the DNA of living organisms. Building new features thus requires generating new information in the genetic code of DNA.

Can the necessary information be generated in the undirected, step-by-step manner required by Darwin's theory? Most everyone agrees that Darwinian evolution tends to work well when each small step along an evolutionary pathway provides some survival advantage. Darwin-critic Michael Behe notes that "if only one mutation is needed to confer some ability then Darwinian evolution has little problem finding it. As Behe explains, "If more than one [mutation] is needed, the probability of getting all the right ones grows exponentially worse.

Behe, a professor of biochemistry at Lehigh University, coined the term "irreducible complexity" to describe systems which require many parts -- and thus many mutations -- to be present -- all at once -- before providing any survival advantage to the organism. According to Behe, such systems cannot evolve in the step-by-step fashion required by Darwinian evolution. As a result, he maintains that random mutation and unguided natural selection cannot generate the genetic information required to produce irreducibly complex structures.

Too many simultaneous mutations would be required -- an event which is highly unlikely to occur. Observation of this problem is not limited to Darwin-critics. A paper by a prominent evolutionary biologist in the prestigious journal Proceedings of the U. National Academy of Science. Evolutionary scientists like Darwin and Coyne claim they know of no real-world case where Darwinian selection gets blocked in this manner. But they would agree, at least in principle, that there are theoretical limits to what Darwinian evolution can accomplish: If a feature cannot be built by "numerous, successive, slight modifications," and if "intermediate steps do not confer a net benefit on the organism," then Darwinian evolution will "absolutely break down.

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The idea of evolution suggests that all natural species have one common ancestor, or a few of them, and that over very many generations a. Darwin's theory doesn't give any clues with respect to the origin of life and Darwin's theory is a very fundamental theory when it comes to the evolution of species have not found the beneficiary of what we observe that seems to contradict. In fact, Popper says at the beginning of Logic of Scientific Discovery that it is.

The problems are real. Modern biology continues to uncover more and more examples where biological complexity seems to outstrip the information-generative capacity of Darwinian evolution. In his book Darwin's Black Box , Michael Behe discusses molecular machines which require multiple parts to be present before they could function and confer any advantage on the organism.

Behe's most famous example is the bacterial flagellum -- a micromolecular rotary-engine, functioning like an outboard motor on bacteria to propel it through liquid medium to find food. In this regard, flagella have a basic design that is highly similar to some motors made by humans containing many parts that are familiar to engineers, including a rotor, a stator, a u-joint, a propeller, a brake, and a clutch. As one molecular biologist writes in the journal Cell, "[m]ore so than other motors, the flagellum resembles a machine designed by a human.

There are various types of flagella, but all use certain basic components. As one paper in Nature Reviews Microbiology acknowledges, "all bacterial flagella share a conserved core set of proteins" since "Three modular molecular devices are at the heart of the bacterial flagellum: the rotor-stator that powers flagellar rotation, the chemotaxis apparatus that mediates changes in the direction of motion and the T3SS that mediates export of the axial components of the flagellum.

Genetic knockout experiments have shown that it fails to assemble or function properly if any one of its approximately 35 genes are missing. Indeed, the aforementioned Nature Reviews Microbiology paper admitted that "the flagellar research community has scarcely begun to consider how these systems have evolved. Yet the flagellum is just one example of thousands of known molecular machines in biology.

One individual research project reported the discovery of over new molecular machines in yeast alone. National Academy of Sciences, Bruce Alberts, wrote an article in the journal Cell praising the "speed," "elegance," "sophistication," and "highly organized activity" of these "remarkable" and "marvelous" molecular machines. He explained what inspired those words: "Why do we call the large protein assemblies that underlie cell function protein machines?

Precisely because, like machines invented by humans to deal efficiently with the macroscopic world, these protein assemblies contain highly coordinated moving parts. But it's not just multi-part machines which are beyond reach of Darwinian evolution. The protein-parts themselves which build these machines would also require multiple simultaneous mutations in order to arise. In and , protein scientist Douglas Axe published experimental research in the Journal of Molecular Biology on mutational sensitivity tests he performed on enzymes in bacteria.

Mutational sensitivity experiments begin by mutating the amino acid sequences of those proteins, and then testing the mutant proteins to determine whether they can still fold into a stable shape, and function properly. Axe's research found that amino acid sequences which yield stable, functional protein folds may be as rare as 1 in 10 74 sequences, suggesting that the vast majority of amino acid sequences will not produce stable proteins, and thus could not function in living organisms.

Because of this extreme rarity of functional protein sequences, it would be very difficult for random mutations to take a protein with one type of fold, and evolve it into another, without going through some non-functional stage. Rather than evolving by "numerous, successive, slight modifications," many changes would need to occur simultaneously to "find" the rare and unlikely amino acid sequences that yield functional proteins.

