The Instigator
toughenough
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
tylergraham95
Pro (for)
Winning
22 Points

Evolution is the only viable explanation for the origin of all the species that exist today.

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 6 votes the winner is...
tylergraham95
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 6/25/2014 Category: Miscellaneous
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 976 times Debate No: 57133
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (8)
Votes (6)

 

toughenough

Con

BoP lies on Pro, who has courageously challenged me to defend this statement.
tylergraham95

Pro

I accept the challenge. I pray my opponent will not forfeit many rounds.

Before we begin, however, I'd like to lay out a groundwork for this debate so that it will not be a total train wreck.

First of all, I'm only going to use round one for definitions and acceptance, in the interest of fairness. Also in the interest of fairness, I ask that my opponent introduce no new arguments/rebuttals/information in the final round of the debate (I will, of course, respect the same stipulation).

Definitions

Evolution - "Evolution is the change in the inherited characteristics of biological populations over successive generations. Evolutionary processes give rise to diversity at every level of biological organisation, including species, individual organisms and molecules such as DNA and proteins.

All life on Earth is descended from a last universal ancestor that lived approximately 3.8 billion years ago. Repeated speciation and the divergence of life can be inferred from shared sets of biochemical and morphological traits, or by shared DNA sequences. These homologous traits and sequences are more similar among species that share a more recent common ancestor, and can be used to reconstruct evolutionary histories, using both existing species and the fossil record. Existing patterns of biodiversity have been shaped both by speciation and by extinction.

Charles Darwin was the first to formulate a scientific argument for the theory of evolution by means of natural selection. Evolution by natural selection is a process inferred from three facts about populations: 1) more offspring are produced than can possibly survive, 2) traits vary among individuals, leading to different rates of survival and reproduction, and 3) trait differences are heritable. Thus, when members of a population die they are replaced by the progeny of parents better adapted to survive and reproduce in the environment in which natural selection takes place. This process creates and preserves traits that are seemingly fitted for the functional roles they perform. Natural selection is the only known cause of adaptation, but not the only known cause of evolution. Other, nonadaptive causes of evolution include mutation and genetic drift.

In the early 20th century, genetics was integrated with Darwin's theory of evolution by natural selection through the discipline of population genetics. The importance of natural selection as a cause of evolution was accepted into other branches of biology. Moreover, previously held notions about evolution, such as orthogenesis and "progress" became obsolete. Scientists continue to study various aspects of evolution by forming and testing hypotheses, constructing scientific theories, using observational data, and performing experiments in both the field and the laboratory. Biologists agree that descent with modification is one of the most reliably established facts in science. Discoveries in evolutionary biology have made a significant impact not just within the traditional branches of biology, but also in other academic disciplines (e.g., anthropology and psychology) and on society at large."

http://en.wikipedia.org...

Viable - For the sake of this debate, I ask that "Viable" be defined in a manner appropriate to scientific validity, similar to the definition used in the debate between Bill Nye and Ken Ham. Therefore, the Pro must defend the scientific validity of evolutionary theory, and the Con must defend the scientific validity of any other hypothesis regarding the origin of species.

With these definitions clarified, I wish my opponent the best of luck.
Debate Round No. 1
toughenough

Con

I am not sure where Pro got the idea that there is such a thing as a four paragraph definition not where he got the notion that Wikipedia is a reliable source for one but alas, I shall continue this debate using his definition.

I shall explain to you beyond any reasonable doubt why evolution is not so ridiculous within itself but why the gaps in its logic are, in fact, filled ever so nicely by its key rival, Creationism.

It is important to note that Creationism is not unique to the Judeo-Christian god hi and any creator, omnipotent or not, can be applied to the logic if the theory. I do not have to prove the existence of the specific God of Christianity, Judaism nor Islam to substantiate the viability of Creationism as the correct explanation of all the species that exist today.

It is also essential for the debate to proceed that is made crystal clear that I fully accept micro-evolution on an intra-species level. Within a species, the most adapted creatures to their surroundings are more likely to reproduce than those who don't. This is simple natural selection (which is the process by which evolution happens but is not bound to the theory itself). Where my opponent and I disagree is that the inter-species "macro evolution" is not the only viable explanation for the origin of species that we have today.

So let's analyze a quote that Darwin himself said: http://tinyurl.com...

