Help to debunk Evolution's Achilles Heels.
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02-12-2014, 06:04 PM
RE: Help to debunk Evolution's Achilles Heels.
I love how after one post, I've got 3 atheists hitting the reputation button like Pavlov's dog.

Can't handle a dissenting opinion, can we?

ROFL.

Maybe if you call me a "creatard" it will make you feel even better?
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02-12-2014, 06:13 PM
RE: Help to debunk Evolution's Achilles Heels.
(02-12-2014 06:02 PM)anatevka Wrote:  
(02-12-2014 04:46 PM)pablo Wrote:  Evolution is a FACT, it doesn't have an Achilles heel.

Cool. Just assume what you're trying to prove. Brilliant.

No, it's accepted as fact because of the evidence. I suggest you read a book written by an evolutionary biologist to learn what the evidence is.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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02-12-2014, 06:28 PM
RE: Help to debunk Evolution's Achilles Heels.
(02-12-2014 06:13 PM)Chas Wrote:  
(02-12-2014 06:02 PM)anatevka Wrote:  Cool. Just assume what you're trying to prove. Brilliant.

No, it's accepted as fact because of the evidence. I suggest you read a book written by an evolutionary biologist to learn what the evidence is.

Why do you assume that I haven't? You know what assuming does, ROFL.
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02-12-2014, 06:33 PM
RE: Help to debunk Evolution's Achilles Heels.
(02-12-2014 06:04 PM)anatevka Wrote:  Can't handle a dissenting opinion, can we?

It doesn't appear that you have actually expressed a dissenting opinion; at least you haven't said what you think is wrong about evolution.

Atheism: it's not just for communists any more!
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02-12-2014, 06:37 PM
RE: Help to debunk Evolution's Achilles Heels.
(02-12-2014 06:04 PM)anatevka Wrote:  Can't handle a dissenting opinion, can we?

Who knows? Try us. What is your opinion?

I don't think I've seen it yet.

Perhaps if you say with which part of evolutionary theory you have difficulty understanding, we might be able to help.

Smile

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02-12-2014, 06:37 PM
RE: Help to debunk Evolution's Achilles Heels.
(02-12-2014 06:28 PM)anatevka Wrote:  
(02-12-2014 06:13 PM)Chas Wrote:  No, it's accepted as fact because of the evidence. I suggest you read a book written by an evolutionary biologist to learn what the evidence is.

Why do you assume that I haven't? You know what assuming does, ROFL.

Have you read any? Which one(s)? With what do you disagree? Why?

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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02-12-2014, 06:38 PM
RE: Help to debunk Evolution's Achilles Heels.
(02-12-2014 06:04 PM)anatevka Wrote:  I love how after one post, I've got 3 atheists hitting the reputation button like Pavlov's dog.

Can't handle a dissenting opinion, can we?

ROFL.

Maybe if you call me a "creatard" it will make you feel even better?

Two atheists. I know, basic arithmetic is difficult but I believe in you. You can do it.

Still waiting for that list.

Soulless mutants of muscle and intent. There are billions of us; hardy, smart and dangerous. Shaped by millions of years of death. We are the definitive alpha predator. We build monsters of fire and stone. We bottled the sun. We nailed our god to a stick.

In man's struggle against the world, bet on the man.
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02-12-2014, 06:43 PM (This post was last modified: 02-12-2014 06:59 PM by goodwithoutgod.)
RE: Help to debunk Evolution's Achilles Heels.
(01-12-2014 06:55 PM)anatevka Wrote:  How predictable. Two pages of blather, and 0 debunking.

Lots of logical fallacies though, shall I list them?

Might as well rename this forum, the unthinking atheist circle-jerk.

oh please feel free to educate us ignorant heathens your worshipfullness......let me know when you feel ready to "teach" me about evolution, and I will teach you many things as well.....lets exchange knowledge...come at me bro Smile

Here let me give you an assist on this:

A paper I wrote on this very subject...read, think...evolve beyond the myth.

Evolution - a book report per se of Why evolution is true by Coyne, J.