To put the matter in perspective, Axe's results suggest that the odds of blind and unguided Darwinian processes producing a functional protein fold are less than the odds of someone closing his eyes and firing an arrow into the Milky Way galaxy, and hitting one pre-selected atom. Proteins commonly interact with other molecules through a "hand-in-glove" fit, but these interactions often require multiple amino acids to be 'just right' before they occur. In , Behe, along with University of Pittsburgh physicist David Snoke, simulated the Darwinian evolution of such protein-protein interactions. Behe and Snoke's calculations found that for multicellular organisms, evolving a simple protein-protein interaction which required two or more mutations in order to function would probably require more organisms and generations than would be available over the entire history of the Earth.

Four years later during an attempt to refute Behe's arguments, Cornell biologists Rick Durrett and Deena Schmidt ended up begrudgingly confirming he was basically correct. Now a defender of Darwinism might reply that these calculations measured the power of the Darwinian mechanism only within multicellular organisms where it is less efficient because these more complex organisms have smaller population sizes and longer generation times than single-celled prokaryotic organisms like bacteria. Darwinian evolution, the Darwinian notes, might have a better shot when operating in organisms like bacteria, which reproduce more rapidly and have much larger population sizes.

Scientists skeptical of Darwinian evolution are aware of this objection, and have found that even within more-quickly evolving organisms like bacteria, Darwinian evolution faces great limits. In , Douglas Axe published evidence indicating that despite high mutation rates and generous assumptions favoring a Darwinian process, molecular adaptations requiring more than six mutations before yielding any advantage would be extremely unlikely to arise in the history of the Earth.

The following year, Axe published research with developmental biologist Ann Gauger regarding experiments to convert one bacterial enzyme into another closely related enzyme -- the kind of conversion that evolutionists claim can easily happen. For this case they found that the conversion would require a minimum of at least seven simultaneous changes, 40 exceeding the six-mutation-limit which Axe had previously established as a boundary of what Darwinian evolution is likely to accomplish in bacteria. Because this conversion is thought to be relatively simple, it suggests that more complex biological features would require more than six simultaneous mutations to give some new functional advantage.

In other experiments led by Gauger and biologist Ralph Seelke of the University of Wisconsin, Superior, their research team broke a gene in the bacterium E. When the bacteria's genome was broken in just one place, random mutations were capable of "fixing" the gene. But even when only two mutations were required to restore function, Darwinian evolutionseemed to get stuck, with an inability to regain full function.

These kind of results consistently suggest that the information required for proteins and enzymes to function is too great to be generated by Darwinian processes on any reasonable evolutionary timescale. Axe, Gauger, and Seelke are by no means the only scientists to observe the rarity of amino acid sequences that yield functional proteins.

A leading college-level biology textbook states that "even a slight change in primary structure can affect a protein's conformation and ability to function. Goodsell writes:. Goodsell goes on to assert that "cells have perfected the sequences of amino acids over many years of evolutionary selection.

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The late biologist Lynn Margulis, a well-respected member of the National Academy of Sciences until her death in , once said "new mutations don't create new species; they create offspring that are impaired. Similarly, past president of the French Academy of Sciences, Pierre-Paul Grasse, contended that "[m]utations have a very limited 'constructive capacity'" because "[n]o matter how numerous they may be, mutations do not produce any kind of evolution.

Many other scientists feel this way. Over Ph. In , 16 biologists from around the world convened in Altenberg, Austria to discuss problems with the modern neo-Darwinian model of evolution. The journal Nature covered this "Altenberg 16" conference, quoting leading scientists saying things like:. In Problem 3 , we learned that mutations cannot generate many complex traits in living organisms on reasonable evolutionary timescales.

But mutations are only part of the standard evolutionary mechanism -- there is also natural selection. And Darwinian evolution not only commonly fails to explain the "arrival of the fittest" via mutations, but also often struggles to explain the "survival of the fittest" via natural selection.

Evolutionary biologists often assume that once mutations produce a functionally advantageous trait, it will easily spread become "fixed" throughout a population by natural selection. For example, imagine a population of brown-haired foxes which lives in a snowy region. One fox is born with a mutation which turns its fur coat white, rather than brown.

This fox now has an advantage in hunting prey and escaping predators, because its white fur provides it with camouflage in the snow-filled environment. The white fox survives, passing its genes on to its offspring, which are also adept at surviving and reproducing. Over time, the white-haired trait spreads throughout the population. This is how it's supposed to work -- in theory. In the real world, however, merely generating a functionally advantageous trait does not guarantee it will persist, or become fixed.

For example, what if by chance the white fox trips, breaks a leg, and gets eaten by a predator -- never passing on its genes? Random forces or events can prevent a trait from spreading through a population, even if it provides an advantage. These random forces are lumped together under the name "genetic drift. This underappreciated problem has been recognized by some evolutionary scientists who are skeptical of the ability of natural selection to drive the evolutionary process. One of those scientists is Michael Lynch, an evolutionary biologist at Indiana University, who writes that "random genetic drift can impose a strong barrier to the advancement of molecular refinements by adaptive processes.