"To suppose that the eye with all its inimitable contrivances for adjusting the focus to different distances, for admitting different amounts of light, and for the correction of spherical and chromatic aberration, could have been formed by natural selection, seems, I freely confess, absurd in the highest degree."

Now, he of course went on to justify how the eye could have potentially evolved but the point remains that even the very founder of evolution himself had his doubts about his theory's validity (no matter how well he covered up those doubts with desperate grasps at abstract logic).


You see, Darwin did a great thing for biologists; he gave them a framework in which to categorize animals and work out the relationships between them. He observed that out of a group of 3 males and 3 females the most adapted male to the environment is most likely to be able to have sex with all the three females and only the most attractive of the three will get banged the most times with the most semen. On top of this, only the female most turned on by the male would put the effort in being attractive for him in the first place. This is all true and easy to understand. Where Darwin leaves a huge plot-hole in his storyline is in how one species suddenly turns into another. His theory falls apart in explain how us and chimps coexist and why one didn't ever kill the other off. It also fails to explain how a species suddenly spreads and why magically a male and female of the same species both evolve simultaneously to have sex and produce their own species from there onwards

There also another huge plot-hole in terms of how the heck any living animal exists after the entire dinosaur population was wiped out. Did evolution just revamp itself? Did evolution restart from bacteria up to eukaryotes to the complexity level of human beings all over again? Why did all the dinosaurs die but living animals still remain... Oh that's right "they magically evolved"! It all makes sense now. Heck, the leading theory is that fish suddenly grew feet and walked on land.[http://tinyurl.com...]
Now I genuinely wonder why a world where 71% of it is water [http://tinyurl.com...] drove fish so insane with the ocean that they felt the need to suffocate themselves in order to on land. This is simply preposterous.

Aside from this major loophole in the storyline of the macro-evolved animal kingdom, is a more fundamental issue that I want to address. If a group of animals exist and one child happens to be very mutated to a degree that makes it more adapted to its surroundings, it will be socially rejected and thrown to the side for being a freak, it won't suddenly be sexually worshipped and reproduce with every woman in town to pass its genes on. Do you think suddenly one day one primate thought "ooh let's have sex with less hairy people who stand taller because that's just effing hot!" and then magically an army of less hairy upright chimps were bred that kept reproducing within its family and incest triumphed all the other primates because of suddenly super intelligent brains coming to human beings. This is a nice fairytale but simply doesn't sound realistic, in actual fact it's near-impossible. if more violent, stronger primates were around when humans began evolving it doesn't make sense that they'd out-evolve the others. Instead our weak bodies would be massacred by the superior apes that are five to eight times as strong as human beings[http://tinyurl.com...]. What do you think happened, we just suddenly evolved language and ingenuity to build spears and arrows in order to hunt and defeat other species out of nowhere? How the heck did we evolve ingenuity and language in time our weak, frail bodies not to have been thrashed by other species?!

In actual fact why are black bears even black? They are the bears that climb trees but the brown bears are wasting their time hunting fish when it can blend into the tree trunks so much better. Why did pandas begin eating bamboo only? did they just happen to evolve to a less sustainable existence? None of it makes any sense.

On top of this, when two similar species try and create a new one, that species is always, without fail, sterile.[http://tinyurl.com...] So how exactly is a new species supposed to form? Even that makes no sense.

Following from this is the more pressing issue of how freaks of nature end up getting treated by their species. When humans that are freakishly hairy[http://tinyurl.com...], tall, short or any other oddity of humankind they are severely bullied as children and often driven to suicide via it. If they happen to be tough enough to survive that, they will very rarely be able to meet any other human who they can turn on due to their freakish appearance. If they do happen to reproduce it's still very unlikely that their children will be able to find anyone to mate unless the partner is really ugly and desperate themselves and hence evolutionarily maladaptive. In fact, what is likely to happen is that the less-freaky children will out-reproduce the more freaky looking children and over time that undesirable trait will die out. Now I really don't think that being a skinny upright-standing talker was attractive back in the days that humans originated from the "original primates". Instead, I think that standing upright instead of crawling everywhere you went was just considered screwed up and idiotic because you couldn't climb trees so well and no other ape would have wanted to have sex with that weirdo. It makes sense that humans should have died out long ago via evolution. We didn't. Instead we evolved the most idiotic thing ever.

Black absorbs heat better than white[http://tinyurl.com...] but darker people are where the sun is. How does that make any evolutionary sense?