Abstract
This paper will provide a critique and personal reflection on the textbook "Why Evolution Is True". The author will reflect on the themes presented in the chapters of the book and provide personal introspective analysis of the content within. It will describe the author’s personal epistemological approach to the concept of evolution. It will include the author’s perspective based on philosophy, theology and sociological aspects of the subject as well as demonstrate the authors scientific understanding of evolution. The author will lastly offer a critical evaluation of the ideas presented in these chapters.

Keywords: evolution, sonic hedgehog gene, homologies, vestigial structures, fossil record, dating methods, transitional fossils


What is evolution?
This fascinating book by Dr. Jerry Coyne is an extremely important look at the evolution debate ongoing today in this nation. The book begins by discussing one of the many top court cases that determined that the scientific facts of evolution should be taught in public schools. It is important that as a society, and as intelligent educated moral human beings, we continue to fight the continuous attempts by members of various Christian faiths, who strive to force the courts to allow them to interject some form of intelligent design into the public school system. This is truly a tragedy and an outright attack on the minds of our youth, potentially undermining the future success of this country and its ability to compete globally in math and science fields.

It is literally impossible to endeavor to grow intellectually on science-based subjects, like evolution, if one has a personal belief that the earth was created by an omnipresent, life creating super genie 6 to 10,000 years ago. This view of the real world around us stunts the believer’s ability to acknowledge, accept and learn to evaluate empirical evidence using reason, logic and scientific falsification processes.
To summarize the theory of evolution, one only has to understand that life on earth has evolved gradually over a long period of time from an ancient, primitive self-replicating molecule which evolved over time, creating many diverse living organisms.

Most likely the most controversial part of the evolutionary theory is natural selection. This is due to design in nature by a natural mechanical process that does not require supernatural, creation stories to explain its existence. This is controversial because those that subscribe to fabricated fairytales and invalid delusional supernatural transcendental belief systems do not like when you muddy the water with facts, reason, logic and empirical evidence. These people posit intelligent design as the answer, which is a religious argument lacking empirical support and offers no tenable hypothesis.

Written in the rocks
The amazing world of fossils, how they have intrigued us for so many years. How do we have fossils? It requires that the remains of a living organism, plant or animal, die in a body of water, since the bottom and be covered by sediment to prevent their decay. When you consider these very specific requirements is very easy to understand why the fossil record for the last 17 million years is spotty and incomplete. Scientists hypothesize that less than 1% of all species have fossil evidence for us to analyze. Thankfully, we had more than enough fossils show us how evolution proceeded, and to show how major species split off from one another over time.

To the educated, intellectual and rational person, the fact that the fossil record does not give any evidence in support of intelligent design or creationism, which posits that all species appeared suddenly and remain unchanged is of no surprise. To me the biggest blow to creationism, besides the fact that the whole idea is fabricated and can be traced back to its inception, is a simple fact that scientifically we can disprove it in so many ways. The biggest being the fossil record does not reflect or support in any way all life appearing at one time on the earth. This, of course, is the least of creationist supporters worries as every angle of their belief system can be dismantled piece by piece.

For me the single biggest piece of evidence is transitional fossils such as Tiklaalik, or Archaeopteryx, which show major transitions from fish to amphibian and reptile to bird. This is, of course, very inconvenient to those who clutch a delusion in order to comprehend the real world around us. Delusion; A belief held with strong conviction despite superior evidence to the contrary. Which pretty much defines religion.

Remnants: vestiges, embryos, and bad design
This chapter discussed the result of adaptation in a species which produces a feature that has either lost its usefulnes or its purpose has been adapted for new uses is a vestigial. For example; wings of an ostrich, the human appendix which was very important to our ancestors who primarily ate vegetation but is of no use to us, and the human coccyx. These are all vestigial traits which only makes sense to consider evolution as the cause. Another oddity is atavisms; an anomaly which appears to be the reoccurrence of an ancient ancestral trait. A human baby born with a tail, or a horse born with extra toes. They differ from vestigial traits because they rarely occur, rather than be present in every individual.