In Lynch's view, there are many cellular systems which aid in survival, but are redundant. As a result, they serve as backup mechanisms that are only used when a highly effective primary system fails. Because they are only seldom used, these systems are only occasionally exposed to the sieve of selection. Yet these systems can be extremely complex and efficient. How can a system which is only rarely used, or only occasionally needed, evolve to such a high and efficient level of complexity? After observing the many "layers" of complex cellular mechanisms which are involved in processes like DNA replication, Lynch poses a crucial question:.

Lynch doesn't believe natural selection is up to the task. In a paper in Proceedings of the U. National Academy of Sciences titled "The frailty of adaptive hypotheses for the origins of organismal complexity," he explains that among evolutionary biologists, "What is in question is whether natural selection is a necessary or sufficient force to explain the emergence of the genomic and cellular features central to the building of complex organisms.

Selection may neither be necessary nor sufficient to explain numerous genomic or cellular features of complex organisms. In place of natural selection, however, evolutionary biologists like Lynch propose random genetic drift to explain the origin of complex biological features. According to Lynch, "many aspects of complexity at the genomic, molecular and cellular levels in multicellular species are likely to owe their origins to these non-adaptive forces, representing little more than passive outcomes Stochastic, of course, means random.

Can a strictly random force -- which has no reason to preserve features that might provide some advantage -- explain the highly complex biological features -- like DNA replication or bioluminescence -- which appear finely tuned to perform useful biological functions? Biologist Ann Gauger is skeptical of Lynch's explanation, as she observes that he "offers no explanation of how non-adaptive forces can produce the functional genomic and organismal complexity we observe in modern species.

Coyne further observes: "The influence of this process on important evolutionary change, though, is probably minor, because it does not have the molding power of natural selection. Natural selection remains the only process that can produce adaptation. The debate over whether natural selection, or genetic drift, is more influential in evolution will undoubtedly continue. But there is little reason to believe that whichever side wins this debate, a viable materialistic solution will be offered.

Evolutionary biology now finds itself facing a catch In essence, genetic drift is like invoking the "mutation-selection" mechanism, but minus all of the selection. This subjects drift to all of the difficulties we saw in Problem 3, where random mutations were unable to build biochemical features like functional proteins, or simple protein-protein interactions, because multiple coordinated mutations were required to produce those traits.

Absent selection, there is no reason for random mutations alone -- i. Unfortunately, the public is rarely made aware of these problems or this debate. According to Lynch, natural selection is typically portrayed as an "all powerful without any direct evidence " 63 mechanism that can build complex biological features. He warns that "the myth that all of evolution can be explained by adaptation continues to be perpetuated by our continued homage to Darwin's treatise in the popular literature.

The fossil record has long-been recognized as a problem for evolutionary theory. In Origin of Species , Darwin explained that his theory led him to believe that "[t]he number of intermediate varieties, which have formerly existed on the earth, [must] be truly enormous. Today, some years later, out of thousands of species known from the fossil record, only a small fraction are claimed to be candidates for Darwin's intermediate forms.

Fossil evidence of evolutionary intermediates is generally lacking, as the late evolutionary paleontologist Stephen Jay Gould admitted: "The absence of fossil evidence for intermediary stages between major transitions in organic design, indeed our inability, even in our imagination, to construct functional intermediates in many cases, has been a persistent and nagging problem for gradualistic accounts of evolution.

Darwin attempted to save his theory of gradual evolution by maintaining that intermediate fossils are not found because of "the extreme imperfection of the geological record. Paleontologists today generally recognize that while the fossil record is imperfect , it is still adequate to assess questions about evolution. Niles Eldredge, an evolutionary paleontologist and curator at the American Museum of Natural History, puts it this way with Ian Tattersal: "The record jumps, and all the evidence shows that the record is real: the gaps we see reflect real events in life's history -- not the artifact of a poor fossil record.

The eventual realization that the fossil record is not entirely incomplete has forced evolutionary biologists to accept that the record shows a pattern of explosions, not gradual evolution of living organisms. One biology textbook explains this:. Probably the most famous instance of abrupt appearance is the Cambrian explosion, where nearly all of the major living animal phyla appear in the Cambrian period. An invertebrate biology textbook explains this:. Evolutionary scientists acknowledge that they cannot explain this rapid appearance of diverse animal body plans by classical Darwinian processes, or other known material mechanisms.

Robert Carroll, a paleontologist at McGill University, argues in Trends in Ecology and Evolution that "The extreme speed of anatomical change and adaptive radiation during this brief time period requires explanations that go beyond those proposed for the evolution of species within the modern biota. But the Cambrian explosion is by no means the only explosion of life recorded in the fossil record.

Regarding the origin of major fish groups, former Columbia University geoscientist Arthur Strahler writes that, "This is one count in the creationists' charge that can only evoke in unison from paleontologists a plea of nolo contendere [no contest]. As one paper states:. In a similar way, many orders of mammals appear in an explosive manner. Niles Eldredge explains that "there are all sorts of gaps: absence of gradationally intermediate 'transitional' forms between species, but also between larger groups -- between, say, families of carnivores, or the orders of mammals.

