The Instigator
Pro (for)
11 Points
The Contender
Con (against)
0 Points

Evolution is a Plausible Scientific Theory

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 6/23/2015 Category: Science
Updated: 1 year ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 480 times Debate No: 76876
Debate Rounds (5)
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Hello all. This is a debate on the truth in evolution; whether or not evolution is a plausible scientific theory. I think evolution is clearly plausible, as it is supported by a wide range of evidence, however some deny this and claim that evolution is false. My opponent will argue against the plausibleness of evolutionary theory.



Round 1: Acceptance
Round 2: All Main Arguments
Round 3: Rebuttal (no new arguments)
Round 4: Rebuttal (no new arguments)
Round 5: Conclusion/Final Statements

Please note that this debate will be conducted in a formal, respectable manner with extended and well-developed arguments. Each debater will be allowed 10,000 characters to formulate a statement for each round.



evolution: the process by which different kinds of living organisms are thought to have developed and diversified from earlier forms during the history of the earth. Natural selection is theorized to be the primary mechanism of this process.

natural selection:
the process whereby organisms better adapted to their environment tend to survive and produce more offspring. The theory of its action was first fully expounded by Charles Darwin and is now believed to be the main process that brings about evolution.

plausible: (of an argument or statement) seeming reasonable or probable.


I await my opponent's acceptance.


I accept.
Debate Round No. 1



Nature, and the pure variety of it, is exquisite. We have observed this for countless years. One would think that everyone would come to a consensus on an explanation behind this variety if it was supported by mountains of evidence, tested hypotheses and observations of the natural world, but somehow, the debate still goes on.

I believe that debates like these are a small, yet necessary element of increasing awareness about the truth in evolution. By exposing the lack of evidence and astounding warped logic in denying evolution, and raising the level of recognition and attention paid to evolutionary theory, I think that we can make great strides to improve the use of rational, informed thinking in today's world.

In this debate, I will put forth several widely accepted, factual arguments that support the theory of evolution by natural selection.


I. The Fossil Record and Common Ancestry

A key part of evolutionary theory is the idea that we all descended from a common ancestor, therefore explaining both the similarities between species, and the vital differences that separate us. A crucial supporter of this element of evolutionary theory is the fossil record.

Humans have dug up fossils for years, and we have gained much knowledge from the clues left for us within the record. A fantastic example of such a clue is the Archaeopteryx fossil.

Scientists can identify links between birds and reptiles by analyzing this fossil. The Archaeopteryx was a winged bird about the size of a pigeon, with dinosaurian characteristics that proves its ancestry. Scientists know that this is the missing link between modern-day birds and reptiles; it is undisputed within the scientific community now that birds and reptiles are related.

But the Archaeopteryx is not the only piece of evidence for common ancestry, there are countless other fossils sitting in museums and labs just waiting to be spliced into the great hierarchy of Earth's species of the past.

The amazing thing about the fossil record and the geographic and sedimentary location of specific fossils is that we can track possible influences that caused natural selection to take effect. Geographic isolation that causes natural selection to occur in different ways to different sects of a species is considered. Another example is drastic climate change, which gives certain members of a species an natural advantage (furthered fitness), such as acquirement of food, which triggers natural selection.


II. The Genome and Common Ancestry

The fossil record is a way that scientists can map our past, and prove the relationships different organisms have with one another. But there is, in fact, another way to do this: by analyzing the genetic material within organisms that is inherited from one's ancestor. By identifying the similarity of the gene pools of two different species, or the similarity of one organism versus another of a completely different species, scientists have drawn fantastic conclusions on how closely related species are to one another, even when they appear to be very different.

Pioneering research conducted in labs around the world has mapped the genome of numerous different organisms, and the scientific community has discovered major relationships between species. For example, human and chimpanzee DNA is as much as 98% identical, and science has even progressed far enough so that we can easily point out the genetic differences and when they may have arisen.

This is vital evidence for evolutionary theory, as once again, we can prove the relationships between species across the world. With analysis of both the fossil record and the genomic record, scientists can say with utmost confidence that all of the organisms living today share a common origin and common ancestry.


III. Observations of Evolution by Natural Selection

Since the formulation of the theory of natural selection (introduced most prominently by Charles Darwin in his work On the Origin of Species), natural selection has been observed numerous times by many scientists.