I found these examples personally fascinating, how interesting that even today we can see the rare appearance of ancient traits and human and animal species. If we were created, by some anthropocentric, Abrahamic based version of a God for example, why would we have these ancestral traits which reflect our mutation as a species from another species over a very long period of time. If we were created from a handful of dirt, or so the fairytale goes, why would we have the remnants of a tail inside of our body, and a fishlike circulatory system? Why would we have gill arch structures in our embryonic structure during our early development stages? To me, yet again, this indicates that we are exactly what evolutionary scientist have proclaimed, a successful mutation of Homo sapiens species over a very long period of time. It is fascinating to understand that as one species evolves into another, the new specie has inherited the genetic developmental programming of its ancestor, and this is proven over and over in this book.

The ample evidence of bad design refutes, yet again, the ridiculous posit of an intelligent designer. If we were created, we would not have so many imperfections. These imperfections are the mark of evolution and are exactly what we would expect to happen. The Laryngeal nerve of mammals is a good example of this. Another nail in the coffin for the fairytale, fabricated, anthropocentric concept of a creator.

The geography of life
As I went through this chapter and reflected on the vast amount of biogeographic evidence for evolution, I felt sorry for those who cling to the creationism concept. It must require a consistent amount of self-discipline, or self-delusion, to completely ignore the plethora of superior evidence that strongly contradicts their belief system. If I hold up a rock and say that it is 4.5 billion years old, and validate that posit with ample scientific evidence by the utilization of various proven dating methods, and a creationist says it is 6,000 years old and holds up a fictional book as evidence to the contrary, this is not a countering argument worthy of discussion. I guess that is why it is called blind faith.

Whenever a creationist has been asked to offer a credible explanation on why different types of animals have similar forms in distinctly different places, their only answer is the GODDIDIT excuse. Unfortunately for creationists, convergent evolution explains this very well. Species that live in similar habitats will have experienced the same environmental stressors, and thus evolve with similar genetic adaptations. When we perform archeological digs in one area we should find direct descendants of earlier species that lived in this area, to no surprise this is what we find. Yet again, another nail in the coffin of creationism.

Creationism would have to propose that there had occurred an endless number of successive creations and extinctions worldwide, and each set of newly created species were made to look like older ones that lived in the same area. This is about as plausible as the ridiculous Noah’s Ark story which was based on the epic of Gilgamesh myth. Perhaps it is time we discard the chicken bones, tea leaves and fairytales and accept the real, tangible, empirical evidence at hand.

The engine of evolution
Evolution by selection is really a combination of lawfulness and randomness. First you have a random process, the occurrence of mutations that generate genetic change, and then a lawful process… natural selection, that orders this mutation, keeping the good in this guarding the bad by survival of the fittest theory. I found it intriguing when I read that adaptation increases the fitness of the individual and not the species. As the theory of evolution predicts, we never see adaptations which benefit the species at the expense of the individual. That would be something we would expect if living organisms were designed and created by magical sky genie.
Humans are a long lived and slow reproducing species with generation times of about 20 years or more. It is, therefore, difficult to observe inter-generational genetic change. Consider that only two reproductive generations have passed since the discovery of the structure of DNA. Much of the genetic variation that we see in human populations today developed within the past 50,000 years, after the spread of Homo sapiens out of Africa and into other parts of the world.

If you truly wish to see selection in action, then you should look at species that have short generation times and that are adapting to a new environment. One of the most derisive creationists concepts is what I call the God of the gaps argument. Basically, wherever there is a gap in the theory of evolution’s trail of evidence, they posit God as the cause. There is no reason to position intelligent design as the answer to questions or gaps, simply because science has not yet found the answer. Science is the antithesis of faith. Science is a process that contains multiple and redundant checks, balances, and safeguards against human bias and error.

Science has a built-in corrective mechanism; hypothesis testing. Proponents of intelligent design, a ridiculous pseudoscience, do not bother to clutter their perspectives with inconvenient facts, they simply claim to know the truth, based on a fictional disproven fairytale of a book called the Bible. When you push them into a corner with reason, logic, and evidence, they simply wave it aside and pointed at the Bible. This is not countering evidence, this is delusional belief in a transcendental reality which has no place in the discussion of science.

How sex drives evolution
Although I am fairly fluent in most concepts dealing with evolution and scientific principles, I did not know how big a part sex had in evolution. It makes total sense, and now that I know about it through this course I accept it explicitly, but it is fascinating to consider the major impact that sex drive, a mate selection had on the evolution of the world today.