Of course there are a handful of examples where evolutionary scientists believe they have found transitional fossils documenting gradual Darwinian evolution. The origin of whales has been called a "poster child for macroevolution," 86 where it is believed that around 55 million years ago, certain land mammals lost their hind-limbs and evolved into fully aquatic whales.

In particular, it is claimed there are fossil land-mammals with ear-bones similar to whales, and fossil whale-like mammals that retain their hindlimbs. Even though vertebrate and whale expert Phillip Gingerich admits that we only have "fossils illustrating three or four steps that bridge the precursor of whales to today's mammals," 87 let's assume for a moment that a full sequence of fossils exists. Is this enough to demonstrate that this transition occurred? Even if there are fossils that look like potential intermediate forms, if the overall evolutionary story does not make sense, then the fossils cannot be transitional.

In this case, the Darwinian evolution of whales from land-mammals faces serious mathematical challenges from population genetics. Many of these necessary adaptations would require multiple coordinated changes. But as we saw in Problem 3, such simultaneous mutations require extremely long periods of time to arise via the Darwinian mechanism. Whale evolution now runs into a severe problem. The fossil record requires that the evolution of whales from small land mammals would have to have taken place in less than 10 million years. Whale origins thus provides an interesting case study of evolutionary transitions: On a rare occasion where there actually are fossils that potentially show intermediate traits, unguided neo-Darwinian evolution is invalidated by the short amount of time allowed by the fossil record.

If this "poster child" of macroevolution doesn't hold up to scrutiny, what does this tell us about other cases where evolutionists tout supposed transitional fossils? Indeed, the public is commonly told that there are fossils documenting the evolution of humans from ape-like precursors, but a closer look at the technical literature tells a different story. Hominid fossils generally fall into one of two groups: ape-like species and human-like species, with a large, unbridged gap between them. In , the famed evolutionary biologist Ernst Mayr recognized the abrupt appearance of humans:.

In light of such evidence, a paper in the Journal of Molecular Biology and Evolution called the appearance of Homo sapiens "a genetic revolution" where "no australopithecine species is obviously transitional. Lieberman, David R. Pilbeam, and Richard W. As for the "good news," they still admit: "although we lack many details about exactly how, when, and where the transition occurred from Australopithecus to Homo , we have sufficient data from before and after the transition to make some inferences about the overall nature of key changes that did occur.

In the absence of intermediates, we're left with "inferences" of a transition based strictly upon the assumption of Darwinian evolution. One commentator proposed the evidence implies a "big bang theory" of the appearance of our genus Homo. Rather than showing gradual Darwinian evolution, the history of life shows a pattern of explosions where new fossil forms come into existence without clear evolutionary precursors. Evolutionary anthropologist Jeffrey Schwartz summarizes the problem: [W]e are still in the dark about the origin of most major groups of organisms. They appear in the fossil record as Athena did from the head of Zeus -- full-blown and raring to go, in contradiction to Darwin's depiction of evolution as resulting from the gradual accumulation of countless infinitesimally minute variations.

When fossils failed to demonstrate that animals evolved from a common ancestor, evolutionary scientists turned to another type of evidence -- DNA sequence data -- to demonstrate a tree of life. The ultimate goal has been to construct a grand "tree of life," showing how all living organisms are related through universal common ancestry. The basic logic behind building molecular trees is relatively simple. First, investigators choose a gene, or a suite of genes, found across multiple organisms. Next, those genes are analyzed to determine their nucleotide sequences, so the gene sequences of various organisms can then be compared.

Finally, an evolutionary tree is constructed based upon the principle that the more similar the nucleotide sequence, the more closely related the species. A paper in the journal Biological Theory puts it this way:. This assumption is essentially an articulation of a major feature of the theory - the idea of universal common ancestry.

Nonetheless, it's important to realize that it is a mere assumption to claim that genetic similarities between different species necessarily result from common ancestry. Operating strictly within a Darwinian paradigm, these assumptions flow naturally. As the aforementioned Biological Theory paper explains, the main assumption underlying molecular trees "derives from interpreting molecular similarity or dissimilarity between taxa in the context of a Darwinian model of continual and gradual change. But also, if Darwinian evolution is true, construction of trees using different sequences should reveal a reasonably consistent pattern across different genes or sequences.

This makes it all the more significant that efforts to build a grand "tree of life" using DNA or other biological sequence data have not conformed to expectations. The basic problem is that one gene gives one version of the tree of life, while another gene gives a highly different, and conflicting, version of the tree. For example, as we'll discuss further below, the standard mammalian tree places humans more closely related to rodents than to elephants.

But studies of a certain type of DNA called microRNA genes have suggested the opposite -- that humans were closer to elephants than rodents. Such conflicts between gene-based trees are extremely common.

The genetic data is thus not painting a consistent picture of common ancestry, showing the assumptions behind tree-building commonly fail. This leads to justifiable questions about whether universal common ancestry is correct. Problems first arose when molecular biologists sequenced genes from the three basic domains of life -- bacteria, archaea, and eukarya -- but those genes did not allow these basic groups of life to be resolved into a treelike pattern.

In , the journal New Scientist published a cover story titled, "Why Darwin was wrong about the tree of life" which explained these quandaries:. This sort of data led biochemist W. Ford Doolittle to explain that "Molecular phylogenists will have failed to find the 'true tree,' not because their methods are inadequate or because they have chosen the wrong genes, but because the history of life cannot properly be represented as a tree.

Many evolutionists sometimes reply that these problems arise only when studying microorganisms like bacteria -- organisms which can swap genes through a process called "horizontal gene transfer," thereby muddying the signal of evolutionary relationships. But this objection isn't quite true, since the tree of life is challenged even among higher organisms where such gene-swapping is not prevalent. Carl Woese, a pioneer of evolutionary molecular systematics, explains:.

Likewise, the New Scientist article notes that "research suggests that the evolution of animals and plants isn't exactly tree-like either.

What Darwin Didn’t Know

The data were so difficult to resolve into a tree that Syvanen lamented, "We've just annihilated the tree of life. A paper in Trends in Ecology and Evolution notes that, "A major challenge for incorporating such large amounts of data into inference of species trees is that conflicting genealogical histories often exist in different genes throughout the genome. Not all phylogenetic trees are constructed by comparing molecules like DNA from different species.

Many trees are based upon comparing the form, structure, and body plan of different organisms -- also called "morphology. A paper studying bat relationships made this clear, stating: "Incongruence between phylogenies derived from morphological versus molecular analyses, and between trees based on different subsets of molecular sequences has become pervasive as datasets have expanded rapidly in both characters and species. Textbooks often claim common descent is supported using the example of a tree of animals based upon the enzyme cytochrome c which matches the traditional evolutionary tree based upon morphology.

As one article in Trends in Ecology and Evolution observed:. Strikingly, a different article in Trends in Ecology and Evolution concluded, "the wealth of competing morphological, as well as molecular proposals [of] the prevailing phylogenies of the mammalian orders would reduce [the mammalian tree] to an unresolved bush, the only consistent [evolutionary relationship] probably being the grouping of elephants and sea cows.

Finally, a study published in Science in tried to use genes to reconstruct the relationships of the animal phyla, but concluded that "[d]espite the amount of data and breadth of taxa analyzed, relationships among most [animal] phyla remained unresolved. Unfortunately, one assumption that these evolutionary biologists aren't willing to re-evaluate is the assumption that universal common ancestry is correct. They appeal to a myriad of ad hoc arguments -- horizontal gene transfer, long branch attraction, rapid evolution, different rates of evolution, coalescent theory, incomplete sampling, flawed methodology, and convergent evolution -- to explain away inconvenient data which doesn't fit the coveted treelike pattern.

As a paper stated, "phylogenetic conflict is common, and frequently the norm rather than the exception. In Problem 6, we saw that the main assumption underlying all phylogenetic trees is that biological similarity is the result of inheritance from a common ancestor. The problem for evolutionary biologists faced with conflicting evolutionary trees is that biological similarity often appears in places not predicted by common descent. In other words, everyone recognizes that biological similarities often appear among species in cases where they cannot be explained as the result of inheritance from a common ancestor.

This means the main assumption fails. We also saw at the end of Problem 6 that when biologists are unable to construct phylogenetic trees, they often make ad hoc appeals to other processes to explain away data that won't fit a treelike pattern. One of these explanations is convergent evolution, where evolutionary biologists postulate that organisms acquire the same traits independently, in separate lineages, and not through inheritance from a common ancestor.

Whenever evolutionary biologists are forced to appeal to convergent evolution, it reflects a breakdown in the main assumption , and an inability to fit the data to a treelike pattern. Examples of this abound in the literature, but a few will suffice. A paper in the Journal of Molecular Evolution found that molecule-based phylogenies conflicted sharply with previously established phylogenies of major mammal groups, concluding that this anomalous tree "is not due to a stochastic error, but is due to convergent or parallel evolution.

A study in Proceedings of the U. National Academy of Sciences explains that when biologists tried to construct a phylogenetic tree for the major groups of birds using mitochondrial DNA mtDNA , their results conflicted sharply with traditional notions of bird relationships.

They even found "convergent" similarity between some bird mtDNA and the mtDNA of distant species such as snakes and lizards. The article suggests bird mtDNA underwent "multiple independent originations," with their study proposing "multiple independent origins for a particular mtDNA gene order among diverse birds. A paper in Nature Immunology observed that plants and animals have a highly similar biochemical organization of their respective innate immune systems, but their common ancestor didn't have such an immune system:.