A notable example is Darwin's own observation of the finches of the Galapagos Islands. Darwin observed key differences in the structure of the finches' beaks, and found that these differences were grouped in accordance with the diet of the finch. The finches that ate insects and lived in trees had beaks that were structured differently from the ground-dwelling, seed-eating finch.

But how? How did the finches acquire these different shapes, seemingly ideal to their different diets? The answer is natural selection, and science has confirmed that through further experiments on the Galapagos. To put in simple terms: the finches best adapted to their diet were more successful in survival and reproduction, and therefore their genes became more prominent in the gene pool. The finches evolved to become more fit, more adapted to their environment. They evolved.



We can see that evolution is a plausible scientific theory if we examine the evidence. It is obvious that evolution by natural selection is the best way to explain developments, fluctuations and observations made in nature. Science is wonderful; scientists use evidence to build theories which explain the world around us rationally, logically and astoundingly accurately. As much as 98% of the scientific community believes with the theory of evolution. I side with the scientific community, evidence and rationality, and I believe that evolution is a plausible scientific theory.





GainWisdom forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 2


As my opponent has forfeited the round for proposing main arguments, I request that he respond with rebuttal, and I will present counterarguments to his claims in Round 4. I have nothing to rebut at this time.


Since Evolution can mean different things to different people I don't know how to respond to your definition of "Evolution".

These are three types of Evolution:

1.) Microevolution-Evolutionary change involving the gradual accumulation of mutations leading to new varieties within a species.
2.) Macroevolution-Major evolutionary transition from one type of organism to another occurring at the level of the species and higher taxa.

Or Evolution can just mean change over time.
Debate Round No. 3


My arguments extend to this point, despite previous forfeiture by my opponent.


R1: On the Definition of Evolution

My opponent argues that the definition of evolution is unclear, however, I clearly stated the following definition in R1:

"the process by which different kinds of living organisms are thought to have developed and diversified from earlier forms during the history of the earth. Natural selection is theorized to be the primary mechanism of this process."

My opponent argues that because of this lack of definition (which is non-existent), it is impossible to argue the plausibility of evolutionary theory. Even with this broad definition, the mechanism by which evolution occurs, natural selection, is consistently justified within all of my arguments. My opponent fails to give a reason why this definition presents a problem or disruption to the progression of this debate.

I would also like to rebut my opponent's separation of the terms of macroevolution and microevolution, as if only one can be valid. To clarify, my opponent says that microevolution is the "gradual accumulation of mutations leading to new varieties within species", while macroevolution, defined as being separate, as "major evolutionary transition from one type of organism to another occurring at the level of the species".

I argue that these two 'types' of evolution are different, however they occur via the same mechanism of evolution, natural selection. Microevolution, being the change of allele frequencies within a population, is indisputably true, and is widely accepted by even the most staunch creationists, as there is overwhelming evidence to suggest its existence and plausibility. Macroevolution is often argued by creationists as to be to such a great extent that it is impossible to observe, however, many pieces of evidence point to the existence of speciation, or the formation of a distinct species. My previous arguments, including the evidence of the fossil record and genetic similarity, are included in support for speciation.

In all, I claim that evolution has already been defined, and even if it was not, both microevolution and macroevolution are supported by the fields mentioned in my arguments, such as genomics and paleontology.


I await my opponent's rebuttal of all above-mentioned arguments.




GainWisdom forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4


Hello all. Due to forfeiture, all of my arguments extend unrefuted to this point. Because of this, I can only assume my opponent has conceded this debate, and I ask for a vote in favor of Pro.

Thank you all for your voting, in advance.


Since evolution can have different definitions... I don't believe we evolved from a fish. I believe God created us.
Debate Round No. 5
No comments have been posted on this debate.
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by Enji 1 year ago
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Total points awarded:40 
Reasons for voting decision: "Evolution has multiple definitions, therefore the resolution is false" isn't a compelling argument because Pro defines evolution in the framing of the debate. Forfeit by Con.
Vote Placed by Nicoszon_the_Great 1 year ago
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Total points awarded:70 
Reasons for voting decision: GainWisdom has to be a troll or something, he never even offered a defense of his own position and it saddens me to see a lack of intellectual discussion.