To me the impact and major contributing factor of sex and evolution is the simplest concept. Pretty much in all species, the female picks their mate, or the strongest male dominates all the females for reproduction. Thus ensuring those strong genes and genetic traits are passed on to their offspring. It all comes down to males must compete for females. Female choice of a mate has driven the evolution of many sexual dimorphisms.

When we look at the impact of sex, for example why are there only two sexes and not three or four? This is a common countering argument from those who work so hard to discredit evolution. As usual it is due to their lack of knowledge and biology that leaves them down the road to misinformation. Natural selection would favor a state in which one sex makes a lot of small reproductive material (sperm or pollen), and the other makes fewer larger reproductive material such as eggs. This results in males competing for females, the males should be promiscuous and the females coy in their decision and choice of a mate.

The origin of species
Darwin’s book changed the world and many ways, and inspired intelligent, educated thinking scholars to continue his work since then. Darwin identified how and why a single species changes over time by natural selection, but he never explained how one species divides into two. If we didn’t have speciation, we would only have a single, evolved descendant of that very first species. Darwin was a brilliant man, and I often wonder what was going through his mind as he started down this path of discovery.

While I was fairly familiar with the theory of evolution, speciation and the substantial supporting fossil record, I really had no idea how in-depth, brilliant and solid the evidence really is. When you consider how different species not only look different, but had developed genetic barriers that prevent them from interbreeding with other species, even though they all can be traced back to the same common species. It amazes me that someone can wave aside the absolute all inspiring tonnage of evidence that supports evolution, speciation and transitional mutations, all because they have a disproven, fictional book written by groups of superstitious, religious fanatics 2000 years ago based on the oral retelling of a myth passed down from one family to another.

What about us
This was probably my favorite chapter as it talked about human genetic heritage. The fact that DNA evidence proves that we are evolved apes that descended from other apes, and that are closest current ape relative is the chimpanzee, who can be traced back to an older species that the split off from our own several million years ago in Africa. I find it interesting that with the current religiosity numbers that reflect that in the United States 35% of the population is nonreligious, and the 65% remaining (though thankfully dwindling in numbers more each year) believe in some form of religion, mostly Christian, and understand DNA evidence when it comes to criminal investigations and trials. However, wave that aside, when it is inconvenient that DNA evidence proves that we are descended from apes.

I always find it funny how you can pick and choose what you want to believe from the same source. Even within their holy book, “that Scripture is merely a parable”, “that Scripture is fact”, and how do you figure out which is which? Either DNA evidence is a solid, provable prima facie, or not. I submit to you that DNA evidence is a solid, provable prima facie, and thus proves we are descended from apes.

Evolution redux
This chapter really brings it home, some of the more enlightened creationist understand and even accept portions of evolution, and they were even state they find evidence for evolution very convincing, but they still don’t believe it. Someday books like this would not have to be written from a position of defending facts because the majority of the population clings to superstitious belief in a delusion. It is time to put aside the chicken bones, tea leaves, tarot cards and fairytales, and exchange them for empirical evidence, reason, logic and substantiated scientific truth. The fact that, religious belief (declining globally at an ever increasing rate) still holds a majority, does not give it validity due to the argument of popularity.

We need to strive to spread the truth, facts, and evidence to educate ourselves and our children based on our understanding of the real world. We can allow our personal beliefs in a transcendental dimension to be something we teach at home and at church, if that is desired or deemed necessary by the individual. Religion has no place in school as it is not based in fact. The two really are different subjects; Science and fiction, fact and faith.


Work cited:

Coyne, J. (2009) Why evolution is true. London: Penguin Books Ltd.

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"The Christian community continues to exist because the conclusions of the critical study of the Bible are largely withheld from them." -Hans Conzelmann (1915-1989)
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02-12-2014, 06:50 PM
RE: Help to debunk Evolution's Achilles Heels.
Let's start here: Universal Common Descent is a fairy tale, believed by those that worship at the church of Darwinism.
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02-12-2014, 06:51 PM
RE: Help to debunk Evolution's Achilles Heels.
Jerry Coyne. BWahahahahah. Puhlease, next are you going to quote me some Dawkins? ROFL.
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