According to the paper, common descent cannot explain these "unexpectedly similar" systems, "suggesting independent evolutionary origins in plants and animals. Another famous example of convergent evolution is the ability of bats and whales to use echolocation, even though their distant common ancestor did not have this trait. Evolutionary biologists long-believed this was a case of morphological convergence, but an article in Current Biology explains the "surprising" finding that echolocation in bats and whales also involves genetic convergence:. One paper called this data, "one of the best examples of convergent molecular evolution discovered to date.

In , a paper in Trends in Genetics explained:. Biochemist and Darwin-skeptic Fazale Rana reviewed the technical literature and documented over reported cases of convergent genetic evolution. So what does this do to the main assumption of tree-building that biological similarity implies inheritance from a common ancestor? With so many exceptions to the rule, one has to wonder if the rule itself holds merit. One evolutionary scientist tried to pressure his readers into accepting Darwinism by claiming "biologists today consider the common ancestry of all life a fact on par with the sphericity of the earth.

Proponents of neo-Darwinian evolution are forced into reasoning that biological similarity implies common ancestry, except for when it doesn't. And in the many cases where it doesn't, they appeal to all sorts of ad hoc rationalizations to save common ancestry. Tellingly, the one assumption rarely questioned is the overall assumption of common ancestry itself. But perhaps the reason why different genes are telling different evolutionary stories is because the genes have wholly different stories to tell , namely stories that indicate that all organisms are not genetically related.

There is some hope for a different story more attuned to the data, as Michael Syvanen dared to suggest in Annual Review of Genetics in , that "life might indeed have multiple origins. Another area where evolutionary biologists claim powerful evidence for common ancestry is the patterns of development of vertebrate embryos. Biology textbooks typically portray the embryos of different groups of vertebrate as starting off development in a highly similar fashion, reflecting their common ancestry.

Biologists who investigate these questions have found considerable variability among vertebrate embryos from their earliest stages onward, contradicting what we are told to expect from common ancestry. But most embryologists who acknowledge that vertebrate embyros start development differently will still claim embryos pass through a highly similar stage midway through development, called the "phylotypic" or "pharyngula" stage. These theorists propose an "hourglass model" of development, where it is claimed that similarities between embryos during this midpoint stage provide evidence for common ancestry.

One critical biologist explains how this concept is viewed: "It is almost as though the phylotypic stage is regarded as a biological concept for which no proof is needed. But when biologists have looked for evidence supporting the existence of a phylotypic or pharyngula stage, they found the data points in the opposite direction. One comprehensive study in Anatomy and Embryology surveyed the characteristics of many vertebrates during this purportedly similar stage, and found that embryos show differences in major traits, including:.

The researchers conclude that the evidence is "[c]ontrary to the evolutionary hourglass model" and "difficult to reconcile" with the existence of a pharyngula stage. While vertebrate development shows wide variation, evolutionary embryologists seek to force-fit evolutionary interpretations to the data. When every rule is stymied by exceptions, a better way is to simply let the data speak for itself. A non-evolutionary approach to embryology would more easily acknowledge that differences exist between vertebrate embryos at all stages of development, and that vertebrate embryos show some similarities -- but also significant differences -- during the purported phylotypic stage.

Biogeography is the study of the distribution of organisms in time and space both in the present and past on Earth. It is often contended that biogeography strongly supports neo-Darwinian theory. For example, the National Center for Science Education NCSE , a pro-Darwin advocacy group, claims that "consistency between biogeographic and evolutionary patterns provides important evidence about the continuity of the processes driving the evolution and diversification of all life," and "[t]his continuity is what would be expected of a pattern of common descent.

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Court cases such as Webster v. Over time, the white-haired trait spreads throughout the population. This highly improbable phenomenon can only happen because a complex cooling mechanism exists already. Context, p. Hayward, Alan

Evolutionary explanations of biogeography fail when terrestrial or freshwater organisms appear in a location such as an island or a continent where there is no standard migratory mechanism for them to have arrived there from some ancestral population. In other words, when we find two populations of organisms, Darwinian evolution claims that if we go back far enough, they must be linked by common descent. But sometimes it's virtually impossible to explain how these populations could have arrived at their respective geographical locations on the globe from some ancestral population.

For example, one of the most severe biogeographical puzzles for Darwinian theory is the origin of South American monkeys, called "platyrrhines. The fossil record shows that monkeys have lived in South America for about the past 30 million years. This problem for evolutionary biologists has been recognized by numerous experts. A Harper Collins textbook on human evolution states: "The origin of platyrrhine monkeys puzzled paleontologists for decades. When and how did the monkeys get to South America? Fleagle and Christopher C.

Gilbert put it this way in a scientific volume on primate origins:. Primate specialist Walter Carl Hartwig is similarly blunt: "The platyrrhine origins issue incorporates several different questions. How did platyrrhines get to South America? For those unfamiliar with the sort of arguments made by neo-Darwinian biogeographers, responses to these puzzles can be almost too incredible to believe.

Thus, at least two monkeys or perhaps a single pregnant monkey must have made the rafting voyage. Fleagle and Gilbert observe that the rafting hypothesis "raises a difficult biogeographical issue" because "South America is separated from Africa by a distance of at least km, making a phylogenetic and biogeographic link between the primate faunas of the two continents seem very unlikely. They argue that in light of "[t]he absence of any anthropoids from North America, combined with the considerable morphological evidence of a South American-African connection with the rodent and primate faunas" that therefore "the rafting hypothesis is the most likely scenario for the biogeographic origin of platyrrines.

In other words, the "unlikely" rafting hypothesis is made "likely" only because we know common descent must be true. Indeed, the rafting hypothesis faces serious problems, as mammals like monkeys have high metabolisms and require large amounts of food and water. And there are deeper problems: monkeys apparently made the journey from Africa to South America, but other smaller African primates never colonized the New World.

If it was so easy for monkeys to raft across the proto-Atlantic ocean, why didn't these lower primates also make the voyage? The reason we're given by Fleagle and Gilbert is that there is no reason, and it all comes down to sheer chance. In their own words, rafting is "clearly a chance event" and "[o]ne can only speculate that by a stroke of good luck anthropoids where able to 'win' the sweepstakes while lorises and galagos did not.

This is not the only case that appeals to rafting or other speculative mechanisms of "oceanic dispersal" to explain away biogeographical conundrums that challenge neo-Darwinism. Examples include the presence of lizards and large caviomorph rodents in South America, the arrival of bees, lemurs, and other mammals in Madagascar, the appearance of elephant fossils on "many islands," the appearance of freshwater frogs across isolated oceanic island chains, and numerous similar examples.

After reviewing a number of "unexpected" biogeographical examples that require oceanic dispersal, the review concludes: "these cases reinforce a general message of the great evolutionist [Darwin]: given enough time, many things that seem unlikely can happen. Thus, neo-Darwinian evolutionists are forced to appeal to "unlikely" or "unexpected" migration of organisms, in some cases requiring the crossing of oceans to account for the biogeographical data.

This kind of data may not necessarily absolutely falsify Darwinism, but at the least it challenges the simplistic argument that biogeography supports universal common descent through congruence between migration pathways and evolutionary history. In many cases, the congruence is simply not there. For decades, evolutionists have claimed that our bodies and genomes are full of useless parts and genetic material -- "vestigial" organs -- showing life is the result of eons of unguided evolution. During the Scopes trial in , evolutionary biologist Horatio Hackett Newman contended that there are over vestigial organs and structures in the human body, "sufficient to make of a man a veritable walking museum of antiquities.

Over time, however, these predictions of vestigial body parts and useless DNA have not held true. As scientists have learned more and more about the workings of biology, important functions and purpose have been discovered for these so-called vestigial structures. Indeed, in the journal New Scientist reported that, since the days of Professor Newman, the list of vestigial organs "grew, then shrank again" to the point that today "biologists are extremely wary of talking about vestigial organs at all. Despite the poor track record of claiming organs were vestigial, evolutionary biologists have applied this same kind of thinking to our genomes.

Many have postulated that the random nature of mutations would fill our genomes with useless genetic garbage, dubbed "junk DNA. Many scientists who serve as spokespersons for evolutionary biology have claimed this evidence provides case-closed evidence for Darwinian evolution:. The problem with these arguments isn't so much theological as it is scientific: Numerous examples of function have been discovered for so-called junk DNA. Biologist Richard Sternberg surveyed the literature and found extensive evidence of function for repetitive DNA.

Writing in the Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences , he found that functions for repeats include forming higher-order nuclear structures, centromeres, telomeres, and nucleation centers for DNA methylation. Repetitive DNA was found to be involved in cell proliferation, cellular stress responses; gene translation, and DNA repair. Sternberg, along with University of Chicago geneticist James Shapiro, predicted in in the journal Cytogenetic and Genome Research that "one day, we will think of what used to be called 'junk DNA' as a critical component of truly 'expert' cellular control regimes.

The day foreseen by Sternberg and Shapiro may have come sooner than they expected. In September, , the journal Nature reported the results of a years-long research project, involving over international scientists studying the functions of non-coding DNA in humans. While there's still much we don't know about the genome, the trendline of the research is clearly pointing in one direction: the more we study the genome, the more we detect function for non-coding DNA. Yet the now-dubious "junk-DNA" paradigm was born and bred inside the evolutionary paradigm based upon the idea that our genome was built through random mutations.

Yes, a few rogue biologists dared to seek function for non-coding DNA, but the Darwinian "junk DNA" view of genetics has generally hindered the progress of science, as was admitted by a article in Science :. Despite widespread Darwinian assumptions to the contrary, the paper concluded that "repetitive elements are not useless junk DNA but rather are important, integral components" of animal genomes.

Studies suggest that these long stretches of non-coding DNA between genes "constitute an important layer of genome regulation across a wide spectrum of species.

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Like repetitive elements, another kind of "junk" DNA for which function is being discovered is pseudogenes. Pseudogenes are thought to be copies of once-functional genes that have been inactivated through mutations. One paper in Science Signaling observes that "pseudogenes have long been dismissed as junk DNA," but notes:. Indeed, functions for many pseudogenes have already been discovered; the ENCODE project alone found over pseudogenes that are "transcribed and associated with active chromatin. A paper in the journal RNA again argues they can regulate the expression of genes:.

Likewise, a paper in the journal RNA Biology similarly stated that "Pseudogenes were long considered as junk genomic DNA" but "pseudogene regulation is widespread" in complex multicellular organisms. The paper proposed that "[t]he high abundance and conservation of the pseudogenes in a variety of species indicate that selective pressures preserve these genetic elements, and suggest they may indeed perform important biological functions.

Pseudogenes serve as another good example of how Darwinian biologists have assumed that a type of non-coding DNA they didn't understand was functionless genetic junk, and thus ignored their functions. Indeed, the aforementioned paper in RNA Biology explains that one reason why evolutionists have been so slow to abandon the assumption that pseudogenes are junk is because their functions are difficult to detect.

The authors observe that "almost all pseudogenes that exhibit significant biological activity are expressed in specific tissue or cell lines," meaning only specific tissues or cell lines may use a given pseudogene for some function. Additionally, it's difficult to detect function for pseudogenes because we have lacked the research tools to understand how they influence gene expression. The paper predicts that "more and more functional pseudogenes will be discovered as novel biological technologies are developed in the future," and concludes "The study of functional pseudogenes is just at the beginning.

Many evolutionary biologists are wedded to the view that our genomes are full of junk, and resist the interpretation that virtually all DNA has function. Indeed, a evolution textbook teaches that "Over half of the genome is composed of neither genes, nor vestiges of human genes, nor regulatory regions. Instead, it is made up of parasite-like segments of DNA While much remains to be learned about the workings of our genome, the research trendline is unambiguous: the more we study non-coding DNA, the more we find evidence of widespread function.

In recent years, evolutionary biologists have tried to explain the origin of human moral, intellectual, and religious abilities in terms of Darwinian evolution. Harvard University evolutionary psychologist Marc Hauser has promoted the increasingly common hypothesis that "people are born with a moral grammar wired into their neural circuits by evolution.

Humans do appear hard-wired for morality, but were we programmed by unguided evolutionary processes? Natural selection cannot explain extreme acts of human kindness. Regardless of background or beliefs, upon finding strangers trapped inside a burning vehicle, people will risk their own lives to help them escape -- with no evolutionary benefit to themselves. For example, evolutionary biologist Jeffrey Schloss explains that Holocaust rescuers took great risks which offered no personal benefits:.

Facts about Human Evolution

Francis Collins gives the example of Oskar Schindler, the German businessman who risked his life "to save more than a thousand Jews from the gas chambers. In spite of the claims of evolutionary psychologists, many of humanity's most impressive charitable, artistic, and intellectual abilities outstrip the basic requirements of natural selection. If life is simply about survival and reproduction, why do humans compose symphonies, investigate quantum mechanics, and build cathedrals?

Natural Academy of Sciences member Philip Skell explained why evolutionary psychology does not adequately predict human behavior:. Contrary to Darwinism, the evidence indicates that human life isn't about mere survival and reproduction. But in addition to our moral uniqueness, humans are also distinguished by their use of complex language. Finally, humans are also the only species that seeks to investigate the natural world through science. In fact, the next time someone tries to break down the differences between humans and apes, remind them that it's humans who write scientific papers studying apes, not the other way around.

This chapter has cited dozens of papers from the technical scientific literature and by credible scientists which, taken together, pose strong scientific challenges to modern evolutionary theory. Yet defenders of neo-Darwinism commonly assert that legitimate scientific objections to their viewpoint do not exist, and that the only criticisms which remain are based upon religion. Clearly, this is not true. In fact, the attempt to re-label criticisms of neo-Darwinian evolution as religion is typically a ploy to dismiss scientific criticisms without addressing them.

The balance of this book, of course, raises both religious and scientific arguments supporting the progressive creation view that God created life on earth over the course of millions of years. This viewpoint has both religious and scientific dimensions, and for that reason is different from the strictly scientific approach taken in this chapter. The fact that some arguments in this book may be based upon religion, in no way changes the fact that there are strong scientific challenges to neo-Darwinian theory.

Likewise, the fact that there are important religious dimensions to this debate does not mean that materialists can ignore the scientific weaknesses in their own arguments. Until those scientific problems are addressed, scientists will continue to grow skeptical of evolutionary theory. Note: A PDF of this article can be downloaded here. Lasaga, H. Holland, and Michael J. Szostak, David P. Bartel, and P. Trevors and D. Abel, "Chance and necessity do not explain the origin of life," Cell Biology International , National Academy of Sciences , www. Behe ," The New Republic , pp.

DeRosier, "The turn of the screw: The bacterial flagellar motor," Cell , See Transcript of Testimony of Scott Minnich, pp. Dover Area School Board , No. Other experimental studies have identified over 30 proteins necessary to form flagella. See Table 1. Neidhart, John L.