In all honesty the more likely answer is that each species was created as a breed in a great game designed by one, or a group of, bored god(s) that had nothing better to do with their time. It has a pattern for the sake of it and certain species look similar to each other but that's just the mysterious beauty of the work of art that is our world. We don't know how they did it, or why, but to think that evolution explains the whole picture is not only amusing but downright stupid.
tylergraham95

Pro

I thank my opponent for his effort, though I am annoyed that my opponent has shifted the goalposts by conceding Micro-evolution in R2.

I must point out, though, that my opponent assumes that evolution applies to the fauna of the Earth alone. This is not the case. Plants (believe it or not) are living beings, and can reproduce, and can mutate. Therefore, plants are prone to evolution as well.

For this debate, I will be dividing my argument into two main sections. The first section will be entirely devoted to discrediting the validity of creationist theory. The second will be for defending the validity of evolutionary theory, and therefore rebutting the Con's argument.


PROS CASE

I. Evidence against the creationist case.

The strongest evidence against the creationism case, is actually the lack of evidence. If Creationism was a scientifically valid theory, then there would be evidence indicative of creation. There is, however, no such (legitimate) evidence.

A) Argument From Design?

The first argument that is used to support creationist theory is that the universe is complex, and therefore must have a complex designer. This, however, is a non-sequiter. No complex creation comes from a single-sole designer, rather, the accumulated knowledge of all beings that had previously contributed to the creation of any complex thing. Such is the case in evolution. A species of bacteria consumes only resource X. Randomly, A mutation occurs that allows the bacteria to also consume resource Y (as well as X). Because the mutated generation of bacteria is better suited for survival, it is able to reproduce more effectively, thus spreading the genetic code required for the consumption of both X and Y. Suppose though, that the bacteria had instead randomly mutated a generation of cells that could only consume resource Z, which was sparse. That strain of bacteria would eventually die off (or at least, would not be as successful in reproducing as the other strain). Over time, the bacteria become more and more complex, becoming better suited over time for survival. This is the process we call evolution. Every layer of complexity adds variety. This does not mean that it cannot create diversity as well. Suppose one strain of bacteria mutates to consume X and Z. Though possibly not as successful as the strain that consumed X and Y, the strain that consumed X and Z would still likely thrive.

Repeat this process over millions upon trillions of years, and then you have all life that exists on the earth today.


B) Argument From Cause?

Many creationists may argue that the universe began to exist, and therefore has a cause, and this indicates the existence of a divine creator deity. This is not the case. First of all, there is no evidence to prove that the Universe ever "began." This may be too abstract for my opponent to comprehend, but the is no way to empirically prove that the universe has a "beginning" in time. Even if the was a cause to the universe, this does not in any way prove that that same "cause" also created complex life on Earth.


C) Occams Razor

Of course, at the end of any scientific question (Why does mass have gravity? Why are the laws of physics the way they are?) you can simply add "because god made it so" but this is simply an extra assumption to add your hypothesis, or theory, and is therefore to be rejected, under Occam's Razor.


Conclusion

There is absolutely 0 legitimate evidence demonstrating that life was magically wished onto the Earth by an imaginary spaghetti monster. There is, however, an abundance of evidence indicating that life began on the earth very simply, and (through random mutation, natural selection, and the other various forces of evolution) became more and more complex over time.


II. Rebutting Con's Case/The Scientific Validity of Evolutionary Theory

A) Rebuttal

First my opponent takes shot's at Darwin's original theory. This is not a valid attack on modern evolutionary theory, however, because that is not the nature of scientific theory. The primary difference between creationism and evolution regarding scientific validity is this. Evolution takes facts, and from that draws conclusions (aka Theories). Creationism takes a conclusion, and then tries to fill in the blanks with facts. The beauty of a scientific theory is that if there is a flaw, the theory is then revised. When the atom was discovered, we believed that the atom was like a big ball of plum pudding, this was mostly true, but not entirely. When we discovered that fact (atoms are mostly empty space), we revised the theory, to better increase our understanding of atomic structure. Such is the nature of all scientific theories (including gravitational theory).

Creationism isn't scientifically valid because it is a zero-sum answer. There are no further questions. Which is unscientific. Even in the case of gravity there is still the question of WHY does mass have gravity? In the case of creationism, there is no question, only an answer based on zero evidence.

The following paragraph is wholly untrue. My opponent seems to believe that in the natural world "beauty" is just a magical abstract concept with no rhyme or reason. In reality, the reason that you might find a certain person "attractive" is because your brain believes that if you were to mate with them, they would likely provide you with a healthy offspring. This is true in all of the animal and plant kingdoms. Furthermore, evolution occurs when mutant generations with unfavorable traits die before reproducing, and mutant generations with favorable traits reproduce often.

Next my opponent claims that all life ceased to exist when the dinosaurs died. This is not true. During the mass extinction of dinosaurs, not even all dinosaurs went extinct.

http://en.wikipedia.org...;

B) Fossil Records, and Radio-Carbon Dating

The best evidence that we have of macro evolution is the extensive fossil records of the evolutionary process. The most interesting of which (of course) being our own. the evolutionary steps of the Human Race.

http://en.wikipedia.org...

It was over vast spans of time that we, Homo Sapiens, evolved from simple ape-like creatures. Over time, natural selection favored our intelligence, our communication skills, and eventually our tool manipulation. This is what allowed our species to thrive, and eventually develop complex sentience.

C) Micro-evolution+Time=Macro evolution

My opponent may make the argument that Humans and apes are not distinct enough to the point to where a line can be drawn between which ape is more or less "ape." Over time though, micro-evolution, is macro evolution. My opponent cited a lovely source that explains the process by which animals evolved to walk on land. He says that 72% of the earth is water (not true 72% of the surface is covered by water, 99% of the earth is rock/dirt/solid), why move out onto land? I'll explain why the ability to survive on dry land was a favorable trait in natural selection (keep in mind this process requires an unfathomable amount of time). Animals did not evolve to survive on land first. Plants did. Plants originally lived only in the ocean, but photosynthesis is obviously more favorable on land. Plants that lived in areas prone to tidal shifts eventually developed stiff cell walls that allowed the plant to remain upright on land, therefore maximizing the plants survivability, increasing the reproduction success rate, etc. Then, when plants were thriving on the land, Fauna began to develop the ability to live on land, in order to gain access to the resources on land. My opponent essentially argues "the water is good enough, why go out on to land?" Which is the same to say, "Steak is good enough for dinner, why ask for desert?" because you thrive more when your species can also access the resources found only on land.
Debate Round No. 2
toughenough

Con

toughenough forfeited this round.
tylergraham95

Pro

*sigh*

I forward all contentions across the board.
Debate Round No. 3
toughenough

Con

toughenough forfeited this round.
tylergraham95

Pro

Forward all points.
Debate Round No. 4
toughenough

Con

toughenough forfeited this round.
tylergraham95

Pro

I guess I win...
Debate Round No. 5
8 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 8 records.
Posted by tylergraham95 3 years ago
tylergraham95
8,000 characters is not enough space to cover everything. I wish this debate had been 10,000. Oh well.
Posted by toughenough 3 years ago
toughenough
Always nice to have a friendly comment to come back to.
Posted by CarlSaganT3 3 years ago
CarlSaganT3
Con clearly has little to no understanding of macro-evolution. Between the straw-man attacks, blatant lies, and mockery of evolution out of lack of understanding; his/her argument is ridiculous at best. I look forward to pro refuting this BS thoroughly and logically. Farewell.
Posted by Wylted 3 years ago
Wylted
Geeze, 2 inches? I'm not black. It's not that big !!!
Posted by toughenough 3 years ago
toughenough
She swallowed all 2 inches.
Posted by Wylted 3 years ago
Wylted
That's what she said.
Posted by toughenough 3 years ago
toughenough
If I can't chew it then I'll swallow it whole.
Posted by Wylted 3 years ago
Wylted
@toughenough, don't you think you're biting off a little more than you can chew. Facing me and Tylergraham at the same time. On top of facing us, you're arguing against 2 truisms at once.
6 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 6 records.
Vote Placed by 9spaceking 3 years ago
9spaceking
toughenoughtylergraham95Tied
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Vote Placed by Envisage 3 years ago
Envisage
toughenoughtylergraham95Tied
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Vote Placed by FuzzyCatPotato 3 years ago
FuzzyCatPotato
toughenoughtylergraham95Tied
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Vote Placed by lannan13 3 years ago
lannan13
toughenoughtylergraham95Tied
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Vote Placed by dsjpk5 3 years ago
dsjpk5
toughenoughtylergraham95Tied
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Vote Placed by Wylted 3 years ago
Wylted
toughenoughtylergraham95Tied
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Reasons for voting decision